Klinsmann breaks down USMNT Gold Cup roster selections

Jurgen Klinsmann

photo by ISIphotos.com

By FRANCO PANIZO

The U.S. Men’s National Team’s Gold Cup campaign will essentially be one giant tryout for the players involved.

That was the easy message to take away from Jurgen Klinsmann’s conference call on Thursday, one in which the U.S. head coach discussed his player selection for the upcoming Gold Cup at length. Klinsmann revealed many of the reasons why players were summoned or left behind and he touched on the status of former captain Carlos Bocanegra, whose international future seems to be in jeopardy after being left off this Gold Cup team.

“With Carlos, I had a long talk,” said Klinsmann. “He’s basically in the middle of another move, in the middle of another change. He’s going to leave, it looks like today, Racing Santander and he’s in the middle of making up his mind of where he wants to go, where he wants to kind of continue his career. We simply agreed to leave him out of the roster in order for him to have all options open to join a new team right away from the start in preseason and not coming in kind of late into this new opportunity.”

Klinsmann also spoke about the status of Mix Diskerud, a Norwegian-American midfielder who could represent either country but has in recent years represented only the United States. Diskerud will be cap-tied to the U.S. should he play in one of the Gold Cup matches, and Klinsmann hopes to accomplish that as well as help the youngster with his development.

“With Mix, we have a very special talent that he showed in the (U-23) team and showed that in some moments with us. We want to continue to develop the way he reads the game, how he has opportunities to go in the box, he scored a goal in Russia in the last second there. We want to continue to build him. We’re happy to have him back. He made his decision to go with us, the U.S., and that’s exciting. If he plays a game now in the Gold Cup, he’ll be tied to us and that’s great as well.”

Here are some of the other topics Klinsmann touched on during the conference call:

On Landon Donovan’s return to the squad after his self-imposed sabbatical:

“Landon coming back to our group is exciting and this (is) a wonderful opportunity for him now to prove where he’s at now after his break and after a couple months now back with the Galaxy. We’re curious to see how he picks up the rhythm, the speed and tempo and all the elements, and therefore we’re excited to have him back. … We’re simply happy to have him back and to see him now over a stretch of seven games performing.”

On the inclusion of Philadelphia Union striker Jack McInerney:

“We are obviously following him, we’re excited about the progress that he’s making. I had a long talk with his coach and we see a lot of talent coming through. He’s a hungry kid, he’s hungry for goals, he can score goals in many different ways, he’s providing assists, he’s chasing people down, he’s highly energetic, so we just kind of want to open him the door as part of our group and kind of see him on a daily basis in training and possibly in games as well. It’s a huge step for him in our senior program.”

On the status of midfielder Stuart Holden:

“He’s very close, he’s very close. The plan was to kind of give him a rhythm, give him high-intensity training, give him opportunities there and continue that throughout the summer. I think that plan is going well so far and not only that he’s kind of improved with us day-by-day in training. He also was very crucial in these couple of weeks there with the World Cup qualifiers in terms of chemistry because he’s a pure giver, he’s a guy that puts everybody in a good mood, he’s looking after younger players, he’s looking around where are issues, where are things maybe (he) can help with. The plan so far is coming along and now obviously he’s getting closer to start games himself.”

On the omission of New England Revolution forward Juan Agudelo:

“We wish in terms of Juan that he’s just getting more consistent, more consistent game-in, game-out, not only in terms of scoring goals, which obviously for a striker is very, very important and it gives you a lot of confidence, but performance-wise as well. It’s a process he still has to learn and he has to go through, too many still up-and-downs, so he’s working on that and hopefully he can get that balance and get that consistency and then he’s right back in our picture as well.”

On the absence of Chicago Fire attacker Mike Magee:

“Mike is a player we follow, absolutely, but he didn’t make then the 35 but we follow all the MLS games, we follow what goes on everywhere, we talk to the coaches. Mike is in our picture as well but not now for the Gold Cup.”

On why winger Brek Shea was not included in the final roster:

“With Brek, I had long talks and also with his new coach Mark Hughes and after those long talks we decided that it’s really best to Brek to join their preseason at Stoke (City) starting on July 8. But I also agreed with Mark Hughes and with Brek that he could come into San Diego and join that week with us because I want to spend a couple of days with Brek and have a couple of conversations and be in that group. Brek will join us for that week in San Diego plus the game against Guatemala and after that game he will basically leaves us on July 6 going to Stoke and getting on the right foot with Stoke. It’s really, really important that he starts out well with Stoke and gets a starting spot there and breaks in in order for him to get a breakthrough in Europe.”

On why centerback Oguchi Onyewu was called in despite having little playing time with Malaga this past season:

“We kept in touch. We talked always openly about it. In certain moments, he was actually promised to play games by his coach who moved on to Manchester City and for whatever reason he didn’t have that opportunity. But obviously knowing him over the last few years, we know the quality of Gooch. We know what his level can be and we talked two, three months ago about that opportunity at the Gold Cup.

“I told him, ‘I’m thinking of bringing you in but you’ve got to come in, you’ve got to be sharp, you’ve got to be ready, you’ve got to be strong,’ because if he is in very, very good shape and he’s very focused and he he picks up the rhythm he can be the centerback that you all know.

