Jurgen Klinsmann With MLS Focus in Azteca Roster

Alan Gordon summoned….

[San Jose Earthquakes forward Alan Gordon has been added to the US roster.]

Zusi makes his bid for the depth char…

Klinsmann’s caravan to the great smog stadium in the sky on August 15th:


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), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)

61 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by scweeb on 2012/08/12 at 5:25 PM

    Do we take it that Dempsey isn’t going cause of Club conflict?


    • Posted by Eric on 2012/08/12 at 5:47 PM

      I was wondering the same thing. Maybe this is a sign that a deal is about to be completed for him?


  2. Posted by Eric on 2012/08/12 at 5:50 PM

    Although I’ve seen people flippping out over this roster at a few other places (Ives’ blog for instance) I actually don’t have a problem with it. Lots of young defenders who will be put into the pressure cooker and allow JK to see who can handle it. I think he’s realizing that the US has to start finding young defensive help. Besler and Beithasour are good starts but I’d also have liked to see Ream and Morrow called in, especially over Castillo who I’m just not that sold on still.

    The most telling omission to me is Chandler and based off what Ives is reporting, Klinsmann has now admitted publicly that Timmy isn’t sure he wants to stay with the US set-up.


  3. Posted by mbw on 2012/08/12 at 6:52 PM

    Do we have any sense of why Klinsmann now prefers Johnson over Hamid?


    • Posted by ELYK247 on 2012/08/12 at 7:06 PM

      They are pretty much the same, and I don’t think Hamid has been that great lately.


      • Posted by mbw on 2012/08/12 at 7:22 PM

        Definitely similar in some ways — both young, athletic, and inconsistent. I personally like Hamid better because his distribution’s a lot better. I think he’s quietly put together a very good year in MLS (number two in save percentage and GAA behind a pretty average defense). But I was mostly just curious what might have changed Klinsmann’s mind, after he was so high on Hamid last year.


    • Posted by Eric on 2012/08/12 at 7:10 PM

      Johnson has been in excellent form for Chicago lately. Hard to argue with it too much.


  4. Posted by ELYK247 on 2012/08/12 at 7:04 PM

    Geoff Cameron should be in England with Stoke. That is his priority right now. I’m upset to see some names on here. Jermaine Jones needs to be with Schalke 04, Fabian Johnson needs to be at Hoffenheim, Tim Howard should be with Everton, and Boyd should be with Vienna. This is crucial for the season, and they want to be in the starting lineups. (Howard will start anyway) But they need to prove themselves.


    • Posted by Eric on 2012/08/12 at 7:10 PM

      I don’t believe Cameron had left for England yet and he barely got a work visa on appeals so it doesn’t hurt to give him another cap just to make the appeal look better. Jones and Johnson are both very established with their clubs so I don’t think them missing a little bit of preseason for a single friendly is going to hurt either one of them that much. Boyd has already scored some big goals for Vienna and I don’t think they’re in any rush to push him out of their starting XI just because he accepted a call up on a FIFA recognized international date.

      Overall, I think you can relax a little. All the Euro guys called into camp are in good standing with their clubs and I can’t see this hurting any of them.


      • Posted by mbw on 2012/08/12 at 7:25 PM

        He just played in Bavaria last night, so it will be a bit of a trek to get down there. And it might end up costing him a starting spot on opening day. But if he is going to play big minutes in the Hex, one does see the logic of getting him some minutes in Azteca.


    • Posted by Jared on 2012/08/13 at 8:42 AM

      Jones and Johnson are not going to be have their spots with their club teams affected by this trip unless they get injured. Jones is a proven commodity at Schalke and the club knows exactly what they will get from him for both good and bad. Johnson was the best left back in the Bundesliga based on a lot of people’s opinions which is not something that is easily replaced by any club in the world except Real Madrid.

      Cameron was supposedly allowed to go due to Klinsmann’s involvement in getting him the work permit on appeal. National team coaches play a large role in that appeals process in terms of stating reasons why the player doesn’t meet the criteria and whether they will meet the criteria going forward.

      I don’t really see the point to calling in Timmy. He’s just going to get shellacked by shots with the defenders available. Not something that Timmy needs to deal with at this point.


