U.S. names 30-man roster for World Cup
(BDCi) — U.S. men’s coach Jurgen Klinsman released the names of a 30 man squad for the World Cup with few surprises on Monday, including as expected, Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey, Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley.
Eddie Johnson was the biggest name veteran left off the 30 man roster. The 2006 World Cup player co-led the team in appearances last year and scored five goals, including the game winner in the clincher versus Mexico on Sept.10.
Ten players were on the 2010 roster, including left-back Beasley and Donovan, a veteran of three World Cups. Five players did not play in any of the 16 qualifiers for 2014: No. 3 goalkeeper Nick Rimando along with John Brooks, Julian Green, Chris Wondolowski and DeAndre Yeldin.
A total of 15 see action in the MLS. Two players are listed in different positions than in previous participation with the U.S. team: Donovan is now a forward and Fabian Johnson is listed as a defender.
In addition to Johnson, those left off Monday were defenders Michael Orozco and Tim Ream;midfielders Sacha Kljestan, Jose Torres and Daniel Williams; and forwards Herculez Gomez and Juan Agudelo.
Johnson scored the key first goal against Mexico last September that clinched the Americans’ seventh straight World Cup berth. His exclusion means it will be the third consecutive World Cup that the player who scored the goal that clinched the U.S’s berth will not be on the final roster. (Steve Ralston against Mexico, Sept. 2005, Connor Casey at Honduras Oct. 2009).
“Making those phone calls and telling them that they’re not part of the 30-man roster was unpleasant. Every call you make is a tough one,” Klinsman said of the roster cuts in general.
“Eddie’s comments actually had nothing to do with the decision,” Klinsman said when asked whether Johnson’s omission was related to his recent criticism of DC United teammates. “I spoke to Eddie for quite a long time on the phone and then tried to explain as good as I can. It has to do a little bit with the fact that we only take six forwards into this 30-man roster, and in those forwards I also see Landon Donovan competing for one of those spots.
“In Eddie’s case it’s really, really difficult because he’s also a player that brings so much to the table and he’s done tremendously well with us over the last two years and scored very important goals for us,”Klinsman said.
Klinsman said he viewed Donovan as a pure forward on the roster. Johnson, a member of the 2006 World Cup was simply a victim of numbers.
The players on the 30-man roster will report to Stanford on May 14. Training sessions will not be open to the public. Klinsman said the final roster will be named after a June 1 match against Turkey in Harrison, N.J. The final 23-man World Cup roster must be submitted to FIFA by June 2.
Klinsman added that he was not worried about the recent knee injury to LA Galaxy defender Omar Gonzalez.
“It’s very short period of time that he can’t go 100 percent,” he said. “By the end of the week he actually should be at 100 percent already.So, he’ll be just a few days late which is alright. We’ll have him from the beginning of next week going full speed with the group. Thankfully the injury was not bad and it didn’t take him out for much longer. Obviously the first moment we got the information (that he was injured) we were a little bit worried.”
The Americans have exhibition games against Azerbaijan at San Francisco’s Candlestick Park on May 27, Turkey at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J. on June 1 and Nigeria at EverBank Field in Jacksonville,FL on June 7. They then fly to their base camp in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
At the World Cup they open against Ghana on June 16 at Natal, face Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal six days later in the Amazon rainforest city of Manaus and close the group stage against Germany in Recife on June 26.
Goalkeepers: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
Defenders: DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Timmy Chandler (Nurnberg), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Clarence Goodson (San Jose Earthquakes), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim), Michael Parkhurst (Columbus Crew), DeAndre Yeldin (Seattle Sounders FC)
Midfielders: Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Maurice Edu (Philadelphia Union), Julian Green (Bayern Munich), Jermaine Jones (Besiktas), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
Forwards: Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Terrance Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy), Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)