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Report: Chandler making progress, hopes to be back in action for Nurnberg next week

Timmy Chandler Nurnberg 2 (Getty Images)


Some help might soon be on the way for the U.S. Men’s National Team’s problematic right back spot.

According to a report from Bild, Timmy Chandler resumed doing some light ball-work at Nurnberg practice earlier this week, marking the first time he has done so since suffering a knee injury in a match against Bayern Munich on Feb. 8. Some media reports had said Chandler would miss the remainder of the season, but the 24-year-old fullback believes he is healthy enough to partake in normal team training on Wednesday and be available for the match versus Mainz on April 26.

Nurnberg could certainly use a boost right now. The club is currently in the Bundesliga’s relegation zone and realistically three points away from automatic safety with four matches remaining in the season. Nurnberg are one point shy of the relegation playoff spot that is currently held by Hamburg.

If Chandler were to return to action, it could open the door for him to be summoned by U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann for next month’s pre-World Cup camp. The Americans’ right back situation has been in flux in recent months, and is one of the positions that most observers are concerned about heading into a World Cup that will see the U.S. face Ghana, Portugal and Germany.

The top candidates right now to earn the U.S.’s starting right back position are Geoff Cameron, Brad Evans, Michael Parkhurst and Tony Beltran.

The Americans will begin their pre-World Cup camp in the middle of May, and Klinsmann has said he will bring in more than 23 players before trimming down the roster to oblige with FIFA’s regulations for this summer’s tournament in Brazil.


What do you think of Chandler’s progress? Think he will play again this season for Nurnberg? Should Klinsmann call him into the preliminary World Cup camp regardless of whether or how well he plays at the club level just to see if he is a realistic option?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. If he can find his form in time for Brazil, that would be great. I’m getting increasingly concerned about Gonzalez at CB and more and more I want to see Besler with Cameron in the middle.

  2. Point made about Cameron being versatile, RB, CB or DefMid, Check.
    Same deal with Edu, though no one is mentioning it. Edu is solid sub at CB, and can play the DefMid position a swell as Beckerman, with a little more pace, muscle and international flair.
    Edu played really well at CB during the Olympics. Hope he makes the plane.
    Also would love to see Chandler reborn, playing well, making the plane as well. Would take Orozco over Ream. We shall see how it shakes out after the Stanford May camp, and the pre WC friendlies.
    We’ll be ready to rumble. Klinsman is all about building up to peak experiences. This US team will greater than the sum of the parts. With a little luck we could even win the group.

    • Are you kidding? Chandler was publicly expressing that he wanted another shot with the USMNT before the Hex was even over.

  3. If he gets a month worth of games in, you have to bring him to the 30. We just don’t have an option like him at sideback. He also can play LB.

    Parkhurst and the like are good playing against slow players. But when you have a rampaging Ronaldo at full speed, there’s no way he or anyone else can compete physically.

    Cameron is the logical RB at this moment, but I just haven’t seen him bring it at the national level. I think he starts at CB with Besler. Gonzo is a train wreck.

    • Parkhurst was solid enough against Mexico and South Korea’s wingers.

      He’s also faster than he gets credit for, although not by any means a speedster.

  4. If I was Chandler, I would forget about Nurenburg and the rest of the Bundesliga season. If he can prove to Klinsmann he is healthy he can play his way in to Brazil with the three upcoming friendlies. Should he rush back to playing prematurely, and get re-injured, his World Cup hopes will be dashed. He should be focused on getting back to being fully fit and making Klinsmann’s squad for Brazil.

    • Mr Al,

      The next US game is May 27 vs. Azerbaijan.


      “1. Each association that qualifies for the final competition shall provide FIFA with a list of no more than 30 players (hereinafter: the release list) whom it has called up in accordance with the relevant provisions of Annexe 1 of the FIFA Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players. The release list (showing the full last name(s), all first names, popular name, place and date of birth, passport number, name and country of the club, height, weight, number of caps won, number of international goals scored) must be sent to FIFA by no later than 13 May 2014.”

      The final 23 can only come from this 30 player release list.

