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Finding His Form: Johannsson Leads AZ to Europa League; Ready for June MNT Friendlies

Four weeks ago, U.S. Men’s National Team forward Aron Johannsson and his club AZ Alkmaar were seven points out of the third-place position in the Eredivisie. That third-place spot is particularly important because it guarantees the club that holds it a qualifying spot in the Europa League. With that many points to overcome, many of the AZ players were resigned to the fact that if they were going to play Europa League, they’d more than likely have to earn their place during the post-season playoffs.

“When we lost against Feyenoord six games ago we thought we were going to the playoffs,” Johannsson said. “For the rest of the games we were mentally preparing ourselves as if we were going into the playoffs.”

But that was four weeks ago.

On Sunday,  Johannsson scored two goals and added an assist to lead Alkmaar to a 4-1 win over Excelsior. The win landed AZ in third place in Eredivisie, clinching a sport in the Europa League. It was an improbable run highlighted by a hot streak of performances from the MNT forward that began three weeks ago.

Following a 3-1 win against ADO Den Haag, AZ matched up with FC Twente on April 26. Thirty-five minutes into the game, Alkmaar found itself up 2-0 after Johannsson flicked a cross into the back of the net with the outside of his left foot. Johannsson and the team held on for the remaining 65 minutes, and for the first time since February, AZ had won back-to-back games. The positive result berthed a positive thought. If AZ could keep winning, maybe they had a chance.

“We went into the game against NAC Breda realizing third place was possible.” Johannsson said.

The team knew that continuing to win was the only way that possibility could turn into reality, but after 82 minutes AZ trailed 2-1. In the 83rd, Robert Muhren leveled the score line for AZ, but at this stage a tie was not much more valuable than a loss. With two minutes to go, Johannsson kept the Europa League hopes alive, blasting in a stunning long-range goal from 35 yards out.

“I’ve never shot from that far before,” Johannsson said. “We needed to win the game obviously so we could have a chance at third place, and the whole game NAC Breda was defending. They had almost 11 in their own box in the last 30-40 minutes. I didn’t’ get any chances and I barely saw the ball. Finally I got the ball and it was a little bit far away, but I just said ‘screw it’ and decided to shoot on goal. Obviously the result was great.”

With the win AZ moved into a tie with Feyenoord for third with 59 points. Had the season ended that day, Feyenoord would have claimed the automatic Europe League bid based on goal differential. But there was still one game left to play. With Feyenoord holding a huge advantage in the tiebreaker, Johannsson and his teammates knew that they’d need a win in their last game with Excelsior and some luck with the other result.

“After the NAC Breda game, we were thinking the whole week about Excelsior and we knew we had to win to have any chance and hope for good results,” Johannsson said. “It was also tough for us because it was not in our own hands. In a situation like that you can only focus on yourself and get those three points and hope for the best.”

Five minutes into the match with Excelsior, AZ proved they were ready to take care of business. And Johannsson was ready for the spectacular.

“The ball came into the box and bounced high in the air. It was on turf and it was spinning a lot, so I was trying to read where the ball would eventually come down and I made it there before the defender,” Johannsson said.  “The ball was at a perfect height and I just decided to do a bicycle kick. I’m really happy it worked out.”

Johannsson’s goal sent the number of AZ fans that had traveled to Stadion Woudestein into a frenzy and gave his team an early 1-0 lead. It was good thing he heard the roar of the supporters, since he wasn’t quite sure it had gone in.

“I felt it when I hit it and it felt very good,” Johannsson sad. “First I heard everybody celebrating and then I just looked up in the goal and saw the ball, so I didn’t see it in exactly the same time as everybody else. It was amazing. Not only was it a beautiful goal, but we needed to score a goal early in the game to help us build confidence and this was after five minutes. From every perspective it was really nice.”

Bicycle-kick goals are rare, but for Johannsson, this one was not a fluke.

“Two days before the game I was training, we had a striker training at the club, and I was training bicycle kicks. So it was really fortunate the ball came exactly there in this game. We were training and we had the trainer play us the ball and I was kind of taking it off my chest and putting in the air and taking, I think it was five or six bicycle kicks. So it was probably in the back of my head in the game when the ball came in that position.”


Weekend Review: MNT Players Play Big Roles in Club Success

In a weekend where Champions League and Europe League spots awaited clinching, where promotions lay for the taking, and where streaks sought to be continued, there to respond were members of the U.S. Men’s National Team who made an impact with their clubs.

Fabian Johnson and his club Borussia Monchengladbach made history this weekend. Entering just one win away from clinching a group-phase spot in next season’s Champions League, Johnson started and gave ‘Gladbach 78 strong minutes, which helped propel the Foals to capture the needed victory by a 2-0 score line against Werder Bremen. This marks the first time ‘Gladbach has punched a ticket to the Champions League group stage. The Foals have not lost a league match in which Johnson has started since the winter break, going 10-0-2 in that stretch.

Staying in Germany, Alfredo Morales and his squad FC Ingolstadt had an opportunity to secure first place in the 2. Bundesliga and promotion, needing a win against RB Leipzig. Leipzig got on the board early, scoring in the game’s fourth minute. In the 39th Morales came on, and just before the halftime whistle Ingolstadt leveled at 1-1 with a penalty kick. In the 76th minute Morales assisted on the goal that proved to be the game winner. In the end, he helped hoist the 2. Bundesliga silverware that declared Ingolstadt was headed to the top division.

Moving north, Aron Johannsson and his Dutch club AZ Alkmaar entered the weekend tied with Feyenoord for the Eredivisie’s third-place position and the Europa League spot that goes along with it. Johannsson was clearly set on AZ taking that position as he scored a pair of goals, including a full bicycle. Johannsson also added an assist in AZ Alkmaar’s 4-1 win over Excelsior. With Feyenoord losing, AZ are officially in the Europa League for next season.

In MLS, Clint Dempsey continued his point-scoring tear for Seattle Sounders FC. Dempsey again contributed to the Seattle attack, setting up Chad Barrett for what proved to be the game-winning goal in the 2-0 win against Vancouver Whitecaps FC. In doing so, Dempsey extended his streak of recording at least a point to 10 games, which is the fourth-longest streak of its kind in MLS history and the longest since 1998. Dempsey has at least one point in 18 of Seattle’s last 19 games and is tied for the league-lead in goals (7) and assists (5).

In Mexico, Ventura Alvarado and Club America entered the second leg of the Liga MX quarterfinals trailing Pachuca, 3-2. Alvarado came on in the 59th minute of a match packed with excitement and drama that included seven goals, two red cards – both for Club America and the first leaving them a man short after 33 minutes – and last-minute strikes. Ultimately, Club America lost 4-3 at home and 7-5 on aggregate.

Michael Bradley, Chris Wondolowski and Juan Agudelo were a trio of other MNT players that made a mark last weekend, each scoring a goal. Agudelo was a difference maker for the New England Revolution scoring on a diving header to give his team the lead against Toronto FC. Michael Bradley, his MNT teammate, but opponent in this matchup, responded with a game-tying goal for Toronto. Bradley’s was an exhibition of individual dominance. The midfielder dribbled through a host of New England Revolution defenders and finished in the lower left corner of the goal. In San Jose, Chris Wondolowski directed in a header in his team’s 2-0 win over Columbus Crew SC. The goal was the 99th of his career, which ranks him ninth overall in MLS history.

