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Donovan admits he hasn’t spoken to Klinsmann about USMNT farewell

Landon Donovan USMNT 1293

Photo by Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports


Landon Donovan will receive his much-discussed farewell from the U.S. Men’s National Team later this month, but do not expect him and head coach Jurgen Klinsmann to be buddy-buddy just because they will be around each other.

Donovan talked about his upcoming appearance in the U.S.’s Oct. 10 friendly against Ecuador in Hartford, Connecticut, in a wide-ranging interview with, and admitted he has not spoken to Klinsmann about the upcoming camp that will see the 32-year-old attacker play in his final international match before he retires at the end of the MLS season.

Donovan also responded to a question about whether he received an apology for Klinsmann’s son over a now infamous tweet mocking his controversial omission from the World Cup roster by saying he had not heard from the teenager. The U.S. head coach had said in a press conference shortly after the incident that his son, Jonathan, was a big fan of Donovan and needed to apologize.

Regardless, Donovan is looking forward to the upcoming match at Rentschler Field.

“I thought about it for a while,” Donovan told about his thought process when U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati presented him with the idea of playing one more U.S. match. “Obviously, this summer didn’t leave the best taste in my mouth with everything that happened. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized this was something that I think would be really special, not only for me to feel and receive, but also my opportunity to say thank you.”

Donovan also restated his desire to end his career with another MLS Cup title. Afterwards, he wants to spend his days by going to college, spend time with family, and just being able to do things that any other normal person could do.

Donovan did not completely rule out making a comeback if he were to get the itch to play again, but said it is unlikely.

“I’ll never say never,” said Donovan. “But I feel like once I’m gone that’s going to be it for me. I’ll still get my fill of soccer. I’ll play pickup games or play indoor or just hang out and go kick a ball around. Those moments where I get excited and think, ‘Oh, I can play again,’ I’ll be aware enough to say, ‘OK, let’s remember all the bad moments where you were thinking, ‘Gosh, I can’t wait to retire.’

“I’m aware of all that. I understand it. You never know, but at this time I would say it’s unlikely.”

Surprised Donovan and Klinsmann haven’t discussed the friendly? Think it matters that Klinsmann’s son apparently never apologized for his tweet? See Donovan coming back for a year or two at some point?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. “For me, it’s a very easy equation – if he’s on the field, he’s our top one or two players,” Howard said. “That’s just my opinion, whether that means anything or not, I don’t know. Landon’s humble and I’m sure he feels that way, but for me, he’s easily one of our best players and he strikes fear in opponents.”

    -Tim Howard
    Two days before Donovan was cut from WC Roster

  2. This saga is pure gold for driving traffic on SBI. I suggest a monthly item consisting simply of “Donovan. Klinsmann. Discuss.” (With apologies to Linda Richman.)

  3. I guess all the LD haters didn’t actually read the SI article.

    LD was not whining…. just giving answers to questions posed by a reporter.

      • According to you. You’ve just made a hundred assumptions about me, the expected results, or my expected impact. Sometimes you take a stand not because you can single-handedly change the world but because it’s right to do.

      • You could have taken a principled stand on any number of fantastically important issues, stands that would have demonstrated true courage.

        World Peace, Racism, Free Speech, Freedom from Oppression, etc., etc.

        So you take a stand on a controversial coaching decision.

        I guess principled ethical stands just ain’t what they used to be. No wonder the world is going down the toilet.

  4. All this is pointless. Maybe Klinsmann made a mistake by not taking Donovan to the World Cup, but he made some other good decisions too like bringing Yedlin and Green. And we can’t go back in time. Klinsmann is our coach going forward so let’s make the best of it. Hopefully he has learned some things as well.

    • This is one of the few meaningful posts on this article. He looks like a bunch of teenagers are having a pissing competition all over this article and taking sides. It’s sad.

    • Even worse, Klinsmann a LIAR. We already knew that his words have no meaning, but he actually called a press conference, and told the public that his son owed Donovan a huge apology, and months later there has been no apology. Actually, add “bad parent raising a spoiled brat” to “liar”….

      • Bobb,

        “Even worse, Klinsmann a LIAR. .. he actually called a press conference, and told the public that his son owed Donovan a huge apology, and months later there has been no apology. Actually, add “bad parent raising a spoiled brat” to “liar”….