      So Chandler probably needs at least one or two of those Nuremburg games, if they are before May 13, if he is to prove his fitness to JK before the deadline for the 30 man list. If he doesn’t make that list the only other way he gets to Brazil is through serious injury to someone:

      “6. A player listed on the final list may only be replaced in the event of serious injury up until 24 hours before the kick-off of his team’s first match. The replacement players do not need to be limited to the release list. Such replacements must be approved in writing by the FIFA Medical Committee upon receipt and acceptance of a detailed medical assessment in one of the four official FIFA languages.”

    • I’m thinking: F.Johnson-Cameron-Besler-Beasley(Ream)
      Thoughts: FJ can hang with any of the speedy wingers we’ll see in our group and I absolutely think we should put him on the side that has the more dangerous wide player to combat speed for speed. It makes it easier knowing that he can and has been playing both sides(rb/lb) for club! The fact that he can get forward and is excellent at doing so will also give headaches to the opposing team and potentially stretch their backline in the process. Who plays the other wingback role will be need to be solid and doesn’t necessarily need to get forward if FJ is already doing so with success. Beasley may not be everyones pick to start the tourney but he does give you something going forward and you know what you get with him from a defensive perspective! I honestly think Ream will win the backup, if not starting LB role because his defense has improved immnesly and his passing out of the back is top notch! We’ll see!

      • Has Ream been playing LB or DM for Bolton lately?

        I remember an article from the beginning of the season saying they wanted to try him at LB.

        Aside from that, all I know is he’s been going 90 every week and Bolton’s doing pretty well.

      • Center back most recently, but has also played left back, I don’t think he’s played defensive mid for awhile now.

  5. Chandler upside: 1. Probably the best athlete we have for the position, the best chance of defending 1v1 the devastating flank attackers we will face in Brazil.

    Chandler downside: 1. (obviously) injury issues, lack of recent fitness/playing time. 2. offers very little going forward in attack 3. does not travel well/had prior issues playing in heat 4. Possible chemistry issues with teammates

    I think a lot depends on how JK decides to use Cameron. If he sees Cameron as the starting right back, then bringing Chandler doesn’t seem worth it. However, if JK decides he has to move Cameron over to CB due to Gonzales’ shaky play, then right back is a big problem since none of the other contenders have the speed/athleticism to hang with the opposition. In that scenario, perhaps a fit and committed Chandler is necessary.

    • Chandler doesn’t attack well? Have you ever seen him play? Nuremberg played him at RW a lot last year because he can attack and cross well..he can definitely attack.

    • Um… Chandler’s an excellent attack fullback. That’s one of the reasons JK was willing to cut him so much slack early on.

    • I have never seen him play for Nuremburg, so I will take this under consideration. I cannot remember any instance when he played for the USMNT and offered anything going forward. I guess the bar was set so high last cycle by the great Cherundolo (and sometimes Spector) that its easy to be underwhelmed by the current group. Evans is an example of someone who has proven to be an attacking threat and has assisted and scored in the current cycle. Can Chandler make this same argument?

      • let me get this straight, you are going to comment on Chandler’s ability to get forward without at least seeing his performance, or reading about them, at his club?

        he is very similar to FJ. can defend but is very good getting forward too. which is why he has played RW before. he has scored and assisted multiple times for Nürnberg.

        Evans is not as good as Chandler at RB, period. this is a 24 year old who rejected a move to VfB Stuttgart as a 21 year old. he wanted to remain with Nürnberg and signed a new contract which actually expires next year.

      • You did not see Chandler’s first few USMNT games.

        When they played Belgium, Chandler, playing left back, shut down Eden Hazard.

        If Chandler is in top form, a big if, he is the most complete fullback in the US pool. He is fast, strong, fundamentally sound defensively and he is very good ,certainly the best in the US pool, at the attacking fullback role.

        If that guy is still around the USMNT absolutely use him.

        But that is a big if.

      • Yep exactly. His first two friendlies he came out flying. People initially saying damn the future without cherendolo is hereh

    • In the first friendly Chandler played in for the US it was a pretty warm day in NJ vs Argentina and he impressed then. Not sure about the heat issues. I am most worried about health and fear of flying, even if he does fly (and the US has to fly a lot in the opening round), he could either be so stressed or so drugged that it would effect his game.

  6. Just because we haven’t seen Cameron play center back very much doesn’t some how make him good at the position. It was defensive mistakes at right back that got him benched for Brad Evans to start with. I understand people wanting a change from Omar but I don’t see Cameron as being any better.