“There are always moments as a coach where you have to make a compromise in how you approach things. Yes, you want all the players playing at their club teams regularly, always as a starter and hopefully always playing consistently at a high level. But then there are moments where you also look at players (who aren’t playing) and there’s a reason, circumstances, whatever they are, you try to analyze them, you try to talk to them and then you come up with your decision.

“Having him in that camp as one of the leaders then because automatically with his experience, with Clarence Goodson there, we have two very, very experienced and strong centerbacks that can lead a whole back line and it’s big. He understands that moment for him is the opportunity for him to get back in our (picture).”

On where forward Herculez Gomez stands in his return to full fitness following a knee injury:

“He’s good to go but obviously we’re going to see right away in the camp how much he caught up. I think it was the right decision just to send him to Athlete’s Performance from the May-June camp and get all the work and all the treatment that he needed. If he’s cleared to go, he’s ready but what we’re going to do on July 2 is the entire team will go through fitness testing at Athlete’s Performance. We’re going to see clearly then what his conditions are and if he’s running behind by a couple of days, it’s no problem then he will catch up over the next few days, so we’re very positive on Herculez.”

On the style of play he hopes to implement at the Gold Cup:

“We definitely kind of want to be consistent with the way we play and tactically our games, but as a coach you always adjust to the players that you have. We will see in training with the players that join in now, but the good thing about going to the Gold Cup is definitely that we have a whole bunch of players that were already with us in the May-June camp that understand exactly how we kind of pick up the rhythm and how we want to play, to continue that path now also in the upcoming games. But when you have different personnel, you adjust to that different personnel. Hopefully, it’s going to be exciting the way we play in the upcoming games.”

On whether he will use the four permitted replacements following the group stage of the Gold Cup:

“It’s very likely the case, looking at it today, but maybe things go extremely well with all 23 now. We have no injuries, no issues. It’s really down to those 23 players to make their mark, to make their case and then we’ll see how we want to switch things around after the group stage is done.”

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143 Responses to Klinsmann breaks down USMNT Gold Cup roster selections

  1. bryan says:

    very interesting comment at the end there.

  2. Can’t wait to see the US v Guatamala game. Looking forward to see Mixx and Jose as well as the return of Gooch and Landon. Go USA!

  3. Dont Care says:

    Not calling in players because they arent getting minutes or arent “consistent” enough at the club level is bush league. The fact is Agudelo has performed and scored at every US level

    • OPMG says:

      It’s not bush league, it’s common sense. If you call in players who haven’t learned to play consistently you get inconsistent performance from them. Look no further than Mexico and Gio Dos Santos. The guy has all the talent in the world, but doesn’t play consistently well for his club or his country. For every brilliant moment the guy has there are 10 more frustrating ones. Agudelo is no different, very talented, but needs to work on some things still.

      • Dont Care says:

        Yeah because Castillo and Torres have looked so consistent for the US right? There is no point in arguing with you when you use Dos Santos as an example. It is common knowledge Gio performs for Mexico DESPITE his lack of club minutes. He was one of mexico’s best players during the Confed Cup. WTF are you talking about?

        • Boss says:

          Maybe Agudelo is getting the Jozy treatment? JK has stressed from Day 1 that it’s a player-by-player process. Jozy, for all his previous success in the USMNT and at the club level, seemed to have some issues with inconsistency that we don’t necessarily see on the field. JK challenged him to mature as a pro, to be more consistent in his professional approach, and it seems to be paying off now. Perhaps Agudelo needs to learn to become “a complete pro” in all aspects that JK references quite a bit and this is his challenge to Agudelo to do so? It’s not always so cut and dry.

          • Dont Care says:

            Or maybe the only thing Jozy needed all along was actual service since he already proved he could score at the international level in meaningful competitions. Once JK finally realized 3 DM’s was a stupid idea and scrapped it for a 4-4-2, the same formation he played in before what a coincedence, he started scoring once AGAIN. Jozy was scoring boatloads of goals before JK left him off the squad and continued to after. JK deserves no credit for Jozy’s work.

            Micheal Bradley was still getting called up despite not playng for Villa and now everyone knows why. Form is temporary Class is permanent

          • Dont Care says:

            Or maybe the only thing Jozy needed all along was actual service since he already proved he could score at the international level in meaningful competitions. Once JK finally realized 3 DM’s was a stupid idea and scrapped it for a 4-4-2, the same formation he played in before what a coincedence, he started scoring once AGAIN. Jozy was scoring boatloads of goals before JK left him off the squad and continued to after. JK deserves no credit for Jozy’s work.

            Micheal Bradley was still getting called up despite not playng for Villa and now everyone knows why. Form is temporary Cl@$$ is permanent

            • Andy N says:

              @Dont Care: Are you related to Agudelo? He has potential sure but clearly hasn’t put it together on the field for his MLS sides so why should he be called up?

