Ruthvenscalperphoto Graham Ruthven for American Soccer Now
Direct from Sarajevo

ASN Exclusive: The Buzz Begins to Build in Bosnia

With Wednesday's friendly just a few hours away, ASN correspondent Graham Ruthven describes the scene in Sarajevo, with sightings of Jermaine Jones, John Anthony Brooks, and Eddie Johnson tossed in.
BY Graham Ruthven Posted
August 14, 2013
10:29 AM
SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina—Sitting on my hotel’s rooftop terrace, looking out over Sarejevo’s old town and enjoying the sunshine, an almighty ruckus erupts on the busy street below. Cars blowing their horns, men hanging out the windows, chanting and waving Bosnia flags. In the back window of one of the cars is a picture of Eden Dzeko.

It’s game day all right.

The training sessions are out the way, the guessing games regarding how Jurgen Klinsmann will line up his team are ramping up, and FIFA clearances have come through (in the case of Aron Johannsson, who was deemed eligible to play late yesterday). The U.S. plays Bosnia and Herzegovina today (2:30pm Eastern; ESPN2 and UniMas) and ASN is in Sarajevo to bring you as much exclusive content as possible.

Upon walking to the U.S. team hotel—just round the corner from where I’m staying—this morning to collect my credentials for tonight’s contest, I came across two men selling tickets for the game. I asked one of them how much a ticket would set me back. “10 markas,” was the reply. Approximately $6.50. Good value, I’m sure you’ll agree.

In the team hotel’s lobby I saw Eddie Johnson and Jermaine Jones, presumably using the wi-fi to browse Facebook and watch funny videos of cats on YouTube.

I’d spotted Jones and John Anthony Brooks strolling about the town last night, trying to relax before the game. Although not much relaxation was to be had, with both players mobbed by German tourists asking for pictures and autographs. Bundesliga, man. Today in the lobby Jones had a little more time to himself, and I didn't want to disturb him.

The game tonight should be a closely contested affair, despite a Bosnian fan telling me this morning that "America will leave with no dignity."

Trash talk indeed.

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