USMNT - Five to Follow

With the seasons in Europe reaching their climax and MLS in full swing, there are Champions League and Europa League spots to be won, promotion to be earned, and streaks to be continued. Here's five MNT stories to follow this weekend.


  • Fabian Johnson and Monchengladbach can guarantee at least third place in the Bundesliga and an automatic spot in next season’s Champions League with either a win away to Wolfsburg on Saturday or if Leverkusen fails to win against Hoffenheim. [FABIAN FEATURE ON USSOCCER.COM]
  • Alfredo Morales and FC Ingolstadt can secure first place and promotion to the Bundesliga with a win against RB Leipzig on Saturday.
  • Aron Johannsson and AZ Alkmaar are tied on points (59) with Feyenoord but behind on goal differential for third place with one game to go. The third-place finisher gets automatic entry into the Europa League; otherwise they go into a playoff. Alkmaar is away to 15th place Excelsior on Sunday.
  • Ventura Alvarado and Club America go into the second leg of the Liga MX quarterfinal at home down 3-2 to Pachuca. Interestingly, in Mexico the tiebreaker in the series is a little different. If both the aggregate goals and away goals are equal, there is no extra time and penalties. Instead, the team with the most points during the regular season advances.
  • Clint Dempsey goes into the Cascadia Cup match against Vancouver on fire, tied for the league lead with seven goals and adding four assists. He has at least one point in 17 of the last 18 games for Seattle. 

Johnson and Monchengladbach on Bundesliga Hot Streak

U.S. MNT Midfielder Fabian Johnson has played a part in Borussia Monchengladbach’s surge in the Bundesliga, who are now just one win away from securing a place in the Group Stage of the UEFA Champions League. With huge friendlies against Netherlands and World Cup champions Germany on the horizon ahead of the vital Gold Cup this summer, Johnson looks to carry that form into the National Team.

After going an unbeaten 5-5-0 in the season’s first 10 games, entering week 13 Borussia Monchengladbach took a sudden skid in the form of three-game losing streak and fell to fifth place on the table. Seven weeks later at the week-20 mark, the team was still in in fifth. Now, entering the last two weeks of the season, ‘Gladbach is riding a 12-match unbeaten streak and holds on to the league’s No. 3 spot. U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder Fabian Johnson has played an integral role in helping make Die Foals the hottest team in Germany.

“We've just been trying to do everything we can,” Johnson said of the team’s success in the second half of the season. “I think the first half was also good, just not as good as the second half.  We have been able to win big games like against Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen that we missed in the first half of the season.”

The victory against Leverkusen was perhaps the most significant for the Foals, particularly with the clock ticking on the season. Going into the match, Leverkusen was just two points off ‘Gladbach’s third place position in the table, which is an especially valuable position to be in since the Bundesliga top three are ensured automatic bids in the group stage of the UEFA Champions League. Ultimately the hosts triumphed for their third-straight league win, with Johnson assisting on the game’s final goal of his team’s 3-0 victory and bolstering the team’s Champions League position. Johnson also assisted on ‘Gladbach’s game-winning goal in its 1-0 victory against Wolfsburg on April 26, that win guaranteeing his side at least a place in Champions League qualifying, but they want more.

“Getting to Champions league would mean very much,” Johnson said. “It was our goal to go to the Champions League. We've already achieved being in the qualification stage, but now we want to go to the group stage directly.”

Johnson said he’s never been a part of an experience like the one he is on right now, and said it’s a thrill to have played a part in it. In league games since January in which he has been in the Starting XI for Gladbach, the team has not lost. In that time frame, Johnson has settled into his role on the left side of midfield, scoring a goal and adding three assists.

“Right now I’m playing left mid. When I first when got to ‘Gladbach it was kind of difficult because it had been a while since I had played the position and I wasn't so used to it,” Johnson said. “After the winter break, I had a few good games and now I’m feeling better. I know where to run and where to pass and I’m feeling much more comfortable in the position right now. I like it.”

The team is now just a win away from that automatic group stage placement in Champions League, and they will have a chance to get it on Saturday when it plays Werder Bremen.

“In almost every game in the second half of the season we have had great team performances. Everybody worked for each other and gave everything in those games,” Johnson said. “I think we’re just having a great run right now and we’re trying to keep it going over these last few games. We have to at least win one more, and hopefully we can manage it on Saturday.”

‘Gladbach has had tremendous defensive success during this run, shutting out its opponent in nine of its last 15 Bundesliga games.

“It’s very difficult to score against us. I think we have a great defensive work and then as soon as we get the ball we are very quick in transition and work to score very quickly. We did a lot of good work on these elements during the Winter break.  We just feel comfortable out there and everybody’s positive, not just the players but the club and the whole area here.”

Borussia Park, the home stadium for ‘Gladbach, has a capacity of 54,057, of which 16,145 are standing-room only due to the team’s popularity. Johnson said the Foals fans are some of the world’s best, and that their support propels him and his teammates when they’re on the pitch.

“Our fans are just great,” Johnson said. “When we play road games, it sometimes doesn’t even feel like we’re away. They’re doing a great job and they’re always supporting us.”

Johnson isn't the only player with U.S. MNT ties that has given the Foals faithful something to cheer about. U.S. MNT Special Advisor Berti Vogts was a two-time Bundesliga Player of the Year when he played for Gladbach from 1969-1975. Vogts was a key player for the team in its Golden Decade in the 1970s, when he earned German Player of the Year honors twice (1971, 1979) and led the team to three-straight Bundesliga titles from 1975-77. Former U.S. MNT goalkeeper Kasey Keller captained the squad in the 2006-07 season.

 ‘Gladbach and Johnson look to continue the success and finish the season on a high note. From there it’s only a few short weeks before Johnson gets back on the field in a U.S. uniform when the MNT faces Netherlands on June 5 and World Cup Champion Germany on June 10 in international friendlies.

“I think these are great games and I think everyone’s excited for it,” Johnson said. “We’re going to play against the World Champion. We already played them in Washington D.C. and it was a great game. Now we’re playing them away and I think it’ll be a huge game. Everybody wants to play against the best players in the world so it will be fun.”

The U.S. lost to Germany in the group stage of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, last summer 1-0. This time around the game will be played on German soil in Cologne, which happens to be just a few minutes away Johnson’s home in Dusseldorf. His mother, brother and friends will be there to watch him play.

The proximity to home with these friendlies also helps because  Johnson has a lot to prepare for in the next few months with the end of the Bundesliga, the MNT friendlies with Netherlands and Germany, and the start of the CONCACAF Gold Cup just a few weeks after that.

Johnson said he’ll closely focus on his training to ready himself for the host of games he’ll encounter, while many of his club teammates will likely be on vacation. Johnson said that the significance of the games and the Gold Cup will fuel him as he works.

“The Gold Cup is very important,” he said. “We want to go to the Confederations Cup, that’s our goal, so we have to win the tournament.”

While Johnson’s club season is wrapping up, he knows his soccer year is far from over, there’s plenty more to come on the horizon with the U.S. MNT, hopefully Johnson says, when his year is over, he’ll have a Gold Cup to hoist and a Champions League group stage matchup to look forward to.