            • Dan says:

              Not sure what games you were watching, but Jozy didn’t get service because he simply stood at the 18 and waited-Which won’t cut it at the MNT level. Remember laughing out loud during the friendly before he got dropped…Commentators Lalas & Darke were making fun of him for just standing there – asking if he was awake. And if you are referring to class…Jozy is better known for his partying attitude and sleeping/hungover through a match and not showing up while in Europe than his form. It’s only recently that he’s grown up and taken it seriously…glad he woke up…still waiting for Adu and Aguedelo to do the same…Balotelli attitude without the talent

              • Brian says:

                Dan,

                I have no idea where you got your information about Jozy. I lived in France, Germany and Belgium and follow all the Americans abroad. I have NEVER heard anything about his partying and hungover game day demeanor. In his early days (19/20 yrs), it was his lack of consistent effort in practice. Elite soccer players is the US are not used to that grind.

                I cannot stand it when people spread self-perpetuated innuendos and rumors. If you have proof (citations etc) of what you are saying please educate us, and I will eat my words.

        • DCGooner says:

          Easy there big boy

        • Judging Amy says:

          Gio is a talented player no doubt. But definitely inconsistent at club and National level. Maybe it’s just youth, but he’s definitely inconsistent.

      • futbolisimo says:

        Then, in light of this logic, how do you justify calling in Onyewu?

    • Old School says:

      Oh, look. Another JK hater!

      • Dont Care says:

        hahahhaha cant refute anything i say so you call me a hater!!! hahhaha I expected that kind of sh!t from you

    • liberoo says:

      Or maybe JK knows something about developing strikers. If memory serves, he was relatively good as one.

      • biff says:

        Or maybe at the current time Juan Agudelo is simply just a mediocre player who was called to the USMTN two years ago light years before he was ready. Agudelo has potential, no doubt about that. But on this snub I agree 100% with Klinsmann. Agudelo should focus on developing his skills and he can make his case after WC 2014 and try to win a spot during the WC 2018 cycle. (And, by the way, this is now where I see Terrence Boyd. Not anywhere near good enough for this WC 2014 cycle.)

        • Andy N says:

          +1. We could say the same thing about Shea too. Whenever I see Shea and Agudelo play, they clearly lack an understanding of team play. Once in awhile they create a nice something out of nothing but far too often they’re out there like chickens with their heads cut off.

          • GW says:

            If Shea is playing at his best you can put him on either wing and he will go at the fullback and then head for goal. He is big, tall, fast and strong, aggressive and relentless.

            He can cause all kinds of problems for defenses.

            I am not saying he is in that class but he is the closest thing to Bale that the US has.

            Juan and Boyd have their qualities but they can’t do what Shea does. If Brek can get it together and do a good job for Stoke, I have no doubt he is going to Brazil.

            • biff says:

              Agree on Shea, with the double images of the two times he burned Mexico for goals. That said, he better start develolping quickly or he also is going to have to skip WC 2014 and try again for WC 2018. He really needs to grow up and work work work

        • Dont Care says:

          If Agudelo is mediocre then what does that make Mixx. Cant even make it in the Belgium league. Ill go by what I and many other coaches have seen in person. Agudelo looked so much better than any other players on the olympic team before he got injured. His touch and vision is something this team can use.

          • biff says:

            Point taken. Mediocre is too extreme. My wrong. He definitely is above average for players his age. But I still maintain he does not deserve to be on the Gold Cup team and that he should needs to develop a lot more and is not in consideration for WC 2014. His time will come for WC 2014. I personally think, and have said this several times, that he would be a better attacking midfielder than forward.

        • Dan says:

          personally watched Agudelo & Adu party like they wuz ganstas and their egos ruin their talent. Juan still has hope to turn it around. Freddy has a million $$ ego in a 10 cent head and is running out of countries to get bounced from

        • Colin says:

          Personally I think that both Shea and Boyd will be on the plane to Brazil. I think Shea will get some real minutes at Stoke this upcoming season and hopefully really mature as a player…

          Personally I think Boyd, who repeatedly scored goals for his club in a decent league and in Europe, is one of our best striker options.
          Striker Depth Chart (Not including Dempsey or Donovan)
          1. Altidore
          2. Gomez
          3. Boyd
          4. Eddie Johnson (plays more than Boyd as a winger not as a striker)
          5. Jack McInerney
          6. Jaun Agudelo
          7. Will Bruin
          8. Chris Wondolowski
          9. Alan Gordon
          10. Edson Buddle

          • biff says:

            @Colin: I am a huge fan of Boyd, but no way in heck is he better at the current time that Eddie Johnson or Chris Wondolowski, and probably at least a couple of others on your list. A year ago he was playing in the regional league for Dortmund’s team and last year in the Austrian league, one of the lowest leagues in Europe. If he does not get an offer this summer to transfer to a better team in a better league, then that would be strong indication that he simply has not yet developed enough to be taken seriously. And as I said after the Germany game, I thought Boyd’s late appearance was embarrassing, almost comical. Showed a lack of maturity and team spirit and even Clint had to talk to him. That did it for me. I do not want to see him on the precious 23-member roster for WC 2014. We need someone level-headed as a back-up who can score goals and someone Klinsmann can trust not to get carried away on the field and do something stupid.

