Klinsmann names Beasley USMNT Gold Cup captain

DaMarcus Beasley

By IVES GALARCEP

U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has named veteran DaMarcus Beasley as the U.S. captain for the upcoming CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Beasley, who recently surpassed 100 caps, heads into the Gold Cup after a strong run in the June World Cup qualifiers, and he will now be counted on to lead a team with a mix of veterans and national team newcomers.

“DaMarcus is a pure giver,” Klinsmann said. “When we called him in back in March he told me he would play whatever role we asked, and he has proven his point over the last several months with some tremendous performances.

“He’s a great guy to have around the locker room,” Klinsmann added. “He always has a smile and brings a lot of positive energy. His leadership and experience will be very valuable in this tournament, and he can help connect some of the younger players to what we have been building.”

A veteran of four previous Gold Cups (2002, 2003, 2005 and 2007), and a starter in the 2005 and 2007 Gold Cup finals (both won by the U.S.) Beasley brings a wealth of experience in the competition, and he enters having played excellently at left back for the U.S. in World Cup qualifying wins vs. Jamaica and Panama in June, as well as in March qualifiers vs. Costa Rica and Mexico.

The selection might come as a surprise to some given the presence of Landon Donovan on the roster, but it makes plenty of sense to make Beasley the captain considering he was actually on the team for most of the U.S. team’s matches this year.

What do you think of the selection of Beasley as Gold Cup captain? Surprised? Impressed? See Beasley having a big tournament? Think he can win his fourth Gold Cup title as a player?

Share your thoughts below.

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69 Responses to Klinsmann names Beasley USMNT Gold Cup captain

  1. Chris says:

    Beasley and Holden are great locker room guys. Because of that, I think it’s a pretty safe bet they are on the 23 to Brazil (assuming they stay healthy)

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      This suggests to me DmB will get played a lot, maybe in different spots, this Gold Cup. You would want your captain playing each game.

      This then also suggests that other potential candidates like Holden, Gomez, and Landon will be playing less — Gomez actually struck me as the most distinguished of the bunch — and also probably underlines that Holden and Donovan have been off the team a long time and have something to prove to JK. Landon would have made the most sense from a historical perspective but apparently JK could care less, “show me.”

      I expect Beckerman to play plenty but this would seem to suggest he’s not taken super-serious, which would be a fair read.

      It’s a decent choice and DmB played fine in recent games. I wonder if the people criticizing this have looked down the roster at who is available. It’s the B team and he’s one of a handful of quasi A players in with the B roster.

      • GW says:

        “This suggests to me DmB will get played a lot, maybe in different spots, this Gold Cup. You would want your captain playing each game.”

        I doubt DMB will play any more than he would have had he not been named captain. Captains get subbed all the time. In fact in Europe some team captains don’t even play every game.

        DMB was made captain because JK wants to reward his exceptional attitude and make an example of it. It’s a perfectly logical thing to do.

        And DMB and Beckerman play different positions. Why should DMB’s PT affect Beckerman’s?

        “also probably underlines that Holden and Donovan have been off the team a long time and have something to prove to JK”

        That needed underlining? Stu has never been a regular starter for the USMNT so why would you make him captain? Holden has not yet shown he can contribute on the playing side.
        Stu has already served his purpose, which was that his overwhelming desire to play for the USMNT in spite of all the obstacles was something JK wanted to highlight and reward, especially in comparison to LD’s commitment issues.

        But now the prodigal son is back. LD has served his time and is officially forgiven by being named to this squad, and all that controversy is so two months ago.

        Now the question with LD and Holden is can these guys play at the required level or not? We’ll soon see.

      • Nate says:

        Curious that You consider Gomez more distinguished than Donovan or Beasley…In what way? Also that one would even consider giving Holden the captaincy when he did not start a game in the last qualifying round, nor any national team game for over a year.

        i think it simply comes down to picking the most experienced player who has been a part of the teams recent run of good form. (why would you pick Beckerman, who last played for the nats in 2011 with 18 total caps over Beasley’s 100?)

