It is attempting to qualify for its seventh straight FIFA World Cup finals, but this group does so under under greater scrutiny from fans and media than any of its predecessors.
The spotlight hasn’t been too bright for Jurgen Klinsmann‘s team. On Tuesday, the U.S. sealed its place in the hexagonal — the final round of qualifying in the CONCACAF region — with a convincing victory over Guatemala. Competitive games will cease for a few months, while the national team retools ahead of the final march toward the 2014 tournament in Brazil.
The U.S. played six games in the semifinal round, winning four, losing one and drawing one. It finished atop Group A, and new truths revealed themselves along the way. The Americans performed well at home, but struggled on the road. They have good depth and chemistry, but questions concerning selections and defense remain. Klinsmann is making progress toward achieving twin goals — qualifying for the World Cup and taking the team to the next level. He also knows that time is short and takes nothing for granted.
NESN.com soccer editor Marcus Kwesi O’Mard is joined by Brian Straus from the Sporting News to discuss the U.S. Men’s National Team in World Cup qualifying. What have we learned so far? What should we watch for in the hexagonal? Is Klinsmann doing a good job? How will the Nov. 14 friendly against Russia play out? These things and more are covered in our latest NESN soccer podcast.
Listen to or download the podcast in the player below, or subscribe on iTunes to listen there.