MONTCLAIR, NJ – United States defender Tim Ream is excited by the hiring of Jurgen Klinsmann and believes that the team’s players will be excited by the changes that the former Germany boss plans to implement.
“For me it’s exciting to hear that he wants to control games,” said Ream. “It’s more fun for the players to control the game and the ball, be all over teams and execute counterattacks instead of waiting to react. No one likes to defend for 90 minutes.”
Ream is referring to the stark contrast of coaching styles between Klinsmann and his predecessor Bob Bradley. Klinsmann has said that he believes the U.S. style of play should be based on American culture, adding “Americans like to dictate their results.”
While Ream is appreciative of the experience that he gained under Bradley’s tenure, he acknowledged that in order for the U.S. to progress, the team has to look at trying to assert itself as opposed to always sneaking out results.
“We [players] like to dictate the flow of games and I think bringing that attitude to the team is definitely a step in the right direction,” explained Ream.
Considering Klinsmann’s desire to attack more, it is no surprise that he called up several players whose strengths lie in passing and controlling the game’s flow. Despite Ream having an inconsistent Gold Cup where a poor performance against Panama saw him ride the bench throughout the rest of the tournament, he was called up to play in the friendly against Mexico on Aug. 10.
Ream admits that he was happy to be given another chance and hinted that under the old regime his performances from the summer might have been held against him.
“Everyone gets to start with a clean slate,” said Ream. “We all start from scratch.”
The 23-year-old believes that if he gets an opportunity to play against Mexico in Philadelphia, his skills will fit in well with Klinsmann’s desired style of play. Ream has been praised for his strong passing ability in a central-defending position and he believes that his German coach will not only look to hold possession for the offense but for the defense as well.
“The German team that he coached liked to keep the ball and keep possession all over the field, not just in the attack,” said Ream. “They like to knock the ball around in the back as well.”
Ream predicts that some of the team’s players that have relied on their physical play under previous regimes might need some adjustment time but believes that his transition will be easy because he played under a European coach in Hans Backe with the Red Bulls.
“I think for some other guys who are big, athletic and fast, I think its going to be a big change for them. I’m used to that style here with Hans that it makes it an easy transition for me,” Ream said.
Still, Ream says that despite any of the early difficulties that come with any new coaching system, he believes that the players will respond well due to the Klinsmann’s track record and that he is proven winner as a player and coach.
"He’s played at the highest level so he knows [what it takes],” said Ream. “He knows what it takes to play at the highest level and how to get guys to play at that level and I think that’s something that’s definitely going to benefit all of the players young and old. “
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