Jun 17, 2014, 9:36 PM EST
Two down, one to go, according to Jurgen Klinsmann. Speaking at a Tuesday press conference, the United States Men’s National Team head coach said two of the three stars that were injured in Monday’s 2-1 win over Ghana will be ready to go on Sunday, with doubts surrounding defender Matt Besler alleviated after the Sporting Kansas City all-star was given the all clear.
According to Klinsmann, Dempsey’s broken nose, suffered the the first half, will not sideline him for the U.S.’s next match, against Portugal. Striker Jozy Altidore is still uncertain after a 21st minute hamstring injury forced his removal.
Matt Besler is in the Dempsey camp. Though he was replaced at halftime against Ghana by John Brooks, the 27-year-old’s own hamstring problem does not approach the severity of Altidore’s. According to his head coach, Besler will play on Sunday in Manaus, pushing Brooks back to his spot on the bench.
“Matt is no problem,” Klinsmann said, augmenting this statement before moving on to the next topic. “[He’ll be] all fine for the next game.”
For U.S. fans, the news is cause for relief. Though Brooks eventually produced the game-winning goal, he was also slow to fill the space in defense during André Ayew’s late equalizer. Even before that 82nd minute score, the back line had looked less confident after Besler’s substitution, with the Black Stars finally able to consistently connect with Gyan once the team’s starting left-center back was removed.
Whether those connections were caused by Ghana’s improvement or Besler’s absence, there is a coincidence, one the U.S. need not investigate further. Going into a match that could secure its place in the knockout round, the States’ back four will be in tact.
Brooks may prove good enough to fill Besler’s shoes. Fortunately for U.S. fans, they don’t have to find out so soon.
Dec 25, 2014, 5:00 PM EST
Can Charlie Austin lead QPR to another win, or will the Rangers’ struggles away from home continue?
Dec 25, 2014, 3:30 PM EST
If the Reds lose away at Burnley on Boxing Day, who/what will Brendan Rodgers blame?
Dec 25, 2014, 2:00 PM EST
The Magpies travel to Old Trafford where they face a Manchester United side keen to get back to their winning ways.
Dec 25, 2014, 12:37 PM EST
Where and how to watch all the PL games on Friday December 26, otherwise known as Boxing Day.
Dec 25, 2014, 11:17 AM EST
The on-loan Chelsea striker could be returning to his boyhood club as his stint with AC Milan has been less than stellar.
Dec 25, 2014, 9:54 AM EST
A full slate of matches on Boxing Day kicks off with a London derby as the Hammers look to spoil Chelsea’s Christmas.
Dec 24, 2014, 7:43 PM EST
Toronto reportedly wants to either keep Defoe or sell permanently, and while Redknapp is interested, that would be a problem.
Dec 24, 2014, 6:30 PM EST
With Saido Mane headed to the AFCON and Jay Rodriguez struggling with his knee injury, Ronald Koeman has added another outside threat.
Dec 24, 2014, 5:07 PM EST
Only England plays matches on Boxing Day, and that means something to the Arsenal manager.
Dec 24, 2014, 3:49 PM EST
With a new style of high-pressing play not suited to Balotelli’s style, Brendan Rodgers is admitting his summer signing no longer fits.
Dec 24, 2014, 2:35 PM EST
Here’s how PST’s lead writer and editor sees things panning out on Boxing Day.
Dec 24, 2014, 12:10 PM EST
Arsenal’s likeable winger just hasn’t seen the field, and could be headed to Serie A as a result.
Dec 24, 2014, 10:46 AM EST
The new Manchester United boss is sweating the heavy injury list, both those that need treatment and those in the recovery room.
Dec 24, 2014, 9:23 AM EST
They don’t play for over a month, and therefore Manuel Pellegrini isn’t thinking about Chelsea despite being three points off the Blues for the top spot in the Premier League table.
Dec 23, 2014, 11:13 PM EST
And yes, we’re opening that unfortunate Pandora’s box of discussion again this fine Tuesday in December.
Dec 23, 2014, 10:42 PM EST
Torres is staying in Major League Soccer after a loan stint in Liga MX, and both MLS and Houston are looking solid after the deal.
Dec 23, 2014, 10:03 PM EST
Three cheers for James Milner, who sank his teeth into the idea that his holiday would be simply mundane in this hilarious video.
Dec 23, 2014, 9:10 PM EST
The article also provides us with anecdotes like the following tale of Colts quarterback Luck, one of the many stories that make us wonder, as always, “What if?”
Dec 23, 2014, 8:20 PM EST
The L.A. Galaxy striker doesn’t sound absolutely certain of his MLS future despite appearing at a press conference for an Ireland friendly.
Dec 23, 2014, 7:30 PM EST
Four matches in 10 days is not a situation unique to Arsenal, but it’s still something the club boss is concerning himself with this holiday season.
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