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Report: USA to face Venezuela in January


Photo by Bernd Feil/

The U.S. men's national team's January camp appears to be culminating with two matches close to the Equator. 

According to numerous reports, Venezuela will host the U.S. national team in a friendly on January 21. The prospective match comes days before another reported friendly, which pits the United States against Panama in Panama City on January 25. 

If the two dates hold up, it would end a six-year stretch in which the United States has ended its January camp with a friendly at the Home Depot Center. Neither fixture has been officially confirmed yet by U.S. Soccer.

Venezuela has been one of the surprise, rising teams in South America over the last year, coming in fourth in this past summer's Copa America. La Vinotinto is currently tied for first in CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying along with Uruguay and Argentina and managed to defeat Lionel Messi & Co. in a qualifier last month.

What do you think of this development? Do you like the opponent choices?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Would Venezuelans defect? Why not? The violence in that country is nearly uncontrolable; the Nationals’ catcher was kidnapped a couple of weeks ago.

    Chavez might not be a full-bore Communist but he *is* a dictator whose “Bolivarian” political philosophy is a front for centralized control and personal power. Besides, he’s definitely more interested in helping the Iranians than he is in helping his own people.

  2. It will be interesting to see if Klinsmann calls in Wondolowski who won the MLS golden boot, or the defender of the year, Omar Gonzales or Sean Franklin. Other than Donavon, attacking USA mids in MLS are few, sorry Freddy and Benny, but Mike Magee is intriguing. Will Brad Davis finally get some attention (I suspect not due to injury).

    It is hard to know what to say about the players from Scandanavia who will be available; I’ve seen them so seldom.

  3. Sure, but no team has to release its players for these friendlies, translation euro-club starters like Dempsey, Bocanegra, Onweyu, Bradley, Jones, Cherundolo, Chandler, Howard, Sasha, and Altidore will most likely not be available. Klinsmann may not have much say it that.

  4. Other than Donavon, Goodson, Beckerman, Shea and possibly Ream this team will not be anything like the team that will be fielded for the first qualifying match. Except for Donavon, this is the level of team the US had in the 2009 Gold Cup, which some described as the C team. I am not sure holding their own is all that likely, especially since there will be only a short time to get them organized. It will give some players a chance to make their case for later, but it might not be pretty!

  5. Are you being sarcastic or being for real ? Venezuela ruling party (United Socialist Party) that Chzez is is founded in Marxist ideology. Last time I checked Karl Marx was a communist.

  6. Wow. This level of ignorance is why Republicans are able to win elections, with candidates who display little acquaintance with economic, scientific and social realities.

  7. He’s with Fulham’s academy now. Lederman was the first American to sign with Barça’s academy, but he’s only 11 or 12.

  8. they should just do an Blue vs. Red game. (inter-squad).. would people pay $5 GA ticket to see this?

    maybe 3-5 guys on each side’s bench…

  9. Ah, thanks for the grammar update. Yeah… “doesn’t preclude a horrible team” doesn’t make sense.

    I’d actually be pretty excited to see what a lot of the up-and-coming MLSers can do. I’d also like to see Parkhurst, Diskerud, and to a lesser extent, Rolfe, get another shot with the senior team.

  10. good stuff. this will certainly be MLS and Scandinavian based players. Just because it isn’t in LA doesn’t mean we can’t bring a B-C team. It’s good experience.

    The real question is whether or not JK wants to use these games to continue gelling the A team. But given they aren’t FIFA dates, I doubt we’ll even be able to get the A team there.

  11. The idea for January is typically not to bring in an entire team of new guys but to mix in several new faces. It’s important to have some of the mainstays in place to show the new guys how it’s done. This way you also get to guage the new guys more accurately as you see them playing in a more authentic environment. Given that Klinsi places more emphasis on continuity than his predecessors, I’d be surprised to see that type of roster, Edwin.

  12. It’s a given that he is taking the ‘B’ team…more like the ‘C’ team…these are January non-FIFA dates, so it’ll be a team compromised of MLS & assorted Scandinavian players.

  13. In must countries south of the US they love to thrown batteries and the infamous poop / urine bags. In Panama and Venezuela we can expect baseballs. I hope we bring our gloves!!

  14. I think Ives most of the time puts up a line up that he (Ives) thinks the current Mgr is most likely to use, not necessarily the one he would like to see or the one he believes we should see etc..

  15. These games don’t fall on an international date, so most of our top 25 will have club commitments.

    More likely to see MLS folk, possibly some scandinavians. Not sure what mexico’s calendar looks like.

  16. I’m guessing no camp cupcake but a 5-7 day camp followed by these two friendlies using A-team level players or atleast those from a top 25 player pool.

  17. Has Hyndman done anything since the stint with Newcastle? I remember in his grandfather’s first season as coach of FC Dallas the fans were wanting him fired because he had his grandson practice with the team a few times. Yet another example of it being a good thing that the fans don’t run the teams.

  18. Where are these guys from?

    I’m excited about Greg Garza getting a chance to play with Tijuana, he might be in direct competition with Edgar Castillo another USMNT pool potential Left back but I have a feeling Castillo might play Left mid more but regardless I like Garza for Left back, did very well for U-20s and handled guys with speed very well.

    Hope he gets to sign and start for Tijuana, it would add to our depth and help us move Chandler to his natural Right Back spot, Lichaj is another possibility but he’s out injured for a little while longer

  19. What do you guys think of this squad?

    Goalkeepers: Sean Johnson, Bill Hamid, Zac McMath

    Defenders: Sheanon Williams, Sean Franklin, Omar Gonzalez, George John, Geoff Cameron, Michael Parkhurst, Todd Dunivant, Zach Lloyd

    Midfielders: Mix Diskerud, Brek Shea, Freddy Adu, Luis Gil, Kyle Beckerman, Benny Feilhaber, Josh Gatt, Chris Pontius if healthy, Graham Zusi

    Forwards: Juan Agudelo, Teal Bunbury, CJ Sapong, Chris Rolfe

    I’m sure I’m leaving some people out, feel free to add to them?

  20. It’s great to have our players getting more matches away from home. I sure hope we just call in MLS/Scandinavian league players. I’m sure they can hold their own.

  21. Wondering if this means we won’t see Camp Cupcake. Which would be a shame, there’s a lot of players who deserve a look. These matches aren’t noob fodder at all.

  22. I like the road games being scheduled. With World Cup Qualifying coming up, the team needs to get used to it again. This camp will also be one for many fringe players so Venezuela and Panama on the road will definitely be good opponents with good crowds rooting against them.

  23. Good opponents, especially considering they are road games. Hopefully Juergen takes B team to test younger players and improve squad depth.


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