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Klinsmann leaves door open for players to make USMNT World Cup squad

Jurgen Klinsmann

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For the next three months, U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann is giving players outside the World Cup-squad picture a chance to work their way in.

While Michael Bradley, Jermaine Jones, and Tim Howard are perceived as locks to make the roster, the same can’t necessarily be said for the likes of Chris Wondolowski, Brek Shea, Maurice Edu, and even Oguchi Onyewu. Wondolowski likely helped his chances with his two-goal performance last Saturday for the USMNT against South Korea while Shea, Edu, and Onyweu have all made moves in January to keep their World Cup hopes alive.

But while time is short, Klinsmann is leaving the door open for players on the fringe to impress him and earn a place in the final 23-man squad for Brazil.

We just want them to be on the field and build their case,” Klinsmann told U.S. Soccer. “Being in February and a few months prior to the World Cup, you want to see them all play. You have to give them a clear message that only if you pick up a rhythm and play week-in, week-out, will you complete one of the big keys in order to make the World Cup roster. That’s why we are really happy some of them now are starting to get their rhythm. This all plays a vital role in evaluating them, and then we have to make the vital calls in May.”

After wrapping up a three-week training camp split between Southern California and 12 days in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Klinsmann has also extended a challenge to the MLS-based players (and Mix Diskerud) that attended the camp. Klinsmann wants them to embrace their role as national team players, to embrace the added responsibility they have to represent their countries, and to stand out from amongst their teammates with their clubs.

More importantly, Klinsmann wants them to continue to be or become leaders on their respective clubs.

“The players that were part of that January camp, when they go back to their club teams, need to be leaders,” Klinsmann said. “They have to be leaders on their club teams because that’s why they represent the National Team. So we expect from them that they are the first to training and the last to leave, that they have the best attitude, the best positive approach, that they always do extra work before and after training. We expect that they look after themselves and live a professional lifestyle, not only that they focus on the field but off it, that they have the right body language whenever they step on the field, that they say the right words to the media because they represent their country.

“Being a National Team player comes with a lot of responsibility, and we want them to stand out and be leaders. This is what we are going to watch for week-in, week-out no matter if they’re in MLS or Mexico or in Europe. This is a big part of our evaluation at the end of the day, and will determine who of all those guys will go to the World Cup.”

Two players who aren’t leaders but could play a big role this season are DeAndre Yedlin and Luis Gil. The two former U.S. Under-20 players made their senior international debut’s last Saturday and certainly made a big impression on Klinsmann during the camp.

Yedlin and Gil, along with a fellow member from the 2013 U-20 squad, Shane O’Neill, all head back to their clubs with the goal of growing on an excellent first season and putting themselves in a position to be a fixture in the USMNT in the future.

“The youngsters DeAndre Yedlin and Luis Gil did well in their first introduction to the senior National Team. That’s why we gave them their first cap, their first couple of minutes on the field with the so-called older guys. They have a lot of talent, there’s no doubt about it. That’s why they played in the Under-20 World Cup with Tab Ramos. I’ve spoken to both of them about keeping their feet on the ground, that they stay modest but be proud of that moment because it’s a special moment when you play your first cap.

“This is just the beginning of a very good career, and we need them to push the envelope with their MLS teams, we need them to understand there’s more responsibility on their shoulders as a senior National Team player,” Klinsmann said. “We need them to understand that they need to work far more than anybody else on their club teams because they are National Team players. We want to see that process now taking place and we will communicate with their club coaches. It’s up to them now how well and how fast they develop over the next couple of years.”

Looking ahead, the USMNT gears back into action in one month’s time with a friendly match at Ukraine. Klinsmann all but confirmed that the squad for the mid-week match will consist of European-based players, and considering the amount of players who returned to the U.S. this winter, there could be a chance or two for a player struggling for playing time to show Klinsmann that they’re still good enough for Brazil.

