United States national team goalkeeper Tim Howard is set to return to his usual starting spot in World Cup qualifying as the U.S. faces off against Trinidad and Tobago on Wendesday, April 1. Though happy to reclaim his usual role, the Everton player was adamant that his replacement, Aston Villa backup Brad Guzan, had not done badly in his stead versus El Salvador last Saturday, when the U.S. team rallied for a 2-2 draw.
"He did fine," Howard asserted. "I think Brad is a
fantastic goalkeeper. He’s going to be one of the really good ones."
Howard did admit to some feelings of helplessless watching his teammates struggle in the away match in Central America. He was sidelined to yellow-card accumulation.
because I want to see my teammates do well," Howard said. "It’s a different dynamic,
when you’re sitting on the bench – to playing."
Though CONCACAF qualifying has traditionally been a difficult task on
the road, many believed the U.S. team had improved enough to breeze
through after securing an early win versus Mexico in the opening game
of the Hexagonal. However, El Salvador proved to be a gritty opponent.
the day, it was a tough game for us, because they scored a goal early,"
Howard pointed out. "We were all pushing forward and getting really
spread out and that’s
After serving as the understudy to U.S. veteran keeper Kasey Keller for
years, Howard won the starting spot in the nets at thebeginning of coach Bob
Bradley's tenure in 2007. He has emerged as one of the leaders of the
young team. The current roster in Nashville has an average age of 25.
Though considered still young for a goalkeeper, Howard is 30.
team is pretty levelheaded," said Howard of how the squad looks to improve from setbacks. "We’re trying to be a mature
team and when we go down to a place like El Salvador, we want to make
sure we win the game."
Andrea Canales, Goal.com, with reporting from Shane Evans in Nashville, Tennessee.