            Boyd has not yet given one bit of evidence that he deserves a spot on the USMNT. If he were the exact same person and skills born on the US and playing in the MLS, he probably would not have been called into so many USMNT camps, if any at all.

            All that said, Boyd has potential and maybe he will be involved in the WC 2018 cycle.

          • Lost in Space says:

            Colin – The USNT uses 2 types of forwards. Holding/Target Striker & Withdrawn/Underneath. When you look at what is asked of each type its clearer who is in compitition with whom….
            Holding/Target Strikers: Big boddied, Airial, etc…
            Altidore, Boyd, Bruin, & Possibly Agudelo
            Withdrawn/Underneath: Finds the holes & makes the late runs into the box.
            Dempsey, Gomez, EJ, McInerney/Wondo, Possibly Agudelo & Bedoya
            Gordon & Buddle should not be included in the discussion but if really needed….they are both Holding/Target men.
            Looking at it from this perspective it is easier to see why both Boyd & Agudelo (while still rough around the edges) will continue to get chances and both have an excellent chancely to be on the plane to Brazil.

    • Brendan says:

      So which forward does he deserve to make it over?

      At a certain point you have to prove it on the field. I’m glad JK doesn’t just hand spots to guys based solely off their names and whether they have consistently been picked int he past.

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        Wondo. Not really hard, that one. There’s a list of talented people like Juan, Boyd, et al who are not this generation’s Twellman. Juan is not necessarily the best option but he and that group are more worthwhile than Wondo, who reverts back to Dynamo Hustle Player when he goes international.

        • Colin says:

          At a tournament like this, I would rather see players like agduelo and Boyd who have actual upside and could be starters in key games rather than Wondo.

          • The Imperative Voice says:

            I agree, Wondo has no apparent upside, all he does is hustle to make the coach happy. This is the way he used to be on the Dynamo. He clearly found a vein of form for SJ but it doesn’t translate.

            However, Boyd, Agudelo, I’ve seen them translate. Boyd can hold up with some skill, and Agudelo can hit a cross and dance around some.

            Yeah, I’ve said it a million times we shouldn’t be wasting any time here on people who’ve had bad showings before. He leaves Adu off but Wondo and some others on. If you know someone stinks go try and find someone else who doesn’t. [This is how you end up with Bornstein out there....]

    • slowleftarm says:

      Picking people based on how they’re playing at their club is pretty standard. It seems bizarre to question it.

    • GW says:

      “Not calling in players because they arent getting minutes or arent “consistent” enough at the club level is bush league”

      Okay, so he should call in players who are on the bench?

      “The fact is Agudelo has performed and scored at every US level”

      If that is the criteria, then there a quite a few players JK is snubbing.

      Your version of the USMNT would be very interesting. Rusty , but interesting

  4. Bac says:

    Well it looks like he’s answered a few of our questions
    1. Good to see the Boca situation was handled well, sounds like it was a mutual deal
    2. Sounds like his Donovan message is, ” ok, you’ve had your break, (& I’ve made my point) so now here’s your shot.. if you’re still the man you have 7 games to show it” It’s a win win for us at this point… if he plays well there’s no way to keep him off the roster going forward
    3. Sounds like he wants to stick with the 4-2-3-1 unless something drastic changes

    • Paul Miller says:

      And he has to show it, because he’ll be playing against other CONCACAF B rosters – at least for the other five Hex teams. If Donovan still can help us against the teams we’ll see in Brazil next year, he ought to be fairly dominant in this tournament.

      I’d like to see him playing the wing opposite Gatt. That would be a great mentoring experience for Gatt, and having that kind of speed on both sides of the field ought to open some space for Donovan.

      • Bac says:

        Exactly right, that’s why its such a win win…
        You got plenty of time in camp
        You have at least 5 different teams to play against
        You have a nice mix of vets to play with and youth to show leadership

        The way this has played out can only make the team better..if he regains his performance he puts himself and the team in a stronger deeper position, if not he’s had more than ample opportunity to win his spot back
        Plus with the other players that have been called in, there’s a lot of flexibility where to see him….
        I think LD, Stu, and Bedoya have the most near-term upside at this point

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Boca would be in offseason shape trying to fight for his Brazil chances. I know the PR is he’s team-shopping but the reality of it is he needs to find a team, get in form and shape, then come back and give it his best shot, sink or swim. It’s not just standard transfer flux.

  5. Amru says:

    I really hope Corona gets some good quality minutes in this cup. If he shows well I’d love to see him on the wing instead of Zusi, who, IMO, is very limited at the international level.

    • the unmistakeable Ronaldinho says:

      Zusi might not be as talented as some other guys but he always brings it in terms of intensity and work rate. He showed really well on the left vs Hondruas and on the right in other games. He can play multiple roles and you know that no matter what he is going to be working is a$$ off for the team. Every team needs a guy like him.

      • zztoppppp says:

        +1

      • Glenn says:

        RB?

      • Judging Amy says:

        Funny that a guy has a great showing over an array of different opponents, being key to unlocking a previously sputtering offense and people still pine for the unproven option. It’s a real gr@ss is greener, shiny, new toy type of mentality. There’s a lot of hard working, blue collar type of players in the US and MLS. Zusi has that trait but he’s also intelligent and a flat out gamer.