The Ukraine friendly, (in addition to the reported but unconfirmed April friendly match against Mexico) represents the last opportunity for Klinsmann to evaluate the USMNT player pool before he has to decide on his 23-man squad for the World Cup.

“We want to see a couple of guys who we don’t have a clear picture of right now, so we might see some people coming back into the roster,” Klinsmann said. “Obviously, it’s challenging bringing a lot of players over from the U.S. or from Mexico for a game that only has three days of preparation. It’s more an opportunity to call in more European-based players because they are already in Europe and they can quickly show us where they are at.”


  1. For GKs, I think Rimando is a lock.
    At RB, I think Cameron and Chandler are locks; at CB Beasler, Gonzo, and Brooks are locks and the competition will be between Orozco and Goodson for the 4th CB slot. I hope Orozco wins out. LB is kind of weird. Since Fabian has been playing left mid, it seems like the logical choices are Beasley and Castillo. However, I can see JK trying a player like Lichaj over on the left to see if he can edge Castillo. Personally, I think Fabian should get the nod at LB.
    At CM, I think JJ, Bradley, and Mix are locks. Prior to the game against S korea, i thought the competition for the 4th spot would have been between Beckerman and Feilhaber. However, I unfortunately think Benny didn’t help himself all that much. This 4th spot is ripe for a player like Edu, Adu, or Holden to come in. I used to think Torres would have been the guy, but not anymore. I’m still secretly hoping that Adu gets into the fold. At RM I think it will be Donovan and Zuzi, though I prefer D Williams over Zusi. At LM, it will be Dempsey and Fabian/Bedoya.
    Because we are so deep at forward, I hope JK uses Dempsey in the midfield. I think the two locks for up top are Altidore and Iceman. The other 2 slots will be a three way competition between gomez, EJ, and Wondo, which will be really interesting since all 3 are proven goal scorers for the us.

    • Williams is not a RM and Klinsmann learned that the hard way. Williams is a #6 and even said so himself. don’t play him out of position. he is NOT better than Zusi at RM.

      • bryan says:

        “Williams is not a RM and Klinsmann learned that the hard way. Williams is a #6 and even said so himself. don’t play him out of position. he is NOT better than Zusi at RM”

        My guess is you are talking about the Italy game where Williams wore the number 7 and started out lined up on the right side of midfield.
        JK knew Italy would want to overrun the midfield. My guess is he put Williams there to stop that from happening. And if you watched the game, Williams helped the under pressure US defense out a lot by serving as an additional outlet for their defensive clearances. Had he not been stationed there the US defense would likely have hit more long clearances which usually come right back at you when Italy is involved. Williams is good with the ball and he helped retain possession for a while longer than might otherwise have been the case, thus relieving pressure on the defense.

        I notice the US won that game 1-0 so I would say the tactic worked. Williams may not like the role but he did a good job with it.

      • he played okay in that game, but there were plenty of other qualifiers/games where he played at RM and was AWFUL. then, when he moved to CDM against Jamaica (Sept. ’12) before the Hex, he bossed the game. it was clear as day he was a CDM. Ives said as much in his latest podcast. that was when Williams stated he was better at CDM. he finally got a chance to show his performances at RM shouldn’t be held against him, which at that time, they were. US fans were saying he was trash.

        point is, one friendly against Italy where he played okay there should not make someone forget how awful he was every other time.

        “Until recently, the German-born Williams had been playing an unfamiliar position on the right wing for the national team. But after a disappointing loss to Jamaica, United States Coach Jurgen Klinsmann decided to start Williams for the rematch against Jamaica in defensive midfield. The move paid huge dividends.

        ‘They knew already that my best position was a defensive midfielder, but we have good players in that position,’ Williams said. ‘The coach told me I needed to stay on the right side because we had so many players in the middle. But I will play wherever they want me. I am just very thankful and happy to play for the U.S. team.’

