An American Midfielder in England: 3-6

The USA's Jermaine Jones (15) and Poland's Jakub Blaszczykowski struggle for the ball during the second half of their international friendly soccer match in Chicago, October 9, 2010. REUTERS/John Gress (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT SOCCER)

Two American center midfielders took part in the weekend’s most exciting matches, Fulham’s 3-2 triumph over Blackburn and Bolton’s 3-2 victory over Aston Villa. Jermaine Jones was on the losing side in the former and Stuart Holden made vital contributions to the latter’s winning efforts. Unfortunately, Michael Bradley, who was on the bench for Villa, again failed to see any action.

To the stats!


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The Rundown

Jermaine Jones (Blackburn 2 – Fulham 3) In Jones’ short time in the EPL, he’s filled two distinct midfield roles, destroyer and, albeit briefly, creator. Today, as one of two central midfielders in Blackburn’s 4-4-2, Jones played as a traditional box-to-box midfielder, completing passes all over the pitch.

by Guardian Chalkboards

Befitting his role, Jones had an opportunity to score in the 78th minute. After starting a Blackburn counter-attack off a Fulham corner, Jones raced to the edge of the penalty area to cap the counter. His shot, though, flew wide.

Stuart Holden (Bolton 3 – Villa 2) If you’ve been reading FFG’s Tactics Tuesday articles, you know that fullbacks tend to grab a fair share of a team’s possession when a squad uses a 4-4-2. As a sign of Holden’s growing importance to Bolton, the gringo attempted 17 more passes than left back Paul Robinson and 11 more than right back Gretar Steinsson. In Villa and Bolton’s September encounter, both fullbacks attempted more passes than the American.

Michael Bradley (Villa 2 – Bolton 3) Michael Bradley was on the bench but didn’t feature in Villa’s loss.

Jonathan Spector (West Ham 3 – Stoke 0) Jonathan Spector was on the bench but didn’t feature in West Ham’s win.

Stat of the Week: Michael Bradley – 0 minutes played

We might just keep the same Stat of the Week until Bradley the Younger acquires consistent playing time. Though he did start Villa’s midweek FA Cup loss, Bradley has played just 18 minutes in 3 Premier League games. If he keeps failing to feature for Villa, the form of Holden, Jones, and Maurice Edu might cause Bradley to lose his starting spot for the USMNT.

Gringos, why do you think Bradley isn’t playing? Does Gerrard Houllier have something against Americans not named Friedel?

2 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Bensten says:

    Wow, 8 interceptions for Holden. Jone’s 11 failed passes is a little concerning, but considering his role today (all over the pitch) it might be forgivable.

    I am worried about Bradley. I think in the long run he’ll work his way in–his style is a good match for the EPL. In the meantime Bradley senior will have some tough decisions to make.

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