Written by Reshad Bahadori

You already know that the U.S. beat Jamaica 1-0 to stay on top of their table. What you didn’t know is that Clint Dempsey uses the ‘Stanky Face’ to intimidate players. I can’t stop looking at it.
Even Bocanegra looks confused.

Who cam blame Dempsey. My man spent an entire summer not knowing where he would play. All is well now and Dempsey is safe and secure with Tottenham.


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Written by Jahmal Corner

Bobbo from Blackie Lawless on Vimeo.

Remember Bob Bradley? Short, bald-headed guy that used to coach our U.S. Men’s National Team … Michael Bradley’s dad … yeah, him. Well, there’s a documentary about him that looks solid.

“We Must Go,” The Pharaohs, Bob Bradley and the Quest for the World Cup follows Bob beyond the U.S. program and into Egypt where he’s now trying to help the country qualify for the 2014 World Cup.

Check out the clip above and decide for yourself whether or not you “must go” see it.

 

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Written by Jahmal Corner

Ever seen the movie The Change-Up …? Good, you saved yourself from wasting 11 bucks. Besides, you don’t have to see the movie to know the story – single guy trades lives with married guy, comedy ensues, ha-ha-ha (studio audience laughter)…
I feel like that’s kind of what’s happening with David Beckham and Landon Donovan. Let’s face it, Beckham 1.0 is nearing the end: he’s fighting mascots and missing the Olympics and this past spring he cut ties with his posh European lifestyle (‘posh,’ get it?).

Exit Becks, enter Donovan.

Our U.S. star recently put his California mansion up for sale, according to the Daily Mail, and guess where he’s rumored to have his sights on playing? Yup, England. See what they did there?

The life swap is well in the works. When Donovan returns to the U.S. MNT with tattoos and his own underwear line, don’t say I didn’t tell you so.

 

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Written by Jahmal Corner

The hair; the tats, the legend.

The 91st Minute recently went 1v1 with rising U.S. National Team player and FC Dallas midfielder Brek Shea. Here are the definitive must-know facts about Shea.


1. The dude has his own line of watches
. Shea’s Deuce Brand signature series watch (seen HERE) is an ode to his free spirit and style.

“It describes me as a person; I’m a firm believer in staying true to who you are and remembering where you come from, but most of all believing in yourself. This watch does all of those things. Deuce was able to capture my personality as a whole in this watch.”


2. His inspiration is Lance Armstrong
.

“He has fought through so much adversity in his career and doesn’t let anything slow him down.”


3. He’s a big fan of Milan’s Zlatin Ibrahimovic.

Shea loves that Zlatin is “dominant with both feet.”


4. He lets his hair style itself …
wait, what?

“Most of the time I just let it go and it shapes itself. People think I spend a lot of time with my hairstyles but the truth is that I really don’t.”


5. He’s a painter.

“I got involved in painting in 2009. It has helped me get away from soccer, especially when I’m in the studio.

See the rest of the interview as well as an exclusive Deuce Brand video after the jump.

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Written by Jahmal Corner

Are we all comfortable calling last night’s 1-1 tie with Guatemala a disappointment? (Me nodding your head for you). Well, we should be.

Earning a point on the road in CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying should never be sneezed at, but it’s the way it unfolded that leaves the bad taste. As you’ll see in the video above, the U.S. surrendered the equalizer in the 83rd minute on a free kick.

By my count, this is the third consecutive subpar performance for the U.S. We’ve got until September to figure this thing out, so here’s hoping the boys have a revitalizing summer and come back strong.

 

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Written by Jahmal Corner

Ten years ago today, the U.S. Men’s national team picked up perhaps its biggest win ever on the international stage with a 3-2 win over Portugal in the 2002 World Cup.

Check out the highlights above – which features Landon Donovan with a full head of hair and a John O’Brien sighting.

What are your memories from the match?

 

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Written by Jahmal Corner

Not what the U.S. MNT was looking for. A 0-0 tie to Canada serves as the final tune-up for the squad before Friday’s World Cup Qualifying match against Antigua & Barbuda.

The U.S. extended their unbeaten streak against Canada to 15 matches – dating all the way back to 1985 – but that was hardly consolation. This was a match they needed to win, and convincingly – especially after being routed by Brazil last week.

Onto qualifying.

 

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Written by Jahmal Corner

Ok, RGIII, you’re back in our good graces. There was that whole inexplicable thing about you confusing Alex Morgan with one of her teammates, but we’re past that now.

Griffin III met up with the U.S. MNT prior to their friendly against Brazil on Wednesday. He said all the right things, calling soccer the ‘real football,’ and even got his own customized Where’s Waldo jersey.

Nice bounce back Robert. Looking forward to seeing you during the ‘fake football’ season.

 

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Written by Jahmal Corner

Well, snap back to reality. It was a humbling night for the U.S. and coach Jurgen Klinsmann as the latest chapter in operation ‘improve U.S. Soccer’ took a stumble in a 4-1 friendly loss to Brazil.

Neymar dazzled as only he can with a goal and two assists, and Brazil was its standard dynamic self.

