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Klinsmann cites injuries and choice of better options for USMNT exclusions

Jurgen Klinsmann USMNT 98

Photo by Dale Zanine/USA Today Sports


With a handful of players not fully fit and others not playing at their peak, U.S. Men’s National Team head coach had to make some important decisions.

He did so, leaving off notable defenders in Omar Gonzalez and John Brooks, midfielder Mix Diskerud and forward Aron Johannsson.

Klinsmann and U.S. Soccer announced the 23-man roster the USMNT will use when they meet Mexico on Oct. 10 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif. Saturday. While World Cup veterans, like DaMarcus Beasley, Kyle Beckerman and Graham Zusi, found their names on the roster, some key contributors as of late had to be left off due to fitness and recent injuries.

“Obviously it’s a specific moment now, and in that moment John Brooks is not 100 percent,” Klinsmann said. “Aron Johannsson is not 100 percent. Greg Garza actually had surgery a few weeks ago. There are always players that you’d love to have be a part of games like this that are just not there. It’s unfortunate for them, but it is reality.”

However, while some players were not called in to play for the CONCACAF Cup because of injury, others were just not included because their peers were performing better. Gonzalez was one of those players, while a player like Club America’s Ventura Alvarado was included, even though the latter hasn’t started for his club in its last four games.

“Every time you have to cut down a roster like now from 35 to 23, there are some players that do not make it and it looks like they are not good enough, which is not the case,” Klinsmann said. “The competition is very, very tight. Not having Omar Gonzalez or Mix Diskerud on this roster, for example, is not because they are not good enough, it’s just because you see another player that is better in their position right now in this specific moment.

“Those are always tough decisions that a coach has to make, and we believe everyone in that roster will get the job done and the other ones are there to support. They also need to be ready still because they are on standby in case someone goes down in training and they get the call.”

Jonathan Spector and Michael Orozco are the defenders Klinsmann chose to fill in for the absences of Brooks and Gonzalez.

With a spot in the 2017 Confederations Cup on the line, Klinsmann hopes the World Cup veterans, the players who have been called into the USMNT regularly throughout their careers, will be the ones to step up and help lead the Americans to a victory.

“We have players on our roster that have done so much for the National Team program, but that are also not getting any younger,” he said. “All these guys in their thirties, they need to realize ‘you know what, I’m may not be getting these opportunities any more. This is it. We better take that trophy.’

“However it looks like, we’ve got to go and get this thing. This is really about chemistry and getting the group together and making it a really special atmosphere the whole week leading into the Rose Bowl moment.”


  1. Can someone explain to me JK’s continued fascination with Orozco?

    He is a good player, but it’s simply amazing to me that he is even in the USMNT pool.
    Are we *that* desperate?

    • PTM9,

      Yes the USMNT is that desperate.

      The games I’ve seen Orozco play he is pretty steady and comparatively mistake free.
      No great shakes but boring and unexciting can be a good thing when you are a defender..

    • you should watch Orozco then. because if you watch Xolos games, he is solid every week for 90 minutes. he can play multiple positions too. it’s not rocket science.

  2. years ago, it seemed to me, the usa teams always had a “style”. opinions would vary. but i think everyone would agree we had a style, a way of doing things.

    you knew who was going to do the dirty work in mid-field (pablo mastroeni).
    you knew who was going to anchor the back line. with authority. (gooch and boca)
    you knew who was going to man the pipes. (keller)
    you knew who was going to ignite the counter. (landon donovan)
    you knew who was going to overlap and whip in a cross (cherundolo or eddie lewis)

    do i have a witness?

    i watch the jk usa teams. what style are we playing?

    i’m not saying the “old” way was perfect. and we certainly didn’t always win.
    but at least fans, players and god and everybody pretty much understand what everybody’s job was.


    • Your hindsight is rosy. The team you describe were never going to seriously, consistently threaten the best teams in the world. The team you mention is fairly average, at best – roughly World Cup 2006. Only against Italy did our team manage to fight a result out. If you want to go back further to 2002, great result but don’t forget our match vs. Poland and the late S. Korea’s goal vs. Portugal which saved our sputtering chances. And 2010, we looked dead in the water until, late in the second match, Donovan woke up alone with the ball at his feet and no one between him and the goal.
      Stylistically speaking, I think we’ve been simply hard working and opportunistic.

      Klinsmann was hired to change the way we play, to better take the game to good teams rather than the other way around. Not sure he is doing it, although at times he has appeared to be onto something more than before. Above all, he has to try, otherwise we will never win a World Cup.

