USA Take On El Tri (11pm ET)

Published: Apr 02, 2014 15:29pm EDT
By Jason Bardwell, Sports Writer for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Apr 02, 2014 @ 03:29pm EDT


Tonight sees the USA welcome Mexico to the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona in a friendly game between two sides whose games against each other usually are anything but. This is not actually a friendly fixture window which FIFA has allocated throughout the year and so do not expect to see the European based players, but that is a very good thing for both National managers.


This fixture will allow both head coaches to check out some of the fringe players currently in the MLS and the Mexican domestic league, although Mexican side Puebla have declined to release Americans DaMarcus Beasley and Michael Orozco for the friendly.


Big attention is being made toward the German-American, Bayern Munich 18 year old, Julian Green. He has been released by Bayern Munich for the game and US fans will probably see him take the field at some point during the night. Whether he is the next big thing remains to be seen but certainly the potential is there. Green will have barely turned 19 when the first US World Cup game is to be played and his place on the plane, if it was given, would probably mostly for experience of a World Cup.


So far he was on the substitutes bench for one Bundesliga game but was not substituted in and played in the Champions League against Moscow in November. In that game he played most of the game before being substituted out with a few minutes to go.


With his coach at Bayern and in Jurgen Klinsmann at the National team level I am sure that Julian will not be done a disservice as was done with Freddy Adu. This shows exactly how much the sport has grown in the USA in the last decade and that has to be a good thing going forward.


When Adu first burst onto the stage in 2004 he was only 14 and was already being compared to Pele. That is a lot of potential for players double his age to have dealt with never mind a 14 year old. Ten years on and he has bounced between sides, recently released by Bahia he now finds himself at Blackpool in England’s Championship, and at only 24 he could certainly come again.


The important thing with Green and the other fringe players is to use this game to prove they can hold their own against the star players Dempsey, Donovan and co. The score isn’t of great importance in this game, only that the players make the right impression on their respective head coaches. If you can stay up late to watch the match you may get an idea of what sort of strength in depth Klinsmann may have to call on while in Brazil. Either way any game between these two usually have at least one incident to get the water coolers buzzing the next morning.


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