By OMAR SHAMOUT
CARSON, Calif. – Houston Dynamo midfielder Brad Davis, 31, says he’s relishing his first U.S. men’s national team call up under Jurgen Klinsmann. The 2012 MLS MVP finalist earned his last cap under Bob Bradley in a 2010 friendly against El Salvador.
“The older you get the less opportunity that those things are possibly going to happen,” Davis said after camp on Thursday.
Despite his age, Davis says he feels healthier now than when he entered the league with the MetroStars in 2002. But he says there are certain changes between his club side and the national team that require adjustment on his part.
“It’s been difficult,” Davis said. “The pace is very high, but when we get back to our clubs we should be ready to go.”
Davis finds himself back in Southern California again after a 3-1 loss to the LA Galaxy in MLS Cup 2012 on Dec. 1. Davis described the tactical differences between coach Dominic Kinnear’s Houston team and Klinsmann’s U.S. side.
“Jurgen … likes to … spread the field out when you’re on the attack, wide players getting wide on the touchline whether the ball’s on your side or the opposite side of the field,” Davis said. “Offensively it’s a little more open, [there’s] a little more freedom maybe to try and create things. Dom [Kinnear] likes us to play more as a unit, as a group across the field.”
But Davis said both coaches ask the same things of their players on defense, emphasizing “getting numbers around the ball, closing down the ball and working with your teammates and trying to close down space and getting behind the ball as fast as you can to do that,” Davis said.
Davis is coming off the best MLS season of his career, tallying eight goals and 15 assists. His fine play earned him a contract extension in December.