Photo by ISIphotos.com
German-born midfielder Jermaine Jones will have to wait a while longer to make his U.S. national team debut.
Jones is skipping next week's USA-Brazil friendly after initially accepting the invitation. Jones and Columbus Crew defender Chad Marshall have been replaced on the U.S. roster by World Cup forward Jozy Altidore and Los Angeles Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez, who has yet to be capped by the national team. Marshall withdrew from the squad, with no explanation provided by U.S. Soccer as to why.
German reports stated that Jones and Schalke manager Felix Magath determined it was too early for him to take part in international duty after being sidelined for nearly a year with a broken leg. Here is a statement from Jones, released by U.S. Soccer:
"I would like to thank Bob Bradley and the U.S> Federation greatly for my first official invitation," Jones said. "It is an honor that I have been working towards for over a year, and while I initially felt like I was ready to make my first appearance, it is also extremely important to me that I am 100 percent fit for my first national team game and that I make a good impression on the manager and my teammates.
"I hope to receive another invitation and finally fulfill my goal of playing with the U.S. national team in the very near future."
Jones missed the entire 2009/2010 club season as he dealt with a leg fracture that failed to heal properly. He has since return to action with Schalke this pre-season, even scoring in a match against Hamburg last week.
Jones has been with the U.S. national team once before, having come in to spend time with the team during the team's friendly against the Netherlands in March (the above photo is from that visit).
Jones' next chance for a call-up is likely to come in October, when a rumored friendly against Poland is in the works.
The United States takes on Brazil on Tuesday at the New Meadowlands Stadium. More than 55,000 tickets have already been sold for the match which will feature a U.S. roster with 15 World Cup players against a young Brazil squad.
What do you think of these developments? Disappointed to not see Jones? Happy to see Altidore coming in? Excited for Omar Gonzalez?
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