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USA vs. Paraguay, Copa America 2016: Stock Up, Stock Down

Who helped their cause the most against Paraguay?

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

There were a number of players who performed quite well and deserve inclusion in this piece. There's already acclaim for Bobby Wood and John Brooks, so, instead of talking about how they obviously have had their stocks go up, let's look at a few people who raised their stocks that you might have overlooked.

Stock Up

Alejandro Bedoya

Bedoya often gets a good bit of flack. He's not the flashiest of players and sometimes ends up being forgotten. However, he is a consistent performer and a dedicated hard worker. On the ball, he was tidy and concise. While he didn't make a lot of charging runs into the box, Bedoya helped retain possession and did a lot in the background to reduce the strain on Jones and Bradley. On the defensive end, he was an absolute workhorse. He dedicated himself as a two-way player, always tracking back to help out, first Yedlin, and then Orozco on defense. Thanks to Bedoya, Paraguay found little headway through that right flank.

Brad Guzan

The one thing that has been true about the USMNT for seemingly forever is that the team always has a World Classgoalkeeper between the sticks. Since the last World Cup, it's been hard to argue that that's still the case. Tim Howard, who was amazing at the World Cup, took a year off from international play and suffered a decline in form. Brad Guzan stepped in to take his place, but he also experienced a turn in form. Guzan's criticism severely amped up during the Gold Cup, with a bad mistake while handling the ball led to a freekick and resulting goal for the opponent, Jamaica. In the friendlies and World Cup qualifiers of this calendar year, Klinsmann rotated between Guzan and Howard, before picking the former for the Copa America Centenario. Naturally, with all of this context, it was quite understandable that there would be a number of doubters on the position. Brad Guzan hadn't had an awful lot to do in the first two games. That changed in the match against Paraguay. Guzan repeatedly came up big on 1v1 situations, including this double save. If this represents a return to form for the Aston Villa man, then the questions for this spot are over.

Jurgen Klinsmann

Klinsmann came into this tournament with a lot of people calling for his head, including me. Well, he's answered the call, and then some. He's responded to criticism and finally started playing players in their proper positions (for the most part) and keeping stability in the side by not constantly tinkering with the line up. Klinsmann has figured out who he wants on the field and he's stuck to them. After the Colombia game, that took some guts. He's played the same starting XI for all three group games, the first time that a manager has done that in consecutive games since 1930. And that paid off with visibly better chemistry in the second two matches. Jurgen Klinsmann has been saying that the team's aiming for the semifinals. Well, because he got the team to perform when the chips were down, it looks like the USMNT actually has a path to make it.

Stock Down

DeAndre Yedlin

There's only one player who really saw his stock drop in this one. DeAndre Yedlin. I am honestly still furious with him. He made a boneheaded mistake with the handball against Colombia. Then, after redeeming himself against Costa Rica, he went and did this. It's infuriating. In the first half, he was lucky not to be booked after some bad tackles and an elbow to the face. But that start to the second half. Man, I get you were angry at that yellow for the first foul. But you should have been booked a while before then. And that response less than a minute later? Disgraceful. This is the second major mistake in just three games. This is the second time Yedlin's put the USMNT in a bind in this tournament. He's supposed to be a premier league starting defender. I mean, come on, find some professionalism here. If you can't, that spot on the national team is gone.