SBI’s 23 for 2010: September 2009 Edition

USAvsSpain (ISIphotos.com)

                                                                      Photo by ISIphotos.com

The U.S. men's national team hasn't booked its place in the 2010 World Cup just yet, but a pair of recent qualifying wins has the Americans on the doorstep. This means we can keep looking ahead to 2010 and thinking about what the team will look like that heads to South Africa.

Recent qualifiers have helped some players move into prime position to be considered, while some others have seen their World Cup hopes fade even further. There is still plenty of time though so the group that makes sense now, could look very different come next June.

If you missed it, here was our 23 for 2010 for August. There are only a few changes to this month's group, though there is plenty of jockeying for position going on.

Now, here is the group of 23 players we see the U.S. team taking to the 2010 World Cup as of right now:


SBI 23 for 2010 (September 2009 edition)

GOALKEEPERS- Tim Howard, Brad Guzan, Troy Perkins

DEFENDERS- Carlos Bocanegra, Oguchi Onyewu, Jay DeMerit, Jonathan Spector, Steve Cherundolo, Chad Marshall, Clarence Goodson, Jonathan Bornstein

MIDFIELDERS- Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, Ricardo Clark, Benny Feilhaber, Maurice Edu, Jose Francisco Torres, Stuart Holden, Robbie Rogers

FORWARDS- Landon Donovan, Jozy Altidore, Charlie Davies, Brian Ching,

Here's a closer look at the positions:

GOALKEEPERS- This threesome remains the same, with Marcus Hahnemann continuing to be Perkins' biggest competition for the third goalkeeper spot.

DEFENDERS- Jonathan Bornstein makes the list by virtue of his recent starts, and his solid performance vs. Trinidad & Tobago. Frankie Hejduk has to fight to get his place on the roster back while Heath Pearce may benefit from getting games in MLS.

Jimmy Conrad has become the forgotten man after his Gold Cup concussion, but he deserves to be in the discussion, as does Michael Orozco, who merits a look in the upcoming qualifiers. As for Edgar Castillo, he needs to play for the national team and show what he can do before he can be projected as someone Bob Bradley would take to South Africa. If he gets a look in the upcoming qualifiers, and can impress at left back, he could slide into the 23 for 2010 by October.

MIDFIELDERS- DaMarcus Beasley's inability to secure a transfer or loan for the fall drops him off this list. Robbie Rogers gets the nod this go-round but two names that merit consideration are Mikkel Diskerud and Alejandro Bedoya. Diskerud is part of the U.S. Under-20 national team and doing well in Norway while Bedoya, a left-footed player, has begun to establish himself in Sweden.

Central midfield remains a jam-packed position and continues to await the inclusion of Jermaine Jones, who has now suffered an injury setback. Torres' solidified his place with a quality cameo vs. El Salvador while Feilhaber continues to impress. Maurice Edu is still working his way back from knee surgery but will hold onto his spot for now, and should keep it if he returns to the Rangers starting lineup. Kyle Beckerman is on the fringes, but may not have helped his cause with his showing vs. El Salvador.

If there's a player who improved his stock more than anybody else over the past month it's Holden, who is a lock right now.

FORWARDS- This foursome remains the same for now, but there are players worth considering. Kenny Cooper enjoyed a strong first month in the German Bundesliga 2 with 1860 Munich and will move closer to a roster spot if he can keep it going. Conor Casey remains Ching's biggest competition as a target forward on the roster. Others to watch are Eddie Johnson, who is seeing spot duty with Fulham, and speedy Robbie Findley, who could be called on if anything happened to Davies. Chris Pontius also remains on the radar.

————–

What do you think of this group? Which player do you think should be on the list? Who made the team that you don't think should be on it?

Share your thoughts below.

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106 Responses to SBI’s 23 for 2010: September 2009 Edition

  1. GJJ says:

    Brian Ching…….Conor Casey? Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have heard that Kenny Cooper has a major attitude problem, but I would still take him over either of them. I also want to see Jones and Castillo get a run out asap to see if they could improve our defense and midfield.

  2. Dudinho says:

    Totally agree except I dont think Bob calls in Orozco. For some reason that red card in the Olympics seemed to black ball him. He should get at look since he does play in arguably the best league in the americas with Torres, and Castillo

  3. EA says:

    If this is the 23 you would take if the WC started on Sunday, I would tend to agree.

  4. PetedeLA says:

    The funny thing is, fans have been saying Ching’s time is over for at least a year now. All of us like Ching as a person, but let’s face it, even Eddie Johnson is miles ahead of Ching if we just rate on performance. Does anyone really think that Ching could get anywhere near the Fulham bench? At least Heskey for England can end up injuring the opposition’s goal keeper. I hate to sound like I’m against the man(cause I’m not), but he’s just not good enough for international duty.

  5. Dangerfield says:

    Always fun to speculate but Clarence Goodson? Nothing against him, I think he’s a very solid player actually. But there’s no way in hell he’s going to South Africa. You’ve got Oneywu, Bocanegra, DeMerit and Marshall as natural center backs. Spector can play there too. And in a pinch, so can Edu. That’s six. Just don’t see room for Clarence. Curious to see the youngsters Diskerud and Bedoya. As well as Castillo — hope he can give us an option there.

  6. DynamoFan says:

    Love the site, Ives.

