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Who should the USMNT call up vs. South Africa?

Jozy Altidore (

The last U.S. national team match of the year will take place in the same country where so many of the year's most memorable matches took place, and chances are the return to South Africa could feature several new faces that didn't make the trip south last summer.

When the United States takes on South Africa on Nov. 17th in Cape Town, Bob Bradley will be calling in a team minus most of his top European players, as well as without the national team players still involved in the MLS playoffs. While we won't see the likes of Landon Donovan or Clint Dempsey, we could potentially see the likes of Tim Howard or Michael Bradley in order to prevent the fielding of a complete B team for a match commemorated as the Nelson Mandela Challenge Cup.

So what will a team without most of the team's starters look like? Here's a potential lineup:







Tim Howard and Michael Bradley are in the middle of their club seasons, where both are regular starters, but if Bob Bradley wants to field a team that isn't a flat-out B team, I could see these two players being called in for this match. If Howard is left home, then Brad Guzan would get the nod. If Michael Bradley is left behind, we could see Kyle Beckerman in the starting lineup.

Jozy Altidore is seeing playing time at Villarreal, particularly, but given his lack of minutes in La Liga, a call-up for this friendly makes sense.

Something else to consider is the status of Mexican club Pachuca, which is still battling for a place in the Apertura playoffs. If Pachuca is eliminated this weekend you have to wonder whether Bob Bradley would consider calling in Jose Francisco Torres, Herculez Gomez and even Marco Vidal.

If you are looking for some brand new faces, like a Mikkel Diskerud, there is no guarantee that Bob Bradley will call in brand new players into this camp. Diskerud seems destined to take part in the January training camp.

What do you think of the projected lineup? What players would you like to see called in for the match?

Share your thoughts below.



  1. @#*&$ BORNSTEIN!!!!! Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. As funny as it sounds we should consider other players, rather than the usual suspects. I mean…isn’t that the point of having friendlies? For instance, not sure why Jones wouldn’t be considered if MB is. Bornstein!!!????…are you kidding me!? Does Bradley owe this man something???? I am not sure why more MLS players, who are no longer in the playoffs, wouldn’t be considered. For instance: Ryan Smith(good speed and most important great first touch & skill on the ball, something that alot of US players don’t posses), Braun (not a world beater, but has a nose for the goal), tim ream, jeff cameron (as a center back or a utility player), gaven, etc…I keep insisting that Altidore is not the answer, I am tired of the “he is only 21” excuse, why not try Agudelo. This kid for being only 17, has good hustle and great first touch, his positioning awareness is pretty high. Altidore needs competition, he has been fed the hype syrup for such a long time, that he does not feel threaten for his spot on the USMNT roster.

  3. and based on Bradley’s trend of rewarding players who have done well in MLS, yea i’d expect to see Wondo called into camp, whether he’s play has been just a good spell in a players career or the growth and maturation of a player.

    If Ives is spot on about this friendly being more about our bid for a world cup then it being more so an actual friendly to access players, then i think we have a whole batch of players to a really think about this January camp (i.e. Lee Nguyen, Jeremiah White, Luis Robles)

  4. Thank You. It was meant to be a comprehensive list that was also prospective based on previous call ups and the likely hood of new players being introduced into the system and which players wouldn’t be available.

    Rodney Wallace hasn’t been capped, and i don’t know if costa rica has shown interest, but like other players he’s yet to make a definite statement about it his future. He’s definitely a long term prospect for LB.

  5. Call me crazry, but why not?

    GOALKEEPERS: Guzan, Rimando

    DEFENDERS: Onyewu, Goodson, Agbossoumonde, Garza, Lichaj, Gonzalez
    MIDFIELDERS: Lletget, Orozco, Holden, Feilhaber, Bedoya, Beckerman, McCarty
    FORWARDS: Altidore, Johnson, LeToux, Findley

    starting lineup (4-4-1-1)

    ————-Le TOUX——————

    subs: Findley for Altidore, Gonzalez for Goodson,

  6. Wow that is a brutal team, for the most part. I agree with Lichaj, Onyewu, Diskerud, and Jozy. Maybe Bedoya. Your bench is garbage. Makes no sense. You have to look at these games with your intentions towards the future. If you honestly think that the rest of these guys have a chance to be apart of the team in the next couple years, you have no hope for them making the world cup. If we arent bringing in our A team, bring in the younger guys who actually have potential and TALENT compared to the scrubs you selected.

