Jonathan Bornstein put on one of the worst displays of defending I have ever seen tonight.
The United States put in an all-around good performance besides No. 12, but archrivals Mexico clinched the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup and the North American spot in the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup in Brazil. They will join Brazil, Japan and Spain as one half of the field is complete.
It is Mexico's second straight Gold Cup triumph, but this time they actually beat the top team the Americans could offer, well, at least it was to start.
Throughout the game, I was hearing comments about this being a complete defensive collapse by the United States, but that was simply not the case. At all times, 10 of 11 American players were playing spectacular. Bornstein was always the one outlier of that group.
He started on the bench, a spot he did not even deserve, but right after Michael Bradley set the Americans off to a momentous start, Steve Cherundolo was forced off with a left ankle sprain. This paved the way for the defender from Tigres UANL to completely blow the game on his own.
The United States handled the early pressure and stuck two away from Bradley and Donovan, but once Cherundolo went down, it was over.
Bornstein was beaten every time down the field. His inclusion had already screwed everything up with Bocanegra being forced to move farther out wide and moving Eric Lichaj to the right side. The defense fell apart and could do nothing to make up for Bornstein's dreadful mistakes out wide. It was a domino effect.
While I throw a lot of blame on Bornstein, can the USSF please just end our suffering and bring in a real coach? Bob Bradley is not the man to lead this team into the future, nor was he ever that man!
While I am irate about the performance of Bornstein, some of the blame has to be put on Bradley for a question I have been asking since the day the Gold Cup roster came out: Where was Timothy Chandler on this roster?
We all hopefully know of the 21-year-old German-born defender. Like Jermaine Jones, he was born in Germany but has an American father, and he has been making a name in the German leagues. He has been playing phenomenally for Nurnberg and played incredibly defending Ezequiel Lavezzi against Argentina, yet he was not on this Gold Cup team. Why? Is Bornstein really considered a better player? I hope not.
Some of Bradley's decisions were great in this tournament, but I really fear for the national team if this is the man leading the Stars and Stripes toward Brazil 2014.
I tip my hat to Mexico. While I feel like the scoreline does not truly reflect the overall game, they were phenomenal and in the end the better team. The United States defense blew it. Mexico's all-around performance was near flawless. The better team, today at least, is representing CONCACAF in the Confederations' Cup. As Stuart Holden said afterward, the Americans are, at full strength, as good or better than Mexico.
American fans, I'm sure many of you are as upset as I am. I want to hear who or what you blame for the loss in the final.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!