Onyewu makes return from surgery
Oguchi Onyewu made his first appearance in a game since knee
surgery last October, and Edson Buddle played his first game for
the U.S. national team in seven years.
Onyewu started in central defense in Tuesday night’s exhibition
against the Czech Republic, a day before U.S. coach Bob Bradley
announces his World Cup roster. Onyewu’s previous game was Oct. 14,
when he tore his left patellar tendon during a qualifier against
Costa Rica. He was operated on seven days later and failed to get
back on the field this season for AC Milan.
Buddle, Major League Soccer’s scoring leader, made his only
previous national team appearance when he played 11 minutes as a
substitute against Venezuela on March 29, 2003. He was paired at
forward with Eddie Johnson, also on the bubble for the 23-man
roster. Johnson returned from a May 12 hamstring strain.
Brad Guzan was in goal, his first match since Aston Villa faced
Crystal Palace in the FA Cup on Feb. 24. Clarence Goodson started
in central defense with Onyewu, with right back Steve Cherundolo
serving as captain and Jonathan Bornstein at left back.
Maurice Edu and Jose Torres were in the central midfield, with
Stuart Holden on the right in only his second game since breaking
his right leg on March 3. DaMarcus Beasley, who returned in March
from nine months of national team exile, was on the left in an
effort to make his third World Cup team.
Bradley gave nights off to seven players, all seemingly assured
of making the roster: goalkeeper Tim Howard; defenders Carlos
Bocanegra and Jay DeMerit; midfielders Michael Bradley, Clint
Dempsey and Benny Feilhaber; and forward Jozy Altidore.
The reserves were goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann; defenders Chad
Marshall, Heath Pearce and Jonathan Spector; midfielders Alejandro
Bedoja, Ricardo Clark, Sacha Kljestan and Robbie Rogers; and
forwards Brian Ching, Robbie Findley and Herculez Gomez.
The Czechs started Petr Cech in goal; Ondrej Kusnir, Jan Rajnoch
and Tomas Sivok on defense; Libor Sionko, Jan Polak, Daniel Pudil,
Jaroslav Plasil and Tomas Hubschman in midfield; and Martin Fenin
and David Lafata at forward.
Mexican referee Maurico Morales officiated.