    • Cameron was never benched for Evans at RB, Klinsi started Evans there from the get go because he always thought of Geoff as a center back! The one time he played there early in qualifying yeah he didn’t look the best but that was early in the prem season! Evans has looked poor in most games to me and can’t hold Geoff’s jock regarding the position but with that being said, I could easily see JK putting Geoff at CB if OG doesn’t shape up! If that were to happen you can count on either Parkhurst or Fabian playing RB, with Beasley at LB! I also think Ream will continue to prove himself, make the 30 man roster for camp and eventually end up on the plane to Brasil as a backup CB/LB!

    • So many logical flaws and erroneous statements in this comment that it’s hard to know where to start.

      1. Cam was not benched for Evans. He’s started in almost every game that Evans has for the last 2 years.

      2. Cam got a single run out at RB early 2013 in which he didn’t play well. Since then he’s put in several excellent performances all over the field, including one at RB against Belgium (where he looked the only player to belong on the pitch for the US). This is also right around the time Cameron had claimed the RB spot for Stoke. Before then, he had been played as a DM, a CB, and an LB, seemingly at random.

      3. Evans has been playing RB poorly for the US for the last 6 months. He has NOT played RB for Seattle in a year. Cameron has been putting in solid performances at RB for Stoke and the US for the last 6 months. It’s pretty easy to see the difference in quality and who’s stock is rising.

      4. While both players have their “versatility” touted, Evans has looked garbage in all of his appearances for the US outside of RB (which required a Herculean effort on his part against Jamaica and Germany). Cameron looks good at any position he plays for the US, excluding his first game as an RB in early 2013.

      • It was the match after Belgium against Germany that Klinsmann first started Evans at right back and continued to him there through qualifying.

        Personally I would play Cameron at right back everyday of the week. However at least for a period of time Klinsmann seemed to have Evans above him in the roster. Hopefully that has changed as there might be 4 or 5 guys i’d start over Evans at this point.

  7. He should not be called up unless he proves that he can withstand serious tackles and he actually helps his team. If he plays, but Nurberg loses because he hasn’t quite returned to full fitness, I would say, Klinsmann needs to depend on others. I figure Chandler, when asked, will always say he is fit. in my opinion too many players (Cherundolo, Steward Holden etc.) are back in action too soon and never quite make it back to health.

  8. I think this defensive personnel could work.

    Beasley, Edu, Cameron, FJ

    or switch FJ and Beasley….I am just not convinced with Besler and Omar with how thei seasons have started. Maybe they will shape up. I think Edu and Cameron started together against Mexico in Mexico…. Thoughts?

      • Because Edu and Cameron they put in a nice performance at Azteca as the center back pair. And they have far more international experience than Gonzo-Besler.

        And while both don’t play CB at the club level, they are not strangers to it and have done well while playing there. International tournaments are short term, do it now events. Fabregas never played striker but Spain started him there in the Euros and he did well.

        This is not like asking Chris Paul to play center, Derek Jeter to pitch or Tom Brady to play left tackle. Soccer skills, for the most part, are the same for most outfield positions.

        Besler and Gonzo have performed well enough to earn their starting spots but maybe not well enough to be unquestioned starters. Call it a C+ for the pair with maybe Gonzo getting a lower individual grade.

        Mo may not love playing CB but if JK tells him “look if you play some center back for me that increases the chances of your going” you better believe Mo will play his heart out at CB.

        When you look at the entire center back pool it really is six of one half a dozen of the other. All of them have issues of one kind or another.

    • You have beasly in the back four and you think itll work in the world cup against some of the best players in the world? And besler has been probably the most solid consistent US defender

    • in theory it’s not bad…but none of those players have played in that formation together. not a great idea. not to mention Edu and Cameron haven’t played CB in how long now?

  9. Honestly, I think you have to keep your options open. Cameron is decent, but doesn’t have the pace, or the support going forward. Also, his positioning is questionable at times. But, with that being said he has had a fairly good season at Stoke playing RB. The problem is who else do we have? Yedlin? He is playing well, but I still think you need to keep the option open for Chandler. We need Fabian on the left.

