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Gonzalez, Brooks, Johannsson out of USMNT roster for CONCACAF Cup vs. Mexico

Soccer: Gold Cup-Third Place Match-USA at Panama

Photo by Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports


The rosters are in for Oct. 10’s massive clash in Pasadena, and there’s no shortage of surprises from the U.S. Men’s National Team.

With a berth for a spot in the 2017 Confederations Cup on the line, head coach Jurgen Klinsmann decided to bring in World Cup veteran presence in the likes of Kyle Beckerman, Geoff Cameron and Graham Zusi. He also decided to leave off the likes of LA Galaxy centerback Omar Gonzalez and Hertha Berlin’s John Brooks.

Jonathan Spector and Michael Orozco replace the two defenders. Aron Johannsson misses due to an injury as well, while Chris Wondolowski replaces him as one of the forwards.

Seattle Sounders forward Clint Dempsey returns to the U.S. after missing September’s international window due to injury. Notable inclusions also are the Galaxy’s Gyasi Zardes, Sounders’ Brad Evans, Club America’s Ventura Alvarado and Fulham’s Tim Ream.

Here is the 23-man U.S. roster for the upcoming clash with Mexico at the Rose Bowl:

Goalkeepers: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)

Defenders: Ventura Alvarado (Club América), DaMarcus Beasley (Houston Dynamo), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders), Fabian Johnson (Borussia Mönchengladbach), Michael Orozco (Club Tijuana), Tim Ream (Fulham), Jonathan Spector (Birmingham City)

Midfielders: Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Jermaine Jones (New England Revolution), Danny Williams (Reading), DeAndre Yedlin (Sunderland), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)

Forwards: Jozy Altidore (Toronto FC), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)


What do you think of Klinsmann’s roster? How does the USMNT stack up against Mexico?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Klinsmann is horrible and I pray that we win, that being said, if we lose I would be calling for Klinsmann’s head. First and foremost, Klisnmann always has players playing out of position. Even the genius that is Taylor Twellman has mentioned it. Natural positions for players could do wonders, even Bob Bradley knew that.

    Guzan deserves to play but I believe Howard is more talented.

    If Alvarado and Orozco play I will die. How has Alvarado done recently? He’s only played 12 matches for the US and I honestly can’t say he’s looked good enough to deserve to be on this roster, let alone starting every match in the Gold Cup. Same has to be said about Orozco, while he scored a goal against Mexico at the Azteca, that was years ago and his defensive game has been shaky. Besler, who was for some reason not included in the GC squad is experienced and has the pace to hang with the speed of Mexico. As for the other CB, I think it should be Cameron or Ream who are natural CBs. Cameron plays CB in the EPL, and Ream in the championship. While Cameron struggled with Brazil, he was asked to defend Neymar and Firminio 1v1 which is a stretch for anyone. Also I love the inclusion of Spector, while he lacks pace he has showed in the last friendly he still has the ability to be a National team defender.

    Though we need Johnson in midfield, he is by far the best RB. For those saying Yeldin, Klinsmann has listed Deandre as a midfielder in almost all his rosters, so clearly he doesn’t think of him as a defender. Beasley has been injured recently, but from Klinsmann’s praise, he will start at LB.

    In the midfield, I see Williams or Beckerman at CDM as they are practically the same player, maybe Williams has the advantage in form and youth. Bradley will start centrally, and I hope Zardes on the left wing as they are both deserved. I can easily see Bedoya starting above Gyasi though. As for the RM, I want Yedlin merely for his speed, but we both know he will play Zusi out of position for some reason. As for the all important Jermaine Jones, who can’t make the squad unless he switches to defender, but was too awful to play defender so he’s now back in the midfield, I could see Klinsmann putting him anywhere in the midfield.

    Dempsey and Altidore will get the nod at Forward because there are absolutely no other options. What about Wondo you ask? While the guy does extremely well in MLS, he doesn’t produce against quality opponents and gets lost. I’d rather see Landon Donovan come out of retirement.

  2. Klins did not place Beas and Jones on the roster to sit them. He has stated too many times that he thinks Beas is our best LB when he’s healthy. Jones is a warrior and, when he’s on, there is no one like him in our player pool. So, both of them start.

    Deuce and Josy up top are locks. He knows we need speed on the field. So, I expect the backline will be Beas, Besler, Cameron, and Yedlin. That allows Fabian to go to LM. the only question is whether he plays Jones as a holding mid and starts Bedoya at RM or if he starts Williams or Beckerman and plays Jones at RM.

    • Unless he goes with a 4-2-3-1 & starts Deuce up top, MB in the hole, and Fabian and Zardes on the wings.
      That puts Jones and Williams (or Beckerman) on the field

      I agree that he didn’t bring DMB to sit.
      And if you want one guy in a do or die game, nobody matches Jones intensity
      So how do you fit the square pegs into a round hole?
      Sit Jozy?