    • usa lost our style?

      Then you are okay with the way it used to be? I loved Eddie Lewis, Frankie Hedjuk and all those guys but they ain’t coming back.

      I remember it a little differently.

      I remember that if Donovan was not there or was not doing well the US wasn’t going to beat a good team. This means you are talking about a one man team. And that one man is now doing Wells Fargo ads and apparently having nice, well deserved retirement. And I don’t see any US eligible player around who is remotely capable of doing what he used to do.

      I remember a US team that had a hard time coming back from one goal deficit to a good team and if it was a two goal deficit then forget it.

      I remember BB being a refinement of Arena’s style so that as far as I could tell the 2002- 2010 USMNT was basically the same style team.

      I remember Arjen Robben, before the game where De Jong broke Stu’s leg giving an interview where he dismissed the US as a hard team to play against and hard to break down but not being very talented. And he was trying to be nice.

      So I ask you which team was better the 2002 WC team or the 2010 WC team?

      In my view the 2002 team was the best. That meant that by 2010 the Arena-BB style had run its course and the USMNT was regressing. There was no plan in place to replace the an aging LD.

      The 2010 team was good but it was obvious to me that some kind of overhaul and major stylistic change was going to happen if only because Landon and Clint were not going to play forever.

      Because of the time it takes to turn over players JK’s 2014 WC team still featured a basic core of BB style players. The 20 some odd games since the end of the World Cup have featured JK mass experimenting with a variety of players but probably more important the Under 20 and 23 teams seem to be coming up with a number of promising players. These players will probably be the new “core”, sooner rather than later.

      I thought the 2014 WC would be the last hurrah for the “BB core” but as it turns out this playoff game is probably it.

      If you want to know where the USMNT is going the Olympics, Copa America (if it happens) and the Confed Cup (if the US gets there), will probably give you the best indications of the players and maybe the style of the 2018 WC team (assuming they qualify).

      Any reasonably neutral reading of the USMNT records of Arena, BB and JK will tell you that there is no significant difference in the USMNT coaching abilities of all three.

      But that is not why JK was hired. He was hired to lead the transition.

      In the end it is always about what players are available to you and JK benefits and will benefit from what appears to an outsider as more support from USSF in terms of aggressively acquiring players, internally and externally.

      If Arena or BB were in JK’s exact same position right now maybe they do as well or better but no one will ever know.

      What I do know is that JK took over the US during a key, very traumatic transition period and he is uniquely suited for that having previously taken Germany through an equally traumatic period.

      His tenure has raised the profile of the USMNT here and abroad. And that profile is overwhelmingly positive more so than in the Arena/BB era.

      So if you want to go back to the Arena /BB era fine. But guess what you can’t. Even if you fire JK tomorrow the whole “US soccer world” has evolved from that era and will never go back.

      • GW,

        The 2002 team were overachievers in my view, they played a consistent game plan, unfortunately, they couldn’t do it more than a couple of games at a time, then they would lay an egg of “back to reality”. That team played beautifully vs. Portugal, Mexico and Germany. The 2010 team relied on coming back from the dead until BB forgot to leave the pipe on the table and decided to go with Clark instead of an in-form EDU.

  3. I love to hear Klinsmann talk about “chemistry” when no one has done more to ruin that chemistry than him. We use to be able to get by on spirit and fight to compensate for lack of skills. Now we don’t even have that. Every decision this guy makes is a head scratcher. And it’s always about him, the egomaniacal striker. Enough already. I would root for Mexico if it meant the end of the Klinsmann rein, but I’m not sure even a loss to El Tri will dislodge Sunil’s love fetish for the flim flam artist. “Alvarado,” really? Let’s put Julian Green back on defense.

  4. Either he uses the people who already have experience or he uses guys who have never played in their respective positions together. Klinsmann wants to win this game. He is not exactly experimenting here. Right now it’s one game at a time. It’s a huge handicap to gather the players for practice and games from all over the globe. The players he chose are good players and the players he didn’t choose are right now not the ones that show that. Get over it. If you have a favorite player who needs to be included, tweet it to Klinsmann. I bet he won’t change his mind. This team has to win. Go USMNT!

  5. Roster seems pretty good, about as good as we have. Arguing a player here or there seems petty – a soccer power can interchange players 15 to 25 without losing much except chemistry.

    • True, but the question is whether Klinsmann’s idea of the Best XI actually lines up with what’s needed to win this game.