        ‘I knew that when [Jurgen Klinsmann] would give me a chance to play my favorite position I think I would do better than I did on the right wing,’ Williams said. ‘I think I did pretty well.'”

        so GW, you would rather have Williams at RM over Zusi?

  2. Would love to hear opinions of posters on players most on the bubble at the moment. I think we all know who the shoe-in’s are, but the rest is up for speculation. Will be VERY interesting to see who Jurgen calls in for the Ukraine game. Performances in that game will obviously have an impact on the roster. But as of this moment…

    F. Johnson

    On the Bubble:
    E. Johnson

  3. Lord knows the US could use a little Ghanaian influence (shot in the arm?) for their Brazilian tussle this summer. I will be thrilled if Freddy miraculously makes the squad to then sub for Zusi in the mid-second half of each game. Bradley and Adu are monsters of the beautiful ball when they have quality around them……..a fresh Adu running at defenders late and curling screamers to Jozy or Wondo?! Absolutely ~

    • LOL.

      If Freddy lines up against those guys, I am sure Ghana won’t be the one intimidated. One can make a case to have Freddy in the conversation but I simply fail to see what he brings to the Ghana match – a game in which the opponent will be as talented or more talented than Freddy and even worse – far more physically gifted (stronger and faster).

      • I do agree that those Black Stars are a site to see. I wonder if they are the quiet underdog for this whole thing? The US must simply defeat them & then tie Portugal in the heart of the Amazon (and hope for bruising draws in most other games in our group) It will be EPIC if they advance ~

      • The US’s best chance to have four points and be playing a six-point GER side on the final matchday. In that case, a nil-nil draw against GER gives GER the group and USA second place, since the most GHA could earn would be three by beating POR and the most Portugal could earn would be four by beating GHA.

        Were that the situation, I think we’d very likely see 90 minutes of aimless anti-football, since neither team would have anything to gain, nor would they wish to wager anything (like an injury or a card). Now… If GER or USA needs points, that’s another story entirely.

  4. I want to see Chadler in the WC. He will lock up Cristiano just like he does to Ribery. Cristiano’s jockstrap is going to fall off.

  5. 23 spots and over 40 guys that could realistically make team. If World Cups were won with depth the US would have a real shot…



    B. Davis
    J. Jones
    D. Williams
    F. Johnson

    E. Johnson

    Wild Card:

  6. I am thrilled to see that JK is trying to instill in the players the notion that making the WC2014 squad is more than just about on-the-field performance. Everything else he talked about — first to training, last to leave, extra effort, professional attitude on the field and off — will translate directly to improved players and an improved team.

    • Maybe JK just hinted at the possibility of someone like Wondo’s inclusion onto the squad…those qualities he mentions are more what he’s about than his physical dimensions or speed quotient…

    • + 1

      Plus it’s what the top players, the best, do. Some are natural talents and some work their way into a higher echelon by simply outdoing everyone else. Beckham comes to mind – dude was mad talented but also had a serious training ethic. You hear that about most of the top players in other parts of the world. I think JK is trying to instill that “and then some” drive and hunger into our guys. Not saying most of our guys don’t do that, but he’s reinforcing that to the next generation. I love it!!

  7. said it in another thread, but makes more sense here. my 23 for Ukraine assuming it really is ALL Euro-based players with the exception of Bradley:

    G: Howard, Guzan, Cropper
    D: Chandler, Johnson, Lichaj, Cameron, Packwood, Ream, Gooch, Brooks, Dolo
    M: Bradley, Jones, Williams, Kljestan, Mix, Shea, Bedoya
    F: Boyd, Agudelo, Jozy, AJ

    unless Dolo is still not 100% (Hannover said he re-joined training with the 1st team), i say bring him in and take a look. since TFC doesn’t have a game, no reason to not include Bradley.

