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Klinsmann on Donovan’s upcoming USMNT farewell: “Not awkward for me at all”

Jurgen Klinsmann, Landon Donovan

Photo by Michael Janosz/


U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann will not be at all uncomfortable during Landon Donovan’s farewell match next month.

Klinsmann on Tuesday touched on the topic of Donovan’s planned final U.S. appearance in the October 10 friendly vs. Ecuador, and said he has no qualms about the decision to honor Donovan’s historic international career before the 32-year-old legend retires from soccer at the end of the MLS season.

Donovan was controversially left off the U.S.’s 23-man World Cup roster by Klinsmann back in May, with the U.S. head coach picking the likes of Chris Wondolowski, Brad Davis, Mix Diskerud and Julian Green over the LA Galaxy playmaker. Donovan was critical of Klinsmann during the tournament in Brazil, even saying that the U.S. was not set up to succeed before bowing out via a Round of 16 defeat in extra time to Belgium.

“As a player (Donovan) obviously deserves every piece of recognition for an amazing career with that farewell game, and has tremendously done so much for the national team program,” Klinsmann told reporters ahead of Wednesday’s friendly vs. the Czech Republic, the Americans’ first match since the World Cup. “So it’s a real pleasure to give him that farewell match, and give him that occasion and give him that recognition.”

Klinsmann might think Donovan is worthy of a proper sending off after a career that has seen Donovan make 156 appearances, score a record 57 goals and assist on a record 58 others. But the U.S. head coach also stands by his decision to leave Donovan off the World Cup squad, a shocking move that came with plenty of initial backlash and some fans are still upset about.

“He built his case leading up to the World Cup, and I decided that the players that were in his position, whether it’s forward or midfield, are just ahead of him,” said Klinsmann. “For me in my evaluation as a coach, it was a simple decision. Obviously it was a big deal, I knew that too, but at the end of the day, I needed to take those players that I believe would make a difference. That was my decision.”

Klinsmann added that Donovan’s reactions were understandable. Donovan admitted to initially hoping the U.S. would do poorly in a send-off series match before changing to a more positive outlook, but was critical of Klinsmann’s tactics at the World Cup.

“That (Donovan) was or is upset about that decision, about not going to the World Cup, is for me a good reaction,” he said. “That means he cares. … That he’s not happy about that, that he makes statements that he’s not content, he sees it different, that’s legitimate, that’s totally fine with me.”

With Klinsmann and Donovan set to reunite for the first following their World Cup controversy next month, many observers expected the two to have some awkwardness and resentment towards one another. Klinsmann insisted, however, that he will be at ease and wants to give Donovan a proper goodbye.

“We give him a blast in that moment,” said Klinsmann. “Hopefully the whole stadium will give him a standing ovations, we give him the best farewell that we can do and make it a huge event that he undoubtedly deserves. Hopefully, he has a smile on his face.”


What do you make of Klinsmann’s comments? Believe him when he says it will not be awkward at all? Still not over him leaving Donovan behind this summer?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. There is no believe or disbelieve, you ramble on about nothing stating things like, take JKs word versus Donovan’s word…….? What?

    Look at the facts

    Jurgen took the American public as fools with his bad choices and eventual mediocre result.

    The just tuning in public, like yourself obviously, are perfectly satisfied with a mediocre result, it wasn’t a fail, but it was by no means a success. Far from it. Jurgern gets a pass from people like yourself who know no better. Juergen would be back in Germany already if he produced that result as the coach of many other country’s. He gets a pass in the USA because the majority know no better, again like yourself obviously.

    You continue to have nothing valuable to add….GW….is that short for Gwen by the way?

    Next time take your best players Jurgen……..

  2. Mr. Allen,

    “Read any article on the topic, Donovan states over and over again why he stayed in the MLS, specifically LA.”

    So you take Donovan at his word but you don’t take JK at his? If you bothered to read the numerous interviews that JK has given he gives plausible explanations for just about everything he has ever done with the USMNT.

    Obviously, you choose not to believe JK and you choose to believe Donovan. I take both guys with a grain of salt

    As for 2002, it was a better team that 2014. The current team has inferior personnel. 2014 had no one in the same ballpark as JOB or Reyna. MIkey was supposed to be the new Reyna. Oh well. And Fabian is great but he was no JOB, not yet anyway.Landon himself said JOB was the best American soccer player he ever met.

    And with all that the 2002 team benefited greatly because Portugal completely overlooked them and by the time they realized what had happened , they were dead.

    Nobody in the Group of Death took the USMNT lightly.

    Fact, It took South Korea springing another upset on Portugal and beating them 1-0 for the 2002 team to get out of the group. This after they crashed losing to Poland.

    As for luck if Wondo makes that shot which even his detractors have to say he should have, then most likely Belgium are dead and you are out of luck..

    In terms of results The two teams, 2002 and 2014 were separated by basically a few bad bounces

    “But to those on here stating Klinsman is the reason soccer is what it is today in the states,”

    And who is saying that? You are the one claiming that w/o Donovan US soccer is nothing.

    There is no one person responsible for the game being where it is today. You want one guy?

    Try Clive Toye, general manager of the Cosmos and he’s not even an American. Or try Lamar Huint.

  3. “As for LD, other than Landon and whoever his confidants may be, no one, even you, knows exactly why Donovan chose to stay in the US for the bulk of his career
    You make it sound like LD took a bullet for the cause of American soccer by staying here”

    Read any article on the topic, Donovan states over and over again why he stayed in the MLS, specifically LA.

    If you actually followed Donovan during his career, you would know this.

    • The topic of Donovan playing in Europe or staying in MLS is definitely not a new discussion. Donovan has been answering those interested with the same answer for years…….makes your argument stating know one knows why, rather weak.

    • We may not agree on everything, but the truth is, you will be happy to see Donovan score vs Ecuador (which he will) Oct 10 in Hartford, and will probably prove to be decisive in the victory vs them.

      Klinsman can ponder his errors in 2014, and hopefully do a better job next time around.

      • One last comment, I am by no means saying a character like Klinsman is bad for US soccer. But to those on here stating Klinsman is the reason soccer is what it is today in the states, that truly is a gross exaggeration of the facts.

        The wheels started turning after the 1994 World Cup.

        Another fact: Bruce arena took the USMNT to the quarter finals in 2002, Klinsman was very lucky to get the team to the round of 16

        Fact: Considering the talent available, the result should have been better

        Fact: Klinsman very recently stated this himself.

      • It is irrelevant if LD scores vs. Ecuador.

        It’s not like the man has not been recognized or rewarded for his efforts for US soccer. It’s not as if he will now be homeless and poor.

        No other US player has ever gotten a game like this even though plenty deserve it so that should be enough for him.

  4. Great that you have the internet at your finger tips like the rest of us do. I’ve been in a position living abroad to watch every one of those games btw. GMT + 4– Dempsey didn’t start very often until Joel took over. (Came on after half time mostly)

    Don’t clog up this thread with Dempsey’s story though, it’s about Donovan.

    I’m only giving you some reasons why Donovan stayed in the states to play, versus sit out in Europe.

    And please don’t come back with he wasn’t good enough. He could have played anywhere, IF he would have wanted to.

    • Mr. Allen,

      You don’t average 42 appearances a season for a team like Fulham in the EPL if they don’t rate you.

      Clint’s career shows that he progressed steadily at Fulham. The better he got the more he played.

      Which makes sense because Clint is an unorthodox player and it makes perfect sense that it would take time for him to hit his stride, and for his teammates to figure out how best t use him, especially in a league as tough as the BPL.

      The Clint who left Fulham was not the same player who transferred to Fulham from the
      Revs. He was a much , much better player.

