I’m excited for the USA-Brazil friendly tomorrow! Now, I know that this might make me a bit of an outcast, but I’ll tell you why. I see this match as the last in the 2010 World Cup cycle. I disagree with those who say that this match is purely a money-grab, although I’m sure US Soccer is loving the ticket sales. This match is a send off, a thank you, an epilogue, to the whole cycle that led up to the 2010 World Cup. How fitting that this game is against Brazil, the team that the USA faced in the Confederations Cup final last year and the game that brought the impending World Cup into the minds of the general public.
This roster only contains one player, Omar Gonzalez, who was not in the 30-man roster for this past World Cup, and only a few players, like Alejandro Bedoya and Sacha Kljestan, who were not on the 23-man roster. But this is a final time for the fans in the United States to go to a game and say goodbye to the players who won’t feature in the next World Cup, or who perhaps won’t ever make a National Team roster ever again. Even the controversial and maligned Robbie Findley should be in the roster, giving Real Salt Lake fans one more, perhaps final, time to see him wearing a National Team jersey.
This could/should be the last match for the National Team before Bob Bradley’s future is decided. He’s been linked to clubs out there, such as Fulham and, as of today, Aston Villa. He would also be welcomed by almost every fan of DC United, should he want to come back to MLS. With the new coach in place, or Bradley’s future secured, the October friendlies should be the first matches in the 2014 cycle. That’s the time that the team should start bringing in players like Charlies Davies, Jermaine Jones (if he’s healthy), Brek Shea, Jack McInerney, Chris Pontius, people from the U-23 and U-20 teams, and all sorts of other possibilities. But let’s have one last hurrah for the men of the 2010 cycle, and give these guys one last thank you.