Klinsmann said after the match that his team got pushed around and has to get nastier.

You want nasty? Check out a few of the Brazilian combinations above including the synchronized goal celebration at two minutes.

 

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5v5: US MNT Roundtable

Written by Jahmal Corner

In our new 91st Minute series, 5v5, five soccer writers tackle five hot topics during a candid roundtable debate. Today’s subject: the U.S. Men’s National Team. Let the debate begin.

1. True or false: Clint Dempsey has become the most important player in the US Soccer program?

Chris Ravita, The Sports Network: True. His scoring record with Fulham this season does not lie, and he has matured into a player who can be relied upon. He’s creative, deadly in front of goal, a strong aerial threat, versatile and a fierce competitor. Dempsey is the most well-rounded player in the national team set-up.

Daniel Robertson, BigDSoccer: Absolutely true. Outside of Landon Donovan, there’s no player on the US capable of the spectacular like Clint is. So many games at the international level are decided by whichever team has that one player that can produce the match-winning moment and Clint is certainly a match-winning type player. I think the only real problem is almost the same problem that Messi has, and something that Klinsmann has to figure out: what is the key to getting him more involved in the USA attack?

Kevin Baxter, LA Times: Right now, true. Not only is he probably the most talented and successful US player, but by playing as well as he has in the EPL he’s proving to Americans – and the world – that US players can be a major force at the highest levels of the sport. And when he hits the transfer market and non-soccer fans in the US see how much teams are willing to pay for an American player, I think it will bring the sport and US program more respect and attention. So yeah, for reasons well beyond his play on the field.

Jason Davis, Best Soccer Show; KCKRS: True. Both because of his obvious status as the best player the US has right now as well as his profile while playing in the Premier League. Clint fits that status from several angles.

Adam Serrano, Soccer By Ives, MLSSoccer.com: False. While Dempsey certainly is the top player in the pool at this time due to his run of form with Fulham, the U.S. National Team’s success begins and ends with the play of goalkeeper Tim Howard. Time and time again, Howard has proven to be the difference between a slim victory and a heavy defeat for the USMNT and his leadership has been irreplaceable in creating a back four that has undergone its share of changes in recent years.


2. True or false: Jurgen Klinsmann’s first nine months as head coach have been a success?

Ravita: True. The more accurate barometer will come in a major tournament, but his record has been consistent with previous USMNT coaches. The national team hasn’t fared well playing European teams IN Europe, so the defeat of Italy was a big selling point to me. They aren’t quite there yet, but if he is able to marginally improve results while changing the overall culture of the program, then it’s worth it.

Robertson: True, simply because there seems to have been a change from top to bottom. I can’t put any of the Olympic failure on Jurgen and he’s on a nice run right now having won the games in Europe, especially the win against Italy. However, nothing that he has done so far will hold a candle to the importance of the next 6 months.

Baxter: I would give him an incomplete – albeit  with a star next to it. I don’t think you say it’s been entirely successful given some of the bumps he’s hit. And remember, he insisted on overseeing the entire national program so the upset in the Olympic qualifying tournament goes on his resume too. But for years we’ve been hearing that US soccer needs to adopt a full-blown European-style approach, and that’s what Klinsmann is bringing. I believe he’s on the right track but I wouldn’t be surprised if there are a few more bumps coming up in World Cup qualifying.

Davis: True. Despite some early hiccups, he beat Italy in Italy. It might not have come with the stylish soccer so many imagined, but his job built confidence through winning.

Serrano: True. It’s been quite the exciting tenure for Klinsmann but it is one that can only be described in one word: progress. While the attacking formation is still in the works, Klinsmann has shown a commitment to bringing in new blood to the national team and when you factor in a confidence-building victory over Italy, Klinsmann’s charges should be in high spirits when World Cup qualifying rolls around. I’m also a big fan of the U.S. boss’ idea to join Twitter and create more communication with his fans. Now about Herculez Gomez…


3. True or false: Stuart Holden is more entertaining off the field (
“No Holden Back”) than on it?

Ravita: True, but only based on the fact that he’s been injured. When fully healthy and in top-gear, he has the potential to be a cornerstone of the national team along with Donovan and Dempsey. From a marketing perspective though, he’s done well to stay in the limelight while sidelined.

Robertson: It’s been so long since he’s worn a US jersey that it’s tough to even know how on- the-radar he is at this point. I will say false, because he is the type of player that can turn the United States from a decent team into a good team – way more entertaining than any video!

Baxter: Wow. I don’t know how to answer that. You have to love him in both places.

Davis: True, at least until he’s healthy. Even if he was, Stu’s game is much more nuts and bolts than many American fans like to imagine. He’s not a flair player, and while he can make a nice pass, he’s not necessarily creative enough to beat out the videos.

Serreno: False. While Holden’s show is certainly entertaining, prior to his injury Holden was one of the—if not the—most dynamic player in the U.S. player pool. Whether it is playing in the center of the park for Bolton or streaking down the flanks for the USMNT, Holden’s career remains one that is in ascension. Although he has battled a yearlong knee injury, he is currently in the middle of a recovery process that could see him play a role for his club next season.

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