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Americans Abroad Review: Cameron aids Stoke shock, Johannsson brilliant as usual

Mar 3, 2014, 3:57 PM EDT

AZ Alkmaar v FC Slovan Liberec - UEFA Europa League Round of 32 Getty Images

The busiest Yanks were in England, though Holland saw Aron Johannsson’s star continue to rise and Stu Holden suffered another setback. Let’s dive right into this weeks Americans Abroad Review.

Jozy Altidore had even less reason to enjoy his club’s 3-1 loss to Manchester City in the Capital One Cup final, as the American striker was left out of the Match Day 18 altogether. While he’s been lauded for his work holding up the ball, his lack of proficiency as a striker is alarming for US and Sunderland fans alike.

Tim Howard picked up his 10th clean sheet of the season, but first in a month and a half, as Everton stymied West Ham by a 1-0 score at Goodison Park. The 10 shutouts match his total last season.

Brad Guzan didn’t keep it tidy early, allowing a Wes Hoolahan goal in the third minute thanks in large part to poor marking from his defense. But Aston Villa roared back with Christian Benteke leading Guzan’s Villans to a 4-1 win and moving them even closer to safety.

What else can be said about Geoff Cameron at Stoke City? As steady as you’d like, Cameron played 90 minutes in the back as the Potters shocked Arsenal 1-0. Cameron has now played the duration of all but one Premier League match for Stoke this season.

By the time Brek Shea subbed on for Barnsley in the 55th minute of their derby match against Huddersfield Town, the Tykes were down 3-0. It didn’t get any better with the blonde-haired speedster in the lineup, as Barnsley fell 5-0 and dropped in a precarious 23rd place in the Championship. And then… there’s the matter of his alleged obscene gesture toward his own team’s supporters.

Danny Williams played 90 in the back for Reading as they pulled to within a point of sixth-place Wigan in their fight for a spot in the Championship playoffs by drawing Duane Holmes (73 minutes) and Yeovil Town. Nottingham Forest was beaten soundly by Wigan, 4-1, and Eric Lichaj came out of the game with injury.

Birmingham City fell to Ipswich Town by a 1-0 margin, but Yank defenders Will Packwood and Jonathan Spector each played the entire contest, with Spector picking up a yellow card for a bad foul. Oguchi Onyewu played a strong match for Sheffield Wednesday in its 1-0 win over Middlesbrough.

Tim Ream also got 90 for Bolton, and almost opened the scoring with a header in the 4th minute before the Wanderers cruised to a 4-0 win over Blackburn. The Wanderers are now nine points out of the relegation zone, but the trouble more Americans will be concerned with has to do with Stu Holden. He suited up for Bolton’s U-21s on Monday in an attempt to comeback from his myriad injuries… and left after 22 minutes with an apparent knee injury.

Aron Johannsson was your proverbial man on a mission in AZ Alkmaar’s match against RKC Waalwijk. He upped his assists to 14 on the season by picking up two in the match. While he didn’t add to his goal total of 25, Johannsson was credited with attempting seven shots. Yes, seven. Altidore beware. This was all on the heels of playing 74 minutes in the Europa League tie against Slovan Liberec… so he’s got that whole “valuable” thing going for him.

Staying in the Eredivisie, FC Utrecht kept Juan Agudelo as an unused substitute in its 1-1 draw with Twente. In Belgium, Sacha Kljestan also didn’t play after making the bench for Anderlecht in a 2-0 win over Genk.

It’s two goals in three matches for Terrence Boyd, though the tally came in Rapid Vienna’s 6-3 loss to Red Bull Salzburg. Boyd played 62 minutes in the loss. Ale Bedoya played 67 minutes in Nantes 2-0 defeat at Evian, while Jermaine Jones finally got on the pitch Besiktas, playing 58 minutes in the Turkish club’s scoreless draw against Antalyaspor.

It wasn’t as busy as usual for Yanks in Germany as Steve Cherundolo and Timothy Chandler continue to fight injuries. Fabian Johnson played the first 87 minutes for Hoffenheim in its 6-2 win against Wolfsburg, and was at right back yet again. John Anthony Brooks did not play for Hertha Berlin in a 0-0 home draw with Freiberg.

Last but not least: watch DaMarcus Beasley turns on the jets to score Puebla’s winner this weekend.

  1. jucam1 - Mar 3, 2014 at 5:03 PM

    I remember coming on this forum and stating the fact that Altidore is not a EPL level player and having everyone get their panties in a bunch. The guy is the most overrated USMT player hands down!…. Jurgen knows the USMT is not going to make it out of the first round in Brazil, but by getting his extension through 2018, focusing on getting the good US talent out of a weak MLS (but getting better) and in to the European leagues, and hopefully realizing that Altidore and a few others are dead weight, he is building the right foundation for Russia in 2018. Hopefully the US draws better for the ’18 cup and will have a realistic chance of making it to the next round. As is now, they’ll be lucky to tie Ghana and will get beat badly in the other two matches, but it’s a marathon and Jurgen’s extension tells us the true goal is to make a run in ’18

    • hanoverboxer - Mar 3, 2014 at 6:33 PM

      I have zero confidence in either Altidore or Dempsey at this point. I hope Aron Johannson starts up top in Brazil.

    • bear06 - Mar 3, 2014 at 10:31 PM

      No, you do not know that JK knows that the U.S. MNT are not going to make it out of the first round in Brazil.

  2. lipcan3 - Mar 3, 2014 at 5:54 PM

    Rumors have it that Shea flipped the bird to Barnsley supporters during a post-match altercation–as USMNT supporters this isn’t exactly what we’re looking to hear.

  3. drewvt6 - Mar 3, 2014 at 6:48 PM

    I have zero confidence in “jucam1” and his player analysis.

  4. jucam1 - Mar 3, 2014 at 9:33 PM

    Your “confidence” isn’t required Drew, just calling it how I see it and i have been proven right on several fronts, but wish I wasn’t in some cases. Altidore unfortunately reached his ceiling in a mediocre Dutch league and was overmatched from day one in the EPL. He’s an ok Concacaf player but that isn’t saying much this cup qualifying term.

    • chadmoon1 - Mar 4, 2014 at 4:05 PM

      Mediocre Dutch League? Hardly.

      It could be possible that Altidore is not the type of forward that can succeed with Sunderland, who doesn’t depend on skill but rather hustle and grit. AZ, as are most Dutch clubs, focus on the technical side, which provided Altidore much better service.

      And as for the US not making it out of it’s group? Maybe so, maybe no, but it won’t be because of team selection. The US has the biggest talent pool ever to choose from.

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