Taylor Twellman loses the plot after USA fail to qualify for World Cup (VIDEO)
13 October, 2017, 16:35
One goal, an equalizer against the weakest opposition in the qualifying group, and the USMNT would have been off to next year's World Cup in Russian Federation.
An erratic qualifying campaign that began with losses to Mexico and Costa Rica, followed by the sacking of coach Jurgen Klinsmann, ended in abject failure against Trinidad and Tobago. But when it mattered most, the players looked as flat as they did during the 4-0 loss to Costa Rica that cost Klinsmann his job.
It is the first time since 1986 that the U.S. will not be present at football's showpiece tournament.
World Cup qualifying for the U.S. is supposed to be like a movie with enough drama, action and intriguing characters to keep us entertained even though we know it's heading toward a happy ending.
The U.S. were eliminated from a place in the World Cup finals in Russian Federation next summer after a disastrous 2-1 loss at last-placed Trinidad and Tobago on Tuesday night, marking the first time since 1986 the Americans will not take part in the sport's biggest event.
Sherman Oaks Notre Dame Coach Patrick Thomsen said the problem is, once a player heads to college, "They turn 18 and they're going to play less soccer". I still believe we are not getting the best talent and fostering it. "Tonight wasn't what we hoped for". But how did US coach Bruce Arena describe it? "What are we doing?"
'Certainly, I think if our league [the MLS] continues to grow it benefits the national team program, ' Arena told reporters Tuesday. Nothing has to change. And I think that's kind of natural in any position where someone remains unchallenged for so long and fresh ideas aren't invited and executed. We're building a good system in our professional league. "We have players playing overseas of a certain quality".
U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati is also likely on the hot seat, but like Arena, he does not feel major changes are needed.
Wearing what appeared to be the exact same suit as he wore when ranting with Max Bretos on ESPN on Tuesday night when he called the US performance an utter embarrassment, Twellman joined the a.m. SportsCenter to continue what he began the night before. The discussion after Brazil 2014 was, 'Can we beat the Colombias and the Belgiums and the Argentinas of the world?'
One thing to keep in mind as we cope with the disappointment of missing the 2018 World Cup and point out all the problems with youth soccer is that, traditionally, U.S. Soccer played a limited role in the youth game. Though losses may raise questions about the intricacies of strategy and player development for both squads, most female athletes face additional pressure in the subtle or explicit belief that women just can't compete for the same accolades and advertising dollars. The 18-year-old who also played for the United States of America at the 2017 U-20 World Cup was instrumental in the Red Bulls reaching this season's playoffs.
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