If you were looking for some bright spots heading into the international break, there weren’t many, as Americans from England to Mexico endured forgettable outings.
Jozy Altidore’s frustrations with winless Sunderland continued. The U.S. national team forward went goal-less again despite a strong showing in the first half in a match that saw him receive plenty of abuse from Manchester United’s defense and little service from the Sunderland midfield.
Tim Howard saw Everton’s unbeaten record erased at the hands of Manchester City, with the American goalkeeper being charged with an own goal in the Toffees’ 3-1 loss on Saturday.
Jermaine Jones’ unsettled situation at Schalke 04 remains cloudy as he followed up his forgettable outing against Hoffenheim last week by not even being in uniform for Schalke’s 4-1 win vs. Augsburg on Saturday. He joined Michael Parkhurst as a spectator, with Parkhurst continuing his exile on the sidelines at Augsburg.
Several other players taking part in the upcoming U.S. national team World Cup qualifying training camp suffered defeats, including Sacha Kljestan’s Anderlecht, Geoff Cameron’s Stoke City, Michael Orozco and DaMarcus Beasley’s Puebla and Aron Johannsson’s AZ Alkmaar.
One team featuring Americans that did win was Club Tijuana, but even the Xolos’ 1-0 victory versus Queretaro came with some drama. While Greg Garza and Edgar Castillo started for Club Tijuana, Joe Corona failed to come off the bench, raising more questions about his future with the club. On the bright side, both Herculez Gomez and Paul Arriola came on as subs for the Xolos.
One of the few bright spots for Americans was the continued steady play of Eric Lichaj at Nottingham Forest. He earned another start at right back and helped Forest post a 3-1 victory against Brighton and Hove Albion to move into fourth place in the League Championship.
Tim Ream earned another start for Bolton, helping the Trotters to a 2-1 victory vs. Jonathan Spector and Birmingham City on Saturday.
The list of injured Americans Abroad grew by one, with Fabian Johnson sidelined with an ankle injury that forced him to miss Hoffenheim’s 2-2 tie vs. Mainz 05 on Saturday. He was joined on the injured list by Michael Bradley, John Brooks, Steve Cherundolo and Danny Williams, who all missed their teams’ matches.
Alejandro Bedoya’s run of starts for French First Division side Nantes came to an abrupt end on Saturday after Bedoya came down with an illness. Nantes still managed to post a 3-0 victory against Evian Thonon Gaillar on Saturday, a win that moved the club into fifth place in Ligue 1, just one point out of third place.
Perhaps the most forgettable performance of the weekend featuring an American came in Mexico, where Jose Torres drew a second yellow card and early exit from UANL Tigres’ 2-1 loss to Toluca.