      As for LD, other than Landon and whoever his confidants may be, no one, even you, knows exactly why Donovan chose to stay in the US for the bulk of his career.
      You make it sound like LD took a bullet for the cause of American soccer by staying here.
      One thing you did not point out was he got comfortably paid very early on with a big contract with Leverkusen so he did not have the financial incentive to move to Europe that influenced guys like Clint and others who were making poverty wages by comparison to LD.

      You choose to put the best possible spin on it, but of course you don’t really know.

      LD was a one of a kind player who was might or might not have benefited from the kind of pressure to produce against the best he would have faced in Europe wherever he went.
      Instead he chose to not deal with that and instead became a USMNT player who hit his highs for the US and played for the Quakes and the Galaxy to keep in shape in between World Cups. Nice work if you can get it but only a select few can get away with that.

      From the time he was 20 Landon got special treatment on every team he was on most likely because that level of talent is always made allowances for. LD was smart to stay in the US because in Europe his level of talent would not have stood out so brightly unless he was willing to fight. It would have been interesting if for example, he could have transferred to Manchester United before the 2002 World Cup. SAF might have been able to get the most out of him.

      But one thing about LD when he isn’t happy, he does not play well.

      As a UMSNT fan, I have zero problem with LD choosing to spend the bulk of his career in MLS because, for the most part, he produced for the USMNT.

      However, you act as if he saved the game in this country single handedly by staying here and that is simply a very gross distortion.

  5. If Landon would have played in Europe where he belonged, none of this would have happened. Should have been an American on a top 4 or 5 club in a top four league. Am I right or wrong? Thanks to Landon’s lack of career ambition, we’ll never know. He did not deserve the 2014 squad- his attitude was too poor.

    • His choice, clearly not for a lack of ambition. Definitely not for lack of skill. His choice.

      You enjoy being a us soccer /MLS/fan because pioneers like Donovan stayed and grew the sport in the states.

  6. A fitting end to this saga would be Klinsmann getting the ice bucket challenge from the bucket of a 5 ton backhoe, when the ice has finished dropping, all I would like to see is ice.

    Klinsman couldn’t handle being overshadowed by one of the greatest, if not the greatest USMNT soccer player of all time. Klinsman had to be #1, it’s pure and simple folks. Same tactics all New Managers in every occupation in the USA make whenever they take over any type of business or venture or whatever. Cut off the head of the most senior person.

    The shame is poor Donovan has to live with it for the rest of his life, as do the rest of the true Donovan generation who know that quarters or semis were possible in Brazil had Donovan been on the field.

    Selfish and unforgivable Klinsmann

    Donovan is showing pure class by even playing in Hartford, what else could Klinsman say except what he did, like somehow we should thank him…please

    • “Klinsman couldn’t handle being overshadowed by one of the greatest, if not the greatest USMNT soccer player of all time. Klinsman had to be #1, it’s pure and simple folks.”

      Hence, the reason he subbed Tim Howard out halfway through the Belgium match so that Howard wouldn’t become the talk of the world.

      • The Fail was omitting Donavan, not leaving Howard in the game ….

        Howard would not have had to revert to heroics in that game had the USA had an attacking forward and a plan to move the ball forward

        Learn the game before you post stupid comments

      • What game are you talking about, Gary Allen? The game I’m playing is, “Let’s identify the elementary logic errors in Gary’s comments and ridicule them sarcastically.” (I’m ahead two points before the half.)

      • USA. Vs Belgium….do you understand English or are you trolling so many other replys you forget which one you are responding to?

        Klinsman failed, that’s enough said.

      • You could better stick to lecturing people about their english skills than making comments about football/soccer.

        I totally agree my skills on the iPad aren’t what they need to be in the company of English majors.

        That’s probably about all we will agree upon because your comments on these threads have nothing to do with football, all you are doing is correcting others With very week logic. Pretty sure you can go troll somewhere else and at least come across as knowing what you are talking about.

    • Mr Allen,

      Compare JK’s playing record and the medals he has won to LD’s and tell me he has anything to fear from being overshadowed by LD.

      As for his coaching record how many teams has LD managed in the World Cup?

      Besides JK has a further four years to make his point while LD is now gone..

      • Klinsman Failed, pure and simple……….

        Mediocre expectations spawn mediocre results…….


        –refer to the article above by Christopher Dill–He hits the nail on the head

      • Fail, JKS performance as a player does not make him a good coach BTW

        JKS result in Brazil was nothing more than a mediocre considering the talent he had at his disposal, but as mentioned so eloquently above, Omitting Donovan was just one of many fails…again, refer to Christopher Dill post above

      • Mr. Allen,

        You are avoiding the issue.

        “Klinsman couldn’t handle being overshadowed by one of the greatest, if not the greatest USMNT soccer player of all time.”

        Let me see if this makes things easier for you.

        How was Landon going to overshadow JK?

        JK has a superior record as a player.

        Landon has no record of managing any teams so there is no comparison possible there.

      • Klinsman failed, enough said.

        2018 will be no different, then he will be booted not having matched Bruce Arenas 2002 quarter final result.

      • Gary Allen: you’ve used the word “failed” nine times in these comments. Let me guess: you think that Klinsmann did a poor job?

      • KGE,

        Failure is a matter of who is asking you to do something and what their expectations are..

        If JK failed the USSF, his bosses, then would he not be fired?

        JK failed Mr. Allen because it seems Mr Allen’s expectations are different from the USSF’s.

        I once had a friend who insisted the Beatles were a failure because all their material was unoriginal and derivative.

        Perhaps there are many others who agree with my friend about the Beatles but it seems unlikely.

        On the topic of JK’s “failure”, Mr. Allen reminds me of my friend.

      • Failed. 10x

        The great news for soccer fans in the USA is that the sport finally inspires attendance at games and debates like these….finally….it’s been a long time coming. After watching the Dutch beat West Germany in 1988, I was hooked, and have been ever since.

        Credit the MLS and players like Donovan for this….not JK.

        Donovan stayed in the USA because he wanted to be with family, and he didn’t like the disrespect American players received in Europe.

        I lived in Europe (Holland) from 1986-1991 & (Germany ) 1999-2004

        Ask Dempsey how much playing time he got at Fulham the first 4 years he was there. After Martin Joel took over and started playing Dempsey, look what happened.

        Donovan knew very well about the lack of respect Americans footballers received abroad, so he stayed in MLS to grow the sport.

        Thank you Landon for all you have given to MLS and United States Soccer. You will be missed by those old enough to appreciate all you have done for the game.

        JK failed 11x

      • “Ask Dempsey how much playing time he got at Fulham the first 4 years he was there. After Martin Joel took over and started playing Dempsey, look what happened.”

        Club Season League Cup League Cup Continental Total
        Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
        10 1 2 0 0 0 – 12 1
        36 6 2 0 2 0 – 40 6
        35 7 5 1 1 0 – 41 8
        29 7 2 0 0 0 13 2 44 9
        37 12 3 0 2 1 – 42 13
        37 17 2 3 0 0 7 3 46 23
        Total 184 50 16 4 5 1 20 5 225 60
        Tottenham Hotspur
        29 7 2 3 2 0 10 2 43 12
        Total 29 7 2 3 2 0 10 2 43 12


        Dear Mr. Allen,

        You don’t have to ask Clint just go online and look up his record.
        Just in case the graph does not transfer well and since you have trouble reading here what it says:

        In 2006-7, Clint’s first season for Fulham, he had a total of 12 appearances.

        In the five seasons after that Clint had no fewer than 40 appearances and no more than 46 appearances, for an average of 42.6 appearances per season. You might also notice that he put in 43 appearances in his one season for Spurs.

