Beckerman starting against Portugal as US searches for group stage success

Kevin C. Cox

Kyle Beckerman will start against Portugal today as the United States search for a second group stage win — a win that would give them a clear exit from a very difficult group stage.

How exactly the lineup shakes out is difficult to say, but Beckerman is joined in the midfield by Jermaine Jones, who had a strong match against Ghana, as well as Michael Bradley, Graham Zusi, and Alejandro Bedoya. Zusi and Bedoya would seem the likely options out wide, but where Bradley and Jones play will prove tactically interesting.

Beckerman's strongest performances have come when he's the sole anchor in the midfield, with others dropping into deeper positions when necessary.

With Portugal possessing strong attack from the flanks — think Cristiano Ronaldo and Nani — Bedoya and Zusi wide may be a tactical switch.

Portugal lost the first game of the group stage to Germany by a surprising 4-0 scoreline.

United States lineup

Howard; Johnson, Cameron, Besler, Beasley; Beckerman, Jones; Bedoya, Bradley, Zusi; Dempsey

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