BRIAN SCIARETTA - Friday, September 2, 2011
The US national team will play their second game under new head Jurgen Klinsmann on Friday night when they host CONCACAF rivals Costa Rica at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California.
The US played to a hard fought 1-1 draw against Mexico three weeks ago in Klinsmann's debut. In that game they fell behind 1-0 in the first but dominated Mexico in the second half. Late in the game, Brek Shea made a great move in the box and found Robbie Rogers for the equalizer.
The United States is likely to play with a similar lineup on Friday against Coast Rica.
In the backline, Timothy Chandler should get the start at right back after rejoining the national team for the first time since March. On the left, Club America's Edgar Castillo is likely to get the nod after an uneven performance against Mexico last month. In central defense, team captain Carlos Bocanegra should open the game paired with Brondby's Clarence Goodson.
In the midfield, Jose Torres and Maurice Edu are the leading candidates to start centrally with Brek Shea and Robbie Rogers starting on the wings.
At forward, Jozy Altidore could make his first appearance under Klinsmann with Landon Donovan also playing up top.
In goal, Tim Howard is the clear number one keeper for the US team but Klinsmann may elect to go with DC United's Bill Hamid to give him his first cap.
The United States last played Costa Rica on October 16, 2009 in the final game of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying.
In that memorable game which was played less than 48 hours after Charlie Davies ill-fated car accident, Jonathan Bornstein headed home a last minute goal to equalize the game at 2-2. The draw clinched first place for the US in the Hexagonal table and sent Costa Rica out of an automatic qualification spot and into a playoff against Uruguay that they would eventually lose.
The US and Costa Rica have played 28 times with the head to head matchup deadlocked at 11-11-6.