  10. “The top candidates right now to earn the U.S.’s starting right back position are Geoff Cameron, Brad Evans, Michael Parkhurst and Tony Beltran.”

    When did Beltran move ahead of Yedlin?

    • This is just an article, not the official depth chart. I don’t think either will be on the plane actually, barring more injuries.

      • I get that it’s not an official announcement. My question, if I were to write it out fully, was, “When did Beltran move ahead of Yedlin in the eyes of any observer or prognosticating journalist?”

      • You mean that one time for one friendly that JK clearly viewed as a time to experiment and then subbed him out for his other experiment?

      • “that JK clearly viewed…” really, did you talk to Klinsy and he told you this? Fact is we dont know what JK is thinking, so we can only make assumptions based on his actions. He had both Beltran and Yedlin for the Mex game (and due to injuries and players not being released, he had to start one of them)… he went with Beltran. So Beltran (atleast for now) won that battle.

      • “that JK apparently viewed”—just as he has apparently viewed almost every other friendly and even gone on record multiple times saying that he doesn’t care whether he wins them or not.

        And yet, you seem also to have ‘special awareness’ of JK’s thinking—the same kind of insight you got all puffed up at me about. You say that “Beltran won that battle.” What battle? Why not assume that JK flipped a coin and Beltran came up heads? Or that JK intends to use Yedlin only as a sub, thus bringing him on later, while Beltran’s start was only for the reason you gave: lots of injuries, so it fell to Beltran? Or that JK wanted to see how Beltran played with a certain group of players, but Yedlin with a different group?

        The point is: we’re looking at *one* game, and a friendly at that. That’s hardly a good measure of selection order.

      • Most of what you just said is a reach and defensive, so I won’t even get into it. The one thing I do agree with you is “we’re looking at *one* game, and a friendly at that. That’s hardly a good measure of selection order.”

        Just remember that you are the one that brought up this conversation by being adamant that Yedlin is ahead of Beltran, and questioning the writers depth chart. You are assuming JK has it the same way you do. You might refuse to admit it, but the fact that JK just started Beltran over Yedlin is likely an indication that JK just might disagrees with you, at least for now.

      • Actually, UclaBruinGreat, I never stated an opinion on Yedlin vs Beltran, let alone being “adamant” about it. I asked a question, looking for reasons why anyone would think Beltran moved ahead of Yedlin (and, by implication, Yedlin being dropped altogether). The only thing I have been adamant about is that conclusions based on that one game are unconvincing.

      • There’s a reason that Ockham never applied his razor to an N of one.

        Here’s another really simple over-interpretation for you: “Klinsy started Beltran, was horrified, so replaced him with Yedlin; thus, Yedlin is firsties.”

      • Dude your counter interpretation isn’t simple at all. It’s like the anti-occam re: simpleness.

        You asked for a reason. JK starting beltran over yedlin (despite not even calling beltran in originally) is a fairly compelling reason.

        You can choose to ignore it and you’re free to invent dozens of increasingly far-fetched explanations, but the one real piece of evidence we have is that beltran started.

      • OTOH, I thought in the game Yedlin did better than Beltran despite what might be JK’s preference for Beltran. Of course, I don’t believe either will be going to Brazil, Cameron and Evans actually. I think, are still ahead of either of them and a healthy Chandler would be as well.

      • but Beltran DID have good play in the build up to our 1st goal. he deserves that credit. but Yedlin and Dempsey also worked very well together but never got that goal.

  11. FJ – Beseler – Cam – Chandler

    This needs to happen.

    I just can not watch Gonzo in the back anymore. He has too many lapses. Cam is big enough to be the designated header guy and still play great D on the ground.

    If Chandler does not make the team I would be inclined to have the following back line

    FJ – Beseler – Edu – Cam

    I guess I am really just against Gonzo starting in the world cup

    the more I think about it Edu would probably the perfect center back for this team. He has world cup exp. is a really good athlete and has lots of CB experience.

    • I’m with you on this (partially).

      I wouldn’t start Edu at CB (especially since he’s only had 5 games in the last year, none at CB).

      I do think, though, that Edu is our best option for a 4th CB (behind Goodson). I don’t see a major dropoff over Orozco, and Edu can add MF depth as well.

