POWERED BY

U.S. Men's National Team

Lletget, Frei, Manneh headline squad for USMNT January camp

Photo by Dan Hamilton/USA Today Sports

Photo by Dan Hamilton/USA Today Sports

The annual January camp will serve as Bruce Arena’s first since returning as head coach of the U.S. Men’s National Team, and the former LA Galaxy boss took the chance to call in¬†several new faces and experienced veterans in his first camp in charge.

Sebastian Lletget, Stefan Frei, Kekutah Manneh and Taylor Kemp are among the newcomers that will join the USMNT for January camp, which begins on Jan. 10. The gathering of the MLS-based squad will culminated with a pair of friendlies against Serbia and Jamaica on Jan. 29 and Feb. 3, respectively.

Of the 32 players called into camp, Arena included several notable regulars after previously confirming that newcomers Manneh, Keegan Rosenberry and Walker Zimmerman would be joining the team for camp. Captain Michael Bradley returns, as do the currently unattached DaMarcus Beasley and Jermaine Jones. Bradley’s Toronto FC teammate, Jozy Altidore, also joins the team after a spectacular MLS playoff run while the forward pool is also boosted by the return of the previously-injured Gyasi Zardes.

Among the more interesting absences is Clint Dempsey, who Arena previously stated was a player that he would like to have in camp. The Seattle Sounders forward has been out of action for several months due to a heart issue and was not included on Arena’s 32-man squad.

Here’s a closer look at the entire USMNT squad for January camp:

GOALKEEPERS: David Bingham (San Jose Earthquakes), Stefan Frei (Seattle Sounders FC), Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake), Luis Robles (New York Red Bulls)

DEFENDERS: DaMarcus Beasley (Unattached), Steve Birnbaum (D.C. United), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Greg Garza (Atlanta United FC), Matt Hedges (FC Dallas), Taylor Kemp (D.C. United), Chad Marshall (Seattle Sounders FC), Keegan Rosenberry (Philadelphia Union), Walker Zimmerman (FC Dallas), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)

MIDFIELDERS: Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas), Alejandro Bedoya (Philadelphia Union), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Benny Feilhaber (Sporting Kansas City), Jermaine Jones (Unattached), Sacha Kljestan (New York Red Bulls), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy), Kekuta Manneh (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Dax McCarty (New York Red Bulls), Darlington Nagbe (Portland Timbers), Chris Pontius (Philadelphia Union), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew SC)

FORWARDS: Juan Agudelo (New England Revolution), Jozy Altidore (Toronto FC), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders FC), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)

31 comments
  • Matt

    Nice to see Kemp being a surprise call up. Nice reward for a guy who has played really well the past few years and done so under the radar.

    Like

  • Anthony

    The more things change the more things stay the same with a couple exceptions (Benny – who has not been called in since 2014).

    Like

    • SilverRey

      There are probably a dozen guys on that Camp Cupcake list that would not have made a Camp Streudel list.

      Like

      • johnnyrazor

        A dozen with only MLS guys to choose from I doubt it would be that many. Even so the bottom 10 guys on this list are really just shots in the dark.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Anthony

        12? Really? I see 7 (out of 31)max:

        GOALKEEPERS (1) : Stefan Frei (Seattle Sounders FC)
        – Every GK has been called up several times including Robles (undeserving this year) who called into last Camp Cupcake. Hamid is a favorite when not injured.

        DEFENDERS (2): Taylor Kemp (D.C. United), Chad Marshall (Seattle Sounders FC)
        – Matt Hedges has been called up by Klinsman with the last year or year and half of his reign
        – I didn’t count Zimmerman or Rosenberry. This is Zimmerman’s first, but he is 23 and was a regular on the u23 Olympic last year. Rosenberry is also 23 was in line for a call up before Klinsmann firing according to Philly Union article last Fall. In fact there was fear that Klinsman firing would spell the end of a possibility of a Rosenberry call up.
        – Zusi out of position in defense. Should be interesting. He works hard, which is *somewhat* translatable.

        MIDFIELDERS (4): Benny Feilhaber (Sporting Kansas City), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy), Dax McCarty (New York Red Bulls), Chris Pontius (Philadelphia Union),
        – I did not include Manneh because he just became a citizen last Summer/Fall and had stated Klinsman had been in touch with him in a couple articles I read last summer.

        Like

  • Chris

    Have some huge issues with the roster, first of all 32 is wayyy too many names. Where the hell is besler? Also glad were going to the klinsi school of playing players out of position with zusi. Thought robbie rogers deserved a call up as well. Names like robles, evans, kemp, trapp and wondo havent reslly deserved a call up here.

    Like

  • Marvis

    Looking forward to seeing Manneh with the national team. Although I primarily follow the black and gold, I have to admit he’s made me a bit of a whitecaps fan, too.

    Like

  • Quit Whining About Soccer in the US

    Like Frei getting a call up….didn’t know that was an option.

    Dempsey missing is a huge bummer.

    Like

    • johnnyrazor

      Frei was asked about it in one of his interviews after MLS Cup, not sure he’s eligible to actually play yet though. His lived in the US long enough and I don’t think he moved to the US to play soccer so it shouldn’t take long to file the paperwork if he hasn’t already. He did play for Swiss U15 team.