  7. Sure it would hurt. It would hurt bringing in a player who actually has a chance to be apart of this team in future, as in team for the gold cup and eventually the world cup. And people, just because a player is getting time, doesnt necessarily mean he is playing well. This is a perfect opportunity to bring in young players who have a legit shot of being apart of the national scene for the big tournaments coming up.

  8. No way do Bradley or Howard make this trip.

    Clark and Guzan, respectively. Spector could start for Lichaj, but both should be there.

    I’d expect Beasley over Rogers (this from a Crew fan).

    And the Danish league is in full swing, and Aarhus are tyring to win promotion, so Feilhaber might be absent. Kljestan has been starting for Anderlecht latley, so he might be unavailable as well.

    My XI:
    GK: Guzan
    D: Lichaj, Onyewu, Goodson, Bornstein
    M: Bedoya, Clark, Diskerud, Beasley
    F: Altidore, Findley

    The rest of the 18-20 man squad:
    GK: Yelldell
    D: Spector, Cameron
    M: Beckerman, Rogers, Gaven
    F: Eddie Johnson, Ching

  9. Aaaaahhhh. NOW, my friend, we’ve hit common ground. I completely understand what you’re saying about the players we produce and over time, that will get better.

    Still, I think it’s a bit harsh on Johnson, Beckerman and Rogers. They’re not players that should really be anywhere near starting for the full team right now – you and I both know that. However, they, along with other players, are players who were at one point incredibly impressive( some would argue Beckerman is quite impressive right now).

    That’s where Bradley gets caught – to me, Bradley is actually a very tactically astute coach, despite what people say. The issue is that he’s very tactically inflexible, and continues to use the same tactics and therefore the same types of players and, sometimes, the same players. I like Bradley and the decision to re-sign him, but he has to be given some kind of animadversion for using Findley and Clark so much and the same tactics as well.

    That being said, he has gotten the team to play well enough to fulfill most expectations and that’s really all you can ask from a coach. Not to mention he really raised the bar with his work in the Confederations Cup.

    Anyways, I see what you’re saying.

  10. Anybody but Rogers. In fact they might as well call me up to play instead of Rogers: They don’t have any conclusive proof that I suck yet.

  11. I see what you mean, and that’s a fair question. I suppose that brings up the greater frustration to me and that is that we can’t come up with anything better than a Beckerman or Rogers or Johnson for a B team. I don’t know of anyone who would ‘merit’ a shot more than those guys, and that’s what is so frustrating. I lived in the UK for a while and played soccer there. It’s not what many people think. Some of those players are garbage. All that to say, they’re not exactly playing soccer in the streets and every second of the day in England, yet they can still create world class players on occasion. I’m not expecting the US to pump out the next Cristiano Ronaldo or Eric Cantona, but can’t we at least get an Aaron Lennon (he’s on the B team), or a Jermaine Defoe (he’s on the B team) or a Scott Parker or a Kevin Davies or an Andy Carroll (who rarely even earn spots on the roster)? the list goes on. I’m talking about a country the size of one of our States: a country of 50,000 people. It just baffles me. And yes… I’m one of those “bitter” people.

    p.s. The comment about Eddie Johnson was in relation to him being the best we have for this particular game. Because I assume that in order to wear a USMNT shirt, you have to be one of the best in America.

  12. No more Robbie Rogers double takes. There has to be better options from MLS or Mexico on the flanks. Why not get Tim Ream in there too. Put him on the bench and then he’s an option for the second half.

  13. bedoya plays for a sweedish league team, which by the by, happens to have to lowest UEFA coefficient than any other league an American player plays in. if you buy in to those sorts of things.

  14. Moreover, who the HELL called Eddie Johnson the best American striker we have? Point to them so I can put the idiot stamp on them.

  15. The problem with your statement is that it seems to assume there are better options we haven’t given chances to. You’re not naming ANYBODY better. Name players that should be given chances that will take away roster spots. I’m not trying to be a jerk and I know it sounds like it, but what I’m saying is that I constantly hear,”give somebody else some chances to impress”, but the usual case is that nobody names anybody – they’re just sick of the players that they have and want something new, as if throwing some random new guy in there is going to fix things.

  16. What the FREAK does Torres have to do with this kid?

    Torres is playing a COMPLETELY different positiong for the USA than this Monterossa boy is. Torres is a distributive, linking central midfield sometimes played in a deep-lying role. Monterossa is, by your description, an attacking midfielder. Torres doesn’t start because he didn’t take his chances in the central midfield when he did start. If Monterossa makes some noise, then he’ll get a call up – simple as that. No relation to Torres, no Latin American bias( not saying that’s what you’re saying), just that simple.

