The US national team put in an underwhelming performance in Bruce Arena's first game back in charge, a scoreless draw against a green Serbia side on Sunday in San Diego.
While the home side was staffed with players working their first games in a couple months, more was expected considering the opponent traveled a long way in short time, carrying a large experience disadvantage. While the US were not poor, much more should be expected of them in the coming months.
Nick Rimando (6.5) – The US 'keeper had next to nothing to do for 89 minutes, but came up with a good save when it counted.
Graham Zusi (6) – The Sporting KC veteran showed he could aid the attack from right back, and stayed tight to his man when Serbia worked into his corner.
Steve Birnbaum (5.5) – The D.C. United defender wasn't overly busy at the back, but did come up with a couple of forceful clearances under pressure. His grade took a small hit for a couple moments of timidity when Serbia forwards breached the box.
Chad Marshall (5.5) – Though Marshall came up with a handful of strong defensive stops, he also made a couple of mistakes moving the ball out of the back.
Greg Garza (5) – The left back improved defensively as the game went on, but he never showed a great understanding with his winger and failed to push into the opposite corner when given the chance.
Michael Bradley (5.5) – The skipper cleaned up some messes in his own end and launched some promising attacks in the first half. He also was guilty of a couple shaky giveaways that knocked his mark down.
Jermaine Jones (6.5) – After a bit of a slow start, Jones was the team's main driving force into the final third during his 45-minutes of work.
Alejandro Bedoya (5.5) – The Philadelphia Union man was responsible for a nice link pass here and hustle play tracking back there, but the team needed him to be more aggressive offensively.
Sacha Kljestan (6) – The Red Bulls playmaker actively sought out space to maneuver and worked some nice lead balls for teammates. However, Kljestan's final passes were often a shade off.
Darlington Nagbe (7) – No one helped their standing more than Nagbe on this night. Though some of his attack moves fizzled out, the Portland ace repeatedly worked the opposing defense and even found time to get back for a few strong steals in the US end. He went close to scoring twice, but probably should have set up a wide-open Jozy Altidore instead of taking the second shot.
Jozy Altidore (5.5) – The Toronto FC striker started brightly, with knockdowns and hold-up plays helping the team threaten. After about 40 minutes, though, he gradually faded out of the game.
Coach Bruce Arena (6) – Opting to prioritize continuity over experimentation, Arena put his charges in position to succeed. Even if the execution and intent wasn't always solid, the game plan was.
Sebastian Lletget (6) – The LA Galaxy midfielder enjoyed a solid start for his debut cap, showing grit and the ability to push the team forward, often in the same incident. Lletget did suffer a couple of sloppy episodes in the waning moments, though.
Chris Pontius (5.5) – The Union attacker was fairly quiet until the late going, when he whistled a decent chance just wide.
Jorge Villafaña (6) – The left back debutant kept things quiet in his own end and showed the ability to support attacking possession during his short shift.
Jordan Morris (5.5) – The reigning MLS Rookie of the Year really only found one opportunity to get loose, and he fired that chance wildly.
Benny Feilhaber (6.5) – Back in the USMNT fold after four years on the outside looking in, Feilhaber quickly proved he can still ask questions of the opposing defense. His stoppage time outside-of-the-boot entry feed was classy.
Juan Agudelo (5.5) – An 87th minute sub normally wouldn't get a grade, but taking one touch too many on his stoppage time break-in chance cost Agudelo a half-point.