    Thanks for making this a monthly feature on the blog. One thing, how about including any changes from the previous month in the player list. It is much easier to track the changes. For instance:

    GOALKEEPERS- Tim Howard, Brad Guzan, Troy Perkins

    DEFENDERS- Carlos Bocanegra, Oguchi Onyewu, Jay DeMerit, Jonathan Spector, Steve Cherundolo, Chad Marshall, Clarence Goodson, Jonathan Bornstein (Frankie Hejduk)

    MIDFIELDERS- Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, Ricardo Clark, Benny Feilhaber, Maurice Edu, Jose Francisco Torres, Stuart Holden, Robbie Rogers (Damarcus Beasley)

    FORWARDS- Landon Donovan, Jozy Altidore, Charlie Davies, Brian Ching,

  7. Trent says:

    Over a year ago I started parking in “yellow R” in the Crew stadium parking lot. The Crew have not lost a home game since. Your welcome Columbus Crew.

  8. metrometro says:

    jermain jones?

  9. yankiboy says:

    I’m not trying to be negative but isn’t maybe a bit too early to know if we are actually going to qualify. Maybe we will get a point in San pedro Sula. I know that the Ticos are in free-fall and just fired Kenton and I am going to see us hopefully beat them here in DC so we can all pary like it’s 2009 but for real, ro real–personally–I’m not comfortable enough to make that leap just yet.

    If we take a point in Honduras then, I’m with Ives. There is still work to do and a congested table. Which makes me a bit nervous. Maybe it shouldn’t but it does…

  10. Will says:

    I understand why you left out Jones and Castillo, but I’d swap them in for Goodson and Rogers.

    Sure we dont have any great pure wingers, but there’s no reason to force one into the roster/onto the field if he’s not ready.

  11. lasoccer says:

    In a World Cup game, who would you trust, Frankie Hejduk or Jonathan Bornstein? Frankie has proven himself again and again as a tireless player who does his best in the biggest games. His injury right before 2006 had a real impact, not as a singular player but for the example, fire and commitment which brings out the best in the team.

  12. NYRB - Best PDL team in NY says:

    Coopper with an attitude problem? I find that hard to believe..

  13. Murphy says:

    Hejduk over Bornstein if he’s healthy.

    I think Hahnemann is better than Perkins but it doesn’t really matter.

    Ching should be out by next summer. There has to be another forward better than him that is at least mobile.

    There is no other defender better than Goodson? What about Simek? I guess he plays on the outside while Goodson is a central back?

    Looks good otherwise. J. Jones will be in there once healthy.

  14. paul lorinczi says:

    This is all fun, but it’s a little too soon to project the roster.

    It’s like predicting who is going to win the whole thing. We still have long seasons in Europe and elsewhere to get through and player injuries, player performances, etc could change between now an the time BB has to select his roster.

    (SBI-Paul, we’re just looking to spark some discussion. Join in or don’t.)

  15. BellusLudas says:

    In the next edition I hope we see:
    Torres, Castillo, Jones & Orozco

  16. Paul says:

    “In a World Cup game, who would you trust, Frankie Hejduk or Jonathan Bornstein?”

    ‘Nuff said.

  17. cbr says:

    its time to start labeling Donovan as a midfielder

  18. ELAC says:

    Blackballed = racism (or plain ol’ ignorance)

    Ching? Really? We are f**ked!

  19. harry says:

    The Fowards i got eventually all finding form and making this team are…………Altidore,Davies,EJ, and Adu

    I put EJ in, becuase in his 17-minute cameo vs Aston Villa….i couldent believe my eyes; EJ was Perfect in holding the ball up and combining..so if he added that too his game, whats the need for Ching?

    I just dont see how a 32-Year old Brian Ching can possibly be on the team unless their is a motive behind it.

    (SBI-Harry, let it go. This is your last warning. Save your absurd conspiracy theories for someplace else.)

  20. Danny says:

    Orozco? No way. I don’t want to see him again. Same goes for Castillo. Don’t want him.

  21. kpugs says:

    Jonathan Bornstein can’t even handle the job in a region where the U.S. team is the favorite in every single match. I cannot fathom why he continues to be called up. I know I could be wrong, but I for one am deeply disturbed that it doesn’t matter how bad he is and he just keeps getting called up, AND still gets minutes.

  22. cfig says:

    “In a World Cup game, who would you trust, Frankie Hejduk or Jonathan Bornstein?”

    Thirded.

    Do we really consider Donovan a striker in the context of this roster? If anyone we’ve seen Dempsey in that spot far more often for the Nats the last 18 months (and after watching him with Fulham this past weekend I greatly prefer him there, much better workrate and far better opportunities).

  23. chupacabra says:

    Ching? Chingalo!

    Did you see the headers in front of wide open nets he missed this weekend against Columbus. And the guy is even worse under real pressure. Ching = Chingadera.

  24. MVK says:

    Call me crazy but even with Jimmy Conrad aging I would rather have him as a back up than (maybe a more talented) Marshall or Goodson.. I would put my house on if Conrad played in that Gold Cup final against Mexico, they dont score half those goals…

  25. cbr says:

    take out Dempsey as a midfielder put him in Ching’s spot as foward and bring in Jones (assuming he’s healthy)

  26. Chris says:

    Forwards need to score goals, and Ching just doesn’t do that for the USA. He just isn’t good enough, sorry.

  27. Andrew says:

    I put EJ in, becuase in his 17-minute cameo vs Aston Villa….i couldent believe my eyes; EJ was Perfect in holding the ball up and combining..so if he added that too his game, whats the need for Ching?

    I just dont see how a 32-Year old Brian Ching can possibly be on the team unless their is a motive behind it.

    Posted by: harry | September 16, 2009 at 11:49 AM

    ——————————————-

    Unfortunately, I don’t think a 17 minute cameo is indicative of consistent overall improvement. But hopefully it is a sign of good things to come from EJ.

