If you're a fan of the U.S. Men's National Team, and most of you probably are, then yesterday was quite the day for you. The team was in action for World Cup Qualifying, Olympic Qualifying, and, in what may be the most prestigious of the lot, the Tournament of Montaigu. You probably already know how that all played out, but if I told you now, then you wouldn't have reason to read the links.
USMNT Defeats Guatemala, 4-0
The USMNT senior team (not to be confused with the old-timers) defeated Guatemala 4-0 in Columbus, OH. Clint Dempsey scored in the 12th minute, followed by a Geoff Cameron strike in the 35th minute to give the team a 2-0 halftime lead. Dempsey roared in on a deflected ball to fire in his shot, and Cameron put in a pretty header off a Michael Bradley free kick. Graham Zusi scored right after halftime to essentially put the game in the bag. Jozy Altidore knocked one in late to turn the convincing win into a straight up rout.
USMNT to Face Trinidad & Tobago in Jacksonville
The USMNT will continue its bid for a place in Russia against Trinidad and Tobago, and the game will take place in Jacksonville -- a mere 90 minutes from Orlando. I'm really struggling to write this piece without using the "it's not fair that they have to play Trinidad and Tobago" joke, but being a professional (not really), I'm just going to note that you should all go support the team as it continues its quest to advance to its eighth consecutive World Cup. As for the U-23s, well, it didn't go as well in Olympic qualifying. Our Daniel Byrd will have a recap of that match for you this morning.
U-17s Defeat France, 3-2
And lest you think that this is all the USMNT news for the day, the U-17 team beat France to win the 44th International Tournament of Montaigu. The tournament has been contested in France since 1973, and the U.S. has won the tournament one other time, in 1992. It was a back-and-forth affair with the Americans taking the early lead on a shot by Tim Weah, before France scored two before halftime. George Acosta then put in two in the second half to seal the game for the U.S.
Kaká to Debut Sunday
Oh yeah, we're an Orlando City blog. After going through full training, it looks like Kaká has recovered from his thigh injury and is looking to finally get on the pitch for the team this weekend. The team will look forward to seeing its captain play as it hosts the defending champion Portland Timbers on Sunday. Fans will look forward to seeing Kaká finally take the field with Kevin Molino and Antonio Nocerino.
Molino Fires One In
Kevin Molino, in an effort to live down the non-shot against NYCFC, scored a nice goal against St. Vincent and the Grenadines. OK, so this isn't like sniping one in against Brazil, but it's nice to see him think "shot."
Belgium Honors Victims
Not to end on a down note, but sometimes we have to be reminded that the World Cup and Olympics are merely part of a game -- a game that we use to distract ourselves from the sometimes harsh realities of life. Such is the case this week as the Belgian National Team attempts to restore some semblance of normality to its home country. The team lost 2-1 in a friendly against Portugal, but the score was hardly the most important part of the match. The team wore the warm up kits below to honor those affected by the terrorist attacks.
We at The Mane Land would like to echo those sentiments and send our best to all those in Belgium.