Clint Dempsey’s Omission from USMNT November Friendlies Is Right Move


On the heels of the Seattle Sounders advancing past FC Dallas into the Western Conference Finals, the US Men’s National Team 25-man roster was announced on Monday. Sounders star Clint Dempsey was not among those called-up and it should not be shocking at all.

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Dempsey has had a busy 11 months of soccer during the 2014 calendar year. Between World Cup, US Open Cup, and MLS play, it’s clear Dempsey needs a break. This two-week international break in November is an appropriate time for Dempsey to recharge his batteries. Instead of tiring himself out more by playing two friendlies in two weeks with the USMNT, Dempsey can make sure he’s ready to go against the Los Angeles Galaxy.

At the same time, Dempsey’s injury risk is less by not participating in the November friendlies. Teammate Osvaldo Alonso left Monday’s game against FC Dallas with a hamstring related injury. The Sounders are optimistic about his injury prognosis and he is day-to-day currently. He is expected to be ready for the first leg against the Galaxy. Alonso is a key part of the Sounders’ game plan and so is Dempsey.

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  • Dempsey’s exclusion from the 25-man roster is the right move by Jurgen Klinsmann. He’s wise to listen to Dempsey and Sigi Schmid concerns about Dempsey being tired and tested often during the year. Likewise, the importance of these friendlies is allow Klinsmann to see the next and current waves of American talent. Klinsmann knows how Dempsey looks and plays on the field. Yet, he doesn’t know how others look and play as a cohesive unit.

    For Dempsey, the best move was to not be apart of the USMNT’s November friendlies against Ireland and Colombia. It’s more important and crucial to be well-rested and prepared to be a dynamic attacker against the Galaxy. The Sounders’ pursuit of winning the MLS Cup and the Treble (US Open Cup, Supporters Shield and MLS Cup) holds more importance than two friendlies at the end of a year.

    Next: MLS Playoffs: 6 Reasons Seattle Sounders vs. LA Galaxy is Good for League

    Without Dempsey during November, USMNT and Jurgen Klinsmann will survive and still be successful in achieving their goals. However, the Sounders without Dempsey in the two-legged Western Conference Final and potential MLS Cup Final match would be detrimental. Yes, Dempsey isn’t the only star and impact player on the Sounders’ roster, but the Sounders are a different team without him.

    It’s a good thing that Dempsey, Schmid, and Klinsmann clearly understand what’s more important for Dempsey right now. USMNT call-ups are important and Dempsey’s services are key. However right now, Dempsey’s performance and health is more crucial for the Sounders’ success right now than it is for the national team.