      • Posted by Richard McGovern on 2012/08/13 at 10:54 AM

        Need Timmy to direct an inexperienced back line. No other keeper in the current US pool can do that, except maybe Rimondo.


  5. Posted by Shawn on 2012/08/12 at 7:55 PM

    Biggest problem with roster is no Bradley. Totally different team without him. Although, this is his first year with Roma and needs every opportunity to cement his spot.


    • Posted by Kevin on 2012/08/13 at 6:52 AM

      I agree. Also Bradley is reportedly having muscle issues (fatigue I’m guessing?) No need to risk a major injury.


      • Posted by Brett on 2012/08/13 at 7:35 AM

        And it’s more important for Bradley to earn a starting spot for Roma. If he’s not playing week in and week out for Roma, he’s not going to be in form for the next qualifying games that actually matter.


      • I read somewhere on Roma’s website it was a right hamstring issue.


  6. Posted by Spiritof76 on 2012/08/12 at 8:07 PM

    What are people’s thoughts on Besler? Havent had a chance to watch him.


    • Posted by Jason on 2012/08/13 at 7:12 AM

      I really like Besler. He has been a rock for SKC all year despite being slightly over-shadowed by Collin next to him. I feel like he is probably a better pure defender than Collin though. He isn’t real big but he plays hard, makes safe plays, good tackles, and doesn’t allow easy goals. You could, in many ways, compare him to Boca, I guess. Also, a less important quality but still of use are his monster throw ins. Every throw in in the attacking third is like a corner when he is in.


      • Posted by Richard McGovern on 2012/08/13 at 10:55 AM

        He reminds me alot of Parkhurst in his style of play.


      • Posted by steve-o on 2012/08/14 at 12:05 PM

        I haven’t watched SKC play much but then I watched the US Open Cup final, I was shocked by Besler’s throw in’s. I remember thinking who is that?1?!? and I thought it was the fullback. The thing is that they’re not just far and deep like gooch or lichaj, but also thrown with some speed and more directly with less trajectory, so the forwards can get a decent header on it. He also kind of leans the ball to one side as he throws to get more power into it like he’s a quarterback. Unfortunately, I didn’t really notice his defense – the game was pretty scrappy, but he wasn’t responsible for any goals so that’s a plus. Let’s give him a test in Azteca!


  7. Posted by Yankred7 on 2012/08/12 at 8:35 PM

    I think Lichaj is a pretty big omission. Must better than Castillo


    • Posted by Eric on 2012/08/12 at 8:39 PM

      Lichaj is one of the ones who really is trying to mark his claim as a starter for Aston Villa. If he manages to do that then he becomes much more valuable to the US with the experience he’ll get. He’s better off with AVFC right now than flying to Mexico for this friendly.


    • Posted by mbw on 2012/08/12 at 9:13 PM

      Yeah — the defensive selections are a bit odd. Only two international caliber defenders on that roster, and one of them is actually an attacking midfielder.


      • Ah yes, the “attacking midfielder cannot play fullback “ myth rears its ugly head yet again. Just so you know, Lichaj has played in the midfield for AV and he is a pretty good “attacker”.

        JK is German and they habitually use midfielders as fullbacks. They don’t seem to get all weird about it like Americans do. Timmy Chandler has played in midfield for Nuremberg and Dan Williams has played quite a lot of right back. Gareth Bale is nominally a left back.

        When JK said “anyone can play left back” he was perfectly serious.

        Once Americans start thinking about really good players who are good on the ball and can pass, shoot, dribble, tackle and head the ball instead of cast iron pigeon-holing everyone into a position, things should get better.

        Most American sports are full of specialized players and most USMNT really buy into that. But soccer is a sport where positions do not necessarily have to be so specialized. That has been obvious since at least the early 70’s and the days of the great Cruyff Ajax and “Clockwork Orange” teams.

        Having Fabian Johnson play at full back instead of midfield is not like having Derek Jeter replacing Mariano Rivera as the closer, or moving Tom Brady to free safety. Basketball is closer to soccer in this regard. Before Magic, points guards were supposed to be 5’11’ – 6’3”. Today we think nothing of the fact that LeBron can play all five positions and play them well.