  8. The big difference between Adu and the other guys you mentioned is that Adu has done nothing at the club level for several years now. Even worse is that he gets passed from team to team and leaves a general negative impression wherever he goes. The idea that because he practiced with a team means he suddenly is elevated to a new status that warrants consideration is ridiculous. It’s not a valid comparison… this isn’t just a guy who’s just not doing well in his club situation but was playing regularly and showed well a year ago, or had some recent quality moments with the Nats. He doesn’t even have a “club situation” really now and he hasn’t played for the Nats for a long time so he can’t fall back on that.

    • That is true but what had he done in Turkey to warrent a call up? He was playing well but nothing to take notice of. He also went on to another team right after. Strangely he was rated highly in the Gold Cup for his Sub on..and then rated Highest in the final. Also was praised by the Mexican announcers.

      The USMNT his not good enough to keep a guy like Adu off the pitch even if it means as a late sub. The fact that he can play at a high level for the Nats while not playing much club honestly just shows how far ahead of most USMNT players he really is.

      • Klinsmann doesn’t really care what certain players did under Bradley. Everyone can go on about Adu 3 years ago but to Klinsmann it might as well of not even happened.

      • lol ooooo ok thanks for that. Your basically saying what all Adu haters are saying lol…because from that Starting XI from the Mexico Final…Only Adu does not get shots still lol….

  9. The news about Freddy Adu’s trial at Blackpool got me to thinking: Why has Klinsmann not called up Freddy? It’s gotta be one of three reasons. Either a) Klinsmann doesn’t rate him or b) doesn’t like him or c) thinks he would be negative for team chemistry. I don’t think we have a “d” reason here, as in Adu is not getting enough quality club playing time.

    I mean Klinsmann regularly calls up guys not getting club time either because he rates them or he feels they need an emotional boost, good old Jurgen’s shoulder to cry on. Parkhurst and Shea top the list of those who have been gifted call-ups without playing for their clubs, but others have as well, such as Alfredo Morales when he was not making game-day rosters.

    So back to Freddy. If Klinsmann is such a nice guy with other players in need, calling them in during bad club situations (while ignoring players who are excelling at their clubs) in order to help boost their confidence, then what gives with Freddy?

    I have no idea. I will say that unlike his fanboys I am skeptical that he could contribute in a big way. But what if? As in, what if Freddy is sort of the big missing piece of the puzzle, bring him in and he gets all excited and works his bu++ off and the midfield really starts clickin’. But we’d never know because Klinsmann for one reason or another stubbornly withholds his royal blessing of Adu while helping out guys like Parkhurst and Shea who under the Klnsmann manifesto of “gotta play for your club” would not have seen a USMNT camp for the past 18 months.

    • Freddy has been deemed not good enough by every team he has played for. Also, he is not on trial at Blackpool, just training with them.

    • see biff, this is my problem with most of your scenarios – you often try to equate things that are not equal or the same (save for some small similarity).

      Freddy and the guys you mentioned are kind’a the same in their struggles for playing time and that’s where the similarities end. How? Well the other responses to your post spell that out perfectly.

      There’s a reason why Parkhuts and Shea have better options to get out of their current funk than Freddy does. I love Freddy but, his track record has to say something, something, about him as a player. If JK said one thing from the above piece it’s this – talent alone ain’t enough.

      • ah. hmmm. I’m waiting, Kosh, to hear the reason the “reason why Parkhuts and Shea have better options to get out of their current funk than Freddy does.” You gonna enlighten us?

        As I said, I am basically an Adu skeptic. I am not touting Adu and if Klinsmann doesn’t like him or has evidence that Adu would be bad chemistry, no skin off my. But if Klinsmann has no hard feelings against Adu and if he has no evidence that Adu would be disruptive to the team, why in the hell shouldn’t Adu get called in. Maybe he would be a revelation.

      • biff says:

        “Either a) Klinsmann doesn’t rate him or b) doesn’t like him or c) thinks he would be negative for team chemistry. I don’t think we have a “d” reason here, as in Adu is not getting enough quality club playing time. I mean Klinsmann regularly calls up guys not getting club time either because he rates them or he feels they need an emotional boost, good old Jurgen’s shoulder to cry on. Parkhurst and Shea top the list of those who have been gifted call-ups without playing for their clubs, but others have as well, such as Alfredo Morales when he was not making game-day rosters…….

