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Donovan misses first USMNT practice to undergo medical evaluation


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Landon Donovan's knee might be feeling better than it did on Saturday, but that still does not mean he will play for the U.S. men's national team on Friday.

Donovan missed the United States' first training session in Miami on Tuesday morning as he was being evaluated by the team's medical staff, U.S. Soccer announced on its Twitter.

Donovan arrived to South Florida on Monday with an injured left knee that he hurt in the LA Galaxy's 2-1 loss to Real Salt Lake on Saturday and despite skipping an MRI with his club because his knee had felt better, Donovan's status for Friday's crucial World Cup qualifier against Antigua & Barbuda is still unknown.

If Donovan is unable to start on Friday, Sporting Kansas City's Graham Zusi is most likely to fill in for him on the right side of the Americans' midfield.

What do you think of Donovan missing the U.S.'s first practice? What type of role do you see him having in the Antigua & Barbuda game? Should he just sit it out so as to be healthier for the Guatemala game?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Klinsi can always call up replacements but I don’t think he will. I think Darwin in right it was already in the plans not to have Shea. Gives him a little boost.

  2. The right decision was to have these players evaluated by USMNT staff, and have them put on the correct recovery plan. Club team staff aren’t always up to par with NT staff.

  3. It was a dumb decision…he should have brought in someone who could contribute…not bringing in a guy who was hurt so they could confirm he was hurt…how stupid is that??

    Nothing comes from that except Shea has gone home to Dallas….

    The selection does not let Shea know jack…bad decision…

  4. I would like to See LD go to back Everton (He has said on many occasions that he is interested) at the end of this MLS season. I am not saying MLS is a “cake walk”, but LD seems to be on VACATION w/ The Galaxy…Sexy Women, sunshine,CALIFORNIA. I am not saying he is not giving it his all either. But the LD that went to WC 2010 after spending time with Everton was truly AMAZING. He had a light in his eyes for soccer, he was aware, quicker, and sharper than ever befor. And to be honest I think LD still has it in him, He just needs the right situation to motivate him. Landon still has a WC left in him no doubt. I hope the same LD “Landy Cakes with NUTS” that showed up to WC 2010 makes a come back. He needs a new challenge, simple as that.

  5. Klinsman said in the article on the USMNT that no immediate replacements will be added…

    Had he made the right decision in the first place this would not be an issue….

  6. bigger question: is Sasha able to fit in right away with teammates he hasn’t practiced with for a long time; can he just jump right in and produce? he’ll have to, not time for anything else IF he’s called upon to play. what, he’ll have worked with the team for a few days right? we’ll see

  7. =Howard=


  8. I like this. I think Castillo and Johnson could cause a lot of headaches going forward. Plus, JK has been playing Torres in that spot and I think Castillo brings more to that outside position

  9. Hear hear. He still could do more to help his cause, but he’s been incredibly important to the Union in terms of generating offensive chances.

  10. Just read on the USMNT official site that both Donovan and Shea are out of the qualifiers…

    This comment by Klinsman is just baffling:

    “We knew Brek was a question mark coming in (abdominal strain), and now we have a clear picture of where he stands.”

    Then why select him?

    Donovan not having an MRI before he reported is equally baffling…

    So we waste two spots on guys that were ‘iffy’ at best because of injuries…

    I’m really starting to lose what little respect I have left for Klinsman and his ability to coach this team…

  11. Klinsmann brought in Kljestan to play. He talked very highly of his aggressive forward movement at Anderlecht.

    Question is: will driving attacks be the game-plan from the starting whistle, or will Kljestan be a late sub?

  12. Our Options our dwindling, but I think we could see this lineup:


  13. It might actually be the opposite. I think Donovan is seeing the changing of the guards from afar and realizes that his opportunities to impress JK are dwindling which is why he skipped the MRI and jumped on the first plane. Zusi is a rising star and primed to take his wing position relegating Donovan to a spot coming off the bench or even worse off the roster because he can’t stay fit.

  14. It seems like Jurgen challenged the whole team, including the vets, to step it up. Donovan has been putting time in with the Nats since he was a teenager, and he’s entering the final phase of his career. I think he doesn’t feel motivated to “step it up.” He usually turns up for big games, but I don’t think Jurgen’s approach has him particularly motivated to produce in less important ones. And threats of benching him are not really motivating him as i think Donovan is contemplating/willing to retire internationally.
    It’s probably just WC mental recovery. Maybe some time off would be good; it could get Donovan passionate about the nats again.

  15. Drop Jones for Zusi…and for god sakes. Wondo isn’t good enough for the national team. Anybody remeber Taylor Twellman…is there anybody you wanted to root for more than this guy? MLS scores 101 goals in 171 games…do the math….%59. For the MNT 6 for 30….or %20.(Pananma, Norway, Japan and El Salvador)He also went 29 goals for 58 games in the second bundesliga(%50)…but he never got it done with the Nats. Is Wondo better than Twellman…case closed!

  16. that could be true. but if LD is healthy by Guat, he’ll play with Zusi. and chalk me up as one who thinks Zusi will start no matter what happens with LD.

  17. Hopefully the Lineup will be:

    Gordon Gomez
    Williams Jones
    Johnson Cherundolo
    Bocanegra Cameron

    Despite all the snubs and Altidore stuff, I am happy Gordon was called…
    I just wish Wondo can get a fair shot.

  18. assuming LD is out for the A&B game, i wouldn’t be opposed to seeing this:

    Dolo, Cameron, Boca, Johnson
    Williams, Bradley
    Zusi, Dempsey, Castillo

    Williams playing the #6 role.

  19. i think one of these games would be good to see what castillo can offer on the left wing. and i also hope corona gets some minutes.

  20. +1 bringing club familiarity into the USNT would be great.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Donovan sits out the first game in A&B. I would rather him fresh and ready to put down Guatemala in KC.

  21. The thing is that when the team’s back is against the wall LD has stepped up and played really well. Think WC 2002 against Mexico and Germany. WC 2010 against Slovakia. I really hope LD is able to play.

  22. Nah!

    I’m so glad that Jozy Altidore was not called up.

    Apart from being lazy, he doesn’t play with heart or conviction. He’s afraid to fight for 50/50 balls. He’s afraid to jump for a header from a cross into the box. He doesn’t even exert energy if the service is not absolutely perfect.

    Here’s my favorite forwards:

    Herculez Gomez, Clint Dempsey, Terence Boyd, Chris Wondolowski.

  23. Why not put Johnson on right mid with castillo and corona paired on left against a&b. Cap tie corona plus you get to see how good these two play together in TJ

  24. I think if Zusi plays well against AB then you give him the nod against Guatemala. This team needs to learn how to win without LD and without Dempsey, so leaving LD as a supersub option while he heals would be a smart way to go.

    If only Adu and Feilhaber had had stronger seasons… US soccer needs those guys to come out of the wilderness.

  25. I’d love to see an inspired/interested Donovan again for the Nats. When he’s on and tuned in, there’s been very few like him.

    However, I’m skeptical an injured/less than 100% Donovan is the ideal call up considering his recent performances and/or effort.

    Perhaps he’ll play a role as a super-sub?

  26. I’m willing to come right out and say that if Landon Donovan has to play in order for the U.S. to win handily against Antigua & Barbuda, then the U.S. has no business qualifying out of Concacaf.


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