U.S. Men's National Team

Projecting the USA Gold Cup roster: February Edition

USALineupVsAlgeria (ISIPhotos.com)

The CONCACAF Gold Cup is less than four months away now and the clock is ticking on American players hoping to do enough to earn a place on the Gold Cup roster.

There hasn't been much shake-up in the squad we're projecting in February from the roster we named in January, with just two new names on the squad. With MLS still in its off-season, the time is now for European and Mexican-based players to work their way past their MLS brethren.

We also have the inclusion of some new names to the mix, including German-born defender/midfielder Timothy Chandler. The Nuremberg player has yet to play for the United States, but has expressed interest in playing for the USA.

So who is on this month's version of the squad? Here is February's projected U.S. Gold Cup Roster:

PROJECTED 2011 Gold Cup Roster

GOALKEEPERS– Tim Howard, Marcus Hahnemann, Sean Johnson

DEFENDERS– Carlos Bocanegra, Steve Cherundolo, Oguchi Onyewu, Clarence Goodson, Jonathan Spector, Eric Lichaj, Tim Ream, Zach Loyd

MIDFIELDERS– Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, Jermaine Jones, Stuart Holden, Maurice Edu, Sacha Kljestan, Alejandro Bedoya 

FORWARDS– Jozy Altidore, Edson Buddle, Juan Agudelo, Teal Bunbury


Here are some thoughts on the picks:

GOALKEEPER- Wondering why Brad Guzan isn't on the squad? Sources tell SBI Guzan will skip the Gold Cup because he's getting married. That leaves Bob Bradley with a serious issue because he'll need a reliable and experienced back-up to Tim Howard. Whether Hahnemann would accept an invite remains to be seen, and if he wouldn't, Bradley could turn to Luis Robles, who is playing regularly in Germany and played in the 2009 Gold Cup. Nick Rimando is another option, though Bradley might be inclined to look for a foreign-based No. 2 goalkeeper rather than pulling a starter off an MLS team.

DEFENDERS– So why is Zach Loyd on the list over Jonathan Bornstein. Aside from an impressive performance against Chile, Loyd will be a regular starter for FC Dallas at right back after the club traded away Heath Pearce. If he continues to develop he should be in the mix.

Jonathan Bornstein's inconsistent playing time, and lack of action at fullback, makes his position tenuous. Pearce is a player who could work his way back into the mix now that he will be playing left back for Chivas USA.

Bobby Convey can't be ignored as a left back either, particularly if he plays as well in 2011 for San Jose as he did in 2010.

Jonathan Spector has enjoyed success at a variety of positions for West Ham and wouldn't be a surprise as a roster inclusion, though the growth of the likes of Eric Lichaj and Timothy Chandler could hurt his chances.

At centerback, Omar Gonzalez is on the fringes, but would miss out behind the aforementioned group. Ike Opara remains an interesting prospect who could definitely play his way onto the radar. George John also merits mentioning.

MIDFIELDERS- Ricardo Clark is replaced by Sacha Kljestan. The injured Clark had been impressing as a centerback for Eintracht, but being sidelined by a fractured cheekbone costs him a bit while Kljestan gives the squad more of an attacking option in midfield.

Timothy Chandler has to be taken seriously as a candidate, and if he does commit to playing. Originally a forward, Chandler has enjoyed success as an attacking right back/midfielder. Benny Feilhaber is someone who can't be forgotten either, and once he's back in action next month he could definitely play his way into the squad.

Mikkel Diskerud is an exciting prospect, but should probably be considered a longshot.

FORWARDS- Danny Mwanga is a player who could move past a Bunbury or Agudelo if he is able to secure American citizenship between now and this summer (and you can't help but wonder if Bob Bradley would rather leave Agudelo behind rather than giving him two tournaments to play this summer). Chandler has played more as a right-sided player for Nuremberg lately, but given the need for forwards you have to think he could get a look from Bradley up top.

Chris Wondolowski should merit another look, but there are several young and exciting prospects who look more likely to establish roles with the national team. Herculez Gomez is starting to see more playing time for Pachuca, and while the goals haven't come yet, he's someone to keep an eye on.


What do you think of the squad? Which players do you think should be on the squad? Which players do you NOT want to see make the team?

Share your thoughts below.

  • Micah King

    Come on Ives he did one little through pass to Agudelo when he was right by him any pro can do that if he could not make that then he needs to retire from pro soccer, or never would have went pro. That is not skill that was common sense. He then was invisible the rest of the game. I think Rogers is way better than Bedoya.

    (SBI-Haha, must be some good stuff your smoking Micah. Not sure what your beef is with Bedoya but we’ll see this year who is better.)


