SAN ANTONIO, TX – APRIL 15: The United States team surround Juan Agudelo #17 after he scores a goal against Mexico during an international friendly match at the Alamodome on April 15, 2015 in San Antonio, Texas. (Photo by Chris Covatta/Getty Images)

USMNT Rules Over Europe! Beat Netherlands and Germany

The USMNT faced World Cup champion and currently top ranked Germany on Wednesday. Rather than cower in fear, the USMNT stared them down to a 2-1 come-from-behind win. This comes on the heels of a thrilling 4-3 come-from-behind win against the Netherlands late last week. In just five days, the USMNT beat the No. 6 and No. 1 ranked teams in the world on European soil.

The USMNT started the game rather shaky and they paid the price. Timmy Chandler and the other USMNT defenders left Mario Gotze tremendously wide open and very easily tapped in the goal to make it 1-0.

Slowly the USMNT started to get things going and rather than starting strong and fading out like most games in the past year, the USMNT struggled at the start and got stronger as the game wore on. That was evident with this tremendous 35 pass sequence.

Speaking of tremendous passing sequences, let’s talk about Michael Bradley. Bradley got a bad wrap over the past year but most of that wasn’t his fault. It doesn’t matter who you are, when you’re not playing a position you’re used to like Bradley was, you’re going to struggle. Bradley played too far up and now that he has played more centrally, he’s shined. That, and you also see sequences like this:

Once things got going again in the second half, the USMNT held their own. A fantastic game going back and forth and it really appeared that the USMNT was in it to win it. Then in the 88th minute, Bobby Wood with the dramatics once again. Not only did he score the game winning goal last Friday against the Netherlands, he scored the game winner against Germany with the kind of finish that would make Lionel Messi proud.

After Germany almost equalizing at the end, the USMNT held on to the 2-1 victory. The team is running on all cylinders as they start the Gold Cup in July. I, and others, have said that for US Soccer and the USMNT to be successful, they must beat the top teams in the world in their own backyards instead of beating up on CONCACAF teams and struggling against the top teams. You can’t get any better than what the USMNT has done over the past five days.

Yes, these are friendlies and these aren’t the top lineups that are being brought out but that doesn’t mean the Netherlands and Germany are putting out crap lineups. And it’s not like the USMNT is fielding their top team either. Both teams are fielding B lineups and the USMNT won the games. Also, this is Seattle Sounders player Brad Evans nutmegging Arsenal’s Lukas Podolski. By that alone, the USMNT earned this victory.

I have said it all the time, in friendlies, you shouldn’t get too high on the wins and you shouldn’t get too low on the losses. As great as the wins were, they are still friendlies. Having said that, we’re going to take a few minutes and celebrate.

About Phillip Bupp

Producer/editor of the Awful Announcing Podcast and Short and to the Point. News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. Highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @phillipbupp