Bob Bradley’s Time Was Up

It was clear to see after the U.S. men’s national soccer team lost to Ghana in the Round of 16 at last summer’s World Cup.

Bob Bradley’s time was up.

Never a tactician, Bradley was forced to engage his team on an emotional level moreso than mental.

And allowing a defensive lapse (and goal) in extra time against Ghana proved his methods were not sustainable. No longer was he a coach who could inspire victory. His motivational powers had reached their zenith.

Nevertheless, he was retained by U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati and led the USMNT for another year, another tournament. This time, the Gold Cup, North American’s regional tournament.

Bradley’s roster selections for the Gold Cup were unbalanced. His lineup changes were slightly better.

If not for the inspired play of Freddy Adu toward the end of the tournament, this Gold Cup would have been near complete and total disaster. Not that losing to Mexico, in the title game, after leading 2-0, isn’t complete and total disaster.

Because it is.

He could no longer command more from his players than what he got in South Africa a year earlier, and certainly not against Mexico at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.

And if your team can’t put up a second-half fight against your most heated rival in a tournament final, someone has to go.

Bob Bradley’s time was up.

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Filed under Soccer, U.S. Soccer, USMNT, World Cup

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