      • I think what you are suggesting is (on paper) our best attacking lineup and formation But, can we create enough chances with this lineup against Mexico without a true target man. I have always given Klins the benefit of the doubt because he sees these guys train and he has always thought we were better with Josy and Deuce on the field. Does a Zardes/Yedlin right side offer enough defensive cover?

      • Ordinarily, I never get into the Predict a Lineup game, but this was my first thought when I saw he named 9 defenders;not including Yedlin; for 1 game.
        It just didn’t make sense to bring in both Evans and Spector unless he wants the option of Fabian in the midfield.
        I’m not convinced Jozy is a lock to start.
        Everyone focused on the Bedoya blunder vs. Brazil- but we look SLOW. We need speed on the field. And we need cover in front of the back line. And we need guys in form now. This was what I came up with.
        If Jody does start your lineup will probably be close to what we’ll see.

      • I agree, Bac, We looked very slow against Brazil. If you remember the 2011 Gold Cup game, Mexico killed us with speed on the flanks.

        Good to have a conversation with someone about this without all the “Klins is stupid” replies and overreactions about fringe players that will not impact the game. Thanks..

  3. Yet again, JK gives us a head scratcher. I dont’t like this roster. That said, out of this group I think our best chances for success would be the following line up:

    Zardes. Antigoal
    bedoya Williams Dempsey
    Fabian jones Cameron Yedlin

    Zardes is a forward, Yedlin is a right back…Jk quit playing them out of position.
    DMB is a bit too old, Beckerman is too slow, Brad Evans is….a good MLS player but not someone we should consistently be going back to at the international level, Zusi is too slow and soft for international play, and Other teams go at him because they know they can blow by him, and Wondo should not be called anymore (and frankly should have been made to walk home from Brazil). Contrary to some on this board, I like Orozco and Beasler (didn’t think we was our best CB before but has shown improvement).

    I used to like Jk, a lot, but he’s been slipping. I do not think this is our best selection of players for a must win game. The repeated Zusi, Wondo, and Beckerman callups are disturbing. And why the hell no Benny??? If JK loses this game, he needs to be canned as he is making emotional (and poor) decisions IMHO.

  4. Wondo, Beckerman, Zusi, Evans, Spector and Bedoya have no place on this squad. When I saw the squad I made plans for a night out on the Town. No way am I going to watch behind the wood shed whipping.
    Prediction: Mexico wins 4 – 1.
    JK’s excuse: The players were not fit so they could not see the vision or execute the game plan which I was unable to develope.

    • Classic.

      There’s not enough new blood.
      Dempsey is long in the tooth.
      Altidore can not score.
      Wondo… Why?

      It very well could get ugly.

  5. ——-Jozy—————-

    Result: Dos a Cero

  6. ———————————-Jozy—————————–

    Subs: Yedlin, Williams, TBD

  7. Here;’s how I think Klinsmann looks at this. Jozy and Dempsey are locks up top. He likes Zardes and Bedoya on the wings and Bradley as playmaker. That leaves defensive mid. We know he likes J Jones a lot, but Danny Williams has been playing so well AND scoring, I don’t think you can leave him out. He wanted to play DMB in the Gold Cup, but he was injured. Not only does DMB still have speed, he has played a couple of seasons in Mexico so he knows their style, so he goes into LB. FJ is one of our best players, so he plays at RB. The only question then is CB. Alvarado doesn’t look ready for prime time and Besler played in the GC. Cameron is currently playing back there for Stoke. So, I think he goes with two out of these three==Besler, Cameron, or Orozco at CB. Then it’s a question of which pair works together best. Since I haven’t seen Orozco in a while, I’ll guess he plays Besler and Cameron at CB since they both have so much international experience.

  8. The fact that he named 9 defenders makes me think he may be looking at how to get FabJo into the midfield. As much as I’ve been a proponent of the 5-3-2, I doubt he’ll do it. Especially leaving Gonzo out.
    He’s been talking so much about Beasley I’d bet he starts. So the question is probably Fabian or Yedlin at RB.
    My initial reaction is he may start in the 4-2-3-1 w/ Deuce up top, MB in the hole, Jones & Williams holding, Fabian and Zardes on the wings.
    That’s a lot of speed on the outside to match and counter Mexico

      • Maybe so, but it may sound a little nuts, but if it was Fabian and Yedlin on the same side, I’d take it. Can’t coach speed, and we need it

      • Yup, not crazy and a good point. My comment has more to do with my frustration with JK .

        Fabian starts in midfield. Yedlin starts at fullback The sensible thing is put guys in their regular positions. Fabian is arguably our best attacking player. I feel like his talent is wasted by defensive responsibility.

        Yedlin has speed but I believe pees his shorts when he has ball close to the attacking box.

        But these two players are the least of my concern.