    • zztoppppp says:

      It blows my mind that there are still Zusi haters even after he has played so well in his last 5 appearances. Come to think of it, he hasn’t had a bad performance for the US ever.

      He may not be an international superstar, but he is consistent, works harder than almost anyone else, tracks back well on defense and has been feeding Altidore with great service. Seriously what more can you ask for?

      • SanFran415 says:

        Who knows at this point. A comment like “Zusi is very limited at the international level” reeks of a fact-free agenda.

        Zusi is a winger who has been delivering inch perfect balls and has what, 3 @ssists in the last 4 games? He’s been brilliant.

        • Amru says:

          2 @ssists in the last 4. His service has been adequate, nothing to write home about. He mishits too many balls for my liking. He has great defensive work rate, but doesn’t have the technical ability or speed to create space for himself. So no, it is not a “fact free agenda,” just seeing a player for what he is.

          • Dan says:

            never been about having the best players…just the right ones together on the pitch

          • Joamiq says:

            Adequate service is better than anything else we’re getting from our wingers these days. He mis-hits some balls, but also delivers some beautiful ones.

        • Amru says:

          2 a$$ists in the last 4. His service has been adequate, nothing to write home about. He mishits too many balls for my liking. He has great defensive work rate, but doesn’t have the technical ability or speed to create space for himself. So no, it is not a “fact free agenda,” just seeing a player for what he is.

        • GW says:

          I love Zusi because he is a former Terp and because he is one of those guys who finds a way.

          Saying he has been brilliant, however, is little much.

          As far as I’m concerned he deserves to go to Brazil and he deserves to play a lot; beyond that we’ll see. I prefer the expression :”trust but verify”.

          He is the attacking midfielder version of Beckerman. Tell him what you want and he will find a way to do it.

          He has been great but the games are only going to get harder. And smarts and a “can do attitude” will only go so far

          Graham, who has no left foot, a liability when you switch wings as much as he does, will have a harder time against Italy or Spain than against Panama or Honduras.

          Given that it only makes sense to get him some help and reduce the expectations.

          • Ross says:

            Every U.S. player will have a harder time against Italy and Spain then against Honduras and Panama. That’s not an argument to replace him with someone else.
            He’s had 2 assists in 4 games. What other US player has done that?

      • That Guy says:

        I think people question his ability against bigger teams. He has done well and deserves credit, however; it is fair to be skeptical because I would argue he has not been truly challenged. Compared to others in the pool, I would argue he does not have the talent and abilities that others have. Regardless, Zusi has out shined those with more talent and skill with work ethic. I personally look forward to seeing a player with more potential step up and overtake Zusi’ starting spot, but I will want Zusi on the bench for the USMNT because I know we can trust him to deliver what we know he is able to do and give his all

        • Amru says:

          This^ is exactly what I meant. People need to chill out and not be so quick to jump down other people’s throats. It’s not unfair to say he is limited. He’s been fine against concacaf teams and I would still have him in my starting line up, but come WC time I hope someone with more ability overtakes him

          • the unmistakeable Ronaldinho says:

            What is it about Corona that makes you think he is more talented? I haven’t seen him play very much but it was my understanding he was not playing much for his club team at the end of the season and he was not impressing the little time he got.

            • Amru says:

              I should have said more offensive ability. He’s more dynamic and has the ability to create space for himself. But like I said, if he doesn’t show well it doesn’t matter if he has more ability or not.

      • Roberto says:

        “He may not be an international superstar, but he is consistent, works harder than almost anyone else”

        This sounds like a description of a lot of US players that have had extremely successful careers with the national team.

        • Brian S. says:

          That’s a perfect description of Brian McBride and Frankie Hejduk and they seem to have done ok for themselves.

      • Paul Miller says:

        I’m one of those former Zusi haters. Well, I’ve put my hate on the back burner for a while, lol. Have to admit, Zusi has well exceeded what I was expecting from him.

    • Del Griffin says:

      Geez, with the way Zusi has played, if you think he is limited, I would hate to see what you have to say about the rest of the team.

    • EspinDOHla says:

      Wow, Amru!!

      If you weren’t impressed with Zusi in June then I don’t know what you were watching because I don’t think it was the USMNT….

      • Amru says:

        The only impressive thing about him is his work rate and intelligence, which isn’t a bad thing, but everything else about his game pretty average. Although, he is currently the best option we have at that position.

  6. KJ says:

    So Agudelo doesn’t get called because of playing time, but Gooch, the bench warmer, gets called? Odd. I don’t particularly like Agudelo, just wondering…

    • SanFran415 says:

      ?

      It clearly states that Agudelo wasn’t brought in because he hasn’t been consistent in his form.

      You just made that “playing time” up because there’s not single word in Klinsmann’s answer about about playing time.

      • Juan's Dad says:

        Maybe, but it does seem like Jurgen is going out of his wat to eventually get Shea on the team, but not Juan

        • SanFran415 says:

          No. There’s no maybe.

          Reality is one thing. What you “feel” is not reality.