It has been close to four years since Johnson debuted for the U.S. MNT in its match against France in November 2011. He’s come a long way since, having played a big part in the U.S.’s run in the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, where he started all four games. Johnson hopes that this recent success proves to be a continuation of better things to come.


U.S. Soccer to Host Series of Fan Events in Europe for MNT's June Matches

CHICAGO (May 14, 2015) – The U.S. Men’s National Team will face a pair of European powerhouses in June as it continues preparations for the 2015 Gold Cup. The USA will face No. 6 FIFA-ranked Netherlands on June 5 at 2:30 p.m. ET at the Amsterdam Arena in Amsterdam, Netherlands, before clashing with 2014 FIFA World Cup champion and world No. 1 Germany on June 10 at 2:45 p.m. ET in Cologne, Germany.

U.S. Soccer, in a collaborative effort with The American Outlaws, will engage fans with several events specifically for U.S. Soccer faithful attending these European matches.

On the night before each game day, AO will host parties for USA fans at local bars. On match days, U.S. Soccer will host the ‘FanFriendly’ against local supporters, as well as FanHQ at venues conveniently located next to each stadium.

FanFriendly matches will be full 11v11 games played for 90 minutes, pitting U.S. supporters against fans from the opposing nation. The games have been organized in partnership with the Royal Dutch Football Association and the German Football Association.

FanHQ will bring together U.S. fans before and after the matches in Amsterdam and Cologne to celebrate the U.S. National Team. Fans who RSVP will have guaranteed access to the events. All FanHQ events will feature music from DJ Spin Easy, a NYC DJ who has opened all over the world for artists such as Snoop Dogg, Akon, T-Pain, Ice Cube and others, and brought his unique sets to FanHQ events in Brazil during the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Food and drinks will be available for purchase.

Further details on all events can be found below. All times listed as local.

U.S. MNT vs. NETHERLANDS || JUNE 5 || MATCH PAGE

AO NIGHT BEFORE PARTY
Thursday, June 4th 
American Outlaws Night Before Party
8 p.m. - close
Three Sisters Pub (Rembrandtplein 19, 1017 CT Amsterdam, Netherlands)

  • No RSVP is needed for this event. 

FANFRIENDLY

Friday, June 5th 
FanFriendly Match against Netherlands Fans
2 p.m.
FC Amsterdam (Zwartelaantje 51099 CE Amsterdam, Netherlands)
This is limited to the first 25 players who register. 

FANHQ AMSTERDAM
Pregame from 3-8 p.m.
Postgame from 10:30 p.m.-1 a.m.
Vanzz Loungebar and Restaurant (De Corridor 2, 1101 BD Amsterdam, Netherlands)

U.S. MNT vs. GERMANY || JUNE 10 || MATCH PAGE

AO NIGHT BEFORE PARTY
Tuesday, June 9th 

American Outlaws Night Before Party 
8 p.m.- Close
Kiez (Moselstraße 80 50674 Köln, Germany)

  • No RSVP is needed for this event 

FANFRIENDLY
Wednesday, June 10th 
FanFriendly Match against Germany Fans
3 p.m. 
Outside RheinEnergieSTADION at the corner of Oskar-Rehfeldt-Weg and Olympiaweg
This is limited to the first 25 players who register. 

FANHQ COLOGNE
Pregame from 4-8 p.m.
Postgame from 10:45 p.m. - 1 a.m.
Playa (Junkersdorfer Straße 1, 50933 Köln, Germany)

MNT to Face Guatemala in Final Gold Cup Tune-Up

CHICAGO (May 4, 2015) – The U.S. Men’s National Team will face Guatemala on Friday, July 3, at 5:30 p.m. CT at LP Field in Nashville, Tennessee. The game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1, UniMás and the Univision Deportes Network.

'We are thrilled to have the opportunity to play a team like Guatemala before the Gold Cup," said U.S. MNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann. "They are similar to our opponents in the group stage, so we couldn't ask for better preparation. Our goal is to win the tournament, and this will be an important first step. Nashville has always been a great home to the National Team, and we look forward to having a fantastic crowd at LP Field."

Tickets go on sale to the public on Thursday, May 7, at 10 a.m. CT through ussoccer.com, by phone at 1-800-745-3000, at all Ticketmaster ticket centers throughout Central Tennessee (including Kroger and Walmart stores) and the LP Field ticket office (open Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.)

Groups of 20 or more can obtain an order form at ussoccer.com or call 312-528-1290. Ultimate Fan Tickets (special VIP packages that include a premium ticket, a custom-made official U.S. National Team jersey with name and number, VIP access to the field before and after the game, and other unique benefits) are also available exclusively through ussoccer.com.

The matchup will serve as the final tune-up for the team before it starts play at the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup with an opening round match against Honduras on July 7 at 8:30 p.m. CT at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas. That game will also be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1 and UniMás.

The U.S. MNT competed in front of 29,059 fans the last time it played at LP Field in 2011, which was the largest crowd for a soccer match in the state of Tennessee. In three matches where the USMNT has played in Nashville, the average attendance has been 27,720.

The U.S. and Guatemala last met on July 5, 2013, in a game that also served as final preparation ahead of the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup. The USA prevailed in that matchup by a 6-0 score line, improving its all-time record against Guatemala to 14-4-6.

The USA has played five international friendlies in 2015, going 2-2-1. The year for the MNT has been highlighted by a 2-0 victory over archrival Mexico in April, a 2-0 win over Panama in February, and a draw with No. 9 FIFA-ranked Switzerland in Zurich in March.

Before the matchup with Guatemala, the U.S. will travel to Europe for a pair of friendlies with international powerhouse and No. 6 FIFA-ranked Netherlands in Amsterdam on June 5 (2:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, WatchESPN, UniMás, Univision Deportes Network), and reigning FIFA World Cup-champion and top-ranked Germany on June 10 in Cologne, Germany (2:45 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1, UniMás, Univision Deportes Network). Fans can also follow all matches on Twitter @ussoccer and @ussoccer_esp.

Altidore Double Highlights MNT Contributions to Club Success

Now just over two months out, the U.S. MNT players have their eyes set on making an impact for the USA in the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup. For now, their work is with their club teams, where last weekend a number of U.S. players made a difference.

Jozy Altidore, F, Toronto FC

Altidore collected his third and fourth goals of the season after notching a double in Toronto FC’s 2-0 win over Orlando City SC. In the 50th minute, Altidore quickly played a free kick from inside of the center circle to teammate Sebastain Giovinco, who in-turn touched it right back to Altidore. From there Altidore did the rest, zipping past the defense and ripping a shot that just tipped off Orlando City GK Donovan Ricketts’ hands and bounced in off the far post. In the 83rd minute, he got around the defense again. His second score came when he took down a long pass and fooled both a defender and the goalkeeper with a cut in the box that he followed with a left-footed finish.

Watch: Altidore goals

Fabian Johnson, D, Borussia Mönchengladbach

Fabian Johnson played a key part in Borussia Mönchengladbach’s 1-0 win over VfL Wolfsburg. Johnson completed 29 of 34 passes one of which set up the game-winning goal. The win was huge for ‘Gladbach as it clinched at least a qualifying spot in the next edition of the UEFA Champions League.