        Martin Jol arrived in 2011 so your claim that he is the guy who finally made Clint a regular is pure unadulterated cow manure.

        For a club like Fulham, 40 + appearances meant that Clint was a regular starter in the same territory as Danny Murphy or Brede Hangeland, who Fulham fans will recognize as integral parts of the team in that era and who have similar numbers.

        There are 38 league games a season in the EPL by the way.

        The 29 League games Clint played in during the 2009-10 season reflect a knee injury he suffered.

  7. LD might be the best US player for his position ever. Hard to compare stats vs a GK or defensive player tho. Granting that fact, LD couldn’t cut it where the best players in the world play, in Europe. Europe is where JK wants his team to play. He’s been there and knows about the level of play. Face it, to compete with the world’s best, you have to play and train with the best every week. The elite players will ONLY sign for a Champions League qualifier. The world’s best are all in Europe. Don’t you think JK knows this? Look at his playing career. The MLS is a second rate league. Until the best sign here in their prime (Messi, Ronaldo, Rooney), it will always be that way. Henry, Pele, Beckenbauer, Carlos Alberto all signed in the US in the twilight of their careers. Can’t blame the recent signings of USMNT players to MLS, I’m sure their salaries are a LOT more here than in Europe…When that kind of money’s offered by the MLS….well…you understand. In the US they are heroes, in Europe they are fighting for playing time. Why did JK take Julian Green vs LD for 2014 WC? He told America a lower level team at Bayern Munich team is better than or at least on level with MLS. Throw in that the best managers are in Europe. Can you say Guardiola? Morinho? Van Gaal? Ferguson? (ret) you get the point. maybe MLS can get those managers to come here to train US players. Maybe Messi or Ronaldo will sign here….in 2022. Until then watch the elite on tv and enjoy. I think hiring JK was exactly what we needed. In JK we trust. I BELIEVE THAT WE WILL WIN!!!

  8. I agree with those posters who say it’s time to move on regarding Klinsman’s decision to omit Donovan, but not for the same reason. Like the saying goes, “when the finger points to the moon, the fool stares at the finger.” The finger is LD and the moon is the absolutely horrendous job that Klinsman did managing the USMNT prior to and during the 2014 WC:

    1. He overworked the squad with 2 full workouts and a morning run on an empty stomacht. Just look at the lethargic play and the hamstring injuries (3). Also, why did he hold the pre-WC camp in Northern California when he knew that our games were going to be played in tropical conditions? Why not Florida where the players could more fully acclimate to such conditions…like Ghana did? Look how the Black Stars ran circles around us.

    2. Brad Davis. Don’t even get me started on this boneheaded decision. I mean, why not Brek Shae at left wing who can at least scare the shat out of right backs when he attacks and does step up when he’s subbed into a big game?

    3. Timmothy Chandler over Michael Parkhurst. Parkhurst can play anywhere on the back line and was certainly needed anywhere on the back line except at left back. The argument that Chandler is being groomed for 2018 is utter BS. Chandler has proven nothing and will prove nothing and there will probably be a dozen ‘Deandre Yedlins’ emerging between now and then.

    4. Deandre Yedlin. I will commend Klinsman for putting him on the roster and playing him, but why not start him against Germany and Belgium after what he showed against Portugal? Neither team had an answer for Yedlin who showed more confidence and poise than any other player on the US team besides Howard. Klinsman complains about the US team not being “proactive” enough, yet doesn’t back it up by starting proactive players.

    5. No backup for Altidore and no plan B for when Altidore went down. Eddie Johnson was and is the only person to play that point forward position.

    6. Klinsman had the most talented US talent pool ever, and even the 2014 team had more skill than the 2002 team. Yet, he barely got them into the knockout round. The 2002 was smarter and far more confident. On that last point, it’s all about the coach.

    As long as supporters are obsessing on LD, they are ignoring everything else that contributed to a subpar performance by the Nats when we really could have gone farther, possibly playing Algeria instead of Belgium. This team succeeded inspite of Klinsman and not because of him. Philip Lamm was right about Klinsman, he knows nothing about strategy.

  9. Yep, still a poor, stupid, short-sighted, unnecessary, and unforgivable decision by Jürgen not to see that the USMNT needed a player with Landon Donovan’s vision, skill and experience in Brazil.

  10. I have to agree with Brain Guy, there is no way that Brad Davis was a better fit than Donovan. I believe you can also add Bedoya and Zusi to that list. Donovan had not played well early in the MLS season. I think that must have counted against him. I still think their must have been something personal that also motivated Klinsmann.

  11. I promised myself I wouldn’t enter this endless debate, but here goes. I was OK with Klinsmann’s decision, if a little shocked, because it seemed clear that Donovan had lost a step or two and i was willing to accept his conclusion that it was time to turn the page. Green? OK. Even Wondo, because he plays a different role. But even before the WC, and especially in retrospect, one consideration keeps me scratching (and shaking) my head — JK concluded that Brad Davis was more important to have on the roster than Landon Donovan.

  12. I respect Jurgen as a coach but I think in this instance he made a poor decision. He’s decision displayed a pettiness and vindictiveness – probably stemming from Donovan’s days with Bayern Munich and culminating in the sabbatical – that you occasionally see in coaches. Donovan would have helped organize the team, distribute the ball, and he would probably have scored a goal or two. Net net is the team might have gone further in the tournament with Landon starting or coming off the bench. Hopefully, Jurgen will let Landon enjoy his well deserved day when they play Ecuador next month. BTW, I’m not the same Joe Corona from the national team.

    • I think Jurgen did himself few favors in his management of the process, but I’m struggling to understand the sentiment regarding the “pettiness and vindictiveness” of using the Bayern Munich experience as a meaningful data point in his assessment of the player. For most of us, the opportunity to work directly with somebody is a rarity that completely trumps most every alternative resource.

      I just don’t know how (or why) anybody would expect JK to discard this. People talk as though JK is refusing to forgive him for bailing on some keg party a few years back beacuse of a wicked hangover. Absurd… this is their life’s work and EVERYTHING goes on the permanent record. JK is trying to root out self-limiting behavior and the preference for comfort over achievement, and it’s pretty hard to ignore LD in this way. Landon has every right to run his life and career the way he wants, but he is perhaps the most self-limiting elite athlete I’ve seen in any sport– guy is the Patron Saint of Small Ponds and the Big Fish who Inhabit Them. JK saw it first-handand had his own reputation damaged by it

    • Hannover 96 are giving a testimonial for Dolo in Germany.

      As far as I know the USSf are not planning one for Dolo.

      As far as I know this “testimonial ” game for LD is the only one the USSF have ever held for any player.

      It is not a real testimonial because in a real one the gate receipts are usually given to the player for his use, typically a donation to a charity or the purchase of drugs, strip club memberships and fast cars.

    • It’d be kind of cool to have a Donovan/ Demerit / Bocanegra / Dolo testimonial match. However this isn’t a Donovan testimonial, this is an actual international friendly that just will happen to be Donovan’s last one.

  13. This is ridiculous. Klinsi made a call on the roster, as he should. Every single thing since then has validated that decision. Not LD’s talent per se, but his mental state. He was not going to sit on the bench without bitching to the friendly media and being a distraction. (BTW I still peg him as the un-named source for the infamous Sporting News article, and I’ll bet Klinsi knows it). He is not 2010 WC LD anymore. If his head was right he would have helped. But Klinsi got the team out of the group (something 90% of US fans thought highly unlikely). He put the players where they needed to be to succeed. He can’t help it if Bradley doesn’t boot a ball downfield vs. Portugal with 30 seconds left. He put Wondo in the exact spot that he was on the roster for and he misses a goal that he makes every time vs. Belgium, which would have sent us through. Get over it…same commenters that claimed MB was only playing because of nepotism.