        But what if? As in, what if Freddy is sort of the big missing piece of the puzzle, bring him in and he gets all excited and works his bu++ off and the midfield really starts clickin’. But we’d never know because Klinsmann for one reason or another stubbornly withholds his royal blessing of Adu while helping out guys like Parkhurst and Shea who under the Klnsmann manifesto of “gotta play for your club” would not have seen a USMNT camp for the past 18 months.”

        When you, biff, become the USMNT manager you will, most likely, call in the players you believe will make the team better.

        Your Reasons:

        A. If you don’t rate them you won’t waste your very limited time on them when there are so many others you think are more likely to help your team. Young as he is, Freddy has been on the US scene for a very long time. JK has been closely involved with the US soccer scene for a long time as well and has had plenty of time to catch his act. And as connected as JK has always been I’m pretty sure he got all the inside information on the entire arc of Adu’s career with BB’s USMNT in a way we never could have. If JK thinks ” well I’ve seen enough of that no need to go there”. then he probably has a very good reason for that.
        If you are looking for a new car, and know exactly what you want, you don’t have to test drive every model in that class of cars.

        Freddy has made it easy for JK to exclude him because Adu has not been playing very well, consistently, for a very long time. Adu gave BB a good excuse to call him in for the 2011 Gold Cup by having that hot spell he had in Turkey. And that hot spell with Turkey and the Gold Cup, 2011 was nearly three years ago, an eternity in soccer and therefore irrelevant to JK’s 2014 USMNT.

        B. Doesn’t like him? Do you mean personally? What does that have to do with Freddy’s productivity as a player? It is pretty hard to believe that JK, a very poor loser, would let personal dislike get in the way of winning. Since you despise JK so much, I assume he would return the favor but even so I’m certain JK would play you as his #10 if he thought you could win a game for him.

        C. Negative for team chemistry. See “A” above. Winning makes for the best chemistry.

        D. “not getting enough quality club playing time.” Adu signed with Bahia in April of 2013, was released in November and played maybe a couple of full games total if that? And he has no prospects of getting serious playing time anytime soon if his pattern holds. Freddy’s career is soccer’s version of a reality show.

        In terms of the other players you mentioned, Morales is out of the picture, Shea looks like he will see a lot of playing time going forward for Barnsley, and Parkhurst will almost certainly get a lot of PT with the Crew.

        “So back to Freddy. If Klinsmann is such a nice guy with other players in need, calling them in during bad club situations (while ignoring players who are excelling at their clubs) in order to help boost their confidence, then what gives with Freddy?”

        What gives is JK does not think Freddy can help the USMNT. As manager, he does not need any other reason.

        Parkhurst, Shea and Morales were all in camps with JK’s USMNT and all played for him in games. Their spells of inactivity happened after he had gotten a look at them. JK tries to help guys who have proven that there is a reason to believe they can help him.

        Freddy has never been called in to JK’s USMNT and has not played regularly anywhere since he left Philly back in the beginning of 2013. He has never done anything for JK’s USMNT. And guess what? JK’s USMNT is not the same as BB’s USMNT who Freddy did help.

    • Parkhurst plays a need position where everyone refuses to step up.

      Shea is inconsistent but has shown well in A team situations where Adu would fail.

      I agree that Adu is not rated but it’s like what has he done in a decade to show potential at least some of the time = quality. Shea on the other hand has had some great, complete type games, which he then offsets with a Cuba. You keep that player around for the demonstrated top end if they ever get their act straight.

