It was a good weekend for Americans Abroad, with three scoring goals and Tim Howard recording his second big shutout of the week.Terrence Boyd and Sacha Kljestan were just two of the quality players who failed to earn a call-up from Jurgen Klinsmann for the recent U.S. national team World Cup qualifiers.
This weekend, both provided reminders for Klinsmann that they should not be forgotten.
Boyd and Kljestan both scored goals for their respective club teams this weekend in blowout wins. Kljestan netted his fourth goal in five matches in Anderlecht’s 5-0 win vs. KV Mechelen on Saturday. Boyd notched his fifth goal of the season with a second-half strike in Rapid Vienna’s 4-0 win vs. FC Wacker Innsbruck.
One member of the squad that clinched a World Cup berth last week did find the net, as Aron Johannsson converted a penalty kick in AZ Alkmaar’s 3-0 victory vs. Go Ahead Eagles. The goal was Johannson’s sixth of the season in all competitions.
The best goal scored by an American last weekend didn’t count. U.S. striker Jozy Altidore scored what looked to be a crucial goal for Sunderland against Arsenal, but referee Martin Atkinson had whistled for a foul against Arsenal and halted play rather than playing the advantage.
No American completed a better week than U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard, who followed up a stellar showing in last Tuesday’s 2-0 win vs. Mexico by posting another shutout in Everton’s 1-0 upset victory vs. Chelsea on Saturday. Howard made six saves in recording his third straight Premier League shutout, which helped Everton join Liverpool as the lone remaining unbeaten team in the EPL.
Another player who enjoyed a good showing vs. Mexico last week was Alejandro Bedoya, who continued his successful move to Ligue 1 by starting and playing 75 minutes in Nantes’ 1-0 victory vs. Sochaux on Saturday.
Geoff Cameron also helped his team record a surprising result against a top opponent on Saturday, starting at right back in Stoke City’s 0-0 tie vs. Manchester City at Brittania Stadium.
In England’s League Championship, Eric Lichaj continued to hold down a steady role for a fast-starting Nottingham Forest. Lichaj made his sixth straight start on Saturday in Forest’s 3-2 victory vs. Barnsley. The victory moved Forest into third place in the Championship.
In Germany, Fabian Johnson shook off the injury that forced him out of the USA’s win vs. Mexico to start and play a full 90 minutes in TSG Hoffenheim’s 2-1 win vs. Borussia Moenchengladbach on Sunday. Jermaine Jones didn’t recover from his full match against Mexico in time to start for Schalke on Saturday, but did come off the bench and played 21 minutes in Schalke’s important 1-0 victory vs. Mainz 05 on Saturday.
Timothy Chandler was again left off Klinsmann's squad, but the German-American turned in a solid performance Sunday, playing the full match and assisting Nurnburg's goal in a 1-1 draw with Eintracht Braunschweig.
In Mexico, Jose Torres turned in a strong 90 minutes to help UANL Tigres earn a 1-0 victory vs. Cruz Azul. Tigres overcame a 53rd-minute red card to Carlos Salcido to hold on to the victory.
The Club Tijuana contingent of Americans settled for a road draw vs. Chivas Guadalajara on Sunday, with Edgar Castillo the lone starter for the Xolos among the Americans. Greg Garza replaced Castillo in the 79th minute, while young attacker Paul Arriola came on as an 81st-minute substitute. Joe Corona’s struggles for playing time continued though, as he failed to come off the bench.