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Jurgen Klinsmann eyes Ethan Horvath for key Olympic qualifying role


While the U.S. Men’s National Team still has two very capable goalkeepers at the helm in Tim Howard and Brad Guzan, Ethan Horvath is making waves in Europe with Norwegian side Molde FK.

Horvath, 20, signed his first professional contract with Molde in 2013. Like most young players, the American took some time to develop, however, Horvath has since captured the club’s starting goalkeeper spot and even appeared in European competition on Thusday.

After making 17 appearances for the club this season, Horvath is in line to help man the net forĀ the U.S. Under-23 National Team when it takes on Colombia in March. The sides will first meet on March 25 in Colombia, before returning to the U.S. four days later, meeting again in Dallas.

For USMNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann, Horvath’s experiences in Europe have helped prepare him for such an occasion.

“Another big talentĀ on the horizon for us is definitely Ethan Horvath, playing at Molde FK, playing in the Europa League against Sevilla,” Klinsmann said. “It’s wonderful to watch. It’s encouraging because obviously we have Tim Howard and Brad Guzan, but we also need a new younger generation of goalkeepers coming through.

“Ethan is the No. 1 on that team, for our Olympic team, and having him play week in, week out in the league in Norway, and especially in the Europa League, is big. We’re going to go there and watch him and keep our fingers crossed that things go well. Having Ethan play international football at that very young age is big time.”

While Horvath has been a revelation for Molde, currently sixth in the Norwegian Eliteserien, the netminder isn’t the only young American impressing overseas.

Nobody was been more touted over the past year than Matt Miazga, who made his high-profile transfer abroad to English Premier League side Chelsea. After working his way up in the ranks of the New York Red Bulls, the centerback turned his attention to the national scene, eventually making his senior debut during November’s CONCACAF World Cup qualifying match against St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Klinsmann expressed he has no doubt that Miazga and other Americans playing in Europe will serve integral roles next month, but the issue of their clubs releasing them does remain a major concern.

“Obviously having our U-23 players involved in several clubs in Europe right now is very important to us,” Klinsmann stated. “Even more important to us will be that they are released by their clubs for Olympic qualifiers at the end of March, which is not mandatory. We really rely on the willingness of their clubs to let them go.

“Players like Matt Miazga from Chelsea, Emerson Hyndman from Fulham, Ethan Horvath and so on. We have a good group of young players coming through the ranks in Europe and fighting their way through, but we have the issue that they are not mandatory on the release issue, so hopefully we can get that done.”


  1. Lets assume Brooks gets to play with the U-23 vs Colombia. He would be the LCB. Would it be best to pair Miazga with him or CCV?? I think CCV is more mobile/quicker/faster than Miazga. I wonder if a Brooks/Miazga twin-tower cb pairing would work well.

    • It’s a tough call for me. Miazga had a really good season as a professional last year, and is now seeing the bench with Chelsea. CCV has been a fairly regular captain with Tottenham’s U-21 squad since last year (at age 17). Now, I don’t read too much into how Chelsea seem to be bringing Miazga along, and Hotspur U-21 have been letting in a lot of goals with CCV back there this year.

      I know you were talking more about our match-up with Colombia and who in theory fits best with Brooks, but I just wanted to get that out of the way; that I think their accolades, form, and potential read about equivalent at this point.

      CCV will be better able to handle the Colombian player’s speed, and the quick, low crosses that they’re sure to send in, but I think Miazga is no slow-poke, and is better at dealing with on ball attackers, which we’re sure to see a lot of as well … more so. Miazga is pretty quick and tough himself, but I worry that his tendency to make well timed sliding tackles will be taken advantage of by savvier attackers.

      I should also note that CCV is used to playing as a LCB with is club, so if Brooks is with the USMNT we’ll still have a potentially exceptional U-23 CB tandem.

      It’s still Bester-Cameron for the USMNT, right?

      • If Cameron is healthy in time for the March qualifiers. If not it will be O. Gonzalez.

        If Brooks is with the senior team and Cameron doesn’t recover in time I think it will be Brooks and O. Gonzalez. If Brooks is with u-23 then Besler and O. Gonzalez. The European and Mexican based players are in mid-season and in-form, the MLS players aren’t.

        My line-up would be:


        Brooks, Yedlin and Morris with u-23s. Versus Guatemala you have the luxury of going offensive, so I bring back Edgar Castillo as my left-back.

    • CCV has never played a minute of first-team football and did not look good against Honduras. There is no way he can be rated ahead of Miazga at this point. If breaks into the first-team at Spurs or goes on loan somewhere and plays, then maybe. But not right now, while he’s still playing U21 football.


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