      The reality is if Shea doesn’t show up in March and May playing well, he maybe gets cut too, so let’s not overstate it. In terms of both you look at the list of attacking players and their work is cut out for them. Adu in particular I’d say is simply not of the echelon. He can’t hit an A team deadball like we need, they are not going to let him juke around like it’s U-20, he needs to play some defense, and you can’t Coca-Cola play where you try home run passes and then watch the play go on around you drinking a coke. To me he’s just never quite made the junior-senior transition.

  10. Why do articles continue to say that Ukraine game is last chance before JK names his 23? What about the big May camp with the send-off games? Will there only be 23 involved with that??

      • I really hope we bring in 30 guys then trim it down to 23 on the very last day and all jokes aside we are a few months from the world cup, we need to beat the brains out of Ukraine. Non of that moral victory sh**

    • I think the window is closing these first couple games for people who rarely get a look. If you’re fringe and not in either the January camp or the March game I think you’re in trouble. But for the regular player pool I think it’ll be up to the 30+ called in this spring for camp, to decide it there. You can play yourself out of a spot right now but this is not the last chance to impress because the roster for most players will be decided in camp (only an elite few like Howard or Bradley can take things for granted). I expect at least some surprises, particularly at M where there is plenty of talent and only so much room.

      • It’s amazing to me how deep the pool of talent is all of a sudden. It seems like it’s far deeper than it was just 4 years ago when there weren’t too many fringe players that could really make a case for the final 23. Now it seems like there are at least 40 guys who, if playing consistently, could make a case for making the squad. Great time for the US in terms of depth, but we still fall short on the quantity of game-changing players. We have a few Bradley, Dempsey (if in-form), Donovan, Howard, Altidore (although not right now). And who knows what could have been if Holden had stayed healthy. Still, the US plays as a great unit, more than the sum of their parts so we’ll see what this squad is capable of in Brazil!

      • Agudelo, Juan; Beckerman, Kyle; Bedoya, Alejandro; Bradley, Michael; Davis, Brad; Dempsey, Clint; Diskerud, Mix; Donovan, Landon; Edu, Maurice;
        Feilhaber, Benny; Gatt, Joshua; Holden, Stuart;
        Johnson, Fabian; Jones, Jermaine; Kljestan, Sacha; Shea, Brek; Torres, Jose; Williams, Danny; Zusi, Graham.

        19 players for 8-10 spots.

    • hopefully JK will do what BB did and call up 30 through the first send-off game. we learned A LOT in that camp and the game against Czech Republic.

    • Last time Bob named 30 which you have to do by end of May. He trimmed it after the first friendly vs Czech Republic or whomever the 1st friendly was against. Then the 23 played and won before going to South Africa & playing Australia I think. This year I think it will be the same, after JK has a group of 30 in camp and play in Stanford area, then trim it and head to NJ

  11. Definitely an interesting comment regarding difficulty of bringing US-based players over. I wonder if that’s all US-based players, or more those outside the current starting 11. With time running so short, it seems we need every chance we can get to have our core guys together, especially Besler and Gonzo. Personally I’m still not convinced they are the clear-cut answer so I’m looking forward to seeing Gooch and Ream, but I feel we need at least 45 min with Gonzo/Besler/Bradley/LD/Clint on the field with Jozy/AJ/FJ/JJ/Cameron.

      • Yes, and they were also 2 of the 3 names specifically mentioned by JK as having the door open (in the linked article), particularly because they are both finding their rhythm’s and playing 90 week in week out.

        I agree they’re behind Besler/Gonzo, but I also still have hesitations about them and their limited experience, which is why I said I hope the “challenge bringing US-based players” comment doesn’t apply to guys in the current starting 11 that we really need getting as much time together on the field as possible. Again though, given the fact those two are not the definitive/no-questions-asked answer, I hope to ALSO see guys who by all accounts are playing great 90 minute games in the Championship.

      • and other than Clarence, who I would view as not necessary to bring do to the “challenges” of him being based in the US, who are the other two CB’s? Cameron perhaps, but I still can’t imagine him not being RB.