  28. A.S. says:

    Where’s Freddy????? :)

    But seriously, I have to think that DaMarcus would be brought in if he gets any playing time at all. This roster seriously lacks wide midfielders, and Beasley also has a good amount of experience to help the more inexperienced players like Jozy and Charlie.

  29. A.S. says:

    This roster lacks wide midfielders. I think that if DaMarcus gets any playing time this year, he’s brought in, just for protection in the wide positions and for his experience.

  30. Kevin says:

    No Ching, no casey, no Adu. We need a better 4th option at forward. Where’s the Freddy lovers now?

    Jermaine Jones FTW?

  31. A.S. says:

    Crap – sorry for the double post. First one didn’t immediately show up after I posted it, for some reason.

  32. kpugs says:

    I have a running list of players in contention that should never play for the national team in competitive matches: Bornstein and Casey are at the top. Based purely on performance and nothing else, I fail to see why they continue to be called up.

  33. Brad minter says:

    where ching becomes useful, and what he has made a living off of, if not so much of his goal scoring, but his ability to play with his back to the goal to lay balls off to other forwards nad midfielders. I bet if you asked Dominic Kinnear, Bob Bradley or any of the midfielders/forwards what Ching does for them, they will say there are no players who do it. Late in a game, team under pressure, Houston has made a living out of lumping it up to him and changing the field position.

    The differnce between Houston winning games and tieing games is his ability to hold the ball later in matches…

  34. Al OC says:

    Orozco? No way. I don’t want to see him again. Same goes for Castillo. Don’t want him.

    Posted by: Danny September 16, 2009 at 11:50 AM

    ——————–

    Danny – any chance your last name is Califf? Is that why you don’t want 2 defenders called in? ;-P

    Why wouldn’t you want call them both? Orozco has been playing 90 min. in most of San Luis’ games and has scored twice.

    As for Castillo, let’s just bring him in and see what he can do.

  35. harry says:

    Mexican league is gonna have some good yanks for years too come.

    Castillo- 22-year old starting for Tigres

    Torres- 21; with good minutes with Pachuca

    Orozco- 23; starter for a solid defense

    Vidal- 23; Starter/Sub for Indios

    Padiila- 22; on-loan to Chivas USA for now

    Sammy Ochoa – 23; now getting some minutes with Tecos

    and all the 15-21 year old Americans in Mexico Acadmey’s and/or reserve teams that could soon to see time within the next few years.

  36. freddie footballer says:

    I would agree except I think we’re bringing 3 listed forwards and nine listed mids. Take Robbie Rogers out and replace him with Landon Donovan as a mid. Lando and Dempsey can play both mid and forward.

  37. Tom says:

    How exactly does Chris Pontius “remain on the radar”? Why/when was he even ON the radar to begin with? He’s a somewhat talented MLS rookie who has had some decent showings for a mediocre MLS side, that’s about it. He’s not exactly lighting the world on fire.

    Let’s be realistic, please.

  38. freddie footballer says:

    so my 23:
    GOALKEEPERS- Tim Howard, Brad Guzan, Troy Perkins

    DEFENDERS- Carlos Bocanegra, Oguchi Onyewu, Jay DeMerit, Jonathan Spector, Steve Cherundolo, Chad Marshall, Clarence Goodson, Jonathan Bornstein

    MIDFIELDERS- Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, Ricardo Clark, Benny Feilhaber, Maurice Edu, Jose Francisco Torres, Stuart Holden, *Landon Donovan*, *Jermaine Jones*

    FORWARDS- Jozy Altidore, Charlie Davies, Brian Ching

    Still think we have too many central mids. I can see another defender or forward going in place of Ricardo Clark.

  39. harry says:

    Brad Minter………….notice how you mentioned MLS coaches who are relevant with MLS…….lets stop using MLS play as the backdrop for Players who just arent good enough for World Cup Quality. Taylor Twellman Owned MLS, and what did he do on the international scene? Get the drift? Its also why im glad EJ moved to Europe and is now sticking it out and learning the game properly so he can be more well-rounded which he showed glimpses of vs Aston Villa.

  40. EDB says:

    People saying there are other forwards then ching. it may be true, but he has a certain skill set the other forwards don’t have. Although I think Demps could fill in as a target forward. He seemed to do it well enough a couple years ago when fulham barely stayed up when mcbride was out.

  41. Tom says:

    “In a World Cup game, who would you trust, Frankie Hejduk or Jonathan Bornstein?”

    Neither. I’d rather put my faith in Spector somehow realizing he’s actually left-footed than either of these two untalented, over-mentioned yahoos. Hejduk is old and awful, and Bornstein is just awful.

  42. Scott A says:

    Haha ELAC, you couldn’t be more wrong. There’s your paranoia again.
    link to en.wikipedia.org

  43. harry says:

    can we please stop with the Ching “hold-up” preach……..just watch the game vs Mexico…..he was invisable vs quality……the guy’s prime was in 2005-2007………this is 2009 going on 2010…..

  44. Nicole says:

    Why do you list Donovan as a forward? I’d sooner list Dempsey as a forward instead of Donovan.

    (SBI-Does it really matter? Really? USSF lists Donovan as a forward, so I listed there as well. Call it a habit from all his years as strictly a forward. In the end it doesn’t matter.)

  45. gmonsoon43 says:

    Totally agree except I dont think Bob calls in Orozco. For some reason that red card in the Olympics seemed to black ball him. He should get at look since he does play in arguably the best league in the americas with Torres, and Castillo

    Posted by: Dudinho | September 16, 2009 at 11:15 AM

    Not just plays but has been scoring goals, something we have lacked a little recently from our defenders.