      • Yeah, I don’t know how much experience Edu has playing CB. If he has limited experience it could be much worse if we expect him to start in that position with so little time left before the world cup. It might be better to express our dissatisfaction with Omar Gonzalez here and in other sites until he either shapes up himself or JK benches him for another experienced CB. As a DM/ emergency 4th CB sure no prob. I would take plenty DMs now that Bradley has shown great potential for CM/CAM. I would even field two DMS: Kljestan on the left and Beckerman on the right, both behind Bradley playing. why? because all three can pass, control and it is obvious that we don’t have quality LWs. Dempsey and Donovan have played there but I don’t think they prefer it and tend to play narrow where they are more dangerous. Jones and Edu could play in other matches where we wont expect to be able to do as much as we might against Ghana.

    • He’ll skip the pre-cup camp, and take a nice long cruise to Brasil. Then, ride a donkey through the Amazon jungle, and walk straight onto the pitch and the starting line-up, just in time for kick-off. Then, of course wilt away in the heat an humidity while watching Ronaldo run past him over and over again. It will be just like the Honduras game, but you know, against Ronaldo.

      • If he’d waited for Cherundolo to get hurt and retire, he would probably have ascended to his starting right back spot. So he might figuratively be kicking himself for the drama that followed. [Whether you buy it depends on whether you take at face value his anxiety/airplane excuse.]

    • I like


      But having Chandler in there for depth is the best. Since Geoff can play multiple positions.

      • No way Omar as center back. You must want us to have zero chance of advancing out the group putting Omar at center back. Smh.

      • Agreed. Omar hasn’t earned it. I’d rather see Goodson in there. At least he’s been consistently decent.

      • Consistently OK from Goodson, or awesome for 85 Mins from Omar with 2-3 brain farts. I think at the world cup you’ve got to go high risk high reward.

        that said, if chandler is healthy it may be :

        FJ, Besler, Geoff, Chandler.

      • Apparently Jurgen doesn’t see it that way. Goodson has been a known quantity for years and the same can now be said for Omar so he could have made the switch any time but chose not to.

      • Yeah, sadly for Jurgen and the NT, the choice to stick with Omar hasn’t been all flowers and sunshine. Even Besler is showing some flaws.

      • Well I personally would want Pepe and Silva on my back line but that ain’t gonna happen. Aside from Eddie Pope I can’t remember a CB that had my complete confidence.

      • I also agree that Omar hasn’t earned starting at WC and that id rather see Goodsonin there. But, the same can be said about Altidore, he hasn’t erned to start either yet he will be taken and so will Omar.

      • I like that group of defenders, assuming Chandler gets back to full health and puts some club matches in.

      • Like this combination the best. If Chandler can’t go could see Parkhurst there – and, I’m betting that Ream could get a call soon.

      • IF Chandler can get healthy, I actually really like this lineup.

        Parkhurst and Beasley can back up the FBs, Omar and Goodson can back up the CBs.

        Otherwise, I say we stick to the current projected starting back 4 (FJ – Besler – Omar – Cameron), take Parkhurst and Beasley as FB backups, and take Goodson and Edu (yes, Edu) as CB backups.

      • ^this

        I think this is both most likely and most desired. I watched a bunch if Timmy before he went out and he’s very solid. Can’t speak to his attitude but lets hope that not an issue.

        On a side note I thought Parkhurst did quite well on the left vs Mexico and based on that single sample I think we may have a real option there.

  12. I have a feeling that all the “bad German American” feelings that were so hyped a couple months ago were centered mostly around Timmy chandler. Even though we need all the help we can get right back, I’m not sure he would be good for team chemistry.

      • Didn’t Chandler a) get injured, b) get benched, and c) express reluctance to fly?

        (not necessarily in that chronological order)

      • yes, literally all of those things happened. yet people are still convinced he wasn’t apart of the team for other reasons.

        he got injured, came back with a bad attitude, got benched at his club, and didn’t get a call up because of that. in addition to his reluctance to fly long distances.

      • It was an opinion, you’re allowed to write those. I’m not the NYT, I don’t have to cite a source. I’m not going to be sued for libel, get over yourself.

      • Fact: JK will not call up Chandler because Chandler ran over JK’s dog and tore the head off of JK’s favorite stuffed animal. Strange behavior, but Lichaj put him up to it.

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