Klinsmann Names U.S. MNT 23-Player Travel Roster for Aug. 15 Friendly Against Mexico

Press Release: Match at Estadio Azteca is First Friendly Between Teams on Mexican Soil Since 1984; ESPN2, ESPN3 and Univision to Broadcast Live at 7 p.m. CT

CHICAGO (Aug. 12, 2012) — U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has called in 23 players to train for the upcoming friendly against Mexico on Aug. 15 at the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City, Mexico. Kickoff for the USA’s first friendly against Mexico on Mexican soil since 1984 is set for 7 p.m. CT, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, ESPN3 and Univision. Fans can follow on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and Twitter @ussoccer.

The players are reporting to Mexico City beginning Sunday, and will train for two days prior to the mid-week fixture.

“We’re excited about the opportunity to bring this group together and challenge Mexico for a win,” said Klinsmann. “For every game, we always look at who is in the best form, who is fit and who is ready to go. We have a lot of veteran players and also some new, hungry guys who deserve a chance. Every player in the pool looks forward to an amazing opportunity like this, the chance to take on Mexico in such an historic stadium like Estadio Azteca. With the World Cup qualifiers coming up next month, we can start preparing these players mentally and physically for Jamaica.”

A little more than a year into his tenure, Klinsmann seeks to lead the U.S. team to its first-ever victory against Mexico in its country. Several U.S. regulars will get their first experience at Azteca, as only three players on the roster have ever played against Mexico on Mexican soil. The match is the first for the U.S. since the 1-1 draw on June 12 in Guatemala, and represents another opportunity to prepare for the critical set of impending World Cup qualifiers against Jamaica next month.

GOALKEEPERS (3): Tim Howard (Everton), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (6): Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Steven Beithasour (San Jose Earthquakes), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana), Michael Orozco Fiscal (San Luis), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim)
MIDFIELDERS (9): DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Maurice Edu (Rangers), Jermaine Jones (Schalke 04), Jose Torres (Pachuca), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), Danny Williams (Hoffenheim), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS (4): Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy), Herculez Gomez (Santos), Alan Gordon (San Jose Earthquakes), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)

After two matches, the U.S. leads Group A in the Semifinal Round of CONCACAF Qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The U.S. resumes qualifying action with back-to-back matches against Jamaica on Sept. 7 and 11. Jamaica hosts the Sept. 7 match in Kingston, and then four days later the U.S. will welcome the Caribbean nation to Columbus Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio (TICKETS). That match will be broadcast live at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2, ESPN3 and the Univision family. Fans can follow the match live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and via Twitter @ussoccer.

As part of the effort to provide more access to the National Team, the U.S. will host a public training session Sunday, Sept. 9, at 10:30 a.m. ET at Columbus Crew Stadium. Admission and parking are free.

Highlights: MLS Week 8

Some choice MLS highlights for you.

Los Angeles Galaxy 1 – 1 FC Dallas

Both squads went into the match without their starting keepers and the score might have been zero-zero had they played.

None the less, each squad managed a fairly equal amount of attempts on goal, with 16 for LA and 14 for Dallas.  The possession averaged about 60/40 in favor of LA which should not be surprising given they were at home.  An exciting match between two conference powers.

DAL – Brek Shea (61′)

LA – Pat Noonan (92′)

Chicago Fire 1 – 2 Seattle Sounders

Eddie Johnson continues to contribute to Seattle and seems to be partnering well with Montero.  Pavel Pardo and Marco Pappa are the class of Chicago but with the home crowd behind them they were unable to change a seven game winless streak against Seattle.

Opportunities on goal were about the same but Seattle took advantage while Chicago let theirs go to waste, sometimes it’s that simple.

CHI – Arne Freidrich (OG, 39′)

SEA – Eddie Johnson (67′)

CHI – Marco Pappa (89′)

Houston Dynamo 2 – 3 DC United

Good game!  Houston is always going to fight, and for United, it was going to be a question of how much they were going to fight back.

Maicon Santos continues his impressive form and is making every team he played for shake their heads in confusion over why he didn’t play like that for them.  DeRo does make things easier when you play in front of him as a striker, but credit to Ben Olson for not playing him as a forward.

DC – Maicon Santos (11′)

HOU – Will Bruin (50′)

DC – Dwayne De Rosario (54′)

HOU – Will Bruin (59′)

DC – Maicon Santos (70′)

Real Salt Lake 3 – 2 Toronto FC

Toronto has to be the most curios team there is in the league.  Aron Winter was massive for Inter Milan as a player, but as a coach for Toronto, well the record speaks for itself.  Toronto is 0-6 and has been outscored 13-4 this season.

Many say the 4-3-3 has been a huge failure for Winter, but one can’t help but notice that sometimes, things just don’t fall Toronto’s way.

RSL – Kyle Beckerman (7′)

TOR – Eric Avila (48′) superb

TOR – Richard Eckersley (OG, 57′)

TOR – Donell Henry (77′)

RSL – Jonny Steele (93′)

Highlights: FC Dallas vs. New England Revolution

Snooze fest …… the important thing is, FC Dallas won and improved their record.  I also like watching the integration of Blas Perez into MLS.  It kind of looks like he’s slowly coming to the conclusion that it’s pretty hard to score in the league.

Brek Shea continues to show well, but we all know he needs to be playing up to his potential every game.  He needs to be the goal scorer in these types of matches.

