U.S. plans to keep same approach against Argentina

The USA (pictured) trains at NRG Stadium in Houston on June 20, 2016, a day prior to its Copa America Centenario semifinal there against Argentina. (Photo: Mexsport)


HOUSTON -- Don't expect the United States to bunker in and play defense for 90 minutes against top-ranked Argentina in the Copa America Centenario semifinals Tuesday night, says head coach Jurgen Klinsmann.

The 51-year-old German doesn't plan to alter his tactics at NRG Stadium.

"There is no need to change the way to approach it," he said. "We want to take the game to them. We’re not going to play with 10 guys in the box. That’s not our game. We’re not playing for a penalty shootout." 

Klinsmann feels his team needs to take risks in order to upend Argentina.

"We want to keep a high line," stressed the former Bayern Munich manager. “We want to go eye-to-eye. In order to grow, you need to go through some pain and you need to try things out. You need to risk. And, when you risk things, you get a lesson." 

The Americans claimed the media has made a bigger deal playing the likes of Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuain and Sergio Aguero than they have.

"There's a bunch of very good players on their team," U.S. captain Michael Bradley noted. "We have a few good players, as well. Sure, on paper they're the team that everybody thinks is going to win. No problem. But, ultimately, when that whistle blows, it's still 90 minutes of competition." 

The goal is reaching Sunday night’s final in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

Only once before has the USA advanced to this stage, falling to 1994 FIFA World Cup champion Brazil in the 1995 edition.

After three straight wins, Klinsmann warned against being complacent. 

"Yes, we reached the goal that we set for ourselves, which some people thought was too big of a goal," he concluded. "If you are content, you are going to get that lesson. There is no split-second to relax. You have to step it up even further. You have to find an extra 10 percent somewhere and make it your moment. It’s really about confidence, hunger and willingness to suffer."