    • Yep, LD leading the league in assists proves he should not have been near our World Cup squad. Then we might have actually been able to string a couple passes together. That would have messed up our sit back and hope Timmy makes the save plan.

      • LD was poor in MLS before the WC. He has been on fire because he is motivated by the snub and wants to prove JK wrong. That’s the thing with LD, he isn’t always motivated. If he could have figured out that mental part, he could have been consistently world class, not just MLS class.

      • he was not poor in MLS before the WC..hogwash. He was playing a different role on the team, very unselfish of him btw. his versatility is unmatched in the US pool

    • “He put Wondo in the exact spot that he was on the roster for and he misses a goal that he makes every time vs. Belgium, which would have sent us through. Get over it…same commenters that claimed MB was only playing because of nepotism.”

      Exactly. Because if he put Landon Donovan in that spot instead of Wando, I’m sure Landon would have missed it also — just like he did against Algeria…

      • Or he could have missed it like he did on 2 breakways against Germany in 2002. That LD scored against Algeria with a much easier sitter than Wondo’s chance (ball on the ground with an open net VS a ball coming down in the air with the GK coming at you) has NO bearing on if he would have made that chance. I have seen better strikers than Donovan miss easier chances than the Wondo chance (even if Wondo should have put it away).

    • +1.
      And I’ll add that what everyone seems to “forget” is how poorly LD was playing right before the WC camp. Yes, he picked it up (in MLS)…after JK cut him, and after he announced his retirement. But at the time, he looked like he was done.

      • he wasn’t playing poorly before…BS. he wasn’t on fire like now but then again, his role was different for that team at that time…you understand all this, yes? very unselfish of LD actually

        more importantly, LD’s talent was always there and it’s proven at the highest level in the pool, and the coach’s job is to get that talent expressed on his team (especially on a team lower in talent like the USMNT still is), something Jurgen failed to accomplish, and especially with a player who clearly was ready and wanting to express his ability, once again, for his country

      • Ah beachbum, I rather suspected you were not quite ready to leave this part of your life behind you. And I respect it– if a guy’s gonna relapse, I don’t wanna hear him whine about nicking sips of his wife’s Chardonnay. Gimme the guy who goes right to his best dealer and absoutely lets loose to make up for the lost time.

        When you’re ready, you’ll know. Just say the word, my man. As long as the Galaxy are around, it’s not important.

    • People who actually know US soccer new well in advance the group of death was no worries to a squad with the talent we had at our disposal. Omitting Donovan was the first time I got worried about not advancing, and it was only pure luck we did in fact advance.

      The group of Death was as such because the US squad was in it.

      Mediocre expectations spawn mediocre results

      Klinsman failed……

  14. There is only one thing that could lead Klinsmann to claim Donovan’s farewell match will be “not awkward for me at all”.

    No way will Klinsmann be coaching the USMNT in 2016. Not a chance.

      • I am 50/50 on whether JK is around much longer.

        Why do you think he would be Kosh ? Good run up to the WCup, but nothing the US hasn’t already done in this WCup inspite of having more and more talent every cycle.

      • Quit Whining: if you agree that JK has pretty much accomplished the same as his predecessors, then why wouldn’t you expect him to last pretty much as long as his predecessors?

      • EXACTLY! The two guys ahead of him had two bites at the cherry and did just what JK just did – on face value. If you were to weight it JK got us out a group in which everyone thought we’d get destroyed. We were a few mistakes away from beating Portugal and even Belgium. We competed with a German side that showed everyone what they can do.

        Behind the scenes he is doing more for the programs than his predecessors but I am not making any comparisons there because he has the authority there that they did not. That said he is doing a very good job.

        I don’t get where this he’s on the track to be fired talk is coming from at all. Now if he loses the GC and stinks up the Coppa then maybe he gets canned but I just don’t see that happening. This team is better than what people see and think.

        Folks on here have their reasons based on what they know or make up. But the people closest to the situation highly rate the guy. I honestly don’t know where all this talk of JK being fired is coming from.

  15. Let’s not lose sight of the lack of progress the national team has so far had under JK. His lack of commitment to US based players and the future of the sport stateside belie his statements when he took over. The current national team is made up of second rate Europe based players who won’t go any further in their careers. For each Diskerud,Bedoya, Chandler,etc…..there are many American players waiting too be given the chance,helped out and polished by a serious professional coach knowledgeable of the American psyque. JK will not be the next world cup coach but he won’t be replaced until the time is short to make an impact in 2018, waisting 6 plus years with this egomaniac,vain,coach. Time will tell…
    Can anybody tell me the name of a US player JK has discovered, polished and grown during his tenure? Right! there isn’t one.

    • Hahah, JK gets two years and you have made up your mind about him, but if another coach comes in before 2018, there won;t be enough time to make an impact? Do you see what you said? Two years is not enough time to make an impact. You contradicted yourself.

      You expect discovery, polishing and growing in two years? That’s asking a lot, no wonder JK can’t meet your expectations. Which coach would you like to replace him with that can do that in two years? JC maybe?

      • Some signs of it would be nice. Only player that could be argued is Green. Exciting players of the past like Diskerrud, Agudelo, Ream, and Lichaj have been phased out. And they have been replaced by players who have not or have hardly played top flight soccer.

      • Green is a product of the German system. Klinsmann was suppose to overhaul player development in the US so we could produce elite players domestically. In the past the US system has produced Donovan, Beasley, Bradley, Onyewu, Bocanegra, Jozy, etc. No players of that quality have come out of Klinsmanns tenure. He obviously only wants to nurture the players based in Europe so why exactly then have we given him control of youth player development. If he can’t implement it here bring in someone who can or at least will try.

      • How many of those guys were Bradenton residency products? All of them? I think were starting to see a shift away from that, to MLS club developing players like with Yedlin, Gil ect.

      • We have Bradenton and the US Development Academy (of which he is in control), and the MLS Academies so where are the Donovan’s and Beasley’s of the future? We should be producing more of those guys domestically not less.

      • Your window is way too short. 2-3 years won’t return you a lot of emerging senior players who were not already in the system, and at most you can throw a coat of paint on them with the time you have.(not that you’lll get credit)

        Patience, bud. I sympathize because it is not a particularly American quality and sometimes it would be easier if we just agreed basketball was our thing because that “World Cup” we can handle in our sleep. But you’re right about the standard… the system will only be deemed a success when we start pumping out more Donovans and Beasleys and Bradleys… that’s why we wanted it– the system we’ve been using is like hanging around the magnet schiool waiting for the next Einstein.

        And it might take a decade. Maybe more. The World Cup became quite a popular prize during our national 50 year sabbatical from soccer, which made LD’s trip look like a cigarette break. Other countries have built a huge lead and they are still investing — they don’t like that the rich kids have developed an interest in their “thing”… and they’ll like it less when they notice one primary strategy is to slip our youngsters like Bolivian Tree Lizards into their academies whenever possible, which is a step up from the petty larceny we’ve been committing against Iceland (who should really be marking their lunches clearly anyway)

      • I think you have a very valid point here. JK is supposed to be developing American players, not beating the German bushes for players that technically qualify. I think he has a very strong Euro bias.

        Focusing on developing players here, not who is an American, … we are very competitive at the younger NAT level and I would like to see some of those players moving up to the Sr. team. JK should be focusing on that

      • He is doing that. Actually, that is most of his job. Look at tomorrow’s team sheet. Look at Yedlin at the WC.

