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USA to face Venezuela in Arizona, Panama in Panama City to kick off 2012 campaign


photo by Florian Eisele/

The U.S. men's national team's final preparations for World Cup qualifying will begin in January with a pair of friendlies against Venezuela and Panama, U.S. Soccer announced on Thursday.

The United States will open its 2012 schedule on Jan. 21 at 9pm ET with a friendly at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. Four days later, the Americans travel to Panama City to take on Panama in the first-ever friendly between the sides.

The two friendlies do not fall on international fixture dates, meaning the teams will largely be made up of domestic-based players.

Unlike the last few years, the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. was not selected as a venue for a January friendly.

What do you think of the United States' first friendlies of 2012? Who would you like to see called in? Happy/upset that the Home Depot Center is not hosting a January friendly?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. “Would also like to see creative, offensive-minded players like Adu, Feilhaber, Davies, and maybe Salgado”

    In that case, hasta la vista baby! You can say hello to Omar while you’re at it.

  2. Technically they could stay here forever as they would be granted political assylum since we’re not exactly cool with how Ven. is run nowadays and the US allows poltical refugees. Now if they were economic refugees then they would have to go back home as they would be breaking the law, but of course who wants to enforce laws nowadays.

  3. I wondered if anyone still cared about the Arizona immigration laws.

    I think we could see some defections from the Venezualans, by the way. Not sure if they will be watched as closely as the Cubans by their team authorities or if Venezuala’s leaders will hold the player’s families as collatoral until they return.

  4. Nice! I’ll be bringing myself and anyone I can trick into coming with me. Maybe some of my friends from the U of Arizona marching band to make the supporters section interesting…

  5. Here’s one snowbird that will be there for sure.Going to drive 4 hours to get there, rare opportunity. Shame you dont have a viable soccer community to go along with the good weather and field. Even where I am from, Sounders country, we play all year, all weather.

  6. I’d like to see Jozy get some time against Baloy who ate him up the last time. Also good chance for Klinsmann to see CONCACAF officiating once more. Coaches must be able to adjust to them on the fly.

  7. I hope we get to see some of the Scandinavian-based players. I’ve not seen most of them play in almost a year. I think the team will end up being a mix of MLS veterans and some younger players.

    Gonzales and Franklin should be called in along with John, Goodson and Ream; Klinsmann must find depth at center back. Not sure who I would call in as wingbacks.

    It is almost a given that Beckerman, Shea and Donavon will be called in, but after that in midfield it could be almost anyone: Adu, Feilhaber, Magee (maybe not physical enough),Davis (if he recovers), Rogers, Diskerud, or name your favorite U-23 player. I like Ampaipitaktwong but suspect his lack of playing time at San Jose will keep him off.

    Forward, will likely have Agudelo, probably Wondolowski (he has won the MLS Golden boot outright once and tied once), after that, it could be almost anyone Davies, Bunbury, Braun, and LaBrocca were among the top 25 goal scorers in MLS, Gatt and Salgado are available the other U-23 players are mostly with lower level european clubs so may or may not be available.

    Keeper, Hamid and then a list of many.

    So many to choose from: Klinsmann seems to like speed so the quickest among these probably have the best shots.

  8. ———-Agudelo————Bunbury————

    With John, Cameron, Adu, and maybe Sapong also seeing time.

  9. I like it. Two decent teams, especially Venezuela. I just hope to see Omar Gonzalez, George John, and Diego de la Torre get a chance to show what they can do.

  10. they certaintly bring PR. which is what our league still needs. And amazing cause 5 years ago, they were all on the list of top 30 footballers on the world.

  11. I’m just trying to help you by providing a little literary criticism. Your characters lack depth and believability. Try giving them a little personality and vibrancy. They just don’t resonate as real people. I look forward to your future attempts at fiction.

  12. Yeah there will be zero european based players unless he brings in scandinavians.

    All the euro leagues will be in action on the 21st.

  13. Dude, you have problems. Pretty sad that you’re so entrenched that you honestly believe if anyone else agrees with me that they must not be a real person.

  14. I hope he doesn’t rely on European based players for these friendlies – I truly think its counter-productive to have them travel that much and then do the two-a-day practices that Klinsmann prefers.


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