        Sure, its about Beasley, but its also very much about JK validating his approach to managing the team. If Donovan performs the way hes capable of, expect to see him in the next round of qualifiers. I think going into Brazil, its between Timmy and Dempsey for captain.

  2. Eric says:

    Was expecting Beckerman to get the armband, but no complaints at all with DMB having it. He’s experienced, talented, and has willingly played out of position all year for the sake of the team’s success. He has earned it.

  3. Petaluman says:

    Didn’t see this coming. I guess giving it to Donovan would have been weird?

    • Eric says:

      I think it would have. Every indication is that Landon has to re-earn his spot on the team, and that includes any captaincy duties in the absence of Clint Dempsey or Tim Howard.

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        I do think this is just the playing out of Klinsi’s pre-existing thought process on Landon, but you could make the same “earn your Brazil spot” comment about almost everyone here so that kind of cancels out. Does Corey Ashe or Jack I or Will Bruin or Wondo really have any superior claim to trust and quality? Depending if Chandler and FJ and certain others are committed, motivated, and healthy, not even DmB could assume he’s a lock.

    • FattyMatty says:

      I’m not sure what you mean by weird, but my take is that instead of sending the wrong message to the team by awarding Donovan the armband, JK is giving Donovan the opportunity to solely focus on his game. As a captain, your responsibilities do not stop at simply wearing the arm band during the game. There is much more to it as mentioned by Ives in this article.

      Let LD go out, focus on his game, and get re-accustomed to playing at a higher level then exposed to in the MLS. He has to earn his spot like everyone else and to task him with captain duties as well would be asking too much in my opinion.

  4. jonathan s says:

    Beasley is a class act, good teammate, and experienced veteran. Happy with the choice

  5. Fabio says:

    I hope that I am wrong, but for me this choice means that Donovan will not be in Brazil in 2014.

    • EspinDOHla says:

      Doubt that. DMB has been there more this year. Here’s hoping that BOTH LD and DMB make it to Brazil!! (and the USMNT for that matter!!!)

    • matty says:

      Your wrong. Well, I think so at least. I cant say for certain that he ( or anyone ) will be there next summer. I mean, MB, Howard, Altidore and etc are locks, but barring injury they could also miss ( CD 2009 ). Landon is just as close to a lock as anyone else. I think giving the arm band to Beasley has to do with what he said, being a team player and holding his own this year for the USA at LB. Donovan is still one of our best players. And that will show this tournament. I dont mind JK holding him out like he has, but LD needs to be on the team. IMO, LD will be on the team, probably starting but at least as a sub.

    • David M says:

      I agree. I believe it’s personal between Klinsmann and Donovan. Not sure why. But I think Klinsmann clearly intensely dislikes Donovan.

      • Tony in Quakeland says:

        That seems pretty obvious. The choice was always going to be “anyone but Donovan”.

        • louis z says:

          If JK has a dislike for LD he wouldn’t even be in the GC.
          Our group is very weak, so I’ll be more interesting how everyone does in the knockout phase.

      • GW says:

        ” But I think Klinsmann clearly intensely dislikes Donovan.”

        There’s no evidence of that.

        Obviously a lot of people here dislike him and are projecting that JK feels the same way but that doesn’t mean squat.

        Donovan needed a break. I’m upset he did not take it a lot sooner as he started looking jaded soon after the last World Cup was over.

        Donovan also does better when he gets challenged. You don’t hand stuff to him, you make him take it away from you.

        LD took care of the first part, JK did the rest.

        Klinsmann is showing you that he knows how to motivate players, especially superstars like Landon.

        JK hasn’t got the luxury of a large pool of star players to be entertaining any personal dislikes. The USMNT player pool is painfully thin so he has to work with what little he has.

      • Mister JC says:

        That’s an unfair statement. Donovan hasn’t been with the team and was seriously considering retirement. He has to show he’s all in, and ready to be a part of the team, let alone be a leader. Besides, it’s not like he was a regular captain before…

  6. EspinDOHla says:

    Happy for DMB. Dude deserves it and I am pumped for him for reviving his career and not only making it back into the USMNT but getting his 100th cap in June and now captaining the GC team. Cheers DMB!!!!!

