On Friday night, 15,798 people piled into the Home Depot Center to watch the United States soccer team take on Costa Rica. And the majority of them went home disappointed as the Costa Ricans defeated the US 0-1, in Jurgen Klinsmann's second match at the helm. The US looked brilliant at times, but they also looked quite suspect in the back and lacked a killer instinct while finishing
Costa Rica got a second half goal to finally put themselves ahead of the US after a lackluster first half. The US showed terrible defense, and even still Tim Howard was able to make the initial save. The US lost gambling on the offside line, and with no one to beat, Costa Rica made an early cross in. That save ended up getting knocked in by a diving header from Rodney Wallace. The Portland Timber defender scored in his Costa Rican national team debut.
It was at least a forgettable first half. The United States and Costa Rica combined for two shots on goal, which really highlights how bad the US's best chance ended up. Brek Shea did a fantastic job of controlling the ball and finding a wide open trailing Landon Donovan on his right. All Donovan had to do was guide it in, and it went just right off the post.
The US also came out with some surprises in the back. Edgar Castillo at the left back position and Michael Orozco Fiscal were unanticipated choices, as Klinsmann tries to see just who he has. Both of them looked suspect in the first half, and they hurt the US in the second half. Castillo was beaten on defense, lost the ball on offense, and made terrible crosses. Omar Gonzalez of the Los Angeles Galaxy would certainly have been a better choice.
Still, the US looked good in the first half with their shiny new 4-3-3. With the right defensive callups, it would be neat to see this become the default formation for the USMNT. Lots of good crisp passing and scoring opportunities.