      • Just thinking out loud, but if Guardado plays, that’s a tough match up on our right side. A lot of speed and skill to deal with. That’s gotta be factoring into what he’s thinking

  9. Whats up with Gonzalez and Wood?

    Im going with
    Subs: Zardes, Yedlin, Beckerman


    Subs: Yedlin, Williams, Wondo

  10. Guzman in goal, back line of dmb besler Cameron and yedlin with Johnson Williams Bradley and bedoya in midfield and deuce and jozy up top.

    • This is definitely a good shout. A strong contender. But does JK truly give up his precious Alvarado experiment? I hope you’re right but I’m not so sure

    • who knows what JK will do but it might not be bad to have johnson and beas on the left or ream and beas on the left with yedlin nd fabin on right

  11. I’m a US fan, but…Mexico has a deadly attack that’s going to overrun the hastily assembled, mis-mash US defensive line.

    Think of it this way: Champions-league tested players vs. a US defensive shield consisting of players from the SECOND division of English football (Ream, Williams) and players used out of position from their preferred spot with their club teams (Cameron, Johnson).

    Folks, you cannot field players from second division Euro leagues and expect to win high-profile international games.

    This is going to be a repeat of GC 2011. That game was a classic example of a strong Mexican attack slicing through a weakened US defense (Lichaj, Bornstein). Add on a 80% pro-Mexican crowd (perhaps I’m being generous, but US soccer has grown in popularity since 2011), and a rapidly increasing lack of respect for Klinsmann’s coaching, and we’re looking at a 3-1 final score.

    You heard it here first, folks.

    • Is the Dutch or Portuguese league much better than the English Championship? Your point about Champions League play would also hold if the US roster wasnt full of WC vets. Finally the US always plays against pro Mexico crowds unless it’s qualifying in Columbus so nothing new for this very experienced group.

    • Cameron is actually playing at CB for Stoke now, and he has been excellent thus far, earning pretty great reviews.

      He really is our best defender (has been for a while in my opinion), and he needs to be on the field.

  12. I really hope that one bad game against Portugal doesn’t doom Cameron for life (just remember, if Bradley boots the ball into the stands with 5 seconds left instead of trying to be a hero we win 2-1 and no one remembers Cameron’s gaffes).

    I’ll take a guy who has played every minute at center-back for a decent premier league club over guys who are struggling to find minutes in Liga MX. With Brooks and Gonzalez out it’s clearly our best move.

    My “ideal” back-line

    Johnson – Ream – Cameron – Yedlin

    Yes I know Johnson prefers LM or RB but he can always “cheat” up field. I love Beasley and all but I really question how many miles he has left in the tank. That said Ream has looked decent out there before too.

    • I concur about Cameron.

      I still trust Beasley, though. How about this?

      Dempsey – Altidore
      Johnson – Bradley – Bedoya
      Beasley – Ream – Cameron – Yedlin
      Yedlin hasn’t looked too shabby at RB for Sunderland. If Beckerman looks too slow like he has been, throw Williams in. Johnson has been playing at LM for his club, and he can be finally used at his preferred spot for the Yanks.

      As for keeper, I’m sorry, but Guzan has made some crucial slip-ups that cost us important games. I still don’t know how he got the Golden Glove this summer. Howard is battle-tested, in great form for Everton this season, and will know how to command our hastily-assembled back-line. Screw Klinsmann’s “must earn your way back to the team” bull.

      • Agreed RE: Howard – and I do hope Beasley has one more left in him. I’d put in Williams over Beckerman since he’s been on fire both at Reading and the national team recently

  13. How does wondo get on in over wood? Just dumb.

    Would take morris and keiswetter over altidore and wondo and i wouldnt think twice about it.

    • I think you are right on the front four and the formation. Beasley will start and Johnson will play LB,that slots Gyasi as a wing. I also think Besler starts for Orozco, and I hope Ream or Cameron as a CB, but that I doubt.

  14. Dang it no edit button and accidentally hit publish too soon. Was going to finish by saying that I didn’t necessarily space the players out exactly how I see them lining but those are the individuals I would go with.

  15. Interesting enough, but at the end of the day nothing changes. There are 11 guys on this list who are capable of getting it done. There is no doubt. Just time to punch in an execute.


  16. If I am JK I am seriously thinking about finding room for Danny Williams in lineup because he’s been in great form lately. I know he won’t start or play probably but that’s what I would do. Looking at this roster I would go:


    Not ne

    • I’m sorry but that backline has no answer for the speed of Gio and Chicharito. Johnson would not be able to go forward and thus slow the offense as well.

      • You would think that having a centerback who plays and trains against the opponents forward EVERYDAY, would be of benefit. But, alas, I am not immersed into Klinsyworld

        Mexico by 2 goals

      • It depends what line-up Klinys puts out there. If he has the right personnel out on the field, I think the US wins. If he starts Alvarado and Orozco, for example, then something needs to be done.

    • Ream stinks. Spector also stinks. The irony is independent of the past month you could have figured this out from the old Bradley Era tapes. JK is starting to get Incumbent Coach Brain like Bradley with Bornstein and Kljestan.

      Judging by the defense I am concerned.


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