    Interesting tweet from Grant Wahl after tweeting that DMB was the captain:
    “Half-suspecting Klinsmann will hold public training where fans will be encouraged to kick balls at Donovan’s rear end.”

    hmmm…..

    • Turgid Jacobian says:

      Butts up!

    • John says:

      Pretty dumb comment to make really. Not everything is some personal vendetta against Donovan. Beasley has worked hard for this team recently and deserves it.

      • Peretz says:

        This is pro- Beasley, not anti-Donovan. Coaches, especially nat’l team coaches, can’t afford the luxury of having vendettas. It may be that Donovan’s personality doesn’t mesh well with Klinsmann, but the bottom line always will be how well someone is doing on the field. Donovan is still a good player, but has clearly lost a step. JK wants Donovan to prove himself, again, now, at the age of 31. His resume is terrific, but that’s all in the past. What can he bring to the USMNT now? We shall see…

    • I’ll let you know – I’m going to the open training on the 4th. By the way, back before the 2002 WCQ, my son and I went to an open training at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, CA. Want to guess how many people were there?

      12 people (including my son and I) were there. Can’t wait to see how many turn up tomorrow.

  7. Ryan nanez says:

    random but can anyone answer why the latest pictures I’ve seen they’re wearing the old where’s Waldo jersey for fox promo stuff and their training outfits have the old emblem. What happened to the centennial stuff?

  8. SanFran415 says:

    RUN DMB!

  9. Old School says:

    I like it. Good choice.

  10. Andrew says:

    Beasley and Donovan back in action at the same time, it’s like 2002 all over again! Can’t wait!

    • Chuckinbham says:

      The two have VERY good chemistry and I look forward to The Beez helping his friend, LD get his game face back.

  11. HoBo says:

    I like DMB (always been one of my favorites) hes probably one of the nicest guys on the team and in a good mood but my concern is will he be vocal enough with the rest of the team during the game and also the ref ?

    Hes been around the block a few times so he knows what to expect, a great veteran and I’m glad hes back with the Nat team but that’s my only concern.

  12. Eric says:

    Beasley is the worst player on the team. He hasn’t played well at all in qualifiers. He doesn’t tackle, he doesn’t head the ball, he is too far away from attackers when pretending to pressure, he falls over constantly any time there is a slight breeze, he doesn’t stop crosses, he is a liability in 1v1 defending situations with attacking players running at him, when he does get the ball he is too negative with possession and he isn’t clean technically. He has no business being in the group much less being the captain. The love in needs to stop and the media needs to stop saying that he has played well- cause he hasn’t- he hasn’t played well at all. Fabian Johnson was far better when Beasley was luckily out due to yellow card accumulation. Anybody that thinks Beasley is playing well doesn’t understand the game or the left back position. He was at his best when he was 17 because he knew he was just a runner so he ran at right backs and caused some problems. He has never developed technically or physically and he is not the answer at left back or at any other position on the field for this team.

    • Ryan nanez says:

      Someone’s daddy fiddled their junk this morning

    • AK48 says:

      He has been more lucky than good at left back. I agree also think he’s a serious liability back there. Maybe still an option at left mid, and yes he’s a nice guy. But it’s really Russian roulette with him at left back.

      • Tony in Quakeland says:

        Again, yup. But expect to get roasted for pointing out the obvious.

      • Ross says:

        Lucky, maybe for 1 game. Beasley has played well in 3 challenging games. That isnt luck.

      • MidWest Ref says:

        Eric must have had a few too many last night. Beasley is not a typical left back – no argument. The negatives of him in that position are his lack of experience in the position with a back line and his sophistication in the role.

        However, he makes up for it with effort, tackling 1v1 (I completely disagree with Eric there) and his ability to bring the ball forward with speed. Beasley (JK and the USMNT) have been lucky in the last few qualifiers, but to rant like that against someone putting forth a great deal of effort is inaccurate.

    • GW says:

      Eric,

      It’s very simple. How many games has the team lost when DMB has played lately?