  46. ko'd says:

    The instant someone cites Wikipedia as authority for a proposition, I stop paying attention.

  47. Bill says:

    To all those who don’t see Ching:

    I hope we have 3-5 forwards better than Brian Ching as well, but Ching, like Brian McBride before him, brings skills beyond scoring goals that are valuable. He plays well with his back to the goal, he holds well, and on his good days distributes well. He also plays excellent defense for a forward. He is not a great goal scorer, not an equal to McBride, but in certain situations he is very useful to have on the field. He also seems to be a good teammate.

    I would also argue that he would do better in the EPL than EJ in much the same way that McBride seemed to get better when he went to England. His skill set is a good match for the league.

    Still, again, I hope for the sake of the team in SA 2010 that a) he improves as a scorer notably, or b) that we have 4-5 forwards that are better than him.

  48. KCB says:

    Ives,

    Do you think Bradley would ever consider bringing in a veteran for the 3rd GK spot? Like a Keller or Freidel?

    The first thing I notice on this roster is the utter lack of depth we seem to have in defense, IMO. Is Goodson really that good? Will someone PLEASE replace Bornstein on the final roster?

    If the old school Run-DMB ever shows up our midfield will be staked. But I guess he’s pretty much out at this point, unless half of Rangers roster goes down to injury.

    (SBI-I highly doubt Friedel or Keller has any interest in being a third goalkeeper. As for the centerback spot, I have a strong feeling someone will step in and unseat Goodson from that spot, be it Jimmy Conrad or Michael Orozco.)

  49. jpc says:

    Ives,

    Are you in on the Michael Orozco Blackballing scandal. I hope not, b/c it’s gonna hit the front page of the NY times come this summer… Reminds me of the 50’s red scare (which I know nothing about, and only mention for dramatic effect).

    (SBI-I almost missed the sarcasm, but thankfully caught it.)

  50. andrew says:

    why isnt cory gibbs on bradley’s radar?

  51. ko'd says:

    jpc,

    you forgot to cite the Wikipedia entry for the Red Scare and/or McCarthy.

  52. Joe B says:

    Hejduk > Bornstein

    And no Rogers!

  53. lasoccer says:

    @Tom:

    Spector is already on Ives’ list. The discussion is who should be included in the top 23, not the top 11.

  54. Scott A says:

    Here you go ko’d: link to dictionary.reference.com
    Browse down to Word Origin & History. There were more credible sources than wikipedia but wikipedia had more illuminating information.
    Oh and you’re confusing blackballing with blacklisting, with the Red Scare reference
    Jerk

  55. A. Ruiz says:

    Ching is a good hold up player vs CONCACAF And MLS defenders since he’s bigger than most of them. He’s ain’t gonna do anything vs the Terry’s and Vidic’s of the world, which is sorta important since it’s the world cup after all.

    He’s hardly dominant at the CONCACAF level, now that I think about it.

    link to en.wikipedia.org

    (SBI- How many strikers in the world, much less in the U.S. pool, are “gonna do anything” against the Terrys and Vidics of the world? Kenny Cooper? Eddie Johnson? Conor Casey? Robbie Findley? It’s fair to say that Altidore and Davies are the starters going forward, but the fact is there just aren’t many options out there to say Ching won’t make the World Cup team. If he’s healthy he’ll go, that is unless some forward or forwards REALLY step up their games.)

  56. sonicdeathmonkey says:

    Why do normally rational people think it makes sense for Brad Friedel to be a third goalkeeper? First off, if he came, he wouldn’t be the third goalkeeper, now would he? Unless you are implying his back up at Aston Villa is actually better than he is? Secondly, why in the world would somebody like Friedel come to the WC when he knows he wouldn’t play? Not to mention the fact that he RETIRED seven years ago. Good grief.

  57. Brandinho says:

    Ives, How much more do you have to see from Jonathan Bornstein to realize he has no business being on the USMNT whatsoever? He’s not even inconsistent, he’s consistently bad EVERY game he plays. Everyone needs to stop holding onto the game against Argentina 2 years ago, hes never going to be that guy again.

    (SBI-Jason (I mean Brandinho), I wrote Bornstein off after the El Salvador game, but he came right back and had a very good game vs. Trinidad & Tobago. He’s definitely inconsistent, but Bradley trusts him and gave him a chance to redeem himself against T&T and he did so. That’s why he’s on this 23, because Bradley will take him as of right now. That could obviously change, but right now he’d make it.)

  58. fan of the football says:

    Re: Orozco, despite the bad Olympic red card, I like him. I recall seeing a video on USMNT website a while back. All the team was doing in the clip were traditional 5′ volley repetitions and header drills, but I was impressed with what I saw. Maybe it was the comparison to Wynne next to him or something, but I felt like he was completely comfortable with the ball. It wasn’t forced movement, it was natural. I haven’t seen him on the field much but if he is that composed on the ball, I would love to see him get a chance.

    Coming out of the back we consistently lack a link between defense and midfield. It goes a little something like this… withstand defensive pressure, win ball, kick ball up top, lose ball up top, repeat. I support anything that may help to break that trend. He may not be ready this cycle, and by no means do I thnk he is the savior, but having a few more composed defenders that are comfortable on the ball can never hurt.

    On a side note, Lee Ngyuen has earned a 3 week trial with Arsenal’s reserves. Who would have thought that moving away from Europe to Thailand would earn you a chance with one of the best clubs around? Great for him and I hope he impresses.

