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Orozco withdraws from USMNT camp with hamstring injury

MichaelOrozco (Getty)


Michael Orozco Fiscal was poised to build on the impressive showing he had in July’s CONCACAF Gold Cup, but his chance to once again impress Jurgen Klinsmann will have to wait after a hamstring injury forced him withdraw from U.S. Men’s National Team camp ahead of Wednesday’s friendly vs. Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Orozco Fiscal’s injury could pave the way for German-American centerback John Anthony Brooks to make his USMNT debut as a starter on Wednesday. Klinsmann is expected to start Geoff Cameron at one of the centerback spots, with Brooks and Tim Ream left to battle for the other spot left vacant by Orozco Fiscal’s absence.

Brooks stands poised to make his U.S. debut after passing up a call-up for an upcoming German U-21 National Team match in order to join the U.S. team. He scored a goal in his Bundesliga debut over the weekend, in a Hertha Berlin season-opening win.

Ream is another option for Klinsmann, though he has not made a USMNT appearance since the 2011 Gold Cup.

What do you think of this development? Who would you start alongside Cameron in central defense with Orozco Fiscal sidelined?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Sorry to hear it for Orozco’s part but if it opens up the possibility to see something of Brooks or of Lichaj as a last-min sub or something, well you know, turn some lemons into lemonade.

    On a side note, we don’t call Edgar Castillo “Castillo-Carrillo”, or Joe Corona “Corona-Crespin”, or JFT “Torres-Mezzell”, so not sure why people are inclined to say “Orozco-Fiscal” (or worse, sometimes just “Fiscal”)…

    • regarding your side note, this site didn’t used to call him ‘orozco fiscal’ either, back when he first started getting talked about (and even now, the naming convention isn’t consistent; compare this post’s headline to its text).

      wonder if michael actually refers to himself as ‘orozco fiscal’ or just ‘orozco’?

      • Well of course his name can be said either way, with or without the “Fiscal”, just as the names of those others can (though none of them should ever be hyphenated). So just wondering.

        I don’t remember seeing the past variation in this site’s reporting that you mention, though that may well have occurred. Seems like I have usually seen the variations (including the incorrect “Fiscal” by itself) in comments…

        But whatever!

  2. even though they play different positions, i think JK should consider bringing in Lichaj as a replacement. even if he plays 0 minutes, it would be nice to see JK bring him in to take a close look.

    someone like Morales could be an interesting call too…even if he does not play.

    • Should bring him in as a Right Back and have play RB, Fabian Left Back, Brooks and Cameron CB and you have a pretty good defense. Lichaj doesn’t know Cameron or Fabian all that well, but he knows Howard

  3. Ream has the distribution skills that JK likes. It’s not hard to see why he is still on the radar despite his recent troubles. Ream needs a return of confidence and the shiny happy person that JK is could go a long way to helping him right the ship.

    • Because he’s a “composed” player who makes routine gaffes and a defender who gets run right by. You might get by as a pro with foot speed limitations or occasional bad passes but internationally you become a liability. When Goodson has to chase and defend he just bundles people over. Ream is like that. When you play Italy in Brazil you don’t want a defender who if he has to defend may just fall over his man trying to keep up.

      And then like so many defenders reknowned for their feet his offensive benefits are overstated.

  4. I was actually hoping to see Fiscal get some minutes…either as a RB or CB….against a good team to be able to see how he does against a higher level of compitition than CONCACAF GC B teams.
    Hope that JK plays/starts Brooks over Ream. Not a hater….but Ream has been proven to be weak against physical strikers (ala Goodson), not a very good 1 on 1 defender, and good for 1 pass directly to the opponent when trying to distribute out of the back.
    Conversely reports on Books have him being a very good 1 v 1 defender who is strong in the tackle, and has good distribution and speed. May need to work on his physicallity & arial tactics a little more…but @ 20 you don’t expect a CB to be fully developed.

  5. Wow what a fire to throw Brooks into. First cap = starting against a top 20 international side. Should be interesting.

    • Yea, Bosnia is so good: one slot above England and three behind Greece.

      For that matter, Columbia is #3 and Brazil and Belgium are #9 and #10.

  6. Thus proving my theory that even if the man waits til two days pregame he will manage to call in someone hurt.

  7. Awesome. We’ll finally get to see Brooks play Wednesday. I heard some great things about the lad. Meanwhile, Johannsson’s FIFA switch looks like it’s not yet official.

    • I was interested in seeing Brooks, Cameron, and Fiscal all getting some minutes against Bosnia. Since its a friendly it would’ve made sense to substitute freely. I’m not sure that makes sense anymore. I don’t think Ream is ready to play against Bosnia, but now it looks like he will. I expect Brooks and Cameron to start, with Ream getting 20 minutes or so.

      • Maybe, we’ll get to see Ream after all. Holding my breath. How many substitutes will there be for this friendly? Six? I hope Mix starts.

      • Been quite a while since I’ve seen him play… hopefully things have improved. When things started going kind of sideways for him in NY and w/ the Nats, it didn’t seem because he was lacking in physical/athletic ability, seemed more a mental thing, whether it be a crisis in confidence or slow of thought. The guy is pretty fast/quick and has decent touch. More than anything I remember being frustrated because of his being passive. Rather than aggressively beating his man to the ball, or initiating physical contact, he was reactionary. That’ll get you burned badly by high quality strikers.

      • You mean the part where he would get run by like he was a graduate of the Edgar Castillo School of Defending? He was like a central Spector aka Goodson.

        The ability to athletically stay with a mark is a basic international soccer need. Lest people forget we ran out Goodson and Ream in 2011 Gold Cup when Panama reamed us 2-1 in the group round. [The result flipped when we started Boca central and Lichaj wide for Panama rematch.]

      • “The ability to athletically stay with a mark is a basic international soccer need.”

        That it is!!!!! Ream has had games that were just plain awful. In the moment, it doesn’t matter why guys are blowing by you, if they are, you need to sit.

        That said, when it comes to forecasting/potential/developing a player, the “why” is everything… determines if it can it be fixed? Some players make up for a lot with excellent vision, positioning and anticipation… being 3 steps ahead of the game. On the Int’l level however, this only goes so far because you are often dealing with players who have the intelligence, feel for the game and physical tools.

        With Ream, I think he has sufficient athleticism/quickness…. sometimes shows it. It’s what has tantalized more than a few smart men… why he started w/ RB as a rook, got a NT call up and a shot in the PL. Unfortunately, other times he reacts slowly…or not at all. So the question is… is he lacking the mental capacity and instincts…… or the confidence to trust/act on them. Well… he better figure it out quick, because thankfully, there are many more options available. Poor showing and surely this will be his last look this cycle.

  8. Too bad for Orozco-Fiscal. If its a choice between Brooks and Ream, I’d rather see Brooks. More upside by a mile. And more likely to help in Brazil than Ream. How quickly Ream fell off the radar!


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