The Send-Off Series didn't get off to quite the start anybody wanted, the United States limping out 2-0 winners over a bunkering Azerbaijan, thanks to late goals from a couple of substitutes. Let's see what Jurgen Klinsmann's side has learned from that experience, shall we? They take the field this afternoon against a strong Turkey side who easily saw off World Cup-bound Honduras earlier this week. Thankfully, we'll get to see how Michael Bradley & Co. do against a team playing something less than everybody behind the ball.
So, let's see that improvement.
Kickoff Time: 2pm EDT with pregame coverage starting at 1:30.
Venue: Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J.
TV/Streaming: National broadcast on ESPN2 and Univision, with streaming on WatchESPN (for those of you with the right cable/satellite company, anyway).
Projected USA XI: Given the focus on fitness, I'd be surprised to see too many changes to the starting lineup. I think Klinsi sticks with the diamond 4-4-2: Tim Howard; Fabian Johnson, Geoff Cameron, Matt Besler, DaMarcu Beasley; Alejandro Bedoya, Jermaine Jones (DM), Michael Bradley (AM), Brad Davis; Clint Dempsey, Jozy Altidore. That's two changes from last time out, with Davis supplanting Graham Zusi and fit-again Dempsey pushing Chris Wondolowski to the bench.
Prediction: I see Jozy getting the goal everybody thinks he needs to get onto a roll, and I see a set piece goal for Matt Besler. I also see a couple of defensive lapses on the way to a hand-wringing 2-2 draw.
What Are You Drinking: Even if the game is in Jersey, you can pretend to see the New York skyline from Harrison, so let's go with a manhattan today. Eagle Rare, perfect, rocks.
Welcome to your gamethread for this afternoon. This is the place for your pre-game, in-game and post-game conversation and commentary.
Come on you Rocket Pops!