Tuesday sure was wild, huh? CONCACAF CONCACAF’d the sh*t out of CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers for two insane hours. There was a lot to take in. A lot. Wacky own goals, rampaging ball boys and hugging commentators. And USMNT World Cup dreams dashed. So like Hillary Clinton after her election loss, let’s revisit what the hell just happened.
Men's World Cup
Lost in all the furor following the USMNT’s disastrous 2-1 defeat to Trinidad and Tobago (and because the match was played on ESPN 8: The Ocho, so no one saw it) is the fact that the Soca Warriors’ Alvin Jones probably scored the best goal of the entire CONCACAF qualifying cycle, a sludge dating back to March 22, 2015.
The USMNT’s failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup is nothing less than an abject failure. It’s a failure for U.S. soccer on so many levels, from player development and youth organization to individual performances and coaching decisions. It’s a failure that must be learned from so as to never repeat it again.
Taylor Twellman was back at it again Wednesday morning. After his epic rant went viral on Tuesday night after the Americans’ shocking elimination from the 2018 World Cup, Twellman returned to the ESPN airwaves to rant some more on the morning SportsCenter.
In the wake of the USMNT’s utterly pathetic defeat to Trinidad and Tobago and subsequent bouncing from the World Cup, perhaps no man on the planet has greater license to say “I told you so” than former head coach Jurgen Klinsmann. That’s not to say that Klinsmann shouldn’t have been fired or that he would’ve steered the U.S. to the World Cup, it’s just to say that he’s ultimately been vindicated in his criticisms of Major League Soccer and American player mentality.
The U.S. flamed out of the 2018 World Cup in spectacular fashion on Tuesday night, losing to little Trinidad and Tobago while Honduras and Panama beat Mexico and Costa Rica, respectively. For many soccer fans in America, this will be the first World Cup they’ve lived through without the Americans.
$400 million. That’s how much Fox Sports paid to wrestle the English-language World Cup broadcasting rights away from ESPN. That total includes both the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, but Fox’s plans for the 2018 edition took a massive hit last night when the United States was eliminated from contention by Trinidad and Tobago, a country trumped in population numbers by Hawaii.