      Ventura Alvarado has promise but is not playing at the club level and has several inexcusable mistakes each game. He should not see the field in a match with real stakes on the line. Yet, that’s what he did through the entire Gold Cup.

      Omar’s omission is a moot point, because we can arguably play a few combinations of our best back 4 without him.

    • i can think of at least 5 mistakes klinsmann made on this roster. his lineups always s^ck! look at how many people disagree with them on these boards. almost everyone here has a different lineup than klinsmann. obviously he has no idea what he’s doing. you never see sigi schmid or bruce arena make these kinds of mistakes, that’s for sure!

  6. The only thing exciting about this line-up (for me) is that we may see what Klinsmann’s strategy and plan was supposed to be for Brazil – you know as it relates to starters and before the Altidore injury.

  7. First day of new soccer coaches’ training: “Okay, we’re going to watch a team formation video. Pretty simple here. Just about everything you see Jurgen Klinsmann do, don’t do, and you should be fine.”

  8. i hate to mention this – but i’d like to say it now, before the game is played – i think maybe “the fix is in”. usa will win regardless, the guardado/marquez injuries (both mexican captains: were they “jobbed”?) combined with the officials giving usa pk’s as needed (or non-call pk’s to mex, if applicable).

    if there is a conspiracy in fifa for usa to win wc, this game would kind of be crucial for their plans, yes?

    i hope i’m wrong. let’s see what happens.

    • Yes of course.
      Those that get ahead by nefarious means will almost always tell you that everyone does. Even when it goes in ones favor, there is the cost of questioning the legitimacy of “the whole game”.

      • with all due respect, i don’t think i understand your comment.

        this is what i’m saying. if guardado were physically assaulted while walking down the street (anywhere), police would be called. a criminal investigation would begin. inspectors would take statements from witnesses, etc., etc., etc. but IF IT HAPPENS ON THE SOCCER FIELD then the police are not called.

        i repeat, if a crime happens on the soccer field, the police are not called.

        seriously, was guardado “jobbed”? was marquez “jobbed”? is the usa-mex game on oct. 10 going to be “fixed” for usa victory?

        serious questions. asked seriously.

      • on oct. 10, in front of god and country and everyone

        with all due respect, i don’t think i understand your comment.

        this is what i’m saying. if guardado were physically assaulted while walking down the street (anywhere), police would be called. a criminal investigation would begin. inspectors would take statements from witnesses, etc., etc., etc. but IF IT HAPPENS ON THE SOCCER FIELD then the police are not called.

        i repeat, if a crime happens on the soccer field, the police are not called.

        seriously, was guardado “jobbed”? was marquez “jobbed”? is the usa-mex game on oct. 10 going to be “fixed” for usa victory?

        serious questions. asked seriously.

  9. Sorry Agoos, Morris playing for u-23s is more important the Olympics will give that group much needed international seasoning. Bobby Wood is confusing, 2nd division teams often don’t observe the international windows but they way he’s scoring you wouldn’t think it would affect his club playing time.

    • Morris can play the all important U23 semis to decide the Olympic selection AND still make it to Pasadena for a super sub role with the senior team.

    • Yeah, but the only reason there is a clash between the schedules of the USMNT and the USMNT U-23 is because Klinsi failed to win the GC.

      There’s obviously a big question mark over Wood, but he has shown that he can score, albeit in friendlies, and he is in good form. 2 Bundesliga is a decent league, and if we can have guys like Williams and Spector who play in the English second division on the roster, we could have Wood as well.

  10. Klinsmann’s lack of foresight may cost us the game.

    Jozy has a history of getting injured at crucial moments (2011 GC, 2014 WC, 2015 GC). Seeing how Klinsmann tends to play with a big guy up top, not bringing a back up for Jozy seems like pure negligence (as it was at the WC). We may regret not having Wood or Morris at our disposal.

    For the record, I’m a big Jozy fan, and I will take an in-form Jozy over any striker in our pool. He seems to be doing okay as of late, but accidents may occur.

  11. I feel like Klinsmann is kind of spelling it out and I’m fine with his selections if this is the absolute last run out for the likes of Wondo, Beckerman, Evans, Beasley, probably Zusi, Jones ect. Then we go into next year and we just start over. Everyone is just evaluated all over again.

  12. No Gonzalez or Kljestan? Williams instead of Morales? FIRE KLINSMANN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This team just went downhill after Landon Donovan left and if it wasn’t for the Fuerher he’d still be playing soccer and we would be winning these types of games.