        If JK’s son has not apologized that does not mean JK is a liar. Did JK say he was going to make his son apologize? I did not read that anywhere.

        If sending out a stupid tweet makes JK’s son a spoiled brat and if that makes JK a bad parent then there are an awful lot of spoiled brats and bad parents out there.

  5. Lando- you’re a legend. Keep it classy and let it go please. It’s a little too much all about you, not the USMNT you profess to still support.

    • Someone interviewed in and asked him questions. He wasn’t cruel. He was honest. He was even. Stop trying to use your hate to bring down a guy who has earned respect and proven himself time and again.

      • “Stop trying to use your hate to bring down a guy who has earned respect and proven himself time and again.”

        He has my respect but what exactly has he proven?

  6. Going back to the day the World Cup roster was announced up until now, it is pretty clear that:

    1. Donovan was and still is one of our best players.

    2. Up until right now, there has been no point in time where either Wondo, B Davis, Mix Disk, or J Green have been better than Landon Donovan. Granted, at this very moment with Donovan being his current age, the comparison between Landon, Mix and Julian might be close, but I still give the edge to Donovan.

    3. Once Altidore got injured; the possibility of having Dempsey up top with Donovan under him and a Bradley/Jones midfield would have been WAAAYYYY better than what we used. We used Dempsey up top with Bradley under him and a Jones/Beckerman midfield.

    4. The VAST MAJORITY of fans, writers, media, analysts, former players; all feel that Donovan should have been on the team and was at the time one of the pool’s best players.

    5. The only people that were happy he was left off where: a.) Fans that already disliked Donovan for whatever reason. b.) Fans that might or might not have been fans of Donovan, but their love of Jurgen Klinsmann far exceeds anything else.

    6. The people from number 3 above make up silly excuses to try to justify what Jurgen did with reasons like:

    a.) Donovan had lost a step/out of shape (that was disproved by reports coming out of camp which stated Donovan was playing well and performed well on the fitness tests).

    b.) Donovan wasn’t mentally all there. See he’s retiring that proves it (That’s the most ridiculous of all. The fact that Donovan is retiring right now, or that he took a short sabbatical one-year before the World Cup, doesn’t have anything to do with how he would have played in June/July 2014).

    c.) Usa was in the group of death and they made it out! And then they took Belgium to extra-time! Obviously Jurgen was right! (This one if my favorite. This assumes that having Donovan be on the team would have made the team worst and caused them not to get out of the group. The fact that the team got out of the group, does not mean that Landon was correctly left of. The better was of looking at it is: The USA team without Donovan was good enough to make it out of the group and lose in the round of 16; I wonder what a stronger USA team that had Donovan could have done?)

    • “The VAST MAJORITY of fans, writers, media, analysts, former players; all feel that Donovan should have been on the team and was at the time one of the pool’s best players.”

      Do you have a link to the poll you took to support that statement?

      • +1

        Somebody obviously wasn’t paying attention to all of the podcasts, articles, and comment boards.

      • Coaches can select who they want. I know I pick the kids I want…and I know, on occasion, I’ve passed over kids who were more talented than some of the ones I selected…for a variety of reasons. If a kid is spotty about being at practice, and I know that about him, he won’t be on one of my teams, period. Hard to build anything with guys who aren’t there, no matter how talented they are. Work rate, coachability, attitude all matter to me too. And I’m a pretty good player’s coach, but occasionally I get that odd duck who just doesn’t respond to me for whatever reason. Had this one kid for almost a year, a transfer from out of state, and he was just…aloof. His parents were aloof too, kind of elitist, stood away from the others. And he always sort of played his own game, ignored tactics, didn’t really combine with other players well, or even try to, and he wasn’t overly eager to track back on defense, and when he scored, even when somebody served him up on a plate, he wouldn’t celebrate with his team or thank the guy who served him. I tried – really hard – to get him more involved, and he’d just stare at me with this blank, kind of contemptuous expression, and then largely disregard whatever I’d told him.

