US ‘not chasing result’ against Brazil after defeat to Colombia: Berhalter | national news

United States coach Gregg Berhalter says he will prioritize player performances over results when his team faces powerhouse Brazil on Wednesday, just days after a 5-1 defeat to Colombia.

Angry American fans flooded social media with calls for Berhalter to resign or be fired in the wake of Saturday’s beating against Colombia, reigniting skepticism about the U.S.’s ability to compete with top teams.

Another tough loss to Brazil on Wednesday in Orlando will undoubtedly put more pressure on Berhalter as he prepares the U.S. for this month’s Copa America campaign.

Berhalter, however, is adamant that winning or losing against the five-time world champions was not his main concern.

Instead, Berhalter wants to see better play from players he accused of “disrespect” for Colombia after the weekend’s defeat.

“The message for the team after the match against Colombia is that we are not chasing the result, we are chasing the performance,” Berhalter said on Tuesday.

If we take care of the game and see 11 or 16 players playing at the level of 8 out of 10, that will be enough.

Berhalter said Wednesday’s friendly game provides another opportunity to prove the United States can compete successfully with the top teams in international soccer.

Under Berhalter, the United States won just five of 18 games against teams ranked in the top 20 in FIFA’s rankings. Four of those five wins came against regional rivals Mexico.

“We know Brazil is a very good team, but what matters for us is how we play at the highest level against teams like this,” Berhalter said.

“Looking back at the Colombia game, the first 60 minutes were OK, but I think the last 30 minutes fell apart. This is what we want to avoid.

“Usually our solutions have a big impact and help us get the result in the match; that didn’t happen in this match. So for us it’s about really focusing on the performance and not the result.”

Berhalter emphasized that Wednesday’s match was only a stop on the way to Copa America, where his team may face Brazil or Colombia in the quarterfinals.

“The natural tendency would be to say OK, now only the result counts, but the reality is that it’s a friendly match,” Berhalter said.

“We are preparing for the tournament, we want to get information about both Brazil and our players. So we have to be brave and continue with our plan.”

Meanwhile, Berhalter dismissed questions about whether his future as an American coach might depend on how well the team performs at the Copa America.

“I don’t think I’m the right person to answer that question,” he said. “But I would say we actually see it as a design element.

“We see this group as a talented group that can do good things and we want to use the Copa America to show that we are focused on going as far as we can.”