    • Ouch hombre. It’s already tough enough being a white male in this country – being blamed for every mass shooting and threat to take down health care. Could you lay off the Fuhrer? Jeez. But, I can agree on the fact that Omar should be on the list. The guy can put a cleat on Peralta in 60th to set a tone. I’m not sure that that Alvarez can be that tough.

    • soccer kyle,

      The last time Mexico played the US in LA with a Confed Cup berth at stake, Donovan was on that team and it was butt f++ked 4-2.

      Is that the type of game you mean? A JK managed team on the other hand, has never lost to Mexico.

      • He sure did, and he definitely wasn’t the number one reason for the 2011 debacle.

        Considering that Klinsi + Donovan = GC champions,
        and that Klinsi – Donovan = Fourth place finish

        the Klinsi apologists/Donovan haters need to grasp at straws in order to make their points.

      • Agoos, Jack,soccer kyle,

        Donovan scored the second goal and gave the US a 2-0 lead. Mexico then went on to score 4 straight and massacre the US.

        I don’t remember the US ever being so humiliated in such an important, competitive, meaningful match, one that basically cost BB his job.

        Do you want to tell me how helpful LD was that day? Mikey and Landon scored the two US goals. Does that exempt them from blame for the complete humiliation of that loss? Is it enough to score one ultimately meaningless goal and say “okay we’re 2-0 up now”?

        Remember , soccer kyle claims that LD being around would help the US win “these type of games”.

        Did LD’s help the US stop Mexico from completely bossing the midfield that day?

        “grasping at straws”?

        Has JK ever lost to Mexico? No. That’s a verifiable fact.

        A USMNT managed by JK has never been buttf++ked by Mexico like that.

        And if any of you ever actually followed LD closely you’d know that the retirement process for him probably began shortly after the 2010 WC when he looked as burnt out as I’d ever seen him.

        There was a good reason for that sabbatical.

      • GW, are you really arguing that Donovan wasn’t important in those types of games? Wow you’ve reached a new comment low. So you bring up one game where USA lost, and a game where Donovan scored as your evidence? Ok. What about all the games where Donovan helped beat Mexico? And you do realize that Donovan played in some of those Klinsmann wins over Mexico right? Yes you are grasping at straws.

        Funny you dismiss that Donovan goal because it was in a loss but you use the Green goal in a loss to praise his wc selection.

      • UCBG,

        Here’s the logic:

        soccer kyle claims that LD‘s absence means the US will have trouble “winning these types of games”.

        My assumption is he is talking about games such as the Oct. 10 playoff.

        LD was present and even scored a goal vs. Mexico the last time the USMNT needed to beat Mexico to get into the Confed Cup. That did not prevent the US from losing. Obviously the US needed more than a goal from LD to beat Mexico.

        This fact makes it reasonable to doubt kyle’s claim that the mere presence of LD, four years down the road, would be by itself, enough of a factor to insure that the US will be “winning these types of games.”

        Would I want a 2011 model LD on the field Oct 10? Sure.

        Is that possible? I don’t think so.

        In the real world, whatever the US needs to do to at least not lose to Mexico, JK’s teams so far, have figured out what to do.
        That does not guarantee a win Oct 10 but it is better than the alternative.

        Green’s WC goal is not comparable to LD’s GC 2011 goal.

        Julian’s goal picked up the US and meant that the US was in a position to tie the game until the last second of the game. And Clint had a chance near the very end at doing just that.

        In contrast LD’s GC 2011 goal was cancelled out after a Gio shot bounced off of a stumbling Lichaj in the 6 yard box and fell to Guardado who promptly equalized. That was in the 36th minute.

        In the next 54 minutes the US and LD were unable to stop Mexico from scoring two more goals and winning that type of game.

        The two goals and the two games were very different.

        The Gold Cup loss was an embarrassing, humiliating surrender to a supposed equal.

        The Belgium game was a loss to a far superior team, where the US came within inches of beating them in regular time and almost got it to penalties after extra time.

      • Dude, you cannot be serious. I admit I took you at face value for a while but now it’s clear you are a pure troll. Well done because true trolls are subtle. I have to give you credit.

      • slowleftarm,

        Dead serious.

        Why wouldn’t I be?

        I’m sorry to ruffle your LD as a god worship.

        I respect LD more than anyone and wanted him in Brazil but he did not want to be in Brazil bad enough to do what was necessary.

        We all have to manage our bosses especially when they are new and LD refused to bother. He wanted to be there but on his terms.

        DMB, Clint and Howard were willing to make their compromises to demonstrate their commitment but LD wouldn’t or couldn’t.