        Next tryout, I cut him. And he was a really good player, very smooth, very technically polished. His parents went ballistic…and I told them, straight up: your son was really good, but he wasn’t bought in, and neither were you. Ended up jumping clubs…and is exactly the same over there as well. The guy I replaced him with wasn’t nearly as technical, but he busted it up and down the field and would run through a brick wall for his teammates, and he was faster and more athletic to boot.

        Never regretted my decision…even though they ended up calling up the club board and raising a stink over it. They claimed it was “personal” as well.

        Well, it was personal, sort of. The kid might have been wearing the uniform, but I don’t think he really ever realized his teammates even existed, and he wasn’t coachable.

        I don’t know what the beef with Klinsmann and Donovan was…but whatever it was, Klinsmann’s got the right as a coach to pick the guys he thinks will respond to him best, and he’ll be judged, ultimately, on the results he generates. Not comparing the attitudes of the two, but Klinsmann didn’t “owe” it to any one player to bring him any more than France “owed” it to Nasri to bring him.

        Lotta people were uneasy over that decision, and I understand why, but as a coach it takes serious testicular fortitude to make a decision like that. Klinsmann decided, for whatever reason, Donovan was not a good fit for what he was doing, the team performed respectably – a round of 16 result coming out of the Group of Death is hardly a poor result – and that’s that. Right or wrong, it’s done…and the results were there.

  7. I wrote JK on his Twitter- and Facebookpage that his son must apologize.

    Although I think when he wrote: “HAHAHAHAHAHAH DONAVAN HAHAHAHAA I DIDNT EVEN NOTICE UNTIL MY PHONE NOTIFIED ME” he may have been sarcastic and ment instead: “Oh no, Landon is not going.” This could give credibility to JK’s Quote: “He’s actually a big fan of him since many, many years. He has his jersey in his room,”

    Jonathan’s opinion may not be insulting but CAME ACROSS like that. Still, it is not good.
    Also, all these hahaha’s are too extreme.

  8. Donovan could do a lot of good if he keeps talking about the importance of mental health, particularly if he talks to young athletes about it. The criticisms of him for taking time off to deal with his mental health issues were (and are) disgusting and juvenile. Having said that, he needs to stop answering questions about Klinsmann and the World Cup. If he wants to take a lesson from Jeter, who he references in the SI piece, it should be that some things are better left unsaid if you want to appear to be above the fray. His place is history is secure. Whatever might be said about the decision to leave him off, the team got out of the Group of Death and lost honorably fighting to the end against a much more talented Belgium team. Its unlikely that Donovan would have made a material difference to the overall result, and if he keeps talking about it is only disrespectful to the players who did well and played their hearts out.

  9. I think Donovan is the best USMNT player of all time and deserved to be in Brazil, but comments like this “Donovan was the big snub and we all know he would have either scored a goal against Belgium in the first 90 minutes or assisted a goal” are just stupid…

    Even if Donovan is there we probably don’t beat Belgium. Hell, on any other day, without Howard’s heroics, we lose that game 6-0 in regular time.

    • Donovan makes the US team better. Period. There’s no telling what we could have achieved with him on the team.

      • Listen man, the only difference would have made is make the midfield “a little better” because when Jozy went down, you would have moved CD up and dropped him in the 10 hole. That way you would kept the midfield
        Beckerman – Bradley
        Bedoya Donovan J.Jones

        we were not beating Argentina. Not happening. Maybe we beat Belgium, but in all honesty, Belgium deserved to go through because they were the more talented team (they one of the most talented teams in the world — and YOUNG). We should have lost to Belgium 4-0 save for TH earth moving heroics

        We were the least talented team in our group but had great TEAM unity. We should have been Portugal, but Cameron made 2 HUGE errors that cost goals, and maybe Bradley doesn’t give the ball away had not had to cover so much space.

        I am a HUGE US Fan. I have even gone to see them practice (maybe in part projecting that I could have played sports past university-level). However, we were less talented than every team we played in the World Cup, every team. You are assuming that he could carried us past Belgium or Argentina or Germany when he couldn’t get us past Ghana 2010, Sloven 2010 and barely by Algeria 2010. C’mon…

  10. Huge LD fan, but this is too much. It is leaving a bad taste in my mouth. Yeah, I think he should have been in Brazil as a sub winger or withdrawn 10 in case something happened (which did happen), but this is taking the gleam off it. He is coming across as a whiny brat who won’t let things go (kinda the way Cristiano is whiny). C’mon, man. I didn’t like the way he acted publicly after he was not chosen (take a cue of how to act like Edu or Evans), and this (there are way to answer or not answer to avoid). I get the feeling he is enjoying showing up JK.