        Specialist position players, in the end, are probably the ideal but, for many national teams, even the best, there are times when those guys just aren’t available. National teams can’t go out and buy one, so they frequently have to ask someone to be a little versatile. It’s not a big deal.


        • Posted by mbw on 2012/08/13 at 8:51 AM

          Just curious — where did you see someone say an attacking midfielder can’t play fullback?


        • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/08/13 at 10:12 AM

          Playing FB is not as easy as you seem to think. It is not just about one on one defending. Playing as a unit and creating an understanding takes time. Then there is getting your positioning and angles right. And knowing the small tricks that they employ.
          Don’t under estimate the role of FBs in modern football.


          • Posted by schmutzdeck on 2012/08/14 at 8:12 PM


            I never said it was easy.

            However they pay these guys a lot of money and I can’t ask them to be a little versatile? Come on.

            When asked who was going to play left back after Johnson and Castillo got hurt just before that Antigua and Barbuda qualifier JK said something to the effect that anyone can play left back. What I took that to mean, and I what I agree with is that somewhere in that pool of 18-23 (?) pro players it should not be too much to ask that one of them could play left back for a game competently. And so it was that first Torres and then Boca did the job. If Rooney was a US player he would have jumped at the chance.

            Of course it is not ideal that a player who does not normally play fullback be asked to play it.

            However, it is hardly deserves the sort of the agonizing, teeth gnashing, weeping and wailing bitchfest USMNT fans fall into every single time some midfielder is asked to play a defensive position on short notice. “ OMG! Edu might actually have Chicharito hanging on his back shoulder and because he has never played center back Edu will fail miserably and give up a goal!” as if Edu might not find himself in that situation even if he was playing defensive midfielder, or as if Edu has never had to mark a man on a corner kick. Hell, Abby Wambach, a center forward, knows how to do that. By the way, that is why you keep guys like Boca and Howard around, to constantly remind the revolving door of defenders of their responsibilities.

            I am on record as saying that the USMNT talent pool is second or even third rate. However that is because I am comparing it to Spain’s, Brazil’s, Holland’s, etc. FIFA says there are about 65 million players actively involved in football.
            Given that a guy like Mo Edu, who has been a pro since 2007 and in Europe since 2008, is still one of the best soccer players in the world.

            I expect that veteran pros like Mo and his USMNT teammates can probably talk circles around you and me and most everyone involved with this site when it comes to soccer. I’m sure he is aware of all the positioning, angles and “tricks” that you spoke of. He’s a pro and for the money he makes and what is expected of him as a soccer player I expect him to know all this much better than you and me.


            • Posted by schmutzdeck on 2012/08/14 at 8:15 PM


              In other words, George, all these things that are complicated to you and me I expect these pros to know them and be at least competent with them. It is not too much to ask a pro like, for example, Cameron, Dax McCarty or Zusi to know at least the basics of how to play fullback and to be able to play there for a game or two if need be. After all they play with and against fullbacks all the time so they should have a very good idea of what a fullback does and of what is required.

              And since I see so many examples of midfielders doing this sort of thing on short notice and under high pressure ( for example, Germany’s midfielder Bender (sp?) playing right back against Denmark in Euro 2012 and scoring) it obviously can be done so I see no reason why everyone gets so sideways.

      • Posted by Jared on 2012/08/13 at 8:49 AM

        Are you referring to Fabian Johnson as the attacking midfielder? He played regularly for Hoffenheim at left back and his play there put him into the top echelon of Bundesliga defenders. It’s not like putting Freddy Adu back there.


        • Posted by mbw on 2012/08/13 at 9:02 AM

          Geez — I know where Fabian Johnson played last year for Hoffenheim. I watched probably half of their games. You must have watched him too. Would you not agree that he’s naturally an attacking player and that he’s much stronger in the attack than in defense? Probably top three among Bundesliga LBs on offense and middle of the pack in defense?