        I think people would do themselves a favor to ask what they should expect to see after 2-3 years from a development overhaul. I would actually set the target in the next generation, or at min 10-15 years so you can assess the young players who have experienced it in its entirety, Germany and Spain’s recent successes at the int’l level are the fruits of overhauls initiated a decade plus earlier… and they already had formidable traditions and resources to leverage. We have Klinsmann and hope. We are going around the board. Belgium are often mentioned in this conversation,

        If you simply can’t wait and want to peek in the oven, the earliest real sniff you *might* be able to detect will be at the 2016 Olympics. Realistically, almost everybody coming through the pipeline right now was a known quantity somewhere in US Soccer before JK. So that’s a starting point

      • True Yedlin is one. And you could say he tried with Shea. But what happens when Yedlin, like Shea, goes overseas with Spurs and then doesn’t play? With Klinsmann that has meant no more call ups for domestically produced talent (Shea) but continued caps for european produced talent (Green, Morales, etc)

      • Besler, Cameron (He had played a total of 4 minutes under Bradley) Gonzalez (started 1 game for Bradley before getting injured), Zusi, Corona, Castillo… I think JK has brought along a fair bit of home grown talent. You could make the case that he brought Bedoya and Beasley in from the cold too since they had fallen from favor under Bradley. He also gave Jose Torres more of a chance than he had ever received.

      • Ream and Lichaj both have Premeire League experience. Agudelo has played around 4 seasons with 3 at MLS and 1/2 in the Netherlands. Diskerrud would be the odd one out in experience.

        Had Klinsmann called in Agudelo more, than he would be in the premeire league with Stoke. Lichaj is on the best team in the Championship and is very likely to be playing in the premeire league in the next two years thru promotion. Ream was linked to Wes Brom but a move fell thru. Thats three potential premiere league players that Klinsmann has hardly given a whiff.

        Plus, all are under the age of 28.

      • That is all well and good but their cumulative total amount of top flight soccer is pretty small. It is not an impressive group that way.

      • Ream and Lichaj are in very unenviable positions I should think insofar as being considered for selection. Staus quo won’t get them into the frame at this point in their careers, and there doesn’t appear to be much left that doesn’t involve a transfer. Not even sure if this would appeal to a guy like Ream, who has found a good situatin and seems unlikely to figure heavily in the USMNT”s future.

        Diskerud might want to look at a move, too. He isn’t really improving and while I like his game, it definitely has some holes that are not being filled. His USMNT future approaching something of a judgement day. If he ticks the boxes, it is likely there will be an opening for him in the first choice CM but it’s clear he hasn’t made it his yet and he’s going to feel some competition coming in behind.

        Juan Agudelo has unfortunately died. He expired without warning last week while sipping espresso and discussing existentialism with other unemployed Europeans, apparently shortly after experiencing the solemn realization that the only living person in Europe aware of his existence or identity was Brek Shea. When asked for his reaction, Shea was overcome and spent the next 50 minutes drawing a picture of a dandelion. He then burst into loud, unbroken sobbing , which continued until Jurgen Klinsman came over, put his arm around him and handed him a fruit roll-up from his fanny pack, remarking tersely to the group that “we should know better”. I felt ashamed.

        Where were we?

      • It’s been three years Del Smitten with Klinsmann, not two. Yes three years should be enough time to start nurturing some American based talent. Klinsmann has been given unprecedented control and resources yet the US program is producing less US based talent than it did a decade ago with the youngsters in 2002 WC. He is relying on talent produced in Europe because he bias and cannot do it or be bothered to do it himself.

    • Well stated and why Sunil is not willing to admit that JK is doing the opposite of what we were all told he was hired to do is beyond me.

      • Gil (only 1 cap), Zardes, Villerreal, Okugo, Soony Saad, gave up on Agudelo (opposite of nurturing as Brando call Klinsmann out on), Farrell, McInerney, Nagbe (will soon be a citizen could include in camps)., Salgado,

      • Salgado?

        He missed the entire 2013 MILS season with injury.

        He is currently on loan to the Charleston Battery . He is having a hard time making an impact with the Vancouver Whitecaps.

        What do you expect JK to do about that?

      • You have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA what you are talking about. Those guys are really young (Gil is 20; all these guys are 23 and under), and MOST of them have been called into senior USMNT or U23/U21/U20 camps at different times during Klinsmann’s reign (Gil, McInerney, Agudelo etc). JK integrated the teams philosophies and coaching staffs with the U23 coaches etc being on the senior Men’s staff. As such, I JK is kept abreast of the player performances who is ready according to Reyna etc. 2nd, JK integrated all the teams, but he does not develop players the academies and clubs do. He can put forth a paradigm (which he did), but he does not do the development. Even if he did, you would not have final products in 2/3 years. Given that look at the players on the USMNT WC roster that brought into the team (that had not played for the senior team before): Fabian Johnson, Matt Beasler, Deandre Yedlin, & Aron Jóhannsson )

        I don’t think think Saad is an elite international player or has better potential than other US hopefuls at the forward position. Nagbe is not consistent enough, but as you mentioned is also not a citizen.

      • The problem with your points Anthony is that you don’t address why similarly young and green (pun totally intended) prospects are not being brought through the U ranks and are instead promoted immediately to the senior team, given senior caps. As someone pointed out had Agudelo been given more caps he’d be playing in the premier league

      • Soony Saad has already played for lebanon…is he still eligbile for US anymore? Decent player but he’s not international quality…

    • Mr. Brando,

      Name me a player that Bob Bradley or Bruce Arena discovered, polished and grew during his tenure. Right! There isn’t one.

      Landon Donovan? No. Clint Dempsey? No. Brian McBride? No. John Obrien? No.
      The only ones you can give them credit for are the players they might have coached before they got the USMNT job. For example, Arena coached Reyna at Virginia. You might give Bradley some credit for Mikey but that is a special case. .

      National team managers do not polish and grow players. Do you think Del Bosque or Lowe do that?

      At best national team managers give their players some guidance and targets to shoot for and if they do well, some high profile exposure for a possible transfer.

      If you doubt that just do the math. They have very little time to actually work with their players. The significant coaching and training happens at the clubs. where all these players spend the vast majority of their time.

      National team managers just take the best players available for their team and then try to form them into the semblance of a team.

      • Mr GW,

        Jurgen Klinsmann has been given unprecedented resources and control over US player development, the youth national teams and the senior team. Bradley and Arena were only the coach of the senior team. They nurtured domestically produced players like Donovan and Adu by giving them caps at young ages. Klinsmann does that with European based players. If he was just the coach of the senior team then I would write that off as European bias but since he is in charge of all of player development then I would say he is not doing his job.

      • Internazionale,

        So you expect instant production at the youth level? They should produce World Cup ready players in two years after the minute JK took over? That is a bit naive.

        I was around for the 2002 World Cup and I seriously doubt Arena could have kept LD off the 2002 World Cup team even if he wanted to.

        LD had just led the Quakes to the MLS cup and despite his age, was clearly the best US player around. Remember this was 2002. There was Jeff Cunningham but there was no Wondo, or Davis or Green to keep him off the WC team.
        BB had to “nurture” Adu because he could not get on the field for his club teams. And how did BB’s “nurturing” of the “domestically produced” Adu turn out? What did BB have to show for it? A nice pass to score on Panama, I believe and then some nice play in the Gold Cup final before ultimately being massacred and humiliated by Mexico. Some return.

      • I think Internazionale expects Klinsmann to sire, birth, raise, train, and polish 23 superstars—all within 24 months.

      • You have no idea what you are talking about here. The structure is being improved and a lot of work is happening right now and you’d know this if you’d bother to do some research.

        Don’t let the emergence of LD fool you developing talent takes time, effort and work not some imaginary timeline that internet posters arbitrarily make mention of to support their weak arguments.