  59. ELAC says:

    Oh snap! I meant brownballed or was it brown listed?

    Either way, if you play in the BEST LEAGUE in CONCACAF, YOU WON”T PLAY FOR THE USA.

    If play in 2nd division Danish or Swedish league, NO PROBLEM.

    :)

    (SBI-Daniel Hernandez was playing and starting in Mexico last year. Where was all the outrage about him not getting a look? I like Orozco and think he should get a look, but some of this talk is getting silly.)

  60. gabe says:

    “How exactly does Chris Pontius “remain on the radar”? Why/when was he even ON the radar to begin with? He’s a somewhat talented MLS rookie who has had some decent showings for a mediocre MLS side, that’s about it. He’s not exactly lighting the world on fire.

    Let’s be realistic, please.”

    agreed tom. i think this is a stretch

  61. Pappajohn says:

    The USA team appears to lack any spirit or character. They are just employees doing their job. Adding Frankie Hejduk to the World Cup 23 could give this team the dose of excitement that they desperately need. I believe his enthusiasm can change the course of a match. Hell, just pay him to come in and stir up the locker room at half time.

  62. gabe says:

    “why isnt cory gibbs on bradley’s radar?”

    should we call in Tony Sanneh as well?

  63. Jason says:

    Tracy should be nowhere near that list. He’s completely been in lack of form for Aalborg and is playing for the reserve side and having trouble making the bench for the first team. All he is useful for still is heading in the ball.

  64. afc says:

    Sammy Ochoa – 23; now getting some minutes with Tecos

    His brother Norberto is on trial with Club Brugge

  65. afc says:

    On a side note, Lee Ngyuen has earned a 3 week trial with Arsenal’s reserves. Who would have thought that moving away from Europe to Thailand would earn you a chance with one of the best clubs around? Great for him and I hope he impresses

    First off its not a trial. This was arragned because Arsenal are linked with HAGL. Its just training stint. He can’t sign anyway, he isn’t qualified for a work permit.

  66. jpc says:

    pointing out sarcasm w/ more sarcasm Ives, I like it. But I think it sarcasmed me out for the day…

    On a serious note. I guess there is a reason why Orozco hasn’t been called in since his red card in the Olympics, but I assume that if I heard the reason I would find it as unbelievable as Bradley’s thinking in constantly playing 2 DCM’s, then saying after every game that possession is something they need to improve. As if he doesn’t know the biggest reason why we can’t hold possession w/ Bradley and Clark playing side by side.

    So making jokes about being blackballed (or blacklisted for all the encyclopedia nerds out there) is a funner coping mechanism than complaining constantly.

    P.S- is it sad that I need a coping mechanism to deal w/ USMNT picks? I didn’t think so either

  67. RLW2020 says:

    come summer we will swap..
    Jones for Bornstein, Castillo for Goodson, Cooper for Ching.

    it is great to see Rogers get on the list he is a great player and will be a bigger part in the future but if EJ, DMB or Findley make any progress from where they are now i can see one of them taking his spot.

  68. All Ching shares with McBride is the same first name. He doesn’t have half the workrate, a quarter of the guts or an eighth of McBride’s heart. McBride was a player that stood out for these qualities in The Best League in the World (TM). Ching was okay at T&T as a late sub and I won’t be at all surprised if he goes but he’s just not the player you need off the bench at the world cup. Bradley used him properly in that match: a late, defensive substitution. It’s fine if that’s how he’s used, but I’d rather see a more attacking option if we’ve got one, especially if Altidore and Davies are both starting. Ching just isn’t good enough in the air and at 6’1″ he’s not big and strong enough to trouble the average international defender.

  69. Mr. Roboto says:

    I want Frankie. Even in his dotage, I’ll take him over half the people we’ve started of late (fan of Spector though).

  70. Robert says:

    I hope Adu can get back in form. If he plays regularly and gets better, there’s no doubt in my mind he will get called up. He’s a game-changer and has unparalleled skill with the ball. I’m optimistic but I sense there are better options at the present time.

  71. elmatador says:

    Ives, think about what I’m going to tell you. Brazil during the ’94 WC had Ronaldo, (yes the all time “world cup leading score”) on the bench. Just to name one (because I think they did that with Pele and few others as well) Would it be crazy to think that the USMNT should bring with them let’s say Jack McInerney from the U-17 for exposure. or Charlens Renken or Luis Gil. At least one of them, I’ve seen Jack McInerney and I truly believe he’s something special, he’s like the next McBride in my opinion. Let me know. So for forward i’d leave Landon Donovan, Jozy Altidore, Charlie Davies but with Jack McInerney instead of Ching

  72. Pat says:

    Ching will be on the team whether people want him there or not. He serves a certain purpose. It’s not like he’ll be playing 90 minutes a game in the WC, he may or may not get off the bench for 10-15 minutes at the end of matches.

    Bradley has shown lately that he’d rather have Dempsey come in and fill that role after the half, but there needs to be someone behind him in case Dempsey gets hurt. That guy is Ching.

  73. Pico says:

    All I have to say is a quote from my grandma:

    Don’t count your chickens before they hatch

    Cheers

  74. roysterer says:

    I don’t know why Brad Friedel wouldn’t go to the World Cup. He’s probably not going to play, but he gets to be there as a mentor and stabilizing influence, which, considering the youth of the squad seems like a great idea. Plus, if he’s any worse than Tim Howard he’s very slightly worse. So, in an ideal world he’s the obvious choice for #2 keeper. And, he gets fantastic seats for the matches, which he’s going to watch anyway.