Watch: Match Highlights

Clint Dempsey, F, Seattle Sounders FC

Clint Dempsey led the Seattle Sounders to a victory over rival Portland Timbers by scoring the game-winning goal in the 77th minute of the match. In front of a crowd of 41,541 at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Dempsey tapped in a rebound from close range after Andy Rose’s initial shot was saved by the Portland GK Adam Kwarasey. The goal was Dempsey’s second through Kwarasey in the last year. He put one past him in just 30 seconds into the USA’s 2014 FIFA World Cup opener against Ghana last June.

Watch: Dempsey Goal

Alejandro Bedoya, M, Nantes

Alejandro Bedoya headed home the game-tying goal for Nantes in its Ligue 1 road match versus Toulouse. With two minutes left in regulation, Nantes trailed by a goal and was given a corner kick. Bedoya made his move to the back post and buried a header to save a point for Nantes.

Watch: Bedoya goal

Aron Johannsson, F, AZ Alkmaar

Aron Johannsson tallied his sixth goal of the season for AZ, flicking in a cross with the outside of his left foot for a goal in the game’s 35th minute. AZ would go on to win 2-0 over FC Twente. The win was important for AZ as the team continues to work for a Europa League spot. Johannsson’s team now trails the third-place position by three points with two more matches to play this season.

Watch: Johannsson goal

MNT Beats Mexico 2-0 in Front of Packed Alamodome

The U.S. Men’s National Team defeated archrival Mexico by a score line of 2-0 behind goals from Jordan Morris and Juan Agudelo in front of a sell-out crowd of 64,369. The match was presented by AT&T. The win extended the USA’s unbeaten streak against Mexico to a record six games (3-0-3), pushed the U.S. MNT’s current unbeaten streak on home soil to 21 games (18-0-3) and marked the ninth USA victory against Mexico by that familiar score line and eighth since 2000.

Q&A: Klinsmann Discusses Takeaways from Mexico Game, Looks to Build for Gold Cup

ussoccer.com: What were your overall thoughts on the performance?

Jurgen Klinsmann: “I think the overall performance was really positive. I think it was a great team effort. We showed a lot of spirit and we showed a lot of character in that game. They were working hard for each other. Everybody tried to follow our tactical principles, playing in a 4-4-2 diamond means there’s a lot of shifting. Obviously you need to have the fullbacks come out and attack the wingers, which we did really well, and we stayed really compact in midfield. We kept the distance between our center backs and our forwards in a good way in order to always be compact and work everybody together in a defensive mode, then once we had the ball we spread it out and went into attack. I think therefore, it was a very good performance with great energy, good spirit and a lot of positives to take from the game.”

ussoccer.com: What did you think the keys were to getting this result?

JK:
“I think keys for winning against a squad as good as Mexico are that you need to be prepared for their way of going at you. They usually come in a 3-5-2 and with the wingers going forward, you need to be prepared to deal with them. They have individually very good technical players so they need to get pressured; they need to get their toes stepped on. We did this; we kept their back three very busy with Jordan Morris and Gyasi Zardes in the first half, and also with the guys coming in in the second half. Overall, everybody tried to implement his personal job in this game and those 90 minutes, and I think we deserved the result.”

ussoccer.com: Clearly the conditions were difficult. Are you able to learn things about players in terms of how they deal with a challenging pitch, an intense atmosphere ant the pressure of a USA-Mexico match?

JK: “I think those games are really crucial and very important to us even if you don’t maybe have your top roster at your disposal, because playing with difficult field conditions is something that we’ll always face in CONCACAF when we go away from home. We always have different environments, and in a game like that where the expectations are very high because you’re playing your main rival Mexico, you have an opportunity to prove to the coaches that you’re able to deal with that. I think after the initial hectic 10-15 minutes, the players started to settle into the game and they started to combine here and there with good passing sequences on a very difficult surface, and they felt more and more comfortable. I think the crowd was exciting. There was a lot of energy in the stadium and the players kind of started to take that energy in a positive way.”

ussoccer.com: You gave a college player the first start for the Senior Team in more than 20 years. How did Jordan Morris fare, and what message does that send to other players who may not be obvious choices?

JK: “When you develop players coming through the youth system going into the U-18’s and the U-20’s, then in the Olympic team at under-23 years of age, you always kind of see the talent and the potential of a player. If he’s playing in that moment with an MLS club, in Mexico, in Europe or for a college team, that’s not the key; the key is that he really gets ‘what is the demand for me going forward,’ and I think that Jordan Morris has the talent and the potential. I think what he needs to learn now is to pick up a higher rhythm to go to the highest level possible and become consistent. He has the talent to break through, but it’s easier to do that in one game than it is to do in 40, 50, 60 games in one year. So when we talk about the development of players, we always talk about the consistency that they need to continue to have to become really good players. I think it’s a great signal to everyone out there that no matter where he plays, that it’s one thing having the talent, which Jordan Morris has, and the other thing is to prove that talent on a consistent basis in whatever environment you are in. The national team program has a little more freedom to do that and to give you a chance, and also calculate the minutes that you’re on the field. Then in your club team, you have to provide week-in and week-out at your highest level.”

JK: I think what everyone felt for Jordan Morris the moment he scored that goal was, ‘Yes!’ He proved a point because it’s always difficult to imagine being on the stage for a game like USA-Mexico, with 65,000 people and a very loud crowd, and how to handle something like that psychologically. So he then ended up scoring that goal and you just kind of go, ‘Yes!’ He showed and proved that he can do it. Now for him going forward, it’s about staying consistent at Stanford and calculating his path and his jump into the professional world sooner or later to become a consistent element in our Olympic team that strives toward Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Obviously, when you don’t know all the answers before a game on how a player like him deals with all those things and then all of a sudden he scores a goal that is very special. I think everybody on the bench felt for him, all the players, all the coaches, and certainly his coaches at Stanford.

ussoccer.com: Also getting his first start was Ventura Alvarado, who has now said he is fully committed to the United States. How did you assess his performance?

JK: “We are very lucky that we have a lot of very center backs on our roster. Ventura Alvarado is now making that step to us and he’s another very strong player into our center back player pool. The way he came into Denmark and Switzerland was very impressive, and the way he played for Club America all season now being in the CONCACAF Champions League Final is very impressive, so we are really happy to have Ventura. We’re really happy because he’s the type of player that a coach looks at that’s almost complete. He’s technically very gifted and he’s obviously physically strong because you need to be that in that center back role. He’s strong in the air and he stays very precise and he’s very grounded, so having him in our pool means a lot to us and we’re thrilled.”

ussoccer.com: A lot of people expected the crowd to be almost exclusively pro-Mexico, but there was a significant number of people supporting the U.S. Do you see us making progress in converting fans with our performances?

JK: I think definitely that our crowd is getting unbelievably exciting no matter where we play. You saw that in Brazil. We had the biggest following of all of the nations that were a part of the World Cup, and now also in all of our home games, the following of the American Outlaws and all the fans streaming to our games. With Mexico, it will always be a mixture because of their fan base here in the United States, but for us it’s huge and it means a lot to us. We feel like no matter what stadium we go into, we have our fans and they’re giving us so much support and it’s adding so much fun to it and adding so much energy to everything we do. We know there are a big amount of fans behind us and they want us to do well.”

ussoccer.com: Did you get any answers from this game that will help you in the building of the roster for the Gold Cup?