        Drawing a line in the sand, especially so publicly rarely works, especially when your primary leverage i.e. your talent and committment to the team is suspect.

        So if you are upset that LD wasn’t in Brazil take it up with LD himself. It’s mostly on him.

      • you guys are right, this gw guy is a troll! i bet his name is jonathan klinsmann!

        klinsmann killed donovan’s will to play soccer. he places way too much emphasis on fitness and obviously donovan isn’t going to be able to train at 110% every single practice. i mean it’s practice! and then he cuts landon from the team right before the world cup because he’s on an ego trip. so landon quit soccer. i guarantee if someone else coached the usmnt donovan would be still playing and trying to make it to the next world cup!

        if bradley was still in charge of the team donovan would have gone to brazil and we would have made it to the quarter or semi finals and he’d still be playing soccer and dominating like he always does. just imagine how well this team would be doing if we would’ve hired mourinho, guardiola, klopp, schmid, or kreis. we would’ve won the gold cup and wouldn’t have to play this game, that’s for sure!

      • We lost that game because ‘Dolo left with an injury and our backup option was poor. Nothing to do with presence or lack thereof of Donovan.

      • Andy,

        I was replying to soccer kyle who claims that LD’s presence alone meant the US would win those types of games.

        Obviously kyle’s logic is flawed.

      • “if any of you ever actually followed LD closely you’d know that the retirement process for him probably began shortly after the 2010 WC when he looked as burnt out as I’d ever seen him.”

        GW, I distinctly remember Donovan talking after 2010 about how he and Clint know how to stay fit and how they hope to be back at 2014. It doesn’t matter that he took a sabbatical. The fact is he looked great at the 2013 GC, and he looked great right after being snubbed from the WC roster and a bit before that. Klinsmann put him on the preliminary roster as a striker, so he could snub him more easily.

        Would Donovan still be playing today, if Klinsi wasn’t the head coach? We’ll never know?

      • Agoos,

        Your memory is different from mine.

        I remember LD looking pretty indifferent after the World Cup , sulking after BB benched him in favor of Bedoya, coming up with little injuries that I never remember him being prone to before.
        I do know he was not unhappy with Bradley leaving.
        But I agree on one thing;we’ll never know if he would still be playing if JK had not been hired.

      • I’m a big Donovan fan. He was done and it had nothing to do with Klinsman. He had been grinding for 13 years, year round as a national team member and club player. He was done.

      • Put another way..

        Klinsi – Dempsey = GC champions.
        Klinsi + Dempsey = Fourth place finish.

        Just saying, your comparison may not be rigorous.

    • ” This team just went downhill after Landon Donovan left and if it wasn’t for the Fuerher he’d still be playing soccer and we would be winning these types of games. ”

      Shocking that a team should be adversely affected by the loss of its best outfield player that a country has ever produced.. stop this nonsense that LD would still be playing if not for JK. LD was burnt out and no one was going to make him stay. If that why he quit soccer all together? If it was he is mentally weak and you would or shouldn’t want him on your team.

    • Donovan was a burned out soccer player. Clearly. Was coming for a while. Hence- the sabbatical. Saying/putting that on Klinsi is giving him way too much credit for his influence on LD who whatever you want to say about him, isquite obviously lead by his own very strong compass and not that of a coach or public opinion. If anything the whole drama motivated/reinvigorated his game with club for a last burst of classic Donovan play. But these molts of energy/motivation only get you so far if you’ve lost the joy and drive to do the day in, day out grind it takes to be at that level. Players age, things change, the world moves on and so will US soccer, long after/without LD or JK. It’s life.

    • Williams has been playing better for the US than Morales anyway, and has been doing equally well if not better on the club level. Why would we drop Williams for Morales?

  13. Gonzalez is better than and “is better in their position right now in this specific moment” than Orozco or Alvarado but whatever Geoff Cameron is better and should play 90 at RCB so no issue..

    Where FJ plays is the interesting question. I know he playing well at LM these days but we need him to make Vela and hold down RB imo.

    • Perhaps someone knows more then me but when Alvarado was doing well in Mexico, wasn’t it in a 3 man back line? Maybe he just isn’t great as a CB pair.

      • Not sure, but your earlier comment was how to look at this- 1 game for all the marbles. That’s why I think Cam and Besler play, with VA there for the 2nd game 3 days later as part of getting him more time with the NT going into the next phase.
        And I said earlier, If VA starts, I’ll eat my words

  14. I’m sick of Ventura Alvarado. If we get embarrassed will Klinsi be fired? And will Klopp accept the job?

    Seriously though, what’s the candidate list if Klinsi doesn’t last through the year?