  12. “We want to see a couple of guys who we don’t have a clear picture of right now, so we might see some people coming back into the roster”

  13. A lot of this is just JK-speak, but looks like the March roster will be more towards evaluating several-based European players, rather than just trying to solidify the starting XI.

    Looks like Williams, Gooch, Shea, Chandler, etc should all be called in. This is a good thing.

    He also mentioned calling in Dolo if he is healthy.

    • This is why he is a bad coach. He should have finalized his roster 3 years ago. That’s what I would have done, and I’ve never lost a world cup match as a coach…I’ve never won one either though, so maybe JK knows what he’s saying.

      • It shouldn’t? You’re still stuck on the whole not American enough huh? You do realize he was born in the US right?

      • And why does it matter? Do we strip the folks of their US citizenship if they are raised overseas? Dude, we are a nation of immigrants, let’s not look down at those who are citizens by birth. You know, Eucebio was neither born nor raised in Portugal, but it does not diminish his international career.

      • I was born in America and basically lived outside the country till I was 17. Every where I went I still called myself American and I embraced being American even if i was saying it in another language so being raised in America doesn’t matter at all.

      • Allow me to clarify. Just being born here and embracing America doesn’t make you American, in my opinion. Someone who was born elsewhere and actually lived here is far more “American” in my view.

      • There is no spectrum of Americanism. You’re not the foxtrot-uniform-charlie-kilo-india-november-golf judge of who is American and who is not. That’s the exclusive right of the executive government of the United States of America acting in accordance with the Constitution of the United States of America and with Laws passed by the Congress of the United States of America.

        If the person in question has a US passport, then that person is American. Full Stop. End of story.

      • hate to break it to you, but he is. being born here is exactly what makes him American. he could be President.

      • I hope you know a child can’t control where they live, Only where they identify with or would it make any sense if the parents of the kids abandon their kids in the USA in order to keep them America? Those who pick themselves up to go fight for a bunch of people they don’t know should never have their nationality questioned. I’m not a military kid but non the less. if anyone has an American passport they are American and they can represent this country nationally in soccer.

      • slowleft, other being slow, what qualifies you as American. It certainly isn’t your attitude. You seem very unAmerican to me.

      • You are dead wrong slow one. I live in the Dom. Rep. My kids live here. We watch american tv shows, follow our favorite teams, i still sing the national anthem out loud before the games. When i am not singing it i am praying for service men i know in various parts of the world protecting ypur freedom and mine.
        Personally i find your position offensive, but gecause i am an American i understand you have the right to be wrong. So i hope you never need the help of one of these un-Americans on the side of the road, etc.. But then again, it wont matter because they will probably help you before you can give them the “slowleftarm” citizenship test.

      • That’s fine and all, but I hope you’re not one of those Americans who hates it when immigrants do that in the US, but don’t seem to have a problem with Americans not assimilating in other countries.

        This has always bugged me about the American worldview. The idea that there are American schools overseas so that kids of Americans don’t assimilate into the country they reside in, makes Americans look hypocritical when they expect full assimilation into American culture when immigrants come to the US.

      • Like the swallows return to Capistrano…. it’s somehow comforting when things are repetitive… predictable.

      • This is like the weird flipside of the people who think we deserve to suffer for not getting Rossi or Subotic.

      • This is not the UK, we don’t have to play by Home Nations rules. There is a lengthy history of using passport players here (including fan favorites like Earnie Stewart) and Klinsi seems to have a decent grasp now on actual quality and contribution and loyalty, where early in his term you could argue there was favoritism and indulgence.

        I do think this is covering up a weakness in domestic development but that’s a whole ‘nother story.

      • While I’m not a fan of people with tenuous connections playing for the US (and I certainly consider Green in that category) I don’t think he should be on the world cup roster because I don’t think a guy with zero professional league appearances is someone we need to bring to a world cup. Sure, he’s got potential but so do a lot of 18-year olds.