FC Dallas 1 – 0 New England Revolution

FCD – Ugo Ihemelu ’95

San Antonio Scorpions Lose 3-0 to US U-23 Men’s National Team

The US U-23 Men’s National team took on the San Antonio Scorpions on Friday evening in Frisco, Tx. It was the first-ever game for the new NASL Scorpions team. Although the San Antonio franchise was dominated most of the match by the young U.S. Olympic hopefuls, they were not able to score on the well organized back line of San Antonio in the first 45 minutes.

Eventually the skill and organization broke down the tired legs of the Scorpions who had only been in camp for 7 days. Brek Shea scored in the 53rd minute off a cross from the left side.

Just 9 minutes later Dilly Duka scored cutting in and out on the left side of the goal box until he forced a shot that slotted into goal near the left post.

In the 78th minute Jack McInerney found the back of the net for the U.S. His goal came after a cross from the right side that Scorpions goalkeeper Craig Hill mishandled, tipping the ball right to McInerney who headed in from close range.


US Result Mixed Bag For Klinsmann

The US Men’s National Team capped off a successful training camp by earning their second win last night by defeating Panama 1-0 in Panama City. The evaluation for Jurgen Klinsmann continues as he looks set to call in some ‘B’ teamers to the next training camp with the ‘A’ team regulars.

The result Wednesday night might not have been the best sampling of talent at JK’s disposal but the adversity desired by the coaching staff was ever present.

Some players may have been tested early on but overall the composure of the squad was quite mature. Graham Zusi opened his National Team account by slotting home an early goal from inside the penalty box and set the team up early on with a 1-0 lead.

Panama proved to be a wily bunch always looking to attack and fending off the advances by Bunbury and Wondolowski, who proved widley ineffective for the most part.

But the game took a turn in the second half with centerback Geoff Cameron being sent off for a tackle on Blaz Perez from behind. As the last defender, the player earned a straight red.

I can’t say the referee made the incorrect call, but it was definitely harsh. Cameron did come from behind on the player and he was the last defender, the harshness of the penalty might have warranted a yellow, but certainly a foul was committed.

Overall the performances for some players were more about building consistency, and a level of familiarity has been developed with the talent pool at JK’s dispense.

I will say, however, that I would like to see Brek Shea being played as a center forward more often. It just feels sometimes that his involvement in the game is sporadic because of his lack of service in the wide positions.

The down side to Shea is that, he sometimes looks like he has no concept of controlling the ball at his feet and sometimes gets hurried into making desperate runs with no real aim.

It’s safe to say, that the art-form of true wing play in America has been lost with the retirement of Eddie Lewis. Shea has no desire or just doesn’t consider a cross from the wide position as a viable option.

I think the defense may have given Jk pause for thought, at least he can consider bringing in depth at critical positions, Parkhurst, being the natural choice for selection.

The midfield is still under inspection and the forward position continues to be a huge blight on the US set up.

Time is fast approaching for CONCACAF Qualifying begins, but before that, Italy and Mexico. The honeymoon is coming to a close for Jurgen Klinsmann, at least he can hang his hat on two wins with a largely domestic based squad and a successful training camp.

Let us know what you think about the two recent results and leave a comment below.

US Squad Earns Well Deserved Victory

For ninety minutes the US squad put into practice everything they had been learning for the past two weeks.  With Jurgen Klinsmann coming out early on referring to this group as a “glorified B team” one didn’t know what to expect from a group of mostly MLS players and first time debutants.

After a few nervous interchanges, the US looked poised to compete with the Venezuelans almost to the point of totally dominating the run of play.

It was clear Jurgen Klinsmann had put in extensive work during the training camps to establish not only his own philosophy but the player’s awareness of each other.  This was evident in the shape and interchange between the back four and midfield who tirelessly worked to spurn the attack.

A.J. DeLaGarza looked very comfortable on the righthand side and even was involved with the attack when needed and the two center backs, Parkhurst and Geoff Cameron, also looked very comfortable with each other.  In the midfield, Jermaine Jones looked very focused and energetic, and was the best player through ninety minutes in my opinion.

Another player to improve his World Cup selection chances was Benny Feilhaber, who after an up and down career, was just what this squad needed, a creative and deft touch in the final third.  His through ball to Brek Shea early in the first half split two defenders and was placed right in the path of the wide man to create the first of many dangerous opportunities.

Teal Bunbury, who was a pleasant surprise in the loan striker role throughout much of the match also made a case for selection.  His fierce competitiveness tired out the back four of Venezuela and he remained a serious threat when he combined with Feilhaber through the midfield.  If the goal wasn’t going to come from Brek Shea, I thought surely Teal would score.  I hope his form continues during this round of friendlies as he looks to be a solid option off of the bench come 2014.

Still, one did get the feeling that the ‘B’ team was going to suffer the inevitable fate the ‘A’ team knew all too well.  Late on in the second half the US squad seemed to lose concentration and get distracted giving you the feeling that a goal from La Vinotinto was on the way.

Give some credit to JK, not only for the hard work put in with the boys the prior two weeks but also for making in-game adjustments that ultimately proved to impact the match.  His decision to move into a 4-4-2 formation and make a few key substitutions was an indication that he wanted to win.

And win he did.  Further justifying the message he has been preaching since his arrival but, to a certain extent, proved that JK does care about winning and will do what it takes to ensure success.

This win does more than just legitimize his style of play, it turns the public’s perception of his tenure so far ever so slightly in his favor.  If your a fan of the red, white and blue, you were screaming in joy from Ricardo Clark’s late goal in stoppage time.  Jurgen may not have the boys, ‘A’ side or ‘B’ side, playing the way he wants for 90 minutes, but he’ll always have set pieces and like Germany, this is an area we excel.