    Not a fan of a National team testimonial. It is not done. It’s kinda bush league. I respect, but no player is bigger than the league. Have MLS do one.

    • Not that we should be taking our cues from Mexico but they played Blanco in the build up to the World Cup. Also if you were going to put together a team of the best US players right now, LD is in it.

      • “Also if you were going to put together a team of the best US players right now, LD is in it”

        Do you want the 23 best players or the 23 from which you can pick an 11 that play the best together?.You know, like a real team instead of an All Star selection?

      • That is a new tradition and he had already retired. Besides,I have friends, family ties to Brazil and very few of them thought highly of it. Honor, LD, sure in special ceremony. To make it part of normal friendly, c’mon. My friends thought it was bush-league for Blanco as well.

        Do a special event in an off-season after a he retires. Bring in guy from his past who are retired and a couple who might still be playing. Give the proceeds to the a charity of his choice. This is just a smaller part of what I am saying. What I am saying is his behavior for the past 5 months is kinda rubbing me the wrong way. Again, I am a huge LD fan, I have been following his since he was playing with Gooch, Alex Yi, DMB, Convey, Nelson Akwari, Jordan Cila, Beckman, and DJ Countess. I had huge hopes for that team…

        But hey, we are all entitled to our own opinions, and this is mine. There just seem to be an abundance of people who take critiques of LD or JK very personally. Just like there used to be about older and younger Bradley.

      • You are comparing a man who won FIFA player of the year 3 times, Won 2 world cups and went to a third final, had the golden boot in the final, Dutch cup in 1996, UEFA Cup winners Cup with Barca, Copa Del Rey Final, the 1998 UEFA cup final and two Copa Americas….

        To a guy who won 3 gold cups and 3 MLS Cup titles.


      • Ross, where in my statement did I say that servicemens’ kids were not American enough? I don’t know what it will take for some of you “fans” of the USMNT to get it. It is not that these German players arent American. The point is that Klinsmann demanded control of the whole show before he would take the job as head coach. He is making four times what Bob Bradley made. He is the technical director of US Soccer. He has been given unprecedented resources and control and tell me what he has done with it? The Development Academy and it’s curriculum was all implemented prior to him taking over. The only change I know of that has been made since he took over is prohibiting high school soccer for dev. academy players and then of course he allows his own son to play academy and high school soccer for his fancy private school. Klinsmann is being paid to improve player development in this country and he has done nothing of note. Instead he is looking to players developed in other countries more than ever and treating the most important American player of all time like utter dog poo. He is simply not doing his job.

      • “treating the most important American player of all time like utter dog poo”

        So does that mean LD should be treated as a king, and his actions have no consequences?

        He does what he wants, he does what he wants. He’s Landon Donovan, he does what he wants!

  11. I can’t wait for Donovan to retire and we can be done with him. Congrats and thanks for being an amazing US player Lando, but I didn’t cry when MJ retired from basketball and I won’t cry for you. Get over yourself, and your lousy monotone voice and personality hopefully won’t go unrecognized so that you don’t get an analyst job at ESPN. Last thing I want to hear during a match is you.

    • Feel the exact same way. Deserves all the accolades and recognition, but this issue has been to far too polarizing. I wish he would have gone to Brazil, not because he belonged, but just to shut people up. He has Lalas written all over him as far as a commentator. Lets move on already.

  12. I can’t wait for Donovan to retire and we can be done with him. Congrats and thanks for being an amazing US player Lando, but I didn’t cry when MJ retired from basketball and I won’t cry for you. Get over yourself, and your lousy monotone voice and personality hopefully won’t go unrecognized so that you don’t get an analyst job at ESPN. Last thing I want to hear during a match is you.

    Cheers bud and thanks for the memories

  13. And of course, Jonathan Klinsmann overlooked making that apology to Donovan. Just completely forgot about it, I’m sure. And his dad just forgot to remind him. A big ol’ coinkydink.