          Unlike people like Seltzer who want him moved forward, I actually like Johnson as a left back. He gives the US attack a dimension it wouldn’t otherwise have. (Compare the Canada game to the Brazil and Scotland games.) But he’s not a lock-down defender. That’s just not his game.


  8. Posted by Nelson on 2012/08/12 at 9:00 PM

    Is Dan Kennedy Canadian or something?


    • He was not picked because he has too much hair. The theory goes that Friedel was tested by a sports science firm and it was found that shaved head keepers had slightly faster reaction times. Kasey Keller actually improved once he shaved his head.


  9. Posted by justin on 2012/08/12 at 9:05 PM

    just saw on espn halftime show of the LA game that Alan Gordon has been added to the roster…

    double snub to chris pontius


    • Posted by justin on 2012/08/12 at 9:10 PM

      just checked and gordon is 30 years old. I do not get that choice for one second…. please explain someone….


      • The World Cup is not an age limited tournament like the Olympics.

        If Gordon can score goals for the USMNT JK does not care how old he is.

        How do I know this? JK himself was 33-34 in 1998 when he went to the World Cup with Germany and scored three goals in the tournament. I’m not suggesting Gordon is in JK’s class as a player but there is a long history of 30 something players doing well in the World Cup.

        Gordon’s selection is not any relfection on Pontius as they are different types of players


        • Posted by Jared on 2012/08/13 at 8:46 AM

          The long list of players who performed well in their 30’s at the World Cup does not include MLS journeymen who don’t have any national team caps before the age of 30. Most of the 30 something players that do well are well established national team players who make up for their diminishing speed with their positional awareness, chemistry with their teammates and familiarity with the team’s playing style.


          • Well, MLS has not been around that long.

            While I would agree Alan Gordon, who I thought was a doofus with the Galaxy, makes an unlikley candidate to be surprising everyone at the World Cup, it seems to me JK is much closer to the situaion than we are.

            There have been unlikely journeyman types who have blossomed at the World Cup before, Toto Shillaci and Roger Milla as examples.

            You say “Most of the 30 something players…..” and that is true but most does not mean every single one and “most” does not mean that it is impossible that Gordon might surprise..I have zero problem with JK bringing Gordon in for a look.


            • Posted by Jared on 2012/08/13 at 9:51 AM

              I have a problem with him bringing Gordon in for a look against Mexico in the Azteca. If it was against Sweden’s C team during Camp Cupcake I’d be fine with it.

              Schillaci blossomed before he got to the World Cup scoring 15 goals for Juve and he was only 25 at the 1990 World Cup. Milla played for top tier clubs in France scoring regularly for St Etienne and Montpellier. These were not Alan Gordon type journeymen.

            • Posted by schmutzdeck on 2012/08/13 at 3:54 PM

              You don’t like those two? JK could do a rough approximation of Milla’s call up if he called in McBride for the Jamaica games.

              Well how about this journeyman? Gordon is red hot right now scoring at a rate of about one goal every 1.8 games. There was a journeyman who was called into a World Cup squad with similar numbers (he was scoring at a rate of one goal every 1.5 games, red hot) for what I would presume were similar reasons, scoring goals.

              While he did not score in the World Cup he did play a fair amount and, I feel, justified his inclusion. I am of course talking about my one of faves, a candidate for the Hedjuk Energizer Bunny Award, Herc Gomez, who was only a year or two younger at the time. Slightly different size and style but both were/are all about scoring.
              As for bringing in Gordon to face Sweden C at Camp Cupcake, JK wouldn’t bother. The competition is so weak he would not learn much about Gordon. Now Mexico at Azteca is something different.
              If Gordon plays ( JK may have just brought him in to see him close up) he will be brought on late with the idea of doing that big target man thing, something that could conceivably be useful against smaller CONCACAF defenses.

              It is very clear JK is using this game as a test for the newer guys.

          • Posted by Gregorio on 2012/08/13 at 9:41 AM

            I’m a bit puzzled by the Alan Gordon inclusion as well, why not EJ, Lehart, Keny Cooper,Pontius, or if we want a 30 something, bring in Matt Taylor from Germany he’s still scoring goals. Although if Gordon bangs in a goal I’d be happy for him.