JK: “Definitely we got a lot of answers to many, many little questions that we always have. This game gave us a lot of good stuff towards individual performances, players that knock at the door and are pushing to get in. It’s going to be a very, very difficult situation at the Gold Cup because European-based players are already done with their seasons at the end of May, so how do we bridge them into the Gold Cup which is in July and is not following up their season right away? We have MLS in full swing and Mexican-based players have a different schedule as well, so it was important for us to see how eager everybody is to get into that Gold Cup roster, and they are all hungry. It will start with the weeks before the Gold Cup with our 35-man preliminary roster, which we are very comfortable with already, and then obviously to bring in a group of 23 players. We also have a chance to switch six players after the group stage, which is a lot of work for us coaches but exciting work because we can kind of schedule things maybe a bit differently and we can bring players in at a later stage, or we can also bring the European-based players from the beginning of the tournament right away into it. It gives us more options, and with that performance for many players against Mexico, it’s going to be exciting for us to calculate everything in hopefully the right way.”

ussoccer.com: What are the messages to the players in the pool between now and the summer?

JK: We had a transition phase from the World Cup into 2015 and a lot of friendly games where we tried different stuff within our player pool and we found new players that we’re excited about, but now it goes into to the real deal and the real deal is winning the Gold Cup. The message to the players has become consistent: prove your point week-in and week-out within your club environment. For the European players, finish the season on the highest note possible and you might have a shorter vacation because we need you to be a part of that Gold Cup team as well, so we’re asking now from them that they be spot on, that they be sharp, that they be leaders in their club environments and that they stand out and not take things easy and make sure that they keep their performance going into July and show it most excitingly in the Gold Cup itself.”

ussoccer.com: You’ve said there are significant challenges in putting together the roster for the games in June as well as the Gold Cup, and we also have the FIFA U-20 World Cup and Olympic Qualifying. How do you now go about piecing that puzzle together?

JK: “It’s a very, very busy year for all of us. We had the U-17’s qualify for the World Cup and the U-20’s qualified for the World Cup and they are right now in Austria playing friendly games. We are building a U-23 pool to go ahead to the Olympic Qualifiers later on this year. It is very, very important that these players, especially the U-20’s right now in camp, know that we’re watching them and we talk to each other. All the coaches are connected. We talk about every talent coming through the ranks and we try to find even more talent. They need to understand that in this very early stage of their career that they are the drivers and that they are the decision makers. They have to make the right decisions on the field, but also especially off the field. This is something that we tell our youth teams more and more, that they become personalities and that they take things into their own hands and they become accountable for what they’re doing. So it’s a huge year for U.S. Soccer with all the teams in their different tournaments and their goals. It’s always important that as coaches we send the same messages over and over again.”

ussoccer.com: How helpful is it to have the U-23’s also face of with Mexico this week?

JK: “It’s very helpful that the U-23s have that game against Mexico coming up at StubHub Center on Wednesday because we urgently need to try and build this pool and try to build a team that is getting together on every possible occasion; trying to find a chemistry, trying to find a spirit within the group and hooking them up with each other. So you try that with the opportunity against Mexico with the U-23s, and it’s a clear message to take that opportunity because there are not many before we have to play the qualifiers, and if you want to go to Rio De Janeiro in 2016, you’ve got to show that to us right away.”

On the Lookout

On April 1, the 18 players that were a part of the U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team March camp in Europe headed home after a week of intense training and friendlies with Bosnia-Herzegovina and Denmark. For head coach Andi Herzog and assistant coach Matthias Hamann that camp may have been over, but the process of continuing preparation for the Olympic qualifications with the U-23 squad, and the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup with the U.S. MNT, was just beginning. The ensuing scouting phase would see them travel more than 7,000 miles in the course of the three weeks that followed.

In addition to being coaches for the U-23s, Herzog and Hamann are also the European-based eyes of the senior National Team, constantly tracking players and evaluating talent for MNT head coach and U.S. Soccer Technical Director Jurgen Klinsmann. However, the pair crossed the pond for this round of scouting, traveling across North America to see games and players in the United States and Mexico.

“We came straight to Texas on April 10 from our March camp in Europe to watch FC Dallas play Colorado Rapids and to see our players,” Herzog said. “Dillon Serna came in 15 minutes from the end and scored a great goal. The next day we went to see the Houston Dynamo against the Montreal Impact. Then after that we came back to Dallas and drove our cars from Dallas to Houston and then from Houston to San Antonio to join the Senior Team for the match against Mexico.”

And that wasn’t all. Next the duo flew to Los Angeles and drove 150 miles to the border before parking and walking through the world’s busiest border crossing.  “We went to Los Angeles and then from LA to Tijuana to watch the U-20’s from Club Tijuana, and Greg Garza and Joe Corona for their first team. We also saw a few of the Mexican players that we will face in the Gold Cup or in World Cup qualifications, so it was an interesting game,” Herzog said.

From Tijuana it was back to Los Angeles to view the LA Galaxy and U.S. MNT players Omar Gonzalez and Gyasi Zardes, as well as U-23 MNT members Jose Villareal and Oscar Sorto.

And that wasn’t all.

“It was nice. It was a lot of games, and in the meantime because of the time difference we were watching the European games on TV,” Herzog said.

Dillon Serna, Shane O'Neill, Wil Trapp, Luis Gil
U-23 MNT members Dillon Serna (No. 21), Shane O'Neill (No. 16) and Luis Gil (No. 14) have all spent time with the spent time with the Senior MNT as well.

Herzog and Matthias take in game after game from Europe to the U.S. to Mexico. Really anywhere there is a game going on that has ties to U.S. Soccer – be that U.S. players or players that the USA will face down the line – there’s a good chance Herzog or Hamann are watching.

“Most of the time because we live in Europe we are scouting all the European-based players for the U.S. MNT and the youth teams, and for our Olympic team as well.” Herzog said. “It’s also critical that we see as many of the players based here as possible. When there’s a game in the U.S., we always try to come a little bit early to watch as many games as we can.”

That is precisely what they did again this time around, going from city-to-city and match-to-match. Seeing the games up close lets the coaches keep tabs on current players, while at the same time giving them the opportunity to scout for new talent.

“The most important thing is to scout our players,” Herzog said. “Even when the U-23 guys aren’t playing, because of my job as an assistant coach for Jurgen Klinsmann, I have to look at all of the players. It’s always good to get a lot of new impressions. You may have already had an opinion and you think, okay this guy is good, and then you get to confirm the level of play.”

It’s safe to say that when this camp is over Herzog and Hamann will be back on the grind. 

“It’s always fun to watch. It’s our profession and our passion. We’re both crazy and every weekend we’re in a different soccer stadium.”

Finding His Form: Johannsson Leads AZ to Europa League; Ready for June MNT Friendlies

Four weeks ago, U.S. Men’s National Team forward Aron Johannsson and his club AZ Alkmaar were seven points out of the third-place position in the Eredivisie. That third-place spot is particularly important because it guarantees the club that holds it a qualifying spot in the Europa League. With that many points to overcome, many of the AZ players were resigned to the fact that if they were going to play Europa League, they’d more than likely have to earn their place during the post-season playoffs.

“When we lost against Feyenoord six games ago we thought we were going to the playoffs,” Johannsson said. “For the rest of the games we were mentally preparing ourselves as if we were going into the playoffs.”

But that was four weeks ago.