  • dabes2

    Still only 26 yrs old. Not too old to play in the 2014 world cup as a center back.

    IMO Whitbread has been very very unlucky with the timing of his injuries for both club and country.

    With a bit more luck, I think he’s a EPL defender.

    If Bradley wants to get younger, I get not bringing in Whitbread, but I think he belongs there on present ability.


  • Micah King

    -___- I do not smoke. Come on in the SA game he was not good. He missed a point blank header that Rogers perfectly crossed to him and stayed invisible. He over headed the ball and cannot do anything right. I have no beef with him I am tired of him getting looks when people like Convey, Daniel Williams, Chandler,Doyle (before Ireland snatches him up), and Hurzeler. We have seen what Bedoya can do flop around like a fish outta water.


  • DirtyLeeds

    Erm, you misunderstood, my point was that the article is written as though he’s included in your projection but yet I don’t see him in the list:

    PROJECTED 2011 Gold Cup Roster

    GOALKEEPERS- Tim Howard, Marcus Hahnemann, Sean Johnson

    DEFENDERS- Carlos Bocanegra, Steve Cherundolo, Oguchi Onyewu, Clarence Goodson, Jonathan Spector, Eric Lichaj, Tim Ream, Zach Loyd

    MIDFIELDERS- Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, Jermaine Jones, Stuart Holden, Maurice Edu, Sacha Kljestan, Alejandro Bedoya

    FORWARDS- Jozy Altidore, Edson Buddle, Juan Agudelo, Teal Bunbury


  • USSFdon'tthread

    Then who would you suggest then? Any other foreign based American GK’s out there that you would like to suggest? Ives stated that he would think BB would bring in a foreign based GK to not disrupt MLS teams, so I was posting the ones that come to mind that fit that paramter.

    And yes, Restrepo is waaaaaayyyyyy too green to be considered in the USNT pool, however Bradley has been known to bring in young guys to give them a look. It wouldn’t be a terrible thing to have him in camp and evaluate him since I still believe he is eligible to play for Colombia and Venezuela as well. The whole “cap-tie him” concept.


  • Scott

    As a Canada supporter I would d like thank the USSF for renewing Bradley for another term. The US now has far more talent and depth then the rest of CONCACAF. Based talent the US should be dominating every game against the mid level CONCACAF nations like Canada, Hondorus, Costa Rica etc. Not saying you won’t beat us, but really you should kill us.

    Canada gave you scare at the last GC and that shouldn’t have happened. A few years later and your player pool is even more talented and deep but I bet Bradley won’t get the most his players again. Whether it be player selections, or formations he just doesn’t seem to get the best out of his teams.


  • New England Beatle

    You mean that he’s TRIED to play the EPL and La Liga.

    Hey, but I respect your opinion.


  • New England Beatle

    As a faithful USMNT fan, I only want what is best for my team.

    I would rather try as many new faces as I could to find a replacement for Jozy, than to keep giving him the “keys to the Car”

    He is not the answer and he hasn’t come close to earning the spot that he now has, after all the opportunities he’s been given.

    I have nothing personal against Jozy,

    but I just think that he’s been given his chance and it hasn’t worked.

    Maybe I’m wrong, but that’s how I feel.

    GO USMNT!!!!!!

    I do respect your opinion, though.


  • Joe

    This is who I would take into battle.







  • Gacm32

    I like it, I think Lichaj can play LB effectively. I’d love to see a Chandler/Lichaj combo for the back spots as well. Chandler isn’t ready for the international game defensively yet, but he looks great going forward. With 2 D-mids we can afford 2 attacking outside backs.


  • Brian

    What I meant by the “tall centerback quota has been filled” is we already have Gooch and Goodson. There really is no need for Gonzalez. He’s not ready for the big time yet.

    I don’t consider Jay DeMerit to be a tall centerback. I think he’s only 5’11”? Anyways I think there’s a good chance that Jay DeMerit can play himself onto the Gold Cup roster, but we’ll see. Can he scrape off 9 months of rust in only 3 months?


  • Brian

    Benny isn’t USMNT caliber? Did you not watch the Confederations Cup or the World Cup? Please. Mix isn’t even close to being on Benny’s level.


  • Brian

    He did look comfortable on the left. But he’s right footed. I’d love it if Bob left Johnny B and The Mustache at home, but I just don’t see it happening.


  • GW

    I would think as a US “fan” you’d want JB to do as well as possible and give the team as many options as possible. I gues not.

    Many people don’t give Buddle serious consideration because as well as he plays for the Galaxy, he doesn’t look nearly as good for the US.


  • Murph

    I’m afraid Jose is the new Freddie… he’s gotta prove his worth, reputation and potential are just words. Show me Goals.


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