            • Posted by scweeb on 2012/08/13 at 2:37 PM

              I say bring on Brayn McBride!! He just started playing again for club

      • Posted by KickinNames.. on 2012/08/13 at 6:29 PM

        Just another strange add to a pretty underwhelming roster IMO. Lichaj being left out of June camp was odd but understand his need to be with club at this point.
        Chandler sounds like he’s getting noise from back home re his opportunity with Die Mannschaft.
        Johnson is a good get but without Mikey pulling the midfield strings it will be interesting how its organized. If JK puts Torres out wide again, I unfortunately am going to have to start questioning his tactical decision making. As with many, we’ve been extending Klinsi’s Einstein pass for a while now but between Orozsco-F to Danny Williams playing wing MF there is a trend developing of odd personnel selection and tactical application. We’ll see I guess but very unexcited about even watching this one….


  10. Posted by Kay20 on 2012/08/13 at 12:32 AM

    If you’re going to call in a Quake, call in Lenhart. I have no doubt he’d get a Mexican player sent off in 10 minutes.


  11. Posted by dth on 2012/08/13 at 12:32 PM

    Wouldn’t be unhappy with the Gordon pick if it were just a nice call-up to reward a veteran in a situation in which there weren’t a lot of other compelling possibilities for call-ups. But this isn’t such a situation, as Chris Pontius’s dribbling ability deserves a look at the national team level. Both Donovan and Dempsey have toned down that element and now we don’t have terribly many guys who will take on opponents one-on-one. And having these players, who tilt the defense twoards them, are immensely valuable assuming they’re smart enough to move the ball to teammates into the space they’ve created just by their existence.


  12. dth,

    This is the best article on JK’s response to the Pontius question that I’ve seen:


    Penalty Kicks
    Pontius omitted as U.S. roster for Mexico match announced
    August 13, 2012 | 1:35 pm
    Craig Stouffer
    Staff writer – sports
    The Washington Examiner

    Selected quotes

    “Chris Pontius and Brek Shea don’t play the same position. Both are versatile attacking players who have spent time on the wing and at forward, but according to U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann they weren’t vying for the same spot on the U.S. national team roster announced Sunday afternoon for Wednesday’s friendly at Mexico. Shea was selected for the team. Pontius was not….
    When I later asked Klinsmann about Pontius, his response was that in fact Pontius was an alternate for the U.S. roster. “One more injury in his area, attacking midfield or forward, and Chris was next in line,” Klinsmann said. “He’s right there. I’m very happy what happened with him the last couple of months in D.C. and his performances.”
    “I followed up by asking what kind of message Pontius and players like him should take from seeing Shea get called into the team. The response was that there is no message.”
    “At the end of the day, the only people that can really evaluate the players – the performance or the state of mind, whatever we talk about it – is the coaches,” Klinsmann said. “Only the individual coaches now – in Brek’s case, it’s Schellas Hyndman in Dallas, he knows exactly what’s going on with Brek, and I talk with him about it and work from his information, basically. Also with Ben Olsen at D.C. United, he knows exactly what is going on with Chris. But you can’t compare every case like you’re trying to do because you don’t have the insights. Only if you have the insights about every player’s situation then you can kind of get a better picture of it… As I said, Chris is on our radar screen all the time. He was already in camp, and I have a really good picture about him.”


    • Posted by dth on 2012/08/13 at 5:25 PM

      Yeah, this doesn’t make me think Klinsmann is any more reasonable for leaving him off. I agree that Shea/Pontius aren’t in direct competition for the same role, but this to me solidifies why Pontius should be there.


      • Posted by Jared on 2012/08/14 at 3:29 AM

        Klinsmann is also a little delusional if he thinks a player isn’t going to get a message from seeing a player like Shea get called in now. Pontius is going to think that he’s stuck further down the pecking order behind players that aren’t playing well. It’s what I would take from that if I was Pontius.

        I also don’t know exactly what he means when he says that he made his decision after talking to the coaches. He almost makes it sound like Ben Olsen said something that made him not want to call in Pontius while Hyndman was probably more than happy to get Shea out of his hair for a week or so.