  14. I remember when Petke turned down 500k per year to stay with the Metrostars for 125k. He was young and single then. Donovan is single now without children. If you have a wife and kids there is pressure to go for more money. When you’re single you can do whatever you want. I think thats one of the reasons Donovan feels comfortable turning down all that money left on his contract.

    • What about the article came off as crybaby? The fact that he was honest about not speaking to Klinsmann or the fact that he was open about what he wanted to do after he retires? I guarantee that if he did have a reality show, you would probably be the first person on the couch with a tub of popcorn ready to watch it.

    • all he did was answer the questions about as direct as he could. Was he suppose to lie and say “oh sure me and JK went for Pizza in his chopper .”

  15. I shall oblige. Prediction: Klinsmann fields Donovan as a long striker with 5 defensive midfielders behind him and then pulls him after 15 minutes stating “he clearly wasn’t motivated enough”.

  16. ouch.. glad that Landon is playing in the last game and hope his career for the national team ends on a good note.

    of the many puzzling points in this article wtf is the last paragraph about?

    • I think the last two paragraphs were Donovan’s thoughts about playing soccer beyond this year; that is, postponing his retirement.

      • Would love to see him go some place else to play. I’ve always thought just for the hell of it, he might go play in Mexico…

    • And why shouldn’t it? It is increasingly obvious that it was a personal and not football decision on JKs part, that he has never understood how to handle and get the best out of our best player. He hasn’t been held to account for something that damaged our team. Sorry if the issue bores you….

      • It was obvious on Day One that the decision was made for personal reasons and not in the best interest of the US Men’s National Team and it was clear that daddy had been bad-mouthing Donovan at the dinner table. Donovan was the big snub and we all know he would have either scored a goal against Belgium in the first 90 minutes or assisted a goal. But there were five or six others left off the WC squad who should have been in Brazil but their spots were stolen by the egoo-maniac and gifted to lesser, not fit and/or undeserving players. And then MB is played as attacking midfielder, a strategy some might argue was designed to humiliate MB before he gets edged off the team. Last summer was the golden opportunity for the USMNT to make it to the semi-finals. But the egoo-tist squandered it playing his little games.

      • “But there were five or six others left off the WC squad who should have been in Brazil but their spots were stolen by the egoo-maniac and gifted to lesser, not fit and/or undeserving players.”

        I love this game. Which five or six would you have added and which five or six would you have removed? I can never get more than two or three deep becomes it becomes really ho-hum.

      • Part of me is tempted to thoroughly refute every single conspiracy laden claims that you make, but I suspect facts have little place in your perceptions. For the sake of time, I’ll take your last point, that last year was the golden opportunity to make it to the semis, as a representative sample of the rest of your diatribe.
        Reasons why this is ridiculous:
        1) We were, without question, in the hardest group that we’ve ever been in, and arguably the most difficult in the WC. Every single betting organization had the odds against us making it out.
        2) We made it out, despite loosing our most important attacker in the first game
        3) Our round of 16 match was against whom virtually everyone considered among the favorites to make it to the semis.
        4) Had we pulled the MASSIVE UPSET against Belgium (and we came close), our quarter final opponent was also a favorite to win the whole world cup, and have this one guy named Messi, who apparently is pretty good. Had we won this game, against the eventual runner up, it would go down as one of the biggest upsets in soccer history.

        So, all it would have taken to get to the semis, was to improbably make it out of the group of death, beat a highly regarded Belguim, and pull the biggest upset of all time. Seems simple enough – they should just make you the coach

      • Groups in 2002 and 2006 were just as difficult as 2014, especially since Ghana was in disarray behind the scenes in Brazil.

      • In my mind, there’s not much question about strength between years. Poland and South Korea (albeit hosts) were not as strong as Germany and Ghana, and we’ll call Portugal about even both years.