  17. I second that.

    If Jozy has no soccer talent, you’re making a direct insult on the Villareal manager(Pelligrini isn’t it?) and the players Jozy has beaten.

  18. I can’t believe that Ives doesn’t have Stuart Holden in his starting lineup. What other American midfielder is playing so well in the most popular league in England?

    Also, I think that Edu and Jones should be given a try together, and let the younger Bradley rest up and miss the long airplane travel.

    I would love to see this midfield get significant minutes together.

    Holden – Jones – Edu – Bedoya

    (SBI-Ben, how many times has it been stated that Bradley would not bring in the full squad? Holden would be in my lineup if we were talking the full A team, but we’re not. I included Howard and Bradley as two players who could handle the extra wear if a long trip and extra game. Maybe neither gets called (but Howard did play in the 07 game in South Africa and was just as busy then, which is why I included him.)

  19. Why no to Bradley? Just wondering because it seems to me that he’s one of our best midfielders.

    People don’t appreciate the little things MB does

  20. The difference between Charlie and those other players is that Charlie is recovering from a career threatening car accident. If he were ready for playing football at a high level, he would be a part of the Sochaux first team.

    Gooch’s situation is similar to Charlie’s, but his injury was much more straight-forward. Although he isn’t getting time for Milan (who knows what’s going on there!), he looked fit and played fairly well in the last two friendlies.

  21. EJ doesn’t deserve a call-up, ask any Fulham fan. But it looks like he’ll get one, I guess the playing time will be good

    Why isn’t Dempsey going?? He just can’t be bothered?

  22. Yeah, he did poorly on a couple of plays in one game, that OBVIOUSLY outweighs the rest of the season and means he shouldn’t play for the national team.


  23. Do you want to see them most INeffective duo of strikers on the planet? Ok, then start Eddie Johnson and Jozy Altidore.

    It’s weird, because to Nike, Bob Bradley and Sunil Gulati they both look athletic, but they actually have not soccer talent.

  24. I know he can’t go b/c of the MLS playoffs, but Edson Buddle deserves to be called up.

    Eddie Johnson and Jozy Altidore have done nothing to deserve it.

    I think if both Johnson and Altidore played in the MLS, Buddle would still lead them in goals scored.

  25. …and my point is you should be able to take 10 seconds to find it on your own instead of trying to nitpicking with Ives. Give that google thing a try sometime.

  26. This is the best suggestion I have heard regarding Jozy! nice

    Abby Wombach has much more skill than Jozy and actually plays harder!

  27. theres a guy playing first division football in Chile, goes by Carlos Monterossa. talented attacking midfielder, but will probably never see the light of day on the USMNT because paco isnt even called…

    socal kid as well so he can ball.

  28. If Edson Buddle can start to impress and score goals consistently at the age of 29, then another player also playing out of his mind should get a chance, regardless of the amount of chances he’s gotten.

  29. I’m really interested to see what Mikkel Diskerud can do on the international stage. Skilled, creative, quick, composed, mature, dynamic, and versatile to boot. A candidate for the kind of player that could run the attack in the future if you ask me.

  30. big +1 regarding Buddle and the WC.

    why on earth are people saying Findley should get called up again? and if i hear the “his speed opens up space” line again i’ll puke.

  31. That’s a pretty good list. Its obviously meant to be comprehensive, hence the more obscure picks.

    Isn’t Rodney Wallace Costa Rican? Or is he undecided?

    I assume you left Wondo off b/c of playoffs. He should def be in the January camp.

  32. We should only need 2 goalies for a friendly match. Guzan and Rimando should do fine. Sean Johnson has potential but needs some more professional experience. Dominic Cervi needs to get on the field before being considered for such a role. Yelldell has a lot to prove before getting a national team look. Luis Robles…forget about it. In his one Gold Cup appearance last year he looked like a dear caught in the headlights.

  33. “with the same chances Johnson & Altidore would have scored on maybe half the opportunities”

    This is a self-evidently foolish statement. 27 is by no means young in pro soccer terms.

    Wondo def deserves a call-up, but all these people who are so sure he’s a better option than our current strikers might want to wait until we see him play against better international comp before they anoint Wondo the next McBride.


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