    • Why would Kopp take the job? He is line for the next big vacancy in Europe. In England alone, that’s looking like Liverpool, Chelsea Arsenal (if Wenger retires). Forget the other leagues. The USMNT job is not high on the list of desirable soccer coaching gigs (despite what some US fans think).

      • I don’t think Klopp is coming here but he’d take it if offered enough money. It would have to be a whole of money though.

      • Maybe if we paid him like 100 million dollars. Klopp can get a job at virtually any club in the world, and you think he’d actually come to the USNT?

      • I don’t know about that. And it would take exponentially more money than the USSF have. A hiring like that would be entirely unprecedented in modern soccer history.

      • Russia paid Capello something like 10-11 million Euros per to manage Russia’s 2014 WC campaign.

        You’d need something like that to get Klopp here.

        But he is unlikely to come. As far as I can tell he would want the same kind of control JK has now and he would be unhappy with the international game where you do not do anywhere near as much coaching as you do in a club setting.

        Besides, the word is the Liverpool job is his and even if it ain’t,he is the kind of “hot property” now that most managers wait their whole lives to be.

        The USMNT job would be a huge step back unless it was something he always wanted to do.

        In the rest of the world managing a national team, for the most part is not viewed as being as much of a big deal as it is here.

        Getting to manage a “big club” is the big objective for most ambitious managers. And Klopp is very ambitious.

      • That was my point – it would take a ton of money. $10m a year or something like that. I doubt US Soccer would do that but if you pay enough you can get anyone.

      • I doubt even that would work with Klopp.

        He’s just about the hottest available manager at the moment and right now Bayern and Chelsea may soon be in play and Liverpool already is.

        And he could probably get close to 10 million or whatever in those jobs.

        And he would be doing something he really wanted to do

        National team management is very different from club management and Klopp has never indicated a desire to manage a national team though maybe Germany would tempt him.

      • There is no way Klopp would manage the USNT for 10 million a year. He will make that wherever he goes. The only way we’re getting him to come here is the same way we get someone like Bradley or Altidore to play here: by paying them exponentially more than they’d make in Europe. In Klopp’s case, this means at least 25-30 million a year. The USSF is not going to pay that.

        After how good last cycle was, it would be ridiculous to fire Klinsmann one year later and replace him with Sigi Schmid

      • Not a good comparison. Capello is old and just had come off of a poor tenure in charge of the English NT. Russia was about as good as he was going to get.

        Klopp is considered the best young managerial prospect in the world. He could manage ANYWHERE. There is absolutely no way he is going to manage the USNT. No possibly way. He’d make 10 million a year at Bayern or Chelsea. We’d have to pay him 30 million a year to take such a step down. Never before has something like this happened.

  15. It’s really the lesser of two evils with Alvarado and Gonzalez as both have been off form my guess is Alvarado wins out because he’s more familiar with LigaMx players.

    • My guess is it will be Cameron and Besler. Alvarado will probably play in the friendly 3 days later. I have no problem leaving Gonzo off if Cam and Besler start,Gonzo hasn’t looked right to me lately. I’d still take him over Alvarado vs Mexico, but in this one game Besler Cam is probably the best duo in form right now

      • OG has rarely impressed me on the international level. He makes too many mistakes. Alvarado makes mistakes, but has more upside. I rate Besler and Cameron MUCH higher than OG.

      • Omar Gonzalez hasn’t impressed me either, but I have to admit every time he has played against Mexico he has definitely shown up.

      • I like OG. He just doesn’t look right to me.
        For those who think JK doesn’t like him, nobody should forget OG replaced Boca, and everyone freaked. Then JK took an injured Omar to Brazil, which was a risk. But he played well in Brazil. Everyone’s gripe is with Alvarado,, which is why I think he’s there for the 2nd game. Cam and Besler should play. If VA starts vs Mexico, I’ll eat my words badly

      • You can’t play someone based on there upside. They could get injured or passed by another player with even more upside. You play your best player at the moment.

      • While I don’t think the time to experiment is now, why doesn’t Klinsmann give Alvarado a run out at RB?

        Alvarado’s good at going up the field and has some pace. Plus, he wouldn’t find himself as the absolute last line of defense so often there.