        • Joamiq says:

          What about him leaving Shea off the team tells you he’s trying to eventually get him on the team?

      • Dan says:

        Gooch’s last chance is up…Agudelo still has 1-2 WC runs to shape up & mature

    • gabe says:

      different players, different position, different depth. at this point, the B team’s depth at CB is more shallow than their depth at forward. hard to complain about Agudelo’s omission based on the FWDs that were included.

    • Juan says:

      Agudelo looks consistent to me since he’s been starting. He has much more upside than Herc.

      It’s really more about who JK likes. If he likes you, none of the rules others are held to apply. If he doesnt like you… youre history

      • Judging Amy says:

        I think US fans sometimes harp too much on the perceived “rules” for call ups. It really might be a little bit more about who JK “likes” in terms of call ups than the “rules” or guidelines for getting a callup. I’m frankly OK with that. He’s a coach, not a legal system. There’s a human element and gut instinct thing to forming your team. There’s probably a milllion little variables a guy as experienced as Klinsmann sees when evaluating his team. Maybe he doesn’t articulate them all.

        • louis z says:

          there is no “rules”, maybe “guidelines” that JK tends to bend or break when he pleases.

      • Paul Miller says:

        You have to give some benefit of doubt to the guy who sees the players in practice, sees them in the locker room, knows first hand what player instructions each is given, etc.

        I don’t know why Agudelo wasn’t rostered, but we’re hardly talking about a benched Oliver Kahn situation. Agudelo is a young kid who shows a lot of potential at times, but who simply is not yet an obvious choice, even for our B team. A little surprising he’s not there, but hardly shocking.

      • GW says:

        Juan,

        So what?

        The question is why does JK like Player X more than Player Y?

        If JK thinks Player X is better for his team then I expect he will play X and leave Y out. And that is what he is supposed to do.

        What you are really saying is you should be the one making the decision because you know more than JK. But you are not the one. Too bad, huh?

        • beachbum says:

          I didn’t read what Juan said like that at all. What he said was spot on…Klinsmann, like any coach, has favorites. No reason to rip the guy for pointing out the truth

          • GW says:

            beachbum,

            That wasn’t ripping Juan.

            “It’s really more about who JK likes. If he likes you, none of the rules others are held to apply. If he doesnt like you… youre history”

            Juan was implying that JK is unprofessional and selects players for reasons that have nothing to do with their contributions to the team.

            Juan obviously feels like JK in wrong in this and that he (Juan) knows better, for example regarding Agudelo vs Herc. But that decision is JK’s not Juan’s. So too bad for Juan.

            That was just””pointing out the truth”.

    • Gary Page says:

      Gooch has started in previous WC games and has played in Europe in the CL. I think that counts for something.

  7. Ah says:

    Calling in Gooch is silly.

    • Paul Miller says:

      Yeah, the only thing I can figure there is JK was scrambling for anyone who might be better than Goodson to anchor the middle. The Gold Cup isn’t just an A team tryout – there are benefits to winning this tournament, like next Confeds Cup.

      Maybe he reached so deep and young for A team centerbacks, he looked around his depth chart and realized, “oh crap.” Especially if Boca begged off and Brooks isn’t coming our way. I can just see JK’s eyes getting bigger, as he nervously looked around the room at his assistants and asked if anyone still knew Gooch’s number.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Smacks of desperation, I thought Antigua told you all you needed to know. But this suggests a level of discomfort with our CB situation.

      • GW says:

        Two very inexperienced, comparatively untested, CB’s with 7 and 11 caps respectively, manning arguably the most vital sector of the team?

        What discomfort?

        I always said center back was the one place besides goalie where you did not want a rookie in a big game because you could have a great game but one single mistake could be fatal.

        But I guess I was wrong and MBGONZ will not make any mistakes and will stay healthy and in form between now and the World Cup just like Gooch and Jay D. did the year before the 2010 World Cup.

        • The Imperative Voice says:

          Except the serial failure of the veteran options is how we got to this point. Gooch broke down in the buildup to the last World Cup, did not show well after it, and got abused by Byers from Antigua for a bad goal this cycle. Boca hobbled out of the Russia game and is falling apart.

          Which is how we came to be speaking of Cameron/ Besler/ Gonzo/ Goodson/ etc in the first place. I don’t blame us for being concerned but the breakdown of the veterans is how we got here, so it smacks of desperation to bring them back.

          • Joamiq says:

            I mean… we are pretty desperate at CB. I have no problem with giving Gooch a look. Sure, it’s not particularly likely to work, but it’s not like Klinsmann is handing him a starting spot in the first XI.

  8. gabe says:

    I don’t understand the Zusi hate either, and I’m a self-described Euro Snob. Graham Zusi provides quality service from the wings, stays persistent, tracks back well, and runs hard for the full 90 minutes. And for all of you saying “he is not Landon at his peak”…who in the pool is?

