Bruce Arena’s greatest failure was underutilizing Dempsey in 2006 and not calling Beckerman at all. I remember Clint with the long hair just blowing my mind when with New England Revolution. I thought to myself, this guy just knows where to be and more clinical than any American I had ever seen — when it mattered.
He became a star. I actually disliked him for a time. He seemed aloof at times, seemed to conserve too much energy. And Bradley called him up when he was not even in form. But as he got older he actually got better and proved brains can take you a long way in soccer. I thought he would fade faster than Donovan. I was wrong. To this day he would likely be money off the bench against tired legs.
He is also proof that the pay to play model is an epic failure for player development in the USA.
I hope he becomes a coach. I doubt it. But his type of soccer IQ should be passed on to the next generation.