    I think it was good that he retired from international play because it gave Howard a chance, but come on, it’s the World Cup. Everybody unretires for the World Cup.

    And, if I were Bob Bradley I’d name him to the squad even if he said he wouldn’t go. Leave off one of the superfluous midfielders or defenders (I’m thinking Rogers or Goodson).

  75. Blokhin says:

    the amount of player-bashing and complaining about who is and isn’t on this entirely hypothetical roster is hilarious… I’ll join in…

    I look forward to the day that we never talk about Eddie Johnson again… 17 minutes against Aston Villa is not going to get him a call-up (I hope)… this guy has not done anything on the USMNT level in 4 years and nothing of note on the club level in 2.5 seasons… it is pretty clear by now that the 3 game stretch in 2005 was an aberration, NOT the norm… the norm has been his form for the past 5 years! this is not a 19yr old we’re talking about anymore, he’s 25-about as close to a peak for strikers as you get… Freddy Adu still has time to make himself relevant, Eddie is running out of time rather quickly….

  76. Eric says:

    ELAC your a fool.forever bringing up the race card.

    you must suffer from some serious form of mental retardation.what with what ive read you say on here.

    i know..i know..now youll call me a ”racist” for writing this.

    lol oh well.

    it must suck to be natures perpetual victim.

    what with your tall tales of persecution and all your imagenairy inflictions.

  77. afc says:

    Ives this better not jinx us.

  78. Brett says:

    If Castillo joins up, and Jones can overcome his injury woes, I want them in for Bornstein and Rogers. I’d also swap Donovan from FW to MF and Dempsey from MF to FW.

    Other than that, I’m happy with the list. Ching belongs, but I hope he remains the 4th option behind Altidore, Davies, and Dempsey.

  79. BellusLudas says:

    I was going to reply but this is perfect!

    “Orozco? No way. I don’t want to see him again. Same goes for Castillo. Don’t want him.

    Posted by: Danny September 16, 2009 at 11:50 AM
    ——————–
    Danny – any chance your last name is Califf? Is that why you don’t want 2 defenders called in? ;-P”

  80. roysterer says:

    One thing about Eddie Johnson makes him a better choice than Brian Ching: his speed. I’d much rather have Ching to start the game, but when you bring on a striker as a sub it’s usually because you want someone who can score on a counter-attack or at least take advantage of defenders’ tired legs.

    Since Ching is probably not going to start unless someone is injured, it might actually be better to take Eddie Johnson.

    But Kenny Cooper? Come on…

    He’s not fast, he’s not a target man, he has no aerial ability, and he’s not even a great finisher. He’s just good poacher. But, so is Dempsey, and is it really ever going to be better to bring Cooper off the bench than to bring in a midfielder and move Dempsey up?

    And on a fairly unrelated note, someone needs to teach Marvell Wynne how to play soccer. He’s so ridiculously fast…if only he could do something with the ball….

  81. BTW, I’m not bashing Ching. He is the player he is and he may be a type of player we need in the side. He just seems a bit pedestrian next to McBride so the comparisons irk me. He is definitely not continuing to improve in his 30s as McBride did.

    As for Eddie Johnson, he is going to get some chances this season at Fulham given that they are dealing with Europa League fixtures, the league, and two cups. It’s not as if he’s behind Adebayor, Teves, Robinho, Santa Cruz and Bellamy.

    I think all our annointed bright young things are shocked to move to Europe and find they’re not quite the dogs bollocks as they’ve always been told. Quite a few weren’t expecting to start at the bottom, learn a new system of play and work their way into the first team. American players tend to have a delayed professional development so Eddie has every chance of coming good but he’s certainly not in the mix now.

    I think it’s a great that we can argue who does and does not belong in the national team nowadays. It used to be we were lucky to have 10 players that weren’t utter embarrassments. Now we’ve got a much larger pool of players, all with the potential to be in form worthy of being called into the side. These arguments are a universal proclivity of soccer fans and it’s another sign that we’re becoming a soccer nation.

  82. BellusLudas says:

    I think John O’Brien’s rehab is done….BRING HIM IN :-)

  83. Paul Westerberg says:

    Great feature Ives.

    I think Orozco was left off the roster for a while in favor of Marshall and Goodson due to the fact they were both the DEFENDER OF THE YEAR in their respective leagues. Califf was a first team choice for awhile. Then he started not showing well and these two guys were in line before Orozco due to their club form. Just because of the league someone plays in doesn’t make their quality. Their performance in whichever league needs to be to certain level. All that being said… i like the kid and hope he gets continued consideration. The racism and blackballing talk is silly (Pablo has been capped since ’06 right?). There are many other logical reasons to be considered.

  84. SoccerJohn says:

    I think (hope) Jones might shake things up a bit, but here are a few thoughts about a Jones-less 23:

    1. Bradley, Edu, and Clark all play DM for this team. I think you only include Clark if you plan to use Bradley substantially at AM.

    2. This lineup lacks height up top. If Edu was in form, I’d include Kenny Cooper and leave Clark home.

    3. It may be a sad comment about the depth of the MNT’s player pool, but Ching and Bornstein both need to be on the roster. When he’s on, Ching can help kill a game off and he’s the only veteran forward who’s been seeing time at the position. Also, he really does seem like a great guy to have on the team–always smiling and hustling (and even scoring sometimes). Bornstein is a lefty, he’s young and, until we know what we really have in Castillo, he’s one of our best options at the position.

  85. harry says:

    Speaking of U-17 US players…………..Will Packwood a just turned 16-year old is a starter on Birmingham FC (EPL) reserve team. Thats just crazy…he is -playing with EPL expieranced players every week.