  16. Jk is playing it safe with this roster with the players he knows and fit his type of guys. I think after this Sat there will be a huge roster overhaul. Prolly won’t see beckerman, zusi, dmb, Jones, wondo and if gonzo was kept off this roster why bring him down the road when Jk clearly rates Alvarado and the kid on the u23 team mizga playing his ass off they don t need him. A couple of the kids have been impressive and might get some call ups for the wc qualifying in November cuz those two games should be easy and need to get some fresh talented faces on board.

    • I think you’ll still see a pretty veteran group for the first two qualifiers you don’t want to start in a whole. Might see some of the U-23 for Costa Rica on the 13th depending on the male schedule.

    • Some of us were saying a long time ago that he would use a largely veteran group for the Gold Cup, and now the playoff, and then begin phasing in the younger players after that. This roster is all about one game. Our group in the first round of WCQ is pretty weak, I’m confident we will see a lot fewer veteran players after this game.

  17. I don’t think he’s left himself with very many finisher-type options if we need a clutch goal. I wish Mixx was in it because he can hit a clutch strike when needed.

    • Mix has had 3 goals all year and has not been very clutch for NYCFC. I’m fine with him not being on the roster. Klinsmann never uses him correctly anyway.

      • True, but he has come trough when he play vs. Mexico. Now Jozy has NEVER scored a goal against Mexico when there is something at stake.

      • Jozy has not plated well recently, but please use facts in your arguments. Jozy had actually scored against Mexico according to my recollection.

      • Yes, but it was only in a friendly early in his career, about 6 years ago. He has never scored vs. Mexico in a GC or qualifier game.

      • Louis Z.

        Does that mean he will never score vs Mexico when something is at stake?

        Jozy hasn’t played a lot of games against Mexico.

      • A coach or manager you plays the percentage most of the time. Playing by hunch is hardly the way to go. Not like Jozy is on fire and is due.. He could score next Saturday, but the odds are not in his favor.

      • Louis Z,

        Tell me who would you start then at forward?

        Both Mexico and the USMNT haven’t played anyone for a month.

        That is a long time for any team.
        Even if Jozy was on fire for TFC, next week he would line up with different guys who haven’t played together for at least that long.

        The terms cohesion , percentages and odds then have a different meaning when you are comparing clubs versus national teams.

        That is probably one reason why JK went so veteran heavy.

      • GW,
        There you got me, Jozy is probably it since Johannsson is hurt. I would’ve brought in Morris or Wood as a speedster to keep Mexico’s defense honest. Wondo is too slow to make a difference. We don’t need Orozco and Evans, it should have been one or the other, then you can add Mix or Lee for a desperation sub late in the game.

      • Louis Z.

        Actually you need Orozco and Evans.

        The camp is a week long and you are going to need to practice 11 on 11 right?

        You can’t just call in the 14 guys you think are actually going to play in the game. And of course, training camp injuries are always a possibility.

        I would have liked Lee or Wood but then again, they have never been in a game remotely as pressure packed and crazy as this one is likely to be.

        Love him or hate him Wondo has played in the.World Cup and in other big games something neither Lee nor Wood has.

    • Mixx hasn’t shown much at all for some time. We have a number of better players. Danny William, you apparently forgot, scored in two of the last 4 US games. Dempsey has the highest rate of scoring of any US player in history and Jozy is streaky and could score a brace, you never know. This roster is at least as good as the pool of players who won the last Hex and got out of our group in the World Cup. I don’t know why people are freaking out so much.

  18. In what world are Spector and Ream better than Gonzo. Eurosnobishness at it’s best. No Russia for the US, but maybe we can get a new “better” coach at that position!

    • That is not the point, the point is he is handcuffing himself when he doesn’t have to. Why take Evans AND Spector, to me that is a head scratcher.

      He has no true ACM backup in the list when he cut Mix and Lee. He better be sure Bradley doesn’t get injured or plays awful.

      • My guess is that Fabian may be in the midfield, that’s my answer. Otherwise, why name 9 defenders instead of 8.
        Anything could happen, but my guess is he wants FabJo as that option. Evans and Spector give you outside backs in practice so you scrimmage 11 v 11.
        Otherwise it makes no sense

      • DMB, F J, and Yedlin can all play either as a back or winger. Dempsey also spent most of his career in England ( and the US team, too) as a midfielder. Zardes can play up top or on the wing. Cameron can play CB, RB, or defensive mid. I would guess that Danny Williams has also played several different positions in midfield and has scored twice in the last 4 USMNT games, showing he is an attacking threat. So, to say we have 8 or 9 defenders is king of meaningless since many of them have played both defense and midfield.