        I would like to see us develop players here instead of trying to find other countries’ castoffs but if Green develops like we think and still wants to play for us, then he’ll be ready for 2018 but not now.

      • What about young Americans who are in European Academies? We aren’t developing them.

        Are they “American” enough for you? If Rossi had been ignored by Italy and played for the US, would you have accepted him? He was born and raised here, but was in Italian academies by age 12.

        Your position on this is inherently self-contradictory and ridiculous. You really should reconsider it, before you decide to discard players that were scouted early by Euro clubs and left at a tender age.

      • yes, awesome point. many of the world’s best players have been in European academies since a young age. even Messi has been with Barcelona since he was 11 (I’m not positive on the exact age, but its close). does that make him less Argentine? No.

        I agree that we need to develop our own world class talent, but that’s not going to happen overnight. and even when it does, our best young kids will probably be picked up by the best academies before they’re teenagers. it’s how it works. maybe one day we’ll have academies of that status of our own but it takes decades. in the meantime, anyone with an American passport that wants to play for us is as American as it gets

      • Yep… 11. According to the wiki, his contract was offered on a paper napkin. River Plate had first shot, but they didn’t want to pay for Messi’s HGH treatments. Barca did and the rest is history.

      • Exactly. Not only is it silly in the context of soccer, where we clearly lag behind other countries in terms of player development and need other countries to develop our talent, but even in sports where we develop players better than anyone else, I’m unaware of any national team program that would discard a player because he developed in some other country.

        For example, should U.S.A. Basketball have left Kobe Bryant off of the last 2 Olympic teams because he spent most of his childhood (and his earliest years of basketball) in Italy? Would anyone argue that he’s not “American” enough? No of course not, because our country’s national teams have always taken players who’ve developed in other countries, so long as they’re good enough to play for us. That’s true in soccer and everywhere else.

        Julian Green may not be ready for the World Cup stage. That’s a valid argument. But if he’s talented enough and physically and mentally ready, he’s not gonna be left off. And that’s the way it should be.

      • The funny thing about the Messi story is that he exists in his current form as a player BECAUSE a foreign club took a flyer on him when a domestic club passed him over because of medical costs. Argentina owes a great debt to Barca for that, but does anyone on this board think that ARG has a problem developing its talent?

      • It is happening now. Our youth teams are going toe to toe with most teams. Some of them are even kicking butt In a few years we won’t need to look so far for players .

        As to the discussion on who is an American.
        1) I reject the nation of immigrants argument. That ended a long time ago
        2) I accept people that were born here, or that are naturalized citizens
        3) I dont like players that weren’t born here, have never lived here, and qualify simply because on of their parents got lucky while in the service. Technically they qualify but like so many others, they are just taking advantage of the situation and don’t really want to be American. Those players, we can’t stop calling fast enough for me

        As far as Im concerned, J. Jones falls into the third group. Aron was born here but admits hes using us. The others, we really dont need

      • There you go judging who’s American enough.

        That’s not your right. You diminish us all when you do it. Please stop.

      • I actually think he has a fair point if you view it more from a structural standpoint than a xenophobic one. The 18-year old FIFA rule makes it hard for us to export development of most players. Those with the right passports can go play in European academies but otherwise you’re stuck here til 18. In which case whether we like it or not the quality of MLS academies and traditional clubs matters because we cannot escape the legal limit and have Europe develop players for us.

        I see this as MLS’ current challenge, which is that if they are going to sign people at 16-18 and replace college and Bradenton, they have to train them up well and be as effective as other countries’ youth systems. Right now I’d argue that the decentralized development process that has followed the transition from the Bradenton Era to the Academy Era is part responsible for our youth teams’ slide. We depend on our pro teams now a lot and they are first team focused.

        The USL loan idea is a half baked solution, the only thing headed the right way right now is Galaxy II.

      • New rule should be if you haven’t watched someone play you can’t call for them to be on the World Cup squad.

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