        • Jared,

          Ben and JK seem to have a pretty down to earth relationship. And as a former USMNT stalwart Ben certainly would be as sympathetic to the US’ needs as much as any club manager could be. In other words, no hostile anti-German Dutchman Verbeek here. I’d say Ben told JK he needed Pontius right now a lot more than JK does so they cut some sort of deal.

          Pontius, who has never even been in a JK camp, should know he is down in the pecking order. If he doesn’t realize that he is an idiot. It should motivate him to get higher up the list. He’s smart enough to realize JK is supporting his guy through a rough patch and as a player I would respect such loyalty and want to work towards earning similar loyalty. Right now Pontius has no reason to expect any loyalty from JK. What has he ever done for him?

          Why is Shea higher on the pecking order than Pontius even though Shea is playing worse right now?

          Because Shea has already played quite a few games for JK so Klinsmann has a pretty good insight into him, while Pontius has yet to even be in a JK camp. Shea is three years younger (this is actually a fairly big deal), has actually been a pro longer, is probably a little sturdier than Pontius, appears to be at least as fast, and is bigger and arguably as skilled. They have similar goal production, 88 appearances, 23 goals for Pontius and 91 appearances and 19 goals for Shea.

          What this all means is Shea has a chance to be something special, a big, fast, goal scoring winger, if he can just get himself back on the rails.
          Pontius, on the other hand has a chance to be Clint Dempsey. Which is awesome except Clint is still here. And he is better in every way. I’ve watched Pontius for most of his time at DC and I would say he needs to move to his version of Fulham.

          This is why I think JK has Shea higher up on the pecking order for attention than Pontius. Shea probably has greater upside and needs the attention more. Pontius is probably a lot closer to already being what he is going to be than Shea is. I’m not convinced this version of Pontius is permanent but hopefully it is and Chris is older and more mature than Brek and will just have to be the better man and wait his turn, which I’m sure is not far away; unless he gets hurt again.
          I’ll bet Chris is handling this “snub” a lot better than the most of the fans are..


          • Posted by Jared on 2012/08/14 at 7:28 AM

            I’m not saying that Olsen was in any way hostile to Klinsmann just that it seemed like a little bit of passing the buck on the reason why Pontius wasn’t brought in. I’m aslo sure that Pontius understands how the pecking order works but that in this case it can’t be a good feeling knowing that you are down that pecking order when you look at the defenders called in and see guys that most people didn’t have on the national team radar.

            I’m sure Pontius would love to move to “his version of Fulham” as you put and not being called in by Klinsmann restricts that possibility. If Pontius isn’t called in when healthy then it makes it that much harder to qualify for work permits.


            • Jared,

              I don’t know Chris but he is a professional athlete, an American in MLS, so he must have developed a lot thicker skin than you have to deal with all the rejection that is a normal part of their lives in a way most of us regular people would never accept.

              Besides, what is Pontius going to do? Pout and say he is off to play for Germany or Greece? JK will just tell him fine, I’ll play Dempsey in your spot, in a polite way I’m sure.

              If he wants an international future it is JK’s way or the highway at least until you all get JK fired. So Pontius needs to play nice, spout the company line and behave.

              It’s too bad it took Chris this long it get it together because at 25 this is very probably his last chance to ride the wave and force a move to wherever his version of Fulham is. And the USMNT is the ticket. He knows it, Olsen knows it and JK knows it. And everyone should just calm down about the “snub” because JK was hired to take care of the USMNT not Chris Pontius.

            • Posted by KickinNames.. on 2012/08/14 at 8:52 AM

              Schmutz- I enjoy your enthusiasm for debate and nuanced knowledge of the game but you may want to go back and reread most of your posts in the last few strings. A bit heavy on condescension, personal shots and imperiousness IMO but maybe that’s what you’re going for…. It’s OK for people to have other opinions without breaking out the quotes and highhanded commentary.

            • Posted by schmutzdeck on 2012/08/14 at 8:59 PM


              I assume by quotes you mean taking what you write and pasting it onto the reply?

              “without breaking out the quotes and highhanded commentary.”

