Sep 14, 2012; Kansas City, KS, USA; Houston Dynamo midfielder Brad Davis and Sporting KC defender Matt Besler (5) go after the ball in the first half at Livestrong Sporting Park. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Analysis of Players Picked for USMNT Camp

Jurgen Klinsmann revealed a roster made up of 21 Major League Soccer players on Sunday.  After digesting the list further it is hard to complain about a lot of those brought into a camp that has been fondly called Camp Cupcake.  In our projections last month we fared pretty well although we did not tackle the entire 25 man roster.  Here is where we stand after a few hours to dissect the roster.  GOALKEEPERS (3): Tally Hall (Houston Dynamo), Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire)

I think none of the keepers picked are not shocking but a lot of folks have been wondering whether Steve Clark would get a call up after a stellar season in Norway. His club is in off-season right now so Coach obviously doesn’t rate him higher than the ones called in.

I’m surprised Nick Rimando isn’t here. He’s been the #3 keeper and I feel he would be a good veteran to have around, but word from Real Salt Lake is that he has an injury concern.

Dan Kennedy had a stand out season for Chivas USA so he’s another head scratcher for me. In the end, I have no problems with the three called in though. It’ll be interesting to see who stands out & eanrs the start for the Jan. 29th friendly. 

DEFENDERS (9): Steven Beitashour (San Jose Earthquakes), Tony Beltran (Real Salt Lake), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), A.J. DeLaGarza (LA Galaxy), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Connor Lade (New York Red Bulls), Alfredo Morales (Hertha Berlin), Justin Morrow (San Jose Earthquakes), Jeff Parke (Philadelphia Union)

The biggest topic around the water cooler that is Twitter has been Lade. I honestly don’t know enought about him to give my opinion but the poor guy is being singled out as the person who doesn’t belong in camp. My guess is this might be one of those selections that’s about fitting Coach K’s system versus talent. Many see him in a midfield role with his relentless nature while questioning his ability one on one.  

Another selection that is interesting is Alfredo Morales. The guy is talented but hasn’t been playing for his club and their willingness to let him be in this camp also suggests he’s down the depth chart at Hertha Berlin.

Omar Gonzalez is one the players that must shine at this camp in order to graduate to the “A-Team” roster. I don’t see many of these remaining defenders making it the the CONCACAF qualifier but Omar has high expectation from both fans and the coaching staff.

MIDFIELDERS (8): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (out of contract), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders), Benny Feilhaber (Sporting Kansas City), Joshua Gatt (Molde), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)

Once again, the deepest part of the roster, there’s been grumbling about Freddy Adu getting snubbed but a bigger snub for me was Dax McCarty. He had a solid season for the disaster known as the NY Red Bulls but doesn’t get any love.

Coach K mentioned there would be between 6 – 8 players that might make the qualifier and I believe most of them will be from here. Zusi will be there for sure and I suspect that a strong camp for players like Diskerud, Gatt (especially since I doubt Donovan will called up since he’s still exploring his options), heck even Bedoya or Beckerman could put them on the roster for World Cup qualifying.  Of course Bedoya is out of a contract and will need to iron out a club soon as well.

FORWARDS (5): Juan Agudelo (Chivas USA), Will Bruin (Houston Dynamo), Edson Buddle (Colorado Rapids), Eddie Johnson (Seattle Sounders), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)

One player that was expected to be in this pool was DC United’s Chris Pontius. He has tweeted that he hasn’t recovered from his groin injury & wanted to be ready from the MLS season. That’s absolutely understandable but (I might be reading between the lines here) I think it shows where on the USMNT depth chart Chris thinks he sits. I wonder if Coach K will hold that against him in the future.

A head scratcher for me is Buddle. I’m not sure who I’d call in his place (one that comes to mind was Bunbury but he’s injured).  As I sit here thinking about it more, why not CJ Sapong, Alan Gordon, or  Kenny Cooper?  Of course you could listen to the rumors of Sapong to Arsenal.  Gordon is also nursing an injury.  There is one school of thought on Buddle that does make some sense.  



Let us know what you think.

Tags: Concacaf Football Futbol Major League Soccer MLS Soccer U.s. Soccer USMNT

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