USA 2 - Honduras 0: Americans Advance to Gold Cup Finals

CONCACAF Cup - Semifinals, Hondurus v USA

The U.S. blanked Honduras 2-0 tonight at Soldier Field and, in doing so, advanced to their third straight Gold Cup final.

The final, which will be played on Sunday at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford N.J., will feature the U.S. against Mexico or Costa Rica, who are currently tied 0-0 in the second half of a highly entertaining match.

Click [here](http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/soccer/fire/chi-24-gold-cup-chicago-jul24,0,6184794.story) to read the match report I wrote for the Tribune and read on for a few thoughts I had on the match.
**Stuart Holden: My Man of the Match**

Though defender Clarence Goodson was given the official title of "Miller Lite Man of the Match," I thought that Houston Dynamo midfielder Stuart Holden was far and away the American team's best player.

Holden, who assisted on both American goals, was all over the field tonight and he looked very dangerous running with the ball and delivering it to teammates.

"These are the games you live for," said Holden. "These are the games where you can show people what you can do and I thought not just myself but everybody did a good job of that tonight."

But enough about my opinions... who was your MOTM from tonight's game?

**U.S. needs to finish better**

While the American team did well to create plenty of chances against Honduras, they struggled at times to finish them and if they want to take home their third Gold Cup in a row they will have to improve this facet of their game.

"The opportunities that we had in the early part of the second half you worry about," said Head Coach Bob Bradley. "Sometimes when you don't take advantage of those opportunities you pay for it. We were fortunate tonight that finally we got that second goal and and we were able to finish the game."

**Random Notes**

- I saw Fire Technical Director Frank Klopas at the match tonight, but unfortunately he ducked back into his suite before I could get a chance to talk with him.

- The U.S.'s win makes Jon Busch's weekend a whole lot busier. Here's his schedule for the next few days...

Friday: Fly to Seattle to join Fire ahead of the match against the Sounders

Saturday: Start between the pipes in the Fire's 2 p.m. match, then catch a flight to New York to join the U.S. team ahead of the Gold Cup final.

Sunday: Play/sit on the bench for the Gold Cup final.

Comments

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  • Maybe I was too spent from watching the Buehrle perfect game, but I thought the US looked confused most of the time--they were getting clogged in the midfield and didn't seem to have good, crisp passes and anticipation in the attack.

    I thought Holden looked especially frantic.

    I liked Beckerman's play and appreciated Kenny Cooper's spark off the bench.

    Where was Pause--other than the yellow card he was invisible.

    My perceptions are probably way off since i could hardly pay attention to the game given my excitement for Buehrle!

    Is Mexico paying the Gold Cup with B-listers as well? I was hoping for Costa Rica to pull out the game, but I actually think the US kids will be able to get more psyched for Mexico in the final.

    I'm looking for Cooper to knock a ball past Ochoa fast enough to straighten his perm. Am i the only one who thinks Ochoa looks like Cher?

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