  86. smokeminside says:

    Ives, can you do everyone a favor and just not mention Ching publicly any more? Every argument I hear about him, pro and con, is as frayed and worn as my grandma’s couch. Your last point, that he’ll be on the team unless someone else vastly improves their level of play seems about right. Bradley likes him, his teammates like him, he’s a solid player. The people mentioned as his competition just don’t do what he does for the TEAM. Let’s talk about something more interesting, like whoever above mentioned that someone should teach Marvell Wynne how to play soccer, because, seriously, that guy could be hell on wheels.

  87. Tony says:

    Ives,

    Would it really be fair to the other midfielders who have played through qualifying to loose their spot to J. Jones? There just seems to be something suspect about allowing a player who did not play through qualifying to get a place on the world cup team. Especially given that he’s never played a game for the US.

    Tony

    (SBI-You take the best team of players eligible for the United States. If Jones is eligible and one of the best players then he’ll go. He is American by birth, his father was in the U.S. Army. Would it be fair to deny Jones his rightful opportunity to represent a country he’s eligible to play for?)

  88. Paul says:

    If a good game against Trinidad & Tobago is enough to put Bornstein in Bradley’s good graces after the El Salvador match, then we’re all in for a very curious ride. Castillo and Hejduk will both be ahead of Bornstein on the depth chart by the end of the year, if there’s any justice.

  89. milkshake of despair says:

    I heard Claudio was considering coming out of retirement….

  90. Mike W says:

    Ives — What’s strange is that Bradley named 5 forwards to the past double dip qualifiers with El Salvador and T&T (Casey, Altidore, Ching, Davies, and 24th man Findlay) in addition to Donovan, but Bradley only brought in Altidore, Davies, and Casey in the Confederations Cup (plus Donovan and Dempsey, who were named as forwards).

    So, I guess my question is, if you think that Bradley is only going to bring three true forwards, with Ching replacing Casey, to WC 2010 (an entirely reasonable prediction), then why is Bradley bothering with bringing in all the dead weight now in the qualifiers?

    I know that we had to bring more offense to the El Salvador and T&T games, but in the end, Casey and Findlay didn’t dress for either. I don’t know, it just seems gratuitous considering the injury problems we had on the back line. (But I guess, who else on defense could he have named that would make a difference, anyway).

    I don’t know… Just thinking out loud.

  91. RO says:

    MVK- I think you are right on with Conrad. He deserves to be on the team. He plays harder than anyone on the field and his concussion in the Gold Cup proved that. There is a reason he was captain of two games in the Gold Cup as well. Besides Boca and Gooch he is the only defender with experience. Although Marshall and Goodson are good players they both have never played in a big game. Marshall’s biggest game of his career was against El Savador and he was shaky at times.

    Like in the last World Cup things happen (red cards, injuries, etc.) If you need another CB who would you rather have play. Conrad has played in the big games (Italy, Mexico, Ghana-where he was man of the match) and will always be dependable. We dont really know how dependable Marshall and Goodson are. And we can not rely on Boca moving to the center because our LB situation is terrible. Bornstein was the worst player on the field against El Salvador. Bradley must feel some loyalty since he brought him to Chivas USA.

    Jimmy deserves to be on the 2010 WC squad!!!!

  92. Deuce says:

    Ives,
    5 central defenders, including Goodsen, is a bit much. I’d have to say Hejduk or even Pearce comes before Goodsen….but no matter who replaces him, I don’t think he goes. Not now, and not in September.

  93. harry says:

    Bob’s gonna bring 4 Fowards…………Donovan and Dempsey will stay on the wings where they belong since we have no true Wingers, which means the Foward player pool is this….

    Altidore,Davies,EJ,Adu,Ching,Cooper…..

    The “in-form” MLS expierements (casey,etc.) i hope are over at least till 2011.

  94. Bobby says:

    I’m a little confused about the stern warning towards Harry earlier. Clearly SBI wanted to cut the discussion off, but I too have trouble finding rational reasons Ching sees the light of day with the USMNT

    (SBI-Bobby, people not wanting Ching on the World Cup thing is one thing. That’s definitely open to discussion and nobody has an issue with that. Harry carrying on about a conspiracy by US Soccer to showcase MLS players is something else altogether. It’s inane and brings nothing rational or sensible to the conversation.)

  95. powehigpoiegh says:

    Really Ives. Goodson and Rogers who have done NOTHING for the A team (just a few things in the gold cup). 6 central midfielders plus Dempsey (not a true winger) and Rogers.

    You are asking…no begging…for trouble.

    (SBI-I’m not really sold on Goodson either, partly because I prefer Conrad, but I could see him being chosen if the selection was made now. As for Rogers, he gets in as a winger. As for the six central midfielders plus Dempsey and Rogers part, there just aren’t many natural wingers worth the call and several of the central midfielders are versatile enough to play in other spots. Holden would be used as a winger, and has proven to be a pretty good one, Torres can go on the left and Feilhaber has been used on the right. Where are all these great wingers being passed over? Jeremiah White? I could see him meriting a look, but aside from him where are all these proven wingers? There happens to be a shortage of them. It should also be noted that based on the current forward options, having traditional wingers isn’t as important as it would have been during the McBride era.

    How about some suggestions instead of a weak dismissive statement in your first post on this site?)

  96. Isaac says:

    For most of the Ching haters, he understands how to hold the ball better than any of the other forwards and his contribution to the team rather than just the 18 yard box( Kenny Cooper) is valuable. Cooper is a good goalscorer yes, but unless he learns the team needs him in more places than the goal mouth he won’t be around Bradley much.

