Ready for anything
Saturday, 12 June, 2010
Jay DeMerit says he is ready for the challenge of England.
USA defender Jay DeMerit insists he is ready to handle the challenge of marking England striker Wayne Rooney and hopes his side can cause a major upset.
DeMerit may have been released by Watford this summer, but he is set to play a major role for his country at the World Cup.
The 30-year-old defender showed he can compete against the best strikers in the world when he marked Spain striker Fernando Torres out of the Confederations Cup semi-final last year.
DeMerit is now hoping to do the same against Rooney and help USA get off to the perfect start when they face England in the opening group game on 12 June.
When asked if he can deal with Rooney, the same way he performed against Torres, DeMerit said: "You hope so. Going into games with fear is something you should never do.
"You go in knowing the challenge is there but that you've been there and done it before so you can take confidence and try to mirror a performance you've made before.
"I'm under no illusions about the quality that Torres, the England players and the rest of my opponents have.
"Those type of challenges are what I thrive on. Those performances are what it's all about, especially for me personally.
"It's something not every player gets to be part of and experience. But now I've had some good experiences that's something I can build on and I'm definitely going to have to do that again at the World Cup.
"We need to make sure we are doing the right things and present the challenge for them. If England don't have the right attitude, it might be something we can exploit."
America's AC Milan defender Oguchi Onyewu claims he is ready to end a seven-month injury lay off to start for Bob Bradley's side. Striker Jozy Altidore has also recovered from an ankle problem.