    • Colin says:

      A little excessive, but some valid points. I never feel safe with Beasley at LB; it is just not his position. If the choice is between playing chandler at LB and Beasely at LM or vice versa, it has to be Chandler at LB. It makes the defense much more solid.

    • Nate says:

      How does a “non technical” player start for Guus Hiddink in a champions league semi against Milan, as well as flourish in the Mexican league? Have you watched soccer prior to 2012?

  13. SilverRey says:

    WTF?!? I think Klinsy just likes to frack minds…

  14. Haddo says:

    I think Jurgen really likes Damarcus’ attitude and expeience. Simple as that as far as i’m concerned. Choice makes sense, i dont really see how anyone is surprised its not LD.

  15. MikeG says:

    Beasley is still a LW, but a utility LB as well. He should be one of 23 going to Brazil, providing we qualify of course.

  16. Marden08 says:

    Demarcus at his prime took a beating because if you did not knock him down he would shred a Defense. A couple of times during this cycle he almost crawled off the field from the pounding. He was thrown on the national team trash heap and has come back to help us qualify. I can’ t think of a more deserving captain out there. He is always fearless and ready to give up everything including his body for the national team.

    • GW says:

      I have followed DMB pretty closely and I would say your account of his career is a little fanciful.

      • Marden08 says:

        Please elaborate thanks

        • GW says:

          You are exaggerating and you make him sound like a victim

          If DMB was truly “ thrown on the national team trash heap” how is it that he has played for the USMNT in every calendar year for 13 years?

          How is it that, in a 13 year pro career, he has 103 caps and has made every World Cup team, 2002, 2006. 2010, he was eligible for?

          That does not sound like a forgotten man.

          All of the veterans, LD, Boca, Gooch, Goodson, etc., have been “fearless and ready to give up everything including his body for the national team”. As for taking a beating, did you watch Jozy and Clint in the 2010 World Cup? They both took a ferocious beating in all four games.

          I’m a little tired of people putting down someone to raise another guy up. As far as I can tell every one of these USMNT players is very tough, very courageous.

          DMB has not been in the limelight as much because his best achievement, that great run for a great PSV team in the Champion’s league happened when most of us did not have easy access to the games the way we do now. Plus DMB has been hurt off and on a lot since he left PSV and it was not until he got to Puebla that he has really had a healthy run of games.

          The move to left back is a good idea. It has energized him because he can’t go 90 minutes all out on the wing ( right and left), doing his Robben imitation, like he used to without getting hurt.

          Playing left back allows him to pick his spots for his upfield runs. He’s not the greatest defender but he is getting better and left back is primarily an offensive position in most modern schemes.

      • MidWest Ref says:

        Beasley had a real tought time starting in 2006 USMNT. He was outspoken that he didn’t understand Arena’s tactics in the group games in Germany WC. The Bruce certainly doesn’t like that.

        Then he had a couple real bad games under Bradley – remember the terrible give away to Brazil off a short corner in the group game? His effort waned and he tried to play in the EPL and SPL where the physical nature of the game wore him down. Beasley was always a pest as a two way player on the left. his greaters attribute was his effort.

        It looks like Beasley is healthy again and happy again, and as a result has returned to the USMNT pool under JK.

  17. SBI Troll says:

    While, I still don’t believe he should be playing leftback, I can’t think of a more deserving captain. Beasley left his ego at the door and said he would do whatever it took to get back on the sqaud. I hope he can return to the wing in the gold cup.

    As for Donovan, how can a guy who hasn’t played for the national team or played with any of the new players become a captain. He’s played a few games under Klinsmann which were an eternity ago in national team terms. Just think about it, this is no surprise if you think about it.

  18. Chris says:

    Awful idea, this means hes gona keep DMB at left back, which he struggles at, wouldnt mind putting him on the left wing with castillo at lb. I thought it was pretty obvious that beckerman should wear the armband

  19. Alex Lozano says:

    Thought it might be Donovan or Beckerman but not surprised that it’s Beasley…and think he’s a great choice as USMNT captain! I do suspect he will have a very good tournament & continue to cement himself as the #1 LB option. And I believe he will win his fourth GC title on July 28!!!!

