United States men’s national team interim boss Anthony Hudson looks to rebound from a disappointing loss to Serbia to start January camp when the team faces Colombia Saturday night. There were promising performances in the match, especially considering the short period of time that Hudson has had to design this camp compared to coaches of January camps in the past, but the team was punished for their mistakes on both of Serbia’s goals in the 2-1 loss, but it was the veterans who helped cause those issues. Walker Zimmerman not jumping in time with the wall on Luka Ilic’s goal and Aaron Long not backing up 19-year-old Jaylen Neal on Veljko Simic’s goal made the difference after Brandon Vazquez scored his first goal in his national team debut.
Cade Cowell should get a chance to perform with Kellyn Acosta in midfield after rattling the post twice against Serbia, but one of the better performers of the second half, Alejandro Zendajas, was recalled back to Club America to be available for their match against Mazatlan in Liga MX. Zendajas is a tricky winger who can bring a lot to the team, but he’ll need support to cut inside how he likes, which he wasn’t able to do against Serbia.
Facing Colombia, it will be a tougher task for the United States with Cucho Hernandez leading the line alongside five other MLS players. Colombia has a similarly young roster with only Frank Fabra having more than three caps.
The USMNT will also need to ignore the off the pitch noise as U.S. Soccer’s upheaval continues with Earnie Stewart and Brian McBride leaving their roles, so Hudson will need to have them focused for the match.
“So we found out over the last few days. Obviously, there’s been some changes,” Hudson said. “And yeah, my focus is for however long it is, just to keep doing all I can to progress the team, prepare the team starting in March, and that’s it. Obviously, it’s a fluid situation, but that’s my focus right now.”
Here’s our storylines, how you can watch the match and more:
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How to watch and odds
- Date: Saturday, Jan. 28 | Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
- Location: Dignity Health Sports Park — Carson, California
- TV: Universo | Live stream: HBO Max
- Odds: United States +135; Draw +215; Colombia +185 (via Caesars Sportsbook)
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United States: Hudson was clear about how he expects the team to function saying “We have a clear game idea. We want to be a team that plays attacking soccer and wants to be brave in possession. Whoever’s in this seat and has this type of game idea naturally wants to keep evolving and moving it forward. So that’s the plan for us.”
That makes it clear of what to expect against Colombia, and it will be a time to look for progression from the Serbia match as with fewer mistakes, it is winnable.
Colombia: The forward line will offer quite a challenge between Hernandez and Cristian Arango. Neither could be stopped by MLS defenses which could make the best option for Hudson in this match.
GOALKEEPERS: Alvaro Montero (Millonarios; 3/0), Jose Luis Chunga (Alianza Petrolera; 2/0)
DEFENDERS: Frank Fabra (Boca Juniors/ARG; 26/1), Andres Llinas (Millonarios; 2/1), Alexis Perez (Giresunspor; 0/0), Nicolas Hernandez (Athletico Paranaense/BRA;0/0), Andres Reyes (New York Red Bulls/USA; 0/0), Juan Davis Mosquera (Portland Timbers/USA; 0/0), Junior Hernandez (Deportes Tolima; 0/0)
MIDFIELDERS: Jorman Campuzano (Giresunspor/TUR; 2/0), Daniel Ruiz (Millonarios; 0/0), Daniel Catano (Millonarios; 0/0), Yilmar Velasquez (Deportivo Pereira; 0/0), Kevin Castano (Águilas Doradas; 0/0)
FORWARDS: Diego (Valoyes Talleres/ARG; 0/0), Cucho Hernandez (Columbus Crew/USA; 0/0), Cristian Arango (Los Angeles FC/USA; 0/0), Santiago Moreno (Portland Timbers/USA; 0/0), Dylan Borrero (New England Revolution/USA; 0/0), Diber Cambindo (Independiente Medellín; 0/0)
It will be a hard fought but exiting draw as Colombia’s attacking power will be hard to stop but an open match will suit the well-rested United States side. Pick: United States 2, Colombia 2