      Like

  • Hot Karl

    Zusi as a defender??? I’m a huge Zusi fan and I know he hasn’t been his usual self for the past year and a half but this is a big surprise. Who knows though, maybe a change to right back is exactly what he needs to get back on track. He always did well tracking back to defend when played on the wing.

    Like

    • Super Nintendo Chalmers

      Yes, surprising. However, Beasley is a converted wide midfielder. Zusi played as one too under Klinsmann.

      Arena doesn’t currently have the luxury of developing a young outside back. Our next two fixtures in WCQ just TEN weeks from now are crucial. We need a minimum of four points to end the panic mode. Right now, Beasley could be the starter at LB. Arena is just giving one of his former MNT players (one of the best in 04-06 IMO) a look. That’s loyalty, and most players love a coach like that.

      The January camp is to bring in young inexperienced talent and see what they can do. I have less of a problem with trying Zusi as a fullback than I have with the fact that Wondo is still getting call ups.

      Like

  • rbender17

    Love this squad. It’s the perfect mix of players to get blown out in every game and hopefully get Arena fired in record time so we can get a good coach. Fingers crossed

    Like

    • Super Nintendo Chalmers

      WTF. Yes lets root for a coach to get fired. You realize that you are willing to risk WC qualification to prove a point? Let the guy do his job, which is to get us qualified and oversee the team through WC 2018. AFTER that, assuming we qualify, then we can look at who is available and who can we get as head coach. Missing Russia 2018 because you rooted for us to get blown out is not going to advance the program. In fact, it would be regressive because our players would not get the experience of playing in the WC and would face lesser opponents between the end of the Hex and the end of the WC because we would just be one of those teams that actual WC qualifiers play in warm up matches. You really want that, to set us back 40 years ago to 1986 and the last time we didn’t go to WC?

      Like

  • AC

    About as expected. Good squad. Remember, this isn’t all the main team, but a good group to look at. CONCACAF is the goal right now.

    Like

    • Gary Page

      I would add Brad Evans to that list. Better to add more young players than has beens for this camp. There’s enough senior leadership with the likes of Bradley, Altidore, Jones.

      Like

    • AC

      If they are no good, then the other guys should have no problem competing for spots with them. You always need a camp with a mixture of young newcomers and experienced veterans for stability. It doesn’t mean they automatically get to play, but remember, it’s not about 2018 World Cup, it’s about 2017-2018 qualifying for the World Cup. A lot of the newcomers have no idea how hard it is to qualify in away games in CONCACAF.

      Like

      • antonnynoronha

        The qualifier will be very difficult for him to
        insist on these players, he has to call the
        best, as for the experienced, he should call
        those who have something beyond his
        experience to offer

        Like

  • antonnynoronha

    People need to forget that Zusi is a player
    for the team, his time has passed and he has
    never been able to show that he is a good
    player tactically, but that does not add up,
    sorry if he offends some fan of him, but he
    should never have been called When it was
    at its height and much less now

    Like

  • I scored three goals in one game

    Most likely Euro based players getting called in for March prolly: Wood, Brooks, Yedlin, Cameron(if healthy), Johnson, Guzan(if still over there), horvath, Kitchen( arena said he would have been called up except for the schedule), CP22, miazga(already said he had an eye on him if he was getting mins) and if haji Wright breaks into first team how do u not call him up that is 11 so that means 12 spots left for the 23 man WC qualifiers roster. Not to mention ccv, Green and hooch if they are getting mins and are in good form

    Like

    • johnnyrazor

      Chandler and AJ both good possibilities as well. Omar Gonzalez out of LigaMx and a former Arena player, has a pretty good shot too, so that drops your number even more. Wooten has been the hottest American striker in Europe so he would be possible too, although he’s only ever been in one camp. Keiswetter is seeing regular minutes as well. Arriola is a Galaxy Academy guy and will be in mid season form come March also.

      Like

  • Dennis

    I am amazed! No one has yet gone on an anti-Wondo rant. At Wondo’s age his star is falling so unlike 2 or 3 years ago there may finally be some meat in the claim he is not a valuable addition to the USMNT.

    Of course, all the senior veterans do have a role to play as on-the-practice-field coaches. That is not something any coach would gladly ignore.

    Like

    • johnnyrazor

      Might be more CJ Sapong, Patrick Mullins, and Will Bruin don’t excite people, not a lot of American strikers playing in MLS. Charlie Davies had things other than soccer to worry about last year. Ethan Finlay is wing forward so not a like for like with Wondo. I’m sure I’m forgetting someone, but that’s kind of the point if they aren’t easily remembered they probably aren’t deserving.

      Like

    • Lost in Space

      I’ll say it. Wondo is a waste of space for any National Team roster. He has 35 caps…Zardes has 31….making them about equal experience wise at the international level. If you want/need a practice field coach than bring Dempsey or Donovan in for training purposes. At least they actually have/had talent/success at the international level.
      I’ve got similar issues with the inclusion of Evans & Marshall. Both were decent/good players 4+ yrs ago, but not now. Neither have been a part of the national team picture for ages, and neither have a ton of international experience, so again they don’t really bring much to the table as practice field coaches nor can they help us qualify.
      Lastly pulling Beasley out of international retirement because we can’t find/develop a decent LB is sickening. If he’s part of Arena’s qualification plans we’re in deeper trouble than most of us thought.

      Like

      • Super Nintendo Chalmers

        A wasted space indeed. Probably at least half a dozen other young options.

        Like

Add your comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More from SBI Soccer