  97. madmax says:

    Ives, just four changes for SA 2010.
    Jones, Castillo, Orozco, replace Rogers, Bornstien and Goodson.
    Plus anyone who is playing well replaces Ching. The Ching myth that he holds the ball, draws fouls etc is coming apart.

  98. len says:

    Agree with most of the 23. Would not take Bornstein. Sounds like Castillo might be a better Bornstein and would certainly like to see what he can do. Recognizing that Bocanegra is going to play somewhere (I don’t think Bradley’s going to pull a Sampson/Harkes move), then I’d rather see Bocanegra on the left than centrally (personally I think Bocanegra may be 2010’s Agoos, presuming we make SA). Therefore, Bocanegra for defense and potentially Castillo for offense (Which means mostly Bocanegra). Incidentally, just to get a dose of the US actually overachieving, I watched a replay of the 2002 US/Portugal WC game. Frankie played the left back over Regis, not well but exuberantly. It wouldn’t be such a terrible thing to include Frankie for heart and clubhouse presence. Here’s a crazy thought. What if we were actually ahead in a WC game and we brought Frankie in aroud 75′ not as RB or LB but as right mid for tiring winger to harass any opposing winger,prevent crosses, go into corners and generally give his life for the team, something like the Coby Jones role in 2002. Maybe not. Probably silly.

  99. len says:

    Incidentally, I actually liked Goodsen who I thought was more mobile than some of our large men in the back. If my memory serves me correctly wasn’t he a longhaired stringbean who played for Dallas at 6’4″ and about 145 pounds? He looks stronger now and still fairly quick.

    To return to another point of discussion, I see people advocating Dempsey to the bench as a late sub for a forward. I don’t think you put goals on the bench. I still think he should be up top with Altidore. People have fallen in love with Davies but I still think he is limited in tactical awareness. I think his speed coming on late would be devastating to tired defenders. Unfortunately, I think it’s probably a moot point because we’re likely to keep seeing the same formation with Dempsey on the wing, therefore no Holden until late, double defensive midfielders, therefore no Feilhaber until late etc. It’s already all been said. There is some talent here. Go after the game from the start instead of setting yourself up to chase it at the end. I just keep hoping the cream (talented players) will somehow find a way to rise to the top even with limited opportunities. I should add that I like Charlie Davies especially his potential and I think Altidore/Davies is a good strike pair. We could win with them (and I hope so). I just think the total team is better with Dempsey in the picture at striker.

    (SBI-The Goodson backlash stems from the Gold Cup final loss to Mexico. How quickly people forgot about the rest of his tournament, which was better than most, including myself, expected from him.)

  100. metrostar 4 life says:

    minus Goodson and Perkins.. and we then look legit

  101. RevsFan says:

    Do nottt even bother mentioning Eddie Johnson

  102. Chris from OC says:

    “I heard Claudio was considering coming out of retirement….

    Posted by: milkshake of despair | September 16, 2009 at 04:04 PM”
    ——————————————-

    Man that would be a scary thought–

    In any case, I forgot who it was in the many comments before mine that took a look at Orozco as compared to the rest of our current back line. The difference (and it’s an important one) has to be comfort on the ball. As much as I like Gooch and Boca, they don’t really distribute well. At the very least, when they get the ball in the back they seem to be thinking “Oh crap, I have the ball! Gotta get rid of it!” I haven’t seen Orozco that much, but if he does keep a cool head–and use it to make good decisions about distribution–then maybe he deserves a look. Same goes for Torres at mid. IMO he seems comfortable on the ball, I would prefer him over Clark– but I’m a big fan of Holden (as a super sub at least; he brings lots of energy).

  103. r.benjamin says:

    Ives – I’d be interested in who your picks for the 23 would be. I agree with the names you put in guessing what Bradley would do but like most here I would choose differently.

    Put me down as:
    -Rather have EJs speed than Ching’s “hold up”
    -Giving Castillo and Orozco serious runs to determine their inclusion over FH and JB.
    -As serious a look as possible at JFT or BF combo with Jones

    BTW – The league you perform in is HUGE. I look great in the over30 but pretty slow in mens open v 23 year olds. Speed of play and being used to it is everything.

  104. andrew says:

    should we call in Tony Sanneh as well?

    Posted by: gabe | September 16, 2009 at 01:21 PM

    gibbs is only 29. it’s just kind of odd he doesn’t get more looks. is he really that bad at colorado?

  105. euroman says:

    Great feature Ives.

    I think Orozco was left off the roster for a while in favor of Marshall and Goodson due to the fact they were both the DEFENDER OF THE YEAR in their respective leagues. Califf was a first team choice for awhile. Then he started not showing well and these two guys were in line before Orozco due to their club form. Just because of the league someone plays in doesn’t make their quality. Their performance in whichever league needs to be to certain level. All that being said… i like the kid and hope he gets continued consideration. The racism and blackballing talk is silly (Pablo has been capped since ’06 right?). There are many other logical reasons to be considered.

    Posted by: Paul Westerberg | September 16, 2009 at 02:52 PM

    Goodson was the Player of the Year league -wide not a mere Defender of the Year.

  106. Joeja Joga Bonito says:

    I’m so glad to see that most fans see the complete lack of talent in Conor Casey and Brian Ching. It seems like they get playing time simply for being taller than our other forwards. If you’re a “target forward” but you cant do anything skillfull w/ the ball then what’s the use?

    (SBI-A little late to the party no? Nobody’s calling either of those guys Ibrahimovic, but to say they can’t do anything skillful with the ball is a bit much.)