U.S. Men's National Team

Klinsmann hints at starting XI for World Cup qualifiers


Though he stopped short of revealing the entire lineup, Jurgen Klinsmann answered several questions about who would start on Friday night, particularly in goal.

The U.S. Men’s National Team coach told reporters on Thursday that Brad Guzan would start between the posts for Friday night’s qualifier against St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Klinsmann also stated that Tim Howard would start the second match against on Tuesday against Trinidad and Tobago.

It will be the USMNT’s first action since their loss in the third-place match of this summer’s Copa America Centenario, during which Brad Guzan heavily featured with Tim Howard only starting the final match of the tournament. Guzan will hope to put a mistake-ridden 4-0 loss to Argentina behind him and help his team put themselves in a strong position to advance.

Klinsmann also announced that Geoff Cameron, Kyle Beckerman, and Jozy Altidore would all be starting as well. Altidore returns to the team after missing the Copa America due to a hamstring injury. He’s been red-hot for Toronto FC since his return, helping to guide the team to first place in the Eastern Conference as they’ve won six of their last eight matches.

The USMNT could use a win on Friday as they battle for a place in the hexagonal round of 2018 World Cup qualifying. They currently sit second in their group, three points behind leaders Trinidad and Tobago, and just one point ahead of third place Guatemala. The top two teams in each group advance and a win, combined with a Guatemala loss, would see the USMNT guarantee their passage through.

The USMNT have not failed to qualify for a World Cup since 1990.

What do you think of the starters named so far? Who would you like to see in the rest of the XI?

Share your thoughts below.

      • Helium-3

        Beckerman going to get run over by the big T&T guys. Beckerman > Williams? Haha


      • johnnyrazor

        Good thing we aren’t playing TnT tomorrow then.

        Yes that TnT midfield which consists of two MLSers, one from a Belgian team, a USL, a NASL, an Ascenso Mx, an English 5th divisioner, a Trinidad leaguer, and a guy who just moved to French Ligue 2 after being in the Belgian League 2. Their forward line is one soon to be MLS player, a USL guy, and Ascenso Mx, and a promising young player for AZ Alkmaar. Boy these guys are as good as Messi and Higuain.

        Liked by 1 person

      • UclaBruinGreat

        Johnnyrazor, even with everything you just stated, the U.S. is very capable of losing to those players and that team. That’s just how team USA rolls. Luckily the TnT game is at home where the U.S. is less likely to lose to a minnow. A year ago TnT outplayed Mexico in a 3-3 thriller.

        But TnT is the second game, let’s not overlook this St. Vincent and the G’s road game.


      • johnnyrazor

        UCLA just responding to Helium’s statement that Beckerman was so below the competition.


    • Helium-3

      Beckerman’s lack of pace and (good technical) skill for his advanced are suitable for futsal, not World Cup qualifying soccer. T&T are a big, physical, athletic team who never beat USA on tactics but on power, pace, and determination.


  • Cj

    No jones, no Bradley and the game is important to not start a new body there, I am OK with it against SVG


  • Jayboy

    Beckerman was a pretty obvious pick if you track Klinsmans selections. The interesting part will be the front 6. We know Beckerman and Jozy. I think Bedoya is a lock. Does the other midfield spot go to Zusi or Nagbe? (I highly doubt Klejstan starts after being exiled for four years. ). Who is on the wings?


  • Hot Karl

    Hopefully Beckerman is played in a more advanced role. Kyle has sick skill on the ball and has proven time and time again he can be a #10. Good on ya Jurgy.


  • Patrick

    Good. Proactive, offensive soccer. I look forward to endless passing sideways and backwards with no width and none attacking the end line to whip crosses in.

    Nagbe again will not start because JK is an inept, unimaginative and farce of a coach.


  • MLSsnob

    So we know; Beckerman, Guzan, Altidore, Cameron. You gotta think; Wood, Yedlin, Bedoya and Johnson will get starts. That leaves 2 more. Depends on where he plays Johnson. I’m going with Besler and Zusi for the final 2.


    • Autolycus

      So you’re going with Guzan in the field rather than in goal. Bold choice!

      Or are you thinking we only play 10?


      • Autolycus

        Smiley didn’t show up in that post. It was meant to be a kind tease, not a harsh one. We’re all so used to thinking goal + 10, and just answer who the 10 are…


  • johnnyrazor

    Heard on ESPN that Howard will start on Tuesday so I guess we are back on the rotation.


      • johnnyrazor

        I guess the question is, is Howard with aging skills better on a match by match basis than Guzan on a bad day? With Tim you seem to get the same consistent performance, but with Guzan he looks like an all-star one game and then the next looks like a rec league guy.


      • Turkmenbashy

        I don’t know about rec league… maybe a full year of starting in the prem will bring his consistency back. but I agree he has some brain farts.


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