    • D says:

      Zusi isn’t dynamic enough. And if you’re a winger who can’t attack 1v1 consistently with speed, you better be David Beckham. Zusi’s service is pretty good, but needs to be better. He doesn’t cause defenders to have to mark extremely tight, thus opening up space for an overlapping back.
      He did play well, and work hard, and provided very good defensive cover. But I prefer a more dynamic player. EJ, or even Davis and slide Fabian Johnson to the right…the real problem is, we need 1 game changer on one flank, so for me Zusi doesn’t cut it, yet. But he can put in the work if he chooses and up his ability.

      • Colin says:

        Agree. Zusi did well. He should definitely make it to Brazil, but I don’t think we want him starting. I would prefer Donovan in his place. Though I do think Zusi is a better overall option than Eddie Johnson.

  9. Sean says:

    So why exactly is Agudelo even on the USMNT radar at this point? He’s got talent and promise for sure, but that hasn’t translated to his club teams at all yet. Jack Mac has definitely earned the nod over Agudelo, in my opinion.

    • biff says:

      Yep. This is true. Agudelo does not deserve to be on the USMNT radar at this point. He was hyped two years ago as an 18-year-old kid with little club experience and put the team ahead better and more experienced players who now have had chances under Klinsmann. I think his agent was the same as Bob and Michael Bradley’s. Might still be. And with Agudelo looking to move to Europe at the end of this season, he no doubt would like to get some playing time with the national team to increase his visibility in Europe. And no doubt Klinsmann is feeling some heat from some to put him on the Gold Cup roster. But after winning those 9 points in three WCQ games in June, Klinsmann, I am sure, is feeling even more confident than usual and ain’t gonna be pushed around.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Yes, Jack I has 10 goals and is the trendy pick, but Juan has as many goals as Wondo (5) and one more than Bruin (4). And I think Juan has more positive history with the team than those two.

    • K says:

      because he has quality. Something most USNT players lack.

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        Agudelo can hit a cross and set people up. I think he’s going through the motions professionally awaiting transfer and Klinsi’s holding it against him. But I think he’s as good as that bunch of Mixx and such that he was on the U23s with — many of whom got this call — and it’s goofy they’re here and he isn’t.

        Bruin was getting repeatedly teed up for Houston last weekend, couldn’t score, and has 1 fewer goal than Agudelo. And he’s a one trick pony target striker. Wondo has the same amount of goals but has shown less for the NT, and seems off his game this year.

    • Colin says:

      I dont think anyone is saying he should have been in the team over Jack, but, give his potential, I do think he should have been in the team over Bruin and Wondo–neither of whom are ever going to be serious contenders for a World Cup spot.

  10. gtv says:

    Really hope Gooch does well. He had flashes of solid play with Sporting CP, but nada at Malaga.

  11. CJinOC says:

    I would contend that Juan just doesn’t have the “hunger” for goals that JK is looking for. What that actually means, I don’t know. But it is word that JK uses a lot when describing his strikers isn’t it? Maybe its a combination of work ethic and nose for goal?

    • GW says:

      Look at Shea. When he has it all going on, he gets the ball and heads for goal and keeps heading for goal.

      He is direct. Juan tends to prance around a lot. But Juan will figure it out. He has all the tools.

      • alocksley says:

        Agudelo has done far better as an international than Shea has. Juan plays well in a US shirt and always has. He has something like 18 goals between youth and MNT sides. Shea has 4.

  12. Gary Page says:

    What a lot of nit picking. I enjoy reading Klinsmann’s reasoning. I don’t recall Bradley or Arena ever giving the fans this kind of insight. I have criticized some of Klinsmann’s moves in the past, but lest we forget that the US is currently at the top of the Hex table and that last year was the most successful in men’s national team history? Guess what, it’s a results driven business and no one has any real reason to complain at this point about Klinsmann’s results. I think it is time to give the man some slack and some credit for knowing just what the heck he is doing.

    • Gary Page says:

      One other thing, how many of the arm chair coaches here have ever won a
      WC or coached a team in one? Klinsmann has done both and we shouldn’t forget the vast amount of knowledge he has about the game. When a former top player fails as a coach, it is not because he doesn’t know the game, but usually because of termperment and knowing how to treat players. Klinsmann seems to be doing well in those departments.

      • Fredo says:

        I’m an armchair coach. Where on the Internet should I go to discuss my thoughts about the USMNT’s coaching, player selections, player form, tactics, games, tournaments and world cup qualifying campaign?

        • beachbum says:

          +1

        • Gary Page says:

          I’m not saying you or anyone doesn’t have that right. I just want to see more comments with substance than I am seeing with this article.

          • beachbum says:

            it was clear what you were saying

            frankly, many of us arm chair folks nailed the need to change the formation, the need to change the tactics…all things Klinsmann has done btw

            there are more examples. it’s not just haters or lovers; some actually get it right, no hating/loving involved

          • Colin says:

            actually think that there a lot of great comments in this comment section, really enjoying it.

    • Rey Pygsterio says:

      I have also been critical of Klinsmann’s approach in the past, but I like his explanations here. Not sure Agudelo ever deserved a spot. He scored that one goal in Nashville and suddenly the Internet said he was the next thing. If he were that good, Chivas (Chivas!) would have wanted to keep him. Here’s hoping Wondo finally gets it going and scores some goals.