              If so, I do that so that I reply accurately to what you wrote. Very often you get ” you did not read what I said” and that is how I avoid that. You do want accuracy don’t you?

              And if you are referring to quotes from artilces and the like, well I’m lazy and I don’t want to translate what Clint Dempsey or Preston Zimmerman said. I’d rather let them speak for themselves and let you judge whether the quote fit the context.

              I am sorry if you detect condescension. it is not intended, but I can tell you that , on this site, I have no monopoly on the perception of condescension in my writing.

              As for imperiousness, believe it or not I actually try to keep things short.

              Which means , for example, I don’t write things like ,” in my opinion, Shea is better off at goalkeeper than left wing”. Obviously, it is my opinion so why write it?

              “Shea is a better keeper than he is a left wing.”

              This can come off as abrupt, which I take it you translate to imperiousness.

              Another possibility is that because I tend to take the bigger picture view, i tend to not get overly concerned about a minor detail like Pontius’ exclusion or Gordon’s inclusion. I assume JK and Bradley before him generally have a good reason for it, even if I don’t agree. That can come off as dismissive or high handed as you say.

              Of course it’s okay for other people to have opinons,

              But if they have an opinion are you saying I am high handed if I question it? Should you not be able to defend your opinion? Everyone is free to question mine. If you can dish it out you should be able to take it.

              Where I come from, if you say Pontius deserves to be called up before Shea then you should be able to explain and defend that point of view. What is the point of a discussion board if all it consisted off was “Shea sucks, Pontius is great, Beckerman is useless and has bad hair because I said so”.

              Don’t you find that kind of boring and unenlightening? The best thing about JK’s lineup is that he sparked such a controversy . He managed to make what might otherwise have been a dreary,welcome home Olympic Champions match
              ( remember that boring Brazil – US welcome home World Cup heros match in 2010 ?) into something very interesting.

              Anyway, I’ll take what you say and try to be less “highhanded” but I would not expect miracles if I were you.

      • dth,
        I would not have had a problem with the inclusion of Pontius but I don’t have any issue with leaving him out for this game. It sounds like JK wants to give serious time to Gomez, Wondo and Boyd. And it appears he wants Gordon to play the big physical late sub and take advantage of the smaller , lighter Mexicans, especially on set pieces.
        There is also the small matter of Gordon and Wondo being teammates and maybe JK wants to take advantage of that.
        JK hints at the USMNT having a very busy 2013 to make up for having missed out on the 2013 Confed Cup. I don’t doubt that Pontius will get his shot soon……if he can stay healthy, a big issue with him


  13. Posted by justin on 2012/08/13 at 9:18 PM

    interesting article on mlssoccer about edu playing centerback along side cameron…

    I’m not saying I love it, but I think edu is the best option from our personnel, in this game especially, in the back than playing CM… at the same time, do we really want to play edu back there in any other game ever? If not it shows again how poor the roster selection was and/or the extreme lack of depth at CB…

    This means in the middle 3 of the 4-3-3, we will probably see torres (whom we have only really seen along the wings so far) I’m guessing the other two will be beckerman at the #6 and Germany Jones as the right sided CM.

    That leaves us with Beasley or Shea on the left wing and Donovan on the right and Gomez in the middle OR slide in another forward (Boyd) and push Gomez out to the wing and neither beasley or shea start…

    gosh darn


    • Posted by Jared on 2012/08/14 at 3:32 AM

      If Edu plays at center back then it really makes me question the entire point of this friendly. Edu has really never played there at any professional level and when he’s played there it shows. Central defense is one of the few positions on the field where you can’t make up for lack of positioning/understanding with physical ability because if you give a guy like Chicharito a half step lead he’s putting it in the net.

      Hasn’t Danny Williams actually played some defense for Hoffenheim in the past couple of seasons? If so, it would make more sense to try him there.


    • Would love to se Amobi Okugo getting some more PT for both Philly and (not now, but soon) the USMNT at centerback. He has looked pretty good in the position from what I have seen, is more skilled than Edu, and has a firm grasp of positioning and timing that will get better over time. Edu, I think, is past the point of being able to make a smooth transition into CB. Not too late for Okugo to move there from CDM.


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