  20. Henry says:

    We cannot forget that JK had LD play for him at Bayern and was quite a fan, gave him a nice chance actually. So I do not think “vendeta” is at issue here. It is all about consistency from the coach about effort and commitment. So DB is Captain and LD has some work to earn a spot.

    • Stephen says:

      JK was also mocked at Bayern about Donovan–way more than was fair, in my opinion, based upon how Donovan actually played within a team that was playing very poorly at the time. That was when things really started to turn sour over there for JK. I wonder if he bears some resentment against Donovan for that,

      • GW says:

        According to accounts in the press, LD was received in the locker room as basically a “teacher’s pet” so to speak.

        Bayern has always been perceived as a very political place,. It sounds like LD was caught in the between JK and his resentful players.

        Donovan wasn’t bad but given the climate it sounds like the players and the management were always going to use Landon as a weapon against JK. So unless he came in and scored a goal a game right away, he was never going to get any credit.

  21. Chuckinbham says:

    Who’s he going to select, LD? Not a chance. Beckerman? Not enough PT this year.

    Given the competion in our Group, The Beez’s experience and JK’s fondness for those who WANT to play for him…..this shouldn’t be a shocker.

  22. Hayes says:

    Beckerman shouldn’t get the armband because he does not have a chance of making it to Brazil. DMB just went through qualifiers and I think Klinsman wants some continuity within the program. Having the captain be a link between the two groups makes sense.

  23. Rags in DC says:

    Makes total sense. Great choice. Happy to see his career resurgence. Still hope Klinsi finds a more natural left back before Brazil, but DMB has earned his place on the team, and the honor of being captain. I hope he makes it to Brazil, he’s an ideal 2nd half sub with his pace, his ability to link play and hold possession, and attack a right back while tracking back aggressively (his best dimension).

  24. biff says:

    I am big fan of DMB and would like to see him given a chance at left wing and cannot quibble with him being promoted to captain. All that said, it does leave me with an uneasy feeling about Landon Donovan, who has poured more of his heart and soul into the USMNT than just about any other player in the history of team, certainly about a thousand times more than Herr Klinsmann.

    As someone mentioned above, Grant Wahl yesterday tweeteed after the news that Beasley was named captain: “Half-suspecting Klinsmann will hold public training where fans will be encouraged to kick balls at Donovan’s rear end.” Wahl ain’t dumb and he most definitely is making a point with that tweet.

    My concern is that Klinsmann in some of his comments in the last couple of months appeared to be trying to driving a wedge between not only Donovan and other USMNT members, but between Donovan and the fans. If Klinsmann continues down that road with one of the greatest ever USMNT players, than that would be unforgivable, especially after it appears he has pardoned other USMNT players who no doubt were either direct or indirect sources for the Sporting News mutiny story in March.

    • GW says:

      DMB will make this team as a left back who will occasionally go forward. If he were deployed full time on the wing like he used to be he is more likely to get injured. His many injuries during his club career in Scotland, England and Germany has shown you that.

      Just before the 2010 World Cup it was speculated that LD’s relationship with BB was in the toilet.

      LD came back late for a game after attending a wedding and BB started Bedoya instead of Landon. Then there was some back and forth after that.

      Whatever the truth of the matter it seemed to outsiders that BB and LD were not BFF. Certainly when BB was axed, LD was not overly upset, not like Deuce was.

      Regardless, even with all this manager-player un-love, I notice LD performed okay at the 2010 World Cup.

      Whatever the truth about how JK and LD truly feel about each other, if JK starts LD in the Gold Cup and gives him a lot of playing time, he will give Landon the single most powerful platform on which to make his case for inclusion.

      If LD does well JK will have to include him.

      If he does poorly, JK will cut him and according to you and Wahl, fulfill his heart’s desire.

      If he buries LD on the bench and brings him in for 10 minutes at the end of the Belize match then maybe we’ll see that something is up. But if JK were to do that, it seems like this whole thing would have been a big waste of everyone’s time.

      Either way, assuming Donovan gets a fair chance on the field, this thing will be settled where it should be, on the field.