        You wanna blame someone for the lack of youth infusion in that last cycle then blame Porter for missing the Olympics. Given the time at his hand JK only had the Olympics to see which of the young guys were ready. Now the cycle has started and he is doing just that.

      • Uhhhh, it was Klinsmann who decided that one of the two maybe three U23 training camps for Olympic qualification would be held in Germany when Porter was not available. This was so they could look at the European developed players in keeping with all of Klinsmann’s tenure. Klinsmann was ultimately the guy in charge, he was the one who chose Porter as the U23 coach and he was the one who didn’t think it mattered that porter couldn’t be at that Germany training camp. You can blame Porter and not blame Klinsmann

      • It’s two degrees of separation with you. All roads lead to JK for the bad but not the good stuff. I see who you play.

      • Yes it all leads to Klinsmann because as has been stated multiple times he is in charge of the whole show, not just the senior team. He has been given unprecedented power, resources and pay and we have gone backwards by depending upon talent developed over seas.

      • Porter was really a Gulati hire, which actually seemed fairly safe at the time– most would’ve thought getting out a group of also-ran CONCACAF teams on home soil was a layup with our personnel. But it was a less-than-stellar organizational move whose deficiencies were not properly considered because failure was not contemplated. Really, Porter and JK did not know each other in a working context and the situation was poorly aligned

        The kitchen exploded of course and it would be easy to blame the players for choking (and boy did they). But both coaches distinguished themselves by salvaging value from the wreckage when walking away was easy enough, including the the improvement and integration of the U’s, Olympic team, and Senior team, and ensuring that the expensive introduction to the minefield of CONCACAF did not claim further casualties in the relatively low stress WCQ and Gold Cup campaigns,

        Mistakes borne of inexperience are still mistakes. So it’s not a “pass”. But if there is disappointment in anybody (besides the goofs on the field) I’d say Gulati did both of these guys a disservice by empowering neither properly

    • Thank you, I could not have said it better.
      I have watched Landon Donovan, in the last two World Cups, place the USMNT on his shoulders and score goals with seconds left-ie. Algeria. There is no doubt, but that he would have done so again. The Germans do not want Klinsmann. I know that it is anecdotal, but German friends laughed when they learned that we had hired the “self serving, egotistical,” Klinsmann.

      • Since Donovan wasn’t there in 2014, I am assuming you mean 2006 and 2010 as the last two WCs. Donovan was absolutely awful at the WC in 2006. He placed nothing on his shoulders then. He was good in 2010 when he was motivated to make up for his 2006 terribleness. When he’s motivated, Donovan can be a world-class player, but sadly that only occurs when Donovan feels up to it.

      • ” The Germans do not want Klinsmann.”

        Every German? There are about 82.7 million Germans.

        How many German friends do you have? 42 million? Do they represent the entirety of German opinion on the subject?

      • This argument has been popping up in various forms from time to time and I am not sure I really understand the absolutisim of it. I think it’s great that the Germans do not want Klinsmann, as he is our coach and it is my understanding he is not for sale. And to show I’m a fair person, I would respond that I’ve not heard any interest here in acquiring the services of the booger-eating dweeb who won the World Cup for them, though we find him to be a fine fellow. And I will leave aside the “self-serving, egotistical” comment because the German fascination with these qualities is beyond comprehension or explanation… I will simply assume they’ve slipped out of fashion for the moment and will be restored as indispensible components of the German identity in a incomprehinsible Kraftwerk song later this afternoon.

        I just don’t see why I should be all that excited about the thoughts of random German people in assessing the approrpiateness of effectiveness of our coach for our players and goals, because very few of them spend the time to deeply familiarize themselves with what we need at this point in our development. Probably they can’t even access things like MLS easily or regularly, and it wouldn’t give much context regardless. Really, they only have half of the equation. So how can they claim to have solved it?

      • Real Madrid’s management and Cristiano Ronaldo, both soccer experts, don’t want Mourinho back either.

        I don’t see that bothering Chelsea or their fans do you?

      • +1 If you find a girlfriend who is perfect for you, the approrpiate response is to thank god and be thrilled because that may never happen again. Soliciting the opinion of her ex? Creepy and self-defeating, at best. Might as well go ahead and break up wth her because you don’t want to be happy.

  16. I dont agree it’s a vindication. Some players retire past their prime, some want to go out on top. Since his retirement announcement he has been playing great. Top of the league in assists. We could have used that in Brazil. The only slowing down I suspect is that he didn’t think the over training utilized by Klinsmann in MNT camps was good for his body and ultimately in the best interests of his ability to perform for his club and his country.

      • Come on Jozy’s Hamstring….US can’t have World Class players, you should no better. Thank you Del Griffen for pointing this out.

        England, now THEY can have World Class players.

        Lets try to do better posting people. Del Griffen keep up the good work.

      • Of course the schmucks from MLS helped the USA get out of the group while England’s “world class” players did not in either of the last two W.C.s

      • Let’s see who helped us the most at the WC. Dempsey (played mostly in EPL)
        Howard (EPL)
        Jermaine Jones (BL)
        JA Brooks (BL)

        What exactly did our MLS contingent do? The defense gave up shot after shot against Belgium. What did Zusi, Bedoya and Wondo do?

        MLS is fine and fun to watch here in the US, but to think it is the way for the future of the nats is so, i dont know, its clueless.

      • Wow, still no respect for Beckerman. Or Gonzalez. And no mention of Yedlin.

        But JA Brooks with all his accumulated WC minutes gets a mention.

        Data selection is a sin, Del.

    • that’s what I was going to post…whatever Jurgen

      “He built his case leading up to the World Cup, and I decided that the players that were in his position, whether it’s forward or midfield, are just ahead of him,” said Klinsmann

    • I think he clearly meant attacking midfielder/attacking forward – number 10. That is what he currently plays for LA. There are many different types of midfield positions.

      • Or possibly Klinsmann knows that many have debated LD’s inclusion as a midfielder instead of forward and is pointing out the obvious: it doesn’t matter if you still think there are better options than him. For example, LD was also not picked as a defender or goalkeeper.

  17. Klinsman is a good coach but a poor GM..johannsen and Wondowlowski are definitly not better than Donovan.. DONOVAN WOULD HAVE MADE THAT GOAL AGAINST BELGIUM!!!

    • Johannson is a different player and plays a different position. Maybe LD of 4-12 years ago: a wing/wing forward/2nd forward. LD at this point in his career is a central attacking midfielder/forward. He would have played the 10 hole after Altidore went down and CD got moved forward. I saw a space for Wondo because he’s a poacher who can play as a sub and steal a goal or two (unfortunately, he did not do that). Brad Davis was the guy who took his spot because there was no need for wing for was limited defensively and going forward because you already had 5 guys who could play the wing.

      • LD of today is dominating from the left wing. and, he often rotates up top after subs, playing any number of roles as a forward (not just in the hole) after laying as a central midfielder for a stretch that ended in the SKC game

        also, LD’s D as been garnering tons of positive commentary all summer long…for his defense! NOT a liability. hope this accurate info helps you update your files

        as for 5 guys who can play the wing, none did or can do what LD does and has done, and I like Zusi, Green, Davis, Bedoya. and LD can play either wing, a versatility none of the others truly have

        it’s fine to be down with Jurgen’s choice and continue to defend it but wow, your reasons are inaccurate

  18. Why should JK feel awkward?

    LD represents the past. He is done and on his way out.

    It is JK’s team now. It is Donovan’s farewell match, his last one meaning JK won’t have to worry about the issues surrounding him anymore and can focus on a very busy future.

    JK moved on from this topic a very long time ago.