On Sunday,  Johannsson scored two goals and added an assist to lead Alkmaar to a 4-1 win over Excelsior. The win landed AZ in third place in Eredivisie, clinching a sport in the Europa League. It was an improbable run highlighted by a hot streak of performances from the MNT forward that began three weeks ago.

Following a 3-1 win against ADO Den Haag, AZ matched up with FC Twente on April 26. Thirty-five minutes into the game, Alkmaar found itself up 2-0 after Johannsson flicked a cross into the back of the net with the outside of his left foot. Johannsson and the team held on for the remaining 65 minutes, and for the first time since February, AZ had won back-to-back games. The positive result berthed a positive thought. If AZ could keep winning, maybe they had a chance.

“We went into the game against NAC Breda realizing third place was possible.” Johannsson said.

The team knew that continuing to win was the only way that possibility could turn into reality, but after 82 minutes AZ trailed 2-1. In the 83rd, Robert Muhren leveled the score line for AZ, but at this stage a tie was not much more valuable than a loss. With two minutes to go, Johannsson kept the Europa League hopes alive, blasting in a stunning long-range goal from 35 yards out.

“I’ve never shot from that far before,” Johannsson said. “We needed to win the game obviously so we could have a chance at third place, and the whole game NAC Breda was defending. They had almost 11 in their own box in the last 30-40 minutes. I didn’t’ get any chances and I barely saw the ball. Finally I got the ball and it was a little bit far away, but I just said ‘screw it’ and decided to shoot on goal. Obviously the result was great.”

With the win AZ moved into a tie with Feyenoord for third with 59 points. Had the season ended that day, Feyenoord would have claimed the automatic Europe League bid based on goal differential. But there was still one game left to play. With Feyenoord holding a huge advantage in the tiebreaker, Johannsson and his teammates knew that they’d need a win in their last game with Excelsior and some luck with the other result.

“After the NAC Breda game, we were thinking the whole week about Excelsior and we knew we had to win to have any chance and hope for good results,” Johannsson said. “It was also tough for us because it was not in our own hands. In a situation like that you can only focus on yourself and get those three points and hope for the best.”

Five minutes into the match with Excelsior, AZ proved they were ready to take care of business. And Johannsson was ready for the spectacular.

“The ball came into the box and bounced high in the air. It was on turf and it was spinning a lot, so I was trying to read where the ball would eventually come down and I made it there before the defender,” Johannsson said.  “The ball was at a perfect height and I just decided to do a bicycle kick. I’m really happy it worked out.”

Johannsson’s goal sent the number of AZ fans that had traveled to Stadion Woudestein into a frenzy and gave his team an early 1-0 lead. It was good thing he heard the roar of the supporters, since he wasn’t quite sure it had gone in.

“I felt it when I hit it and it felt very good,” Johannsson sad. “First I heard everybody celebrating and then I just looked up in the goal and saw the ball, so I didn’t see it in exactly the same time as everybody else. It was amazing. Not only was it a beautiful goal, but we needed to score a goal early in the game to help us build confidence and this was after five minutes. From every perspective it was really nice.”

Bicycle-kick goals are rare, but for Johannsson, this one was not a fluke.

“Two days before the game I was training, we had a striker training at the club, and I was training bicycle kicks. So it was really fortunate the ball came exactly there in this game. We were training and we had the trainer play us the ball and I was kind of taking it off my chest and putting in the air and taking, I think it was five or six bicycle kicks. So it was probably in the back of my head in the game when the ball came in that position.”


Weekend Review: MNT Players Play Big Roles in Club Success

In a weekend where Champions League and Europe League spots awaited clinching, where promotions lay for the taking, and where streaks sought to be continued, there to respond were members of the U.S. Men’s National Team who made an impact with their clubs.

Fabian Johnson and his club Borussia Monchengladbach made history this weekend. Entering just one win away from clinching a group-phase spot in next season’s Champions League, Johnson started and gave ‘Gladbach 78 strong minutes, which helped propel the Foals to capture the needed victory by a 2-0 score line against Werder Bremen. This marks the first time ‘Gladbach has punched a ticket to the Champions League group stage. The Foals have not lost a league match in which Johnson has started since the winter break, going 10-0-2 in that stretch.

Staying in Germany, Alfredo Morales and his squad FC Ingolstadt had an opportunity to secure first place in the 2. Bundesliga and promotion, needing a win against RB Leipzig. Leipzig got on the board early, scoring in the game’s fourth minute. In the 39th Morales came on, and just before the halftime whistle Ingolstadt leveled at 1-1 with a penalty kick. In the 76th minute Morales assisted on the goal that proved to be the game winner. In the end, he helped hoist the 2. Bundesliga silverware that declared Ingolstadt was headed to the top division.

Moving north, Aron Johannsson and his Dutch club AZ Alkmaar entered the weekend tied with Feyenoord for the Eredivisie’s third-place position and the Europa League spot that goes along with it. Johannsson was clearly set on AZ taking that position as he scored a pair of goals, including a full bicycle. Johannsson also added an assist in AZ Alkmaar’s 4-1 win over Excelsior. With Feyenoord losing, AZ are officially in the Europa League for next season.

In MLS, Clint Dempsey continued his point-scoring tear for Seattle Sounders FC. Dempsey again contributed to the Seattle attack, setting up Chad Barrett for what proved to be the game-winning goal in the 2-0 win against Vancouver Whitecaps FC. In doing so, Dempsey extended his streak of recording at least a point to 10 games, which is the fourth-longest streak of its kind in MLS history and the longest since 1998. Dempsey has at least one point in 18 of Seattle’s last 19 games and is tied for the league-lead in goals (7) and assists (5).

In Mexico, Ventura Alvarado and Club America entered the second leg of the Liga MX quarterfinals trailing Pachuca, 3-2. Alvarado came on in the 59th minute of a match packed with excitement and drama that included seven goals, two red cards – both for Club America and the first leaving them a man short after 33 minutes – and last-minute strikes. Ultimately, Club America lost 4-3 at home and 7-5 on aggregate.

Michael Bradley, Chris Wondolowski and Juan Agudelo were a trio of other MNT players that made a mark last weekend, each scoring a goal. Agudelo was a difference maker for the New England Revolution scoring on a diving header to give his team the lead against Toronto FC. Michael Bradley, his MNT teammate, but opponent in this matchup, responded with a game-tying goal for Toronto. Bradley’s was an exhibition of individual dominance. The midfielder dribbled through a host of New England Revolution defenders and finished in the lower left corner of the goal. In San Jose, Chris Wondolowski directed in a header in his team’s 2-0 win over Columbus Crew SC. The goal was the 99th of his career, which ranks him ninth overall in MLS history.

Altidore Double Highlights MNT Contributions to Club Success

Now just over two months out, the U.S. MNT players have their eyes set on making an impact for the USA in the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup. For now, their work is with their club teams, where last weekend a number of U.S. players made a difference.

Jozy Altidore, F, Toronto FC

Altidore collected his third and fourth goals of the season after notching a double in Toronto FC’s 2-0 win over Orlando City SC. In the 50th minute, Altidore quickly played a free kick from inside of the center circle to teammate Sebastain Giovinco, who in-turn touched it right back to Altidore. From there Altidore did the rest, zipping past the defense and ripping a shot that just tipped off Orlando City GK Donovan Ricketts’ hands and bounced in off the far post. In the 83rd minute, he got around the defense again. His second score came when he took down a long pass and fooled both a defender and the goalkeeper with a cut in the box that he followed with a left-footed finish.