        2006 Czech were not as strong as Portugal this year, and Ghana were still a very good team this year, despite their off-field drama (they tied the eventual champs, were unlucky not to get a point off us, and probably should have taken points from Portugal too)

      • There is no way an objective fan would say that 2002 was just as difficult as US’s 2014 group. Poland then was weak ( I watched them) and we let them beat us 3-1 after Portugal beat annihilated them 4-0. Korea was not that great and truthfully Italy should have beaten them in the round of 16. I am not an Italy fan, but they the ref blew that game and they were definitely cheated. Portugal was the best team (not saying much in that group honestly). 2002, Italy was great defensively, but the group is a wash, but if anything 2014 was tougher. Had Pepe not had a brain freeze in the first game against Germany, Portugal and Germany would have gone through.Even with an unfit Ronaldo, Germany2014 > Italy2006, Portugal 2014 > Ghana 2006, Ghana 2014 > Czech Republic 2006.

        Our golden chance to get to the semis was 2010 which we blew. Ghana 2010 and Uruguay 2010 were a whole lot more beatable than Argentina 2014 and Belgium 2014.

      • The group was a mess. Ghana players were refusing to play because of money issues and Portugal was mediocre. I was no group of death

      • Ghana was only that way before their last game when they saw their payments were not coming as promised. They came ready. They were lucky not to beat us in game 1, almost beat beat Germany. They were unlucky not to have had 4 points going into game 3.

        Pepe (as usually) cost Portugal with the goal differential against Germany and still had 4 points.

      • And, yet you ignore the following:

        1) Ghana came and dominated us even while committed unforced error after unforced error – errant passes, crosses, and shots. We scraped by to get a win.

        2) Portugal was hobbled and their star player was far less than 100%. The team was missing multiple key players.

        3) Germany sleep-walked through their match with us and, basically, gave us a positive result. Was it respect for JK – since he was German and a former colleague of Low? Hmm.

        4) Timmy Howard saved us against Belgium. Yes, we hung in there but only by the mere graces of our goalkeeper having, perhaps, the game of his career. Was that Klinsmann’s doing? Did Klinsmann inspire Howard to his best performance ever? If you think that… well… hmm…

        5) This is certainly up for debate about whether or not this was the hardest group. All the pressure was on Ghana because they upset us twice. All the pressure was on Portugal because they were favored. All the pressure was off on the Germany game because of the status of the standings at that point and the relationship between US and German soccer at this point.

      • “Would have”

        That’s a bit much don’t you think. Make it “Would have likely” and you have an opinion worth considering.

        Never mind the weird notion that Klinsmann wants Bradley gone…

      • Exactly, I agree with Evan. I would have LD as an impact sub instead of Brad Evans….but that was about it.

      • You mean Brad Davis (Evans wasn’t in Brazil).
        Only other player who shouldn’t have been in Brazil was Wondo. Boyd or (god forbid) EJ should have been in the squad before Wondo. Someone who could have been a like for like sub for Jozy.

      • correct on the Davis correction. Thanks! Wondo was impressing during the run up. Remember LD commenting how great he looked when asked when was impressing. Not a fan, but I see bringing on a poacher was a last min goal. I probably would have brought EJ for AJ (I like both) because he could play wing forward if need be and LD for Davis

      • Think of it in the following light….
        1) JK has been forced to bring Princess Donovan into the team.
        2) It’s Donovan’s farewell….Hence he’ll not be an option beyond this 1 game.
        3) Donovan isn’t going to play much/long in his curtain call, as he still has club commitments.
        4) Taking the above into account what is there for JK to speak with him about?
        Give it a rest. Focus on the future and stop with trying to make a mountain our of a mole hill.

      • No its increasingly obvious what kind of cancer LD can be. They’re giving him a send off what else does he want? There are over 50 players in the NT pool and LD is just one, I’m pretty sure Klinsmann doesn’t call everyone of the personally. LD is part of the past he’s retiring! There no point in Klinsmann keeping up with him.

      • It’s not obvious to me. Give me one example in which Landon has ever been a cancer to his team. Proof of him being a prima dona and his teammates not liking him. Especially his USMNT teammates. The only person associated with US soccer I can think of who appears not to like Landon is Klinsmann, and his nit wit son

      • Mr zip and beachbum,

        Cancer is a bit strong.

        Still, you guys make it sound like a complete black and white issue.

        As if Donovan is either the sweetest most beloved team mate in the history of sports or else he is an entitled pr++k that everyone hates.

        Most likely the old cliché applies i.e/ that the truth is somewhere in between

        LD has been the biggest fish in the small US pond for a very long time and he has been allowed to have his way for most of his entire career in MLS.
        When you are the Golden Child of US soccer you have powerful supporters and that can actually breed a sense of entitlement.

        Klinsmann has power and has dealt with bigger figures than LD but how many of Landon’s 35-70K per year team mates are going to f++k with him, even now?

        I’m sure LD is a fine teammate for the most part but I doubt he is perfect especially if you get on his bad side

      • Really? What’s increasingly obvious about it? If I were to say Player X has 0 goals and 2 assists in 7 MLS games, would you take him to the World Cup? No, you wouldn’t. But alas, when you learn that Player X is Landon Donovan, it’s an absolute travesty he didn’t make the squad.

      • Your comment is ridiculous when considering the stats of some other players on the team from that previous year with their clubs. Their records were far worse.

        Plus, Donovan has proven himself over the years as someone to count on.

        Finally, Donovan’s 2013/2014 US stats were better than any other field player. He had more goals and assists per minute played than any other player by a good margin.

      • I agree 100% Tony.

        Klinsmann failed to manage the most important player in US Soccer history who held, and was poised to break (and is) multiple all-time records on the club and national level. Klinsmann wanted to make a power play that was about him – maybe his son, too – and in doing so he disrespected millions of fans and the one player who has, single-handedly meant the most to US Soccer and can still change and impact a game consistently like no other player. It was, and is, a huge scar on US Soccer and the division cut into the US fanbase will not be mended until JK is removed.

      • Was it personal? Maybe some.

        Still think people are missing the point about what cutting Donovan was all about, though.

        Klinsmann was establishing that the USMNT was bigger than any one guy, and that no one – no one! – was immune to being cut.

        I think the biggest criticism one can make of Donovan is that he was lobbying for special treatment. He was pretty wretched in the last camp prior to the WC camp – he admitted as much – but then basically blamed Klinsmann, claiming “I can’t train as hard as I used to at my current age, and Bruce Arena seems to know that.”

        Whatever else led up to it, I think you can highlight that exact statement as the thing that got him cut. You point a gun and ask Donovan in ten years if he should have said those words, and if he’s honest, he’ll admit that was a mistake.

        Klinsmann requires that players be all in, in terms of commitment. Klinsmann requires that players buy in. Klinsmann requires that players do it his way.

        If they do not, they are gone. Even if their name is Landon Donovan.

        Like it or hate it, that’s how Klinsmann rolls. He’s not going to change for anybody. And the players definitely one and all know, with 100% certainty, that nobody is indispensable, as far as Klinsmann is concerned.

        Now he’s got us moving towards a 4-3-3. The USA, in a high-pressing, attack-minded 4-3-3? And he’s loading up on young guys who can run that system?

        Did ANYBODY think this transition was going to be instant…or painless?

      • You’re clearly off your mark. Donovan was among the top in the World Cup camp both in play and in fitness tests. One of his biggest proponents? Tim Howard – who said right before Donovan was cut that LD makes the team better.

        And, the Donovan debacle is a microcosm of the greater impact that he is having, and it’s NOT positive.

      • I don’t know what anybody wants from Klinsmann.

        We got out of the Group of Death, nearly nicked one off a loaded Belgium team in the Round of 16. That means we’re Top-16 in the world, right there…except we did not have Top-16 talent. Portugal and Ghana were more talented than us…and they went home.

        He’s got the best win-loss record of any coach in USMNT history.

        We’re loaded with young players. He rolled the dice on a bunch of guys under the age of 25 this past World Cup, so we’ll have them for as many as two more cycles…3 more in a couple cases (Yedlin, Green.)

        We’re transitioning to an attack-minded 4-3-3, after playing mostly a 4-2-3-1 last time around…this broke with the stodgy 4-4-2 everyone was thoroughly tired of, mostly because a 4-4-2 lends itself to defensive bunker-ball.

        How was any of this negative?

      • You don’t know if LD was the best in the camp. All we know is that LD complained and said that he could train all out anymore and Tim Howard said that the team is better with him. I agree a team is better with skilled players, but can he go all – out every 3rd day? Probably not.

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