      • He asked why bring both Evans and Spector. And with Yedlin listed as a mid, that’s 10 potential backs. My response was that he may want the OPTION of Fabian in the midfield. Otherwise with the guys he did call in, frankly it wouldn’t make sense. To say that’s the King of meaningless for this one game sounds pretty harsh. What other potential explanation would there be? DMB & Deuce aren’t mids anymore. Cam isn’t gonna play DMid with JJ, Beckerman, and Williams on the roster. You need to be able to scrimmage 11 v 11. Unless he’s planning on a big surprise and playing the 5-3-2, what other explanation makes sense?

      • slowleftarm,

        Michael Preudhomme thought Gooch could play there well enough to get the job done.

        The US won a lot of games with Boca at left back even though he was far from an ideal fit. And the US had a winning record with Jon Bornstein at left back.

        Very few teams , especially national teams, have the luxury of a Philip Lahm or a Paolo Maldini so they often get by as best as they can.

      • anyone know if any rules on how you desinate players? like iu have to carry X number of defenders & mids?

      • onlyagame,

        This is a one off game but they seem to be running the rosters the same way for example the World Cup does.

        And that means you have to name three recognized keepers. You can’t list Geoff Cameron, for example, as the third keeper.

        Other than that if you want to select 20 centerbacks and call them something else I don’t see how they can stop you if you want to do that.

        For example, Fellaini has played at forward, midfield and in defense but I’m pretty sure Belgium listed him as a midfielder.

      • Louis Z.

        “is he is handcuffing himself when he doesn’t have to.”

        The other way to look at it is that JK is putting pressure on the likely starting 11 by in effect saying :

        “This is your last shot at glory and it’s all up to you now” .

        If they win, the Confed Cup team will probably feature the 2018 WC candidates.

        Which means most of these older guys, Beckerman, Bedoya, DMB, Wondo, Spector, Jones, Cameron, Ream, Bradley, Jozy etc, probably won’t be there.

        The Olympics and the Copa America, if it happens, will also likely feature the younger guys who will contend for Russia.

        If you follow the Under 23’s Herzog, who I would assume speaks for JK as well, told everyone that Miazga and probably CCV, Emerson, and perhaps a number of others are probably close to being ready for the senior side.

        The Under 23 games are about the very near future.

        This CONCACAF cup game is about the past and the present.

        So this is the last chance for the veterans to leave it all out on the field.

      • Jozy is 25. He’s not going to miss the 2018 World Cup unless he’s injured or in absolutely abysmal form.

      • Can you guarantee that he will not be in abysmal form?.

        Jozy has been a solid player for most of his USMNT career.

        But a large part of his omnipresence has been that his so-called competition Wondo, Juan, Boyd, AJ, EJ, Herc, etc. hasn’t really worked out.

        But it now looks like he finally might be getting some serious competition in the form of Morris, Keisewetter, Wood, Rubin, that Bjorn guy, Boyd ,and maybe even Wooten.

        Of course we’ve seen this before but it also seems to me like Jozy’s fitness, health , whatever you call it hasn’t been at 100% for a while. Is this something he can conquer with treatment and rest? Or is it the inevitable result of getting older and lots of wear and tear over the years.

        Jozy has always been a very physical athletic type of player so if he is going to continue to succeed he is either going to have to get his body back, or adjust his game to his “new ” body.

        I hope he succeeds but I’m not betting on it.

      • Geez, even Bradley is too old for 2018? Well I guess if this clown can leave LD home due to a personal grudge anything is possible.

      • It’s not his age.

        He’ll probably make Russia as some sort of elder statesman if they make it but Mikey is not so talented that he is a lock.


      • It’s a personal grudge if you leave a fat guy off the team who publicly admitted he couldn’t train 100% anymore?

    • And, of course, we see a lot of people arguing over fringe players selected vs. non selected when none in either group is likely to play.

      • But what else would we do????? Arguing about what lineup we use in FIFA and why it’s better than Klinsmann’s is what being a fan is all about.

    • And what exactly did he say in this article that you take issue with specifically? Or had you already planned out your valuable contribution to the discussion before you read the article?

      • Agreed. The Bedoya fiasco against Brazil was the last straw for me. We deserve better than this. He is holding back our program. I used to find his press conferences kinda amusing but now it’s just frustrating that this man actually gets to make decisions about our team.

      • 1. It was a friendly
        2. It was against Brazil. They are pretty good.
        3. This is exactly the time you experiment

    • This starting line-up might not even get him fired.
      Alvarado Evans Spector Orozco
      Guzan Wondolowski Howard
      Beckerman Ream
      Everyone else not dressed


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