    • The great thing about this comment is you could completely be sarcastic the whole way through to appeal to the other side….maybe you were ?

      My opinion….If you watched the US corner kicks this WCup, you almost HAD to be sarcastic

      • Mr. in the US,

        Sarcasm? What sarcasm?

        Why should JK feel awkward?

        The USSF hired him to move the team on from the Arena, Bradley era and he has done that.

        National team managers cut players and ruin their hopes and dreams all the time. It is part of the job description. I’m pretty sure JK , like Arena and BB before him, is used to that by now.

        There is never a good way to fire people so you just do it and get on with the job.

        The only people whose opinions he has to be concerned with is the USSF and if they don’t like him and what he is doing they will fire him. If you looked outside the SBI world I think you’d find that chances of that happening anytime soon are pretty slim.

        The USSF were massively disappointed with BB over the Ghana failure yet they let him continue an additional year and manage the team through the Gold Cup . By the time they fired BB the whole team was in disarray and in serious need of a rebuild.

        That stands in stark contrast to this edition of the team which has a solid core of young possibilities going forward, plus an ever expanding talent pool going forward.

        So you can piss and moan and cry and hold your breath until your face turns blue but it won’t change a thing about the composition of the 2014 WC team.

      • A good way to fire people: after you’ve gotten the most out of them. Add in mutual consent and you actually have yourself a party

  19. Question: Will LD miss any games because of the friendly? He is chasing the all time assists record and I would hate for him to blow it for some friendly. I would also hate to see the LAG blow the supporters shield as well.

  20. In some way, you must admit that Donovan retiring early is a sort of vindication of Klinsmann’s feeling that he was slowing down and/or losing the desire.

    I think anyone that watches MLS and Donovan regularly knows that Donovan was / is still an elite player. And I personally feel he was showing the commitment necessary to go to Brazil. But he’s undoubtedly been withdrawing since before the Cambodia game, and none of us were in those training sessions or locker room.

    Probably, it’s just time to move on. Hopefully we’ll be moving on to Zelalem! 🙂

  21. Donovan deserves this game but he doesnt deserve to have to play it under Klinsmann. The fact that he can even STILL say that those other players were ahead of Donovan shows that he still thinks he made the right decision. Few believe that.

    I really hope the fans or Donovan find some way to send a loud message to JK and the world that JK was dead wrong. Maybe some Tifo or chant from the fans, Maybe Donovan walking straight past JK when he comes of as if he were invisible. IDK

    I would have gone to this game myself if it was played at Gillette stadium but the Connecticut location is a little too far on a Friday

  22. Well, I can see that we have not really “moved on” after all. This debate is destined to become the “who killed JFK?” of U.S. soccer — perpetual and not capable of resolution.

    • Because he’s stubborn! I am a daily SBI reader who doesn’t post often but just wanted to put my 2 cents…Leaving Donovan off the world cup roster was WRONG and anyone who knows anything about soccer knows it! The argument that “i just had a few players ahead of him” just doesn’t cut it as everyone knows that Donovan is a better footballer than Green, Davis, Wondo etc…You could sense that Donovan was going to do something special this past cup. Were we going to win it all? Of course not. But getting to the quarters or semis wouldn’t have have been out of the question with moments we would never forget… but we’ll never know what magic Donovan would have produced because Klinsmanns ego wouldn’t let it.

    • Sorry for making a coaching decision? I’m not with that at all if LD deserves an apology then every player thats ever been left off deserves on it just doesn’t work like that.

      • not true…each circumstance is its own. Jurgen could own his mistake instead of pandering to the lowest common denominator of the US soccer mentality by continuing to insult our soccer IQ by saying others were ahead of him…it’s insulting

      • beachbum,

        ” Jurgen could own his mistake instead of pandering to the lowest common denominator of the US soccer mentality by continuing to insult our soccer IQ by saying others were ahead of him…it’s insulting”

        JK doesn’t think he made a mistake.

        So there is nothing for him to “own”.

      • GW,

        “JK doesn’t think he made a mistake. So there is nothing for him to own.”

        Not really. Whether he thinks he made a mistake or not, if there was a mistake then it exists for him to own it (or deny it, or ignore it, etc.).

        And JK did make a mistake: Brad Davis should not have been on the team. That doesn’t mean that LD should have been. But someone other than Brad Davis.

        So was it a mistake to conclude that “others were ahead of LD”? No, because others definitely were ahead of him. But it was not Brad Davis. Still, there may have been others ahead of both LD and Brad Davis.

      • KGE,

        I don’t agree with you.

        “And JK did make a mistake: Brad Davis should not have been on the team.” That is your opinion but there is no objective evidence to back you up

        Player selections are a matter of opinion.
        And, after the fact, saying what player X would have done in place of player Y is the height of speculation and cannot be proven.
        Here is what we know, based on facts. In the 93rd minute of the US – Belgium game the score was 0-0 when Wondo had his chance. If he makes that then, game over almost instantly, Belgium are dead and the US advances. And, in fact, if Dempsey puts away that other chance in overtime that he would normally put away, they might still be playing.

        The fact remains that the roster, as it was, Davis and all, was good enough to get them to the point where they should have advanced but for Wondo’s miss.

        My guess is that JK, who knows the striker business better than any of us, thinks that Wondo miss was just bad luck and that his roster, with Davis on it, SHOULD have gotten them through and in the game vs Argentina.

        Obviously you disagree but you don’t have any facts to prove your point so your disagreement is a matter of opinion. And of course, you are certainly entitled to that because after all this is SBI not ISIS.

        If you could prove that including another player besides Davis would have guaranteed a win vs Belgium then yes, JK made a mistake; but you can’t prove that.

        The mistake was made by Wondo and then later by Clint, not JK. JK put both of them in a position to do what they do best, score a poacher’s goal and win or tie the game ( and who knows where a tie would have led?).

        They both let the USMNT down.

        JK is not going to apologize for that nor should he.

      • GW,

        Pointing out what is opinion on a discussion board is a tedious, pointless waste of time. Oh, excuse me—It is my opinion that pointing out that which is opinion is a waste of time.

        It’s like demanding that people preface their comments here with, “I think that….” It’s obvious that “you think that” if you’re writing it. Let’s forgo semantic pedantry.

        “Player selections are a matter of opinion. And, after the fact, saying what player X would have done in place of player Y is the height of speculation and cannot be proven. Here is what we know, based on facts….”

        Then our presence on these boards is utterly wasted time*, if we’re only allowed to discuss that which is historical fact. “Oh, if only Wondo had made that shot, then the US would have advanced!” Not so, not so: it’s possible that Belgium would have equalized 6 seconds later and so we cannot by any means lament that Wondo would have put us through. No way to prove otherwise.

        “My guess is that JK, who knows the striker business better than any of us, thinks that Wondo miss was just bad luck and that his roster, with Davis on it, SHOULD have gotten them through and in the game vs Argentina.”

        My guess is that JK knows that the US was extremely fortunate to still see a scoreline of 0-0 that late in the match. Wondo’s miss was bad luck in that a) he missed and b) the US wasn’t already down 2 or 3 goals so that his miss was actually memorable.

        “If you could prove…then yes, JK made a mistake; but you can’t prove that.”

        No, GW, the existence of a mistake has nothing to do with whether I can prove it or not. Proof only has to do with how reasonable it is to expect JK to recognize and admit it.

        “JK is not going to apologize for that nor should he.”

        Well, at least we agree on this.

        * Our presence on these boards is no doubt wasted time, but not utterly wasted.

      • KGE,

        I could point out the mistakes in your reply. They are there and they exist whether you agree with me or not.

        But I don’t expect you to agree with me or apologize for them.

