Bradley, Johnson, Buddle start for US at Slovenia

BY foxsports • November 15, 2011

Michael Bradley got his first start for the United States since August, entering the starting lineup along with Fabian Johnson and Edson Buddle for the Americans' exhibition against Slovenia at Ljubljana on Tuesday night.

Johnson, who started for Germany in the European Under-21 final two years ago, got his first start for the U.S. after making his debut in the 71st minute of Friday's 1-0 loss at France. Buddle, like Bradley, had not started since a 1-1 tie against Mexico on Aug. 10, the first game after Klinsmann replaced Bob Bradley - the midfielder's father - as coach.

Maurice Edu, Danny Williams, Brek Shea went to the bench.

U.S. captain Carlos Bocanegra made his 100th international appearance, starting in central defense with Clarence Goodson. The back four was unchanged, with Steve Cherundolo at right back and Timmy Chandler at left back.

Tim Howard was in goal, with Kyle Beckerman and Clint Dempsey joining Bradley and Johnson in the midfield, and Jozy Altidore paired at forward with Buddle.

Six of the U.S. starters also began last year's first-round World Cup match against Slovenia, when Landon Donovan and Bradley scored in the second half as the Americans rallied for a 2-2 tie. The starters then included Howard, Cherundolo, Bocanegra, Bradley, Dempsey and Altidore.

Tuesday's bench included goalkeeper Bill Hamid, defender Michael Orozco Fiscal, Williams, Shea, Edu and fellow midfielder Robbie Rogers.

Oguchi Onyewu, who has a slight groin strain, didn't dress along midfielder DaMarcus Beasley and defender Alfredo Morales.

Slovenia made two changes from its previous game, a 1-0 win over Serbia in its final European Championship qualifier last month. New coach Slavisa Stojanovic, who replaced Matjaz Kek, started midfielders Josip Ilicic and Darijan Matic in place of Aleksandar Radosavljevic and Dare Vrsic.

The rest of the lineup had Samir Handanovic in goal; Miso Brecko, Bojan Jokic, Bostjan Cesar and Marko Suler on defense; Andraz Kirm and Armin Bacinovic in the midfield; and Zlatan Ljubijankic and Tim Matavz at forward.

Slovenia returned seven staters from the U.S. match: Handanovic, Brecko, Suler, Cesar, Jokic, Kirm and Ljubijankic, who scored the Green Dragons' second goal. Valter Birsa, who scored the opener, was on the bench Tuesday.

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