EAST HARTFORD, Conn. - The Czech Republic exposed the United States' defensive deficiencies time and again, taking advantage of sloppy play in a 4-2 victory Tuesday night in the first of three World Cup warm-up games for the Americans.
Maurice Edu and Herculez Gomez got their first international goals on a night when the United States rested Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey, Tim Howard, and other regulars.
But defenders Oguchi Onyewu, Heath Pearce, Clarence Goodson, and Steve Cherundolo struggled along with Edu in the midfield and created openings for the Czechs, who failed to qualify for the World Cup.
In front of 36,218 at Rentschler Field, Edu scored in the 17th minute. But the Czechs surged on goals by Tomas Sivok in the 44th minute and Jan Polak in the 58th.
Making just his third international appearance and first in three years, Gomez entered at the start of the second half and tied it when he beat goalkeeper Petr Cech in the 65th.
Martin Fenin broke the tie when he beat backup goalkeeper Brad Guzan in the 78th after Pearce, Goodson, and Cherundolo did not clear the ball. Tomas Necid got the final goal in the 90th after Edu jumped and failed to clear a pass.
U.S. coach Bob Bradley planned to cut seven players Wednesday and announce his final 23-man World Cup roster (1 p.m. on ESPN's SportsCenter).
Next up is another warm-up against Turkey in Philadelphia on Saturday, a day before the Americans leave for South Africa.
Gomez, DaMarcus Beasley and Stuart Holden had excellent games that appeared to boost their chances.
Development plan outlined. The only way the United States will catch up to the rest of the soccer world is by starting young.
That's the message Claudio Reyna delivered to a group of youth coaches Tuesday. Recently hired as the U.S. Soccer youth technical director, Reyna outlined a national curriculum for developing players through all levels of American soccer.
U.S. Soccer will release its curriculum later this summer. It will concentrate on three levels: Zone 1 (under 6 to under 12), Zone 2 (12 to 18) and Zone 3 (elite players, college and professional).
Australia cuts roster. Middlesbrough forward Scott McDonald was dropped as Australia trimmed its World Cup roster from 31 players to 28.
Crystal Palace midfielder Nick Carle and Norway-based defender Jade North also were cut Tuesday.
Elsewhere: Jong Tae-Se scored in each half as North Korea twice rallied to hold Greece to a 2-2 draw in a Cup warm-up game in Altach, Austria. . . . Nigeria played to a scoreless draw with Saudi Arabia in a warm-up in Attens, Austria. . . . Cameroon ended up in a scoreless draw with Georgia in Lienz, Austria.