        Somehow, I think we will all survive, regardless.

      • if others were ahead of him in Jurgen’s pecking order, then there are other things to call into question. Seriously King, not just Davis, but Wondo, AJ, Bedoya…LD dusts them all, has for his entire career, and continues to do so. No soccer mind of any intelligence and ability can dispute it (although many do 🙂 ) And Green over LD? I love the kid but come on

      • beachbum: No soccer mind of any intelligence and ability writes phrases like, “no soccer mind of any intelligence and ability.” It’s a barrier to discussion—which, if truly believed, should signal to the author to avoid entering the discussion in the first place.

        Several players were and are ahead of LD in the pecking order: Jozy, Clint, MB, Jones…. That’s just forwards and mids (who are at least semi-offense). At the time, there was perfectly good reason to view AJ ahead of LD too—kinda hard to make any comparison now with AJ recovering from injury. Zusi also looked every bit as capable as LD in similar competition and came up huge numerous times for the USMNT leading up to the WC.

        Of course, a bunch of other players are way ahead of LD in other ways: Beckerman, Howard, FabJo, Besler, etc. etc. (Yeah, I know it’s silly to list defenders and GKs, but I’m tired of people like Arena talking about “a 23-man roster that didn’t have room for LD.” LD was never in competition for all 23 spots.)

        I agree with you that there are other players who could be debated. Wondo, sure. Bedoya…maybe. Green…not enough public appearance for me to say. But I see no reason to debate about them if LD had replaced Davis on the roster. I mean, if LD had been on the roster, then who would you have dropped Bedoya for? There’s not really an issue then (and 90% of the post-WC comments on SBI disappear).

    • As a fellow Donovan fanboy and galaxy fan, I say he doesn’t deserve an apology. World Cup 2014 is over. Let’s move on.

      Just because you perceive something as an incorrect decision doesn’t mean he has to be an apology. I didn’t get an apology from the police, when I fought a wrongly given citation and won.

      I’ve been following him the last 12+ years like many here. I hated the whole ladycakes thing. Landon didn’t help his cause by playing like crap at the start of the MLS season. MLS play improved after he got cut. He also didn’t so great during the friendlies before the world cup (couldn’t get past Rafa). He constantly talked about retirement. The sabbatical obviously didn’t help. He gave the perception of someone not being focused and ready to move on with his life. He has had a bad habit of disappearing from club and national team games. To me, he has been on the decline (which i think is still better than most) for a few years already.

      That being said, i would have taken him over Davis or Wondo. I think he would have done great as a sub. Then again, the way he had been playing in previous world cups, their is no guarantee that he would have been the savior at the world cup. 2002 – he did great, 2006 – he disappeared, 2010 – had one shinning moment, 2014 – ??? (we will never know).

      If you want to blame someone for donovan’s downward spiral, blame his ex-wife. He has seemed like a different player after he got divorced.

      • I agree — let’s move on — but no matter which “side” you were on, or even if you took no side at all, it’s fun to imagine the dramatic possibilities. To lighten things up, I hereby suggest that this be the theme of the thread. What woud be the craziest, funniest, most appropriate, most inappropriate, etc. gesture that Klinsmann, Donovan, the team, the fans, or anyone else could make at the game. In other words, and to quote, I think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody’s part, and we’re just the guys to do it.

      • I want to see Bruce Arena directing the crowd when it chants “if there are 23 US players better than Landon Donovan then we should win the world cup”

      • When Klinsmann turns back time, puts Donovan on the WC roster, and US fans get to see Donovan in one last WC then I will move on. I will also move on once Klinsmann is out as coach. He is a petty, lying SOB and is likely to continue to do these sorts of things until he is gone. “That means he cares . . . ” what a load of feces Klinsmann. You knew damn well Donovn cares – see Gold Cup, see your own words – “has tremendously done so much for the national team program”

      • I for one completely believe Klinsmann when he insists that there were players that were just ahead of Donovan in usefulness. Players like Injured Aaron Johannsson, Brad “I’m in just as bad an MLS slump as Landon” Davis, Julian “just wait until i get in in garbage time” Green, Mix “I’m not seeing the field” Diskerud, and Chris “I hope we’re playing Concacaf minnows” Wondowloski.

      • If Donovan is that much better, imagine what kind of a nightmare he is in the locker room to force his exclusion.

        Or imagine out of shape ” I can’t train every day’ Donovan trying to play in Manaus. Klinsmann might have saved LDs life by excluding him.

      • Yes, you would have to “imagine” it because by all accounts he is a positive influence in the locker room.

        Leaving Donovan off didn’t save his life but it likely saved him a hamstring injury like the type we saw with Jozy, Besler, Bodoya as a result of Klinsmann’s insane training.

      • “He is a petty, lying SOB and is likely to continue to do these sorts of things until he is gone.”

        + 1 trillion, Internazionale!

        Let’s be honest about why Klinsmann cut Donovan. Donovan was the only member of the national pool to have played under Klinsmann when the latter was at Bayern Munich (Donovan was on loan, at the time). Donovan saw first-hand what a disaster Klinsmann was as a coach. He saw first-hand what Philip Lahm described in his autobiography: excessive focus on training, minimal tactical discussions, the players’ attempt to salvage the season after only eight weeks. By cutting Donovan, Klinsmann was just doing what the Mafia usually does: bury the bodies to eliminate the evidence.

  23. Couldn’t we just have a guest coach for this game? Maybe let Bruce Arena coach the first half and Bob Bradley coach the second half. That way, we can give LD a send off free from vindictive, petty tyrants.

    • This game should be a send off for all the fans that are more in love with the US team from 2000-2010 than with the current team or its future. Please take your mascots Bruce Arena and Alexi Lalas with you.

      • Please remove your head from up Herr Klinsmann’s hindquarters. The brown stains on your shirt collar are becoming unsightly, not to mention unpleasant from an olfactory perspective.

    • It’s a ussoccer friendly firsts, LD’s last game second. LD is no better than any of the other players on the field we should have to change coaches for him and stop making up stuff about a rift. If LD had a problem with Klinsmann he wouldn’t play anymore games at all

      • “LD is no better than any of the other players on the field”?????

        “156 appearances, score(d) a record 57 goals and assist(ed) on a record 58 others.” Umm, it seems pretty clear that LD is better than EVERY other player on the field.

        P.S. he does have 7 goals and 12 assists in 23 games this year.

      • Ok so we should only field one player (LD ) because he’s the greatest American player? You people need to get your heads right. The team must go on without LD if Klinsmann accommodates him for his finally friendly we should thank Klinsmann. His job is to lead the team to the future not do what LD wants. The fanboys on this site disgust me at times. I get it LD was this and that and more but his time has come to an end and we have to accept that. Right now we are trying to build for the future and LD coming into camp simply takes that spot away from a young guy Klinsmann would have given it too. So stop hounding Klinsmann about how the past and lets appreciate that he’s allowing him a proper farewell. We can’t replay the WC ITS OVER

      • The statements don’t get much dumber than this. “if Klinnsman accomadates Donovan we should thank Klinnsman”. You qualify for an all SBI dumb comment Top Ten!

        You don’t thank a thief for putting down the money when the cops have him surrounded.
        You don’t thank Nixon for doing “the right thing” and resigning after Watergate.
        You don’t thank a coach for being there while US soccer organizes a send off game despite him, not because of him.

      • You need to get your head right instead of saying that to others!

        You are so off base that its pretty surprising you care about US soccer at all. Of course the team is moving forward with out LD and soon other players but to say we should thank Klinsmann for giving him a proper farewell, and he’s no better than other players, come on…….. True US Soccer fans appreciate what LD has done for the red white and blue!

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