Watch: Altidore goals

Fabian Johnson, D, Borussia Mönchengladbach

Fabian Johnson played a key part in Borussia Mönchengladbach’s 1-0 win over VfL Wolfsburg. Johnson completed 29 of 34 passes one of which set up the game-winning goal. The win was huge for ‘Gladbach as it clinched at least a qualifying spot in the next edition of the UEFA Champions League.

Watch: Match Highlights

Clint Dempsey, F, Seattle Sounders FC

Clint Dempsey led the Seattle Sounders to a victory over rival Portland Timbers by scoring the game-winning goal in the 77th minute of the match. In front of a crowd of 41,541 at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Dempsey tapped in a rebound from close range after Andy Rose’s initial shot was saved by the Portland GK Adam Kwarasey. The goal was Dempsey’s second through Kwarasey in the last year. He put one past him in just 30 seconds into the USA’s 2014 FIFA World Cup opener against Ghana last June.

Watch: Dempsey Goal

Alejandro Bedoya, M, Nantes

Alejandro Bedoya headed home the game-tying goal for Nantes in its Ligue 1 road match versus Toulouse. With two minutes left in regulation, Nantes trailed by a goal and was given a corner kick. Bedoya made his move to the back post and buried a header to save a point for Nantes.

Watch: Bedoya goal

Aron Johannsson, F, AZ Alkmaar

Aron Johannsson tallied his sixth goal of the season for AZ, flicking in a cross with the outside of his left foot for a goal in the game’s 35th minute. AZ would go on to win 2-0 over FC Twente. The win was important for AZ as the team continues to work for a Europa League spot. Johannsson’s team now trails the third-place position by three points with two more matches to play this season.

Watch: Johannsson goal

Q&A: Klinsmann Discusses Takeaways from Mexico Game, Looks to Build for Gold Cup

ussoccer.com: What were your overall thoughts on the performance?

Jurgen Klinsmann: “I think the overall performance was really positive. I think it was a great team effort. We showed a lot of spirit and we showed a lot of character in that game. They were working hard for each other. Everybody tried to follow our tactical principles, playing in a 4-4-2 diamond means there’s a lot of shifting. Obviously you need to have the fullbacks come out and attack the wingers, which we did really well, and we stayed really compact in midfield. We kept the distance between our center backs and our forwards in a good way in order to always be compact and work everybody together in a defensive mode, then once we had the ball we spread it out and went into attack. I think therefore, it was a very good performance with great energy, good spirit and a lot of positives to take from the game.”

ussoccer.com: What did you think the keys were to getting this result?

JK:
“I think keys for winning against a squad as good as Mexico are that you need to be prepared for their way of going at you. They usually come in a 3-5-2 and with the wingers going forward, you need to be prepared to deal with them. They have individually very good technical players so they need to get pressured; they need to get their toes stepped on. We did this; we kept their back three very busy with Jordan Morris and Gyasi Zardes in the first half, and also with the guys coming in in the second half. Overall, everybody tried to implement his personal job in this game and those 90 minutes, and I think we deserved the result.”

ussoccer.com: Clearly the conditions were difficult. Are you able to learn things about players in terms of how they deal with a challenging pitch, an intense atmosphere ant the pressure of a USA-Mexico match?

JK: “I think those games are really crucial and very important to us even if you don’t maybe have your top roster at your disposal, because playing with difficult field conditions is something that we’ll always face in CONCACAF when we go away from home. We always have different environments, and in a game like that where the expectations are very high because you’re playing your main rival Mexico, you have an opportunity to prove to the coaches that you’re able to deal with that. I think after the initial hectic 10-15 minutes, the players started to settle into the game and they started to combine here and there with good passing sequences on a very difficult surface, and they felt more and more comfortable. I think the crowd was exciting. There was a lot of energy in the stadium and the players kind of started to take that energy in a positive way.”

ussoccer.com: You gave a college player the first start for the Senior Team in more than 20 years. How did Jordan Morris fare, and what message does that send to other players who may not be obvious choices?

JK: “When you develop players coming through the youth system going into the U-18’s and the U-20’s, then in the Olympic team at under-23 years of age, you always kind of see the talent and the potential of a player. If he’s playing in that moment with an MLS club, in Mexico, in Europe or for a college team, that’s not the key; the key is that he really gets ‘what is the demand for me going forward,’ and I think that Jordan Morris has the talent and the potential. I think what he needs to learn now is to pick up a higher rhythm to go to the highest level possible and become consistent. He has the talent to break through, but it’s easier to do that in one game than it is to do in 40, 50, 60 games in one year. So when we talk about the development of players, we always talk about the consistency that they need to continue to have to become really good players. I think it’s a great signal to everyone out there that no matter where he plays, that it’s one thing having the talent, which Jordan Morris has, and the other thing is to prove that talent on a consistent basis in whatever environment you are in. The national team program has a little more freedom to do that and to give you a chance, and also calculate the minutes that you’re on the field. Then in your club team, you have to provide week-in and week-out at your highest level.”

JK: I think what everyone felt for Jordan Morris the moment he scored that goal was, ‘Yes!’ He proved a point because it’s always difficult to imagine being on the stage for a game like USA-Mexico, with 65,000 people and a very loud crowd, and how to handle something like that psychologically. So he then ended up scoring that goal and you just kind of go, ‘Yes!’ He showed and proved that he can do it. Now for him going forward, it’s about staying consistent at Stanford and calculating his path and his jump into the professional world sooner or later to become a consistent element in our Olympic team that strives toward Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Obviously, when you don’t know all the answers before a game on how a player like him deals with all those things and then all of a sudden he scores a goal that is very special. I think everybody on the bench felt for him, all the players, all the coaches, and certainly his coaches at Stanford.

ussoccer.com: Also getting his first start was Ventura Alvarado, who has now said he is fully committed to the United States. How did you assess his performance?

JK: “We are very lucky that we have a lot of very center backs on our roster. Ventura Alvarado is now making that step to us and he’s another very strong player into our center back player pool. The way he came into Denmark and Switzerland was very impressive, and the way he played for Club America all season now being in the CONCACAF Champions League Final is very impressive, so we are really happy to have Ventura. We’re really happy because he’s the type of player that a coach looks at that’s almost complete. He’s technically very gifted and he’s obviously physically strong because you need to be that in that center back role. He’s strong in the air and he stays very precise and he’s very grounded, so having him in our pool means a lot to us and we’re thrilled.”

ussoccer.com: A lot of people expected the crowd to be almost exclusively pro-Mexico, but there was a significant number of people supporting the U.S. Do you see us making progress in converting fans with our performances?

JK: I think definitely that our crowd is getting unbelievably exciting no matter where we play. You saw that in Brazil. We had the biggest following of all of the nations that were a part of the World Cup, and now also in all of our home games, the following of the American Outlaws and all the fans streaming to our games. With Mexico, it will always be a mixture because of their fan base here in the United States, but for us it’s huge and it means a lot to us. We feel like no matter what stadium we go into, we have our fans and they’re giving us so much support and it’s adding so much fun to it and adding so much energy to everything we do. We know there are a big amount of fans behind us and they want us to do well.”

ussoccer.com: Did you get any answers from this game that will help you in the building of the roster for the Gold Cup?