      Freddy Adu to the Cosmos should happen.

      • Colin says:

        Chivas did want to keep him, but he was not signing a new contract. He is very talented and I have a lot of hopes for him… Don’t give up on him yet.

  13. Rags in DC says:

    Why did he call Beasley in for the Gold Cup? Shouldn’t Castillo get that time? Or look for a younger option? Unless he is going to try him on the wing (his actual position).

    I’m excited to see LD, Gooch, Stu, Bedoya, Mixx and Corona. The latter three as players that seem to have a lot of skill whom I’ve not seen much of.

    • Bac says:

      I think he wants to see if Beas is a real option for the team at LB permanently, and how the entire left side will work with Donovan in camp. With Castillo there also he gives himself more options to look at. I think we will see Donovan line up in several spots, and with both Beas and Castillo available and 5-7 games to see, I think he’s just thinking ahead… There’s really no other A team starters out there for now, so I think that’s the reasoning

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Beasley can play LB and LM, and adds some veteran quality and experience to what I see as an underpowered and inexperienced set of backs.

      Castillo has played so poorly there occasionally that I think he’s this bunch’s Bornstein. Wise not to put all his eggs in that basket.

      I’d have liked to see Lichaj get his chance.

      • Colin says:

        No question Lichaj should have been called in… Been frequently discussed on SBI before, but Klinsman seems to have it out against him. Needs to be at least called into one game, when he sees significant minutes across the entire back line for a prem team.

        • Goalscorer24 says:

          I would like to see Lichaj get called in to, but it is so hard to say what the truth is. We don’t know the behind the scenes information. Just like I though Boca would have been called in, they talked, and he is looking for a team. Lichaj in the meanwhile is starting with a new club. Would it be prudent to pull him during pre-season? Or maybe Klinsmann doesn’t like him or rate him highly. Could be any of those reasons.

          • The Imperative Voice says:

            Wouldn’t a good showing in Gold Cup be a nice sales pitch? Boca may want to sign immediately and get into summer training with his new club, but in Lichaj’s case where he has less of a history and a rep, it might be useful to show what he has on a decently strong stagem and then go out and offer himself around. There is more than one way to do things.

            It’s like, some people like Danny Garcia sign before a tournament, use the threat of success as leverage, some people sign after the tournament, use the success itself.

            I go back to, Lichaj helped state his personal case last Gold Cup which is the whole reason half of us talk about him since he hasn’t been given tons of chances in the interim between then and now.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      FWIW, the other LB roster option is Corey Ashe and I think that’s nuts.

      I think we may see Beasley playing in different spots.

      • Rags in DC says:

        Thanks for the feedback. Makes sense. Was a bit surprised he was the holdover from the a team. But if you aren’t sure of Castillo ( I am unsure) its good to have him. I really hope he gets to play up the pitch on the wing at points in this tournament.

        • The Imperative Voice says:

          When I thought about it there were so many LBs that Beasley can’t be intended to play there every game. But the fact that he is on the roster could be seen as less than full faith in Ashe and Castillo.

    • Joamiq says:

      This is what I’m most confused about as well. Beasley has proven that he deserves a spot on the 23, and he’s old and should be taking a break now.

      I also would have liked to have seen Wood get a shot over Wondolowski. Other than that the roster is pretty much as expected, and is fine. Should have every shot to win the tournament.

  14. Tom Traubert says:

    I’m encouraged…Klinsi has a plan. That’s a good thing. His positive attitude might pay off in Brazil. I also like his frankness regarding each player. Maybe he’s worth the $$$ after all.

  15. Andrés says:

    Unfortunately, Beckerman will most likely start but I hope to see:

    McInerney Gomez
    Donovan Corona
    Torres Holden
    Castillo Orozco Onyewu Parkhurst
    Rimando

    • Andrés says:

      ————-McInerney Gomez———-
      Donovan ————————Corona
      ————–Torres—Holden————–
      Castillo Orozco Onyewu Parkhurst
      —————–Rimando——————

  16. Michael F SBI Mafia Original says:

    I like the roster but I’m not sure that defense can keep pace with the speed of our opponents.
    It could be a disaster.

    • biff says:

      +1 I generally like the roster, except for the CBs. That said, I would be tickled pink if Gooch turns in a solid GC showing and proves me wrong. I think in WC 2014 we need one veteran CB on the bench to provide leadership for the kids.

  17. biff says:

    One thing that strikes me about the roster is the mixture of “very experienced” players with USMNT rookies. In mother words, if Corona gets a start he likely would be in a midfield with experienced guys like Beckerman and Torres and Donovan, rather than other rookies. This will give Klinsmann a better indication of what the rookies can do if called to A-team in September/October.

    I am think that Alejandro Bedoya might be a “break-out” player in the Gold Cup. If 2 or 3 can impress would be a major success.

    • Lost in Space says:

      Players most likely to raise their standing in the US Player Pool:
      Donovan, Bedoya, Holden, Mixx, Corrona
      Players given a chance to solidify their position within the team:
      Gomez, Castillo, Beasley
      Players looking at their last chance:
      Gooch, Beckerman, Parkhurst, Wondo