More than any single game, I think I have been most intrigued by the macro-transition from Bradley to Klinsmann. I would say the transition was complete at the end of the Italy game, and we are now fully into the Klinsmann era. Here is my take on the transition phases: January 2011: Bradley is still in post-World Cup mode, trying to identify young players to augment the roster. Bielsa hustles a group of Chilean players together, many of whom have never seen time again. Bradley brings a largely MLS-based side after camp cupcake and sees his team struggle. Worries start to mount as to whether having Bradley for a second cycle was the right move. March 2011: Bradley is in Gold Cup preparation mode, with three difficult friendlies scheduled against Argentina, Paraguay, and Spain. While the US pulls out a tie against Argentina, the overall play is poor. Paraguay handles the US, and Spain embarrasses them heading into the US's most important off-cycle tournament. The US shows signs of serious concern, more so in terms of style than in results alone. Bradley tries to work 3 central midfielder formations together, but the team struggles to adopt the system. Gold Cup 2011: The wheels come off. The US loses for the first time in Gold Cup group play to Panama. Rumors circulate of a lost locker room. The defensive cracks that had been opening for a year break completely in the final. Mexico comes back from a 2 goal deficit to dominate the rest of the game en route to a 4-2 victory. Over Bradley's last 10 games: 11 Goals Scored. 13 Goals Conceded. -2 Goal Differential. 4-4-2 (W-L-D). The US wins 47% of available points. Average current Elo ranking of opponent: 35 Around this time I started to wonder what effect a coaching change may have. I started this thread with that question in mind. The study I referenced, where thousands of Bundesliga games were analyzed over decades of play, indicated the effect would be minimal. At most, we could expect about a 15% improvement as measured by goal differential. As usual, the Germans were cold right in their mechanical analysis (I will take broad stereotypes for $2,000, Alex). Aug/Sep 2011: Klinsmann takes over. With little camp time, he assembles a team to replay Mexico. He introduces a few new players and tries to implement a new style. The team concedes less goals, but also struggles to score. The US loses to an experimental Costa Rica team, and struggles to create chances against Belgium. Oct/Nov 2011: Klinsmann gets his first win with the US against Honduras, in spite of some shaky US defense and thanks to some shakier Honduras finishing. Klinsmann loses two more times, failing to score against Ecuador, and failing to create much of anything against France. This is the low-point of the Klinsmann transition, with threads like these as evidence of how many fans felt about Klinsmann after the France game. Slovenia - Italy 2011: Slovenia represents a turning point. Klinsmann dials up the offense, and the US wins in Europe. The US wins the next 3 games. The transition completes when the US beats Italy, the Italians first home loss in a long time. Questions linger over style, but at least the fan base has more confidence in the US's ability to grind out results. Over Klinsmann's first 10 games: 8 Goals Scored. 7 Goals Conceded. +1 Goal Differential. 5-4-1 (W-L-D). The US wins 53% of available points. Average current Elo ranking of opponent: 34 Like I said, those Germans are good. Actually, Klinsmann slightly outperformed their predictions, but not by enough to make a fuss over it. Their general point stands - you should not expect wildly different results as a team transitions from one coach to another (Sit down, Chelsea fans. Di Matteo is the textbook exception that proves the rule). Klinsmann inherited a team with problems, and working through those problems has taken time. The obvious question is, "Where does the US go from here?" No idea. I will look up some more German studies. What we do know is that the US is about where it should be after a transition. This is now fully Klinsmann's team. The Scotland game was a good start. In his words, the experiments stop now and the results matter.