JK: “Definitely we got a lot of answers to many, many little questions that we always have. This game gave us a lot of good stuff towards individual performances, players that knock at the door and are pushing to get in. It’s going to be a very, very difficult situation at the Gold Cup because European-based players are already done with their seasons at the end of May, so how do we bridge them into the Gold Cup which is in July and is not following up their season right away? We have MLS in full swing and Mexican-based players have a different schedule as well, so it was important for us to see how eager everybody is to get into that Gold Cup roster, and they are all hungry. It will start with the weeks before the Gold Cup with our 35-man preliminary roster, which we are very comfortable with already, and then obviously to bring in a group of 23 players. We also have a chance to switch six players after the group stage, which is a lot of work for us coaches but exciting work because we can kind of schedule things maybe a bit differently and we can bring players in at a later stage, or we can also bring the European-based players from the beginning of the tournament right away into it. It gives us more options, and with that performance for many players against Mexico, it’s going to be exciting for us to calculate everything in hopefully the right way.”

ussoccer.com: What are the messages to the players in the pool between now and the summer?

JK: We had a transition phase from the World Cup into 2015 and a lot of friendly games where we tried different stuff within our player pool and we found new players that we’re excited about, but now it goes into to the real deal and the real deal is winning the Gold Cup. The message to the players has become consistent: prove your point week-in and week-out within your club environment. For the European players, finish the season on the highest note possible and you might have a shorter vacation because we need you to be a part of that Gold Cup team as well, so we’re asking now from them that they be spot on, that they be sharp, that they be leaders in their club environments and that they stand out and not take things easy and make sure that they keep their performance going into July and show it most excitingly in the Gold Cup itself.”

ussoccer.com: You’ve said there are significant challenges in putting together the roster for the games in June as well as the Gold Cup, and we also have the FIFA U-20 World Cup and Olympic Qualifying. How do you now go about piecing that puzzle together?

JK: “It’s a very, very busy year for all of us. We had the U-17’s qualify for the World Cup and the U-20’s qualified for the World Cup and they are right now in Austria playing friendly games. We are building a U-23 pool to go ahead to the Olympic Qualifiers later on this year. It is very, very important that these players, especially the U-20’s right now in camp, know that we’re watching them and we talk to each other. All the coaches are connected. We talk about every talent coming through the ranks and we try to find even more talent. They need to understand that in this very early stage of their career that they are the drivers and that they are the decision makers. They have to make the right decisions on the field, but also especially off the field. This is something that we tell our youth teams more and more, that they become personalities and that they take things into their own hands and they become accountable for what they’re doing. So it’s a huge year for U.S. Soccer with all the teams in their different tournaments and their goals. It’s always important that as coaches we send the same messages over and over again.”

ussoccer.com: How helpful is it to have the U-23’s also face of with Mexico this week?

JK: “It’s very helpful that the U-23s have that game against Mexico coming up at StubHub Center on Wednesday because we urgently need to try and build this pool and try to build a team that is getting together on every possible occasion; trying to find a chemistry, trying to find a spirit within the group and hooking them up with each other. So you try that with the opportunity against Mexico with the U-23s, and it’s a clear message to take that opportunity because there are not many before we have to play the qualifiers, and if you want to go to Rio De Janeiro in 2016, you’ve got to show that to us right away.”

On the Lookout

On April 1, the 18 players that were a part of the U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team March camp in Europe headed home after a week of intense training and friendlies with Bosnia-Herzegovina and Denmark. For head coach Andi Herzog and assistant coach Matthias Hamann that camp may have been over, but the process of continuing preparation for the Olympic qualifications with the U-23 squad, and the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup with the U.S. MNT, was just beginning. The ensuing scouting phase would see them travel more than 7,000 miles in the course of the three weeks that followed.

In addition to being coaches for the U-23s, Herzog and Hamann are also the European-based eyes of the senior National Team, constantly tracking players and evaluating talent for MNT head coach and U.S. Soccer Technical Director Jurgen Klinsmann. However, the pair crossed the pond for this round of scouting, traveling across North America to see games and players in the United States and Mexico.

“We came straight to Texas on April 10 from our March camp in Europe to watch FC Dallas play Colorado Rapids and to see our players,” Herzog said. “Dillon Serna came in 15 minutes from the end and scored a great goal. The next day we went to see the Houston Dynamo against the Montreal Impact. Then after that we came back to Dallas and drove our cars from Dallas to Houston and then from Houston to San Antonio to join the Senior Team for the match against Mexico.”

And that wasn’t all. Next the duo flew to Los Angeles and drove 150 miles to the border before parking and walking through the world’s busiest border crossing.  “We went to Los Angeles and then from LA to Tijuana to watch the U-20’s from Club Tijuana, and Greg Garza and Joe Corona for their first team. We also saw a few of the Mexican players that we will face in the Gold Cup or in World Cup qualifications, so it was an interesting game,” Herzog said.

From Tijuana it was back to Los Angeles to view the LA Galaxy and U.S. MNT players Omar Gonzalez and Gyasi Zardes, as well as U-23 MNT members Jose Villareal and Oscar Sorto.

And that wasn’t all.

“It was nice. It was a lot of games, and in the meantime because of the time difference we were watching the European games on TV,” Herzog said.

Dillon Serna, Shane O'Neill, Wil Trapp, Luis Gil
U-23 MNT members Dillon Serna (No. 21), Shane O'Neill (No. 16) and Luis Gil (No. 14) have all spent time with the spent time with the Senior MNT as well.

Herzog and Matthias take in game after game from Europe to the U.S. to Mexico. Really anywhere there is a game going on that has ties to U.S. Soccer – be that U.S. players or players that the USA will face down the line – there’s a good chance Herzog or Hamann are watching.

“Most of the time because we live in Europe we are scouting all the European-based players for the U.S. MNT and the youth teams, and for our Olympic team as well.” Herzog said. “It’s also critical that we see as many of the players based here as possible. When there’s a game in the U.S., we always try to come a little bit early to watch as many games as we can.”

That is precisely what they did again this time around, going from city-to-city and match-to-match. Seeing the games up close lets the coaches keep tabs on current players, while at the same time giving them the opportunity to scout for new talent.

“The most important thing is to scout our players,” Herzog said. “Even when the U-23 guys aren’t playing, because of my job as an assistant coach for Jurgen Klinsmann, I have to look at all of the players. It’s always good to get a lot of new impressions. You may have already had an opinion and you think, okay this guy is good, and then you get to confirm the level of play.”

It’s safe to say that when this camp is over Herzog and Hamann will be back on the grind. 

“It’s always fun to watch. It’s our profession and our passion. We’re both crazy and every weekend we’re in a different soccer stadium.”

Home Sweet Texas

A number of U.S. Men’s National Team players will return to their Lone Star State roots when the USA meets Mexico tonight in San Antonio.

Four players from the roster are Texas natives: Greg Garza (Grapevine), Omar Gonzalez (Dallas), Lee Nguyen (McKinney) and Brek Shea (Bryan). For these players, knowing that they are getting ready to face archrival Mexico makes this already a huge game. But to also do it while in their home state, in front of their family and friends, is the icