It's a slow progress, but eventually more and more players will be at the top end of the european leagues. Wasn't Dempsey just this year the first ever american in a european cup final? Eventually there will be more and more players moving to top level clubs, and the feedback loop of more expose that brings will build more and more talent. Coaching kind of let the team down, but you can't really say they underachieved.
I'm excited to see where some of the US players move. With Hodgeson likely leaving Fulham it wouldn't be a surprise to see Dempsey move up. Donovan could definitely get in a good team. Bradley had a great tournament, looked great bombing into space and could move to a bigger club. It'll be interesting to see how Altidore does in a lower league for a year. It's a slow process.