Klinsmann starts veterans for Confed Cup playoff vs Mexico
PASADENA, Calif. (AP) U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann picked a veteran lineup for Saturday’s night playoff against Mexico to determine a berth in the 2017 Confederations Cup, starting nine of the 11 players who opened last year’s World Cup for the Americans against Ghana.
The only changes were goalkeeper Brad Guzan in place of Tim Howard and midfielder Gyasi Zardes instead of Alejandro Bedoya, who is ill.
Matt Besler and Geoff Cameron were in central defense, joined by right back Fabian Johnson and left back DaMarcus Beasley. The quartet was Klinsmann’s first-choice back four at the World Cup.
Kyle Beckerman and Jermaine Jones were in the midfield with captain Michael Bradley and Zardes. Jozy Altidore and Clint Dempsey were up front.
Mexico interim coach Ricardo Ferretti fielded a 4-3-3 formation featuring Raul Jimenez and Oribe Peralta up front with star Javier Hernandez. Rafael Marquez, the 36-year-old captain, was in defensive midfield.
Andres Guardado, who scored six goals in the CONCACAF Gold Cup, returned from an ankle injury to start in midfield along with Hector Herrera.
Moises Munoz was in goal, with Paul Aguilar at right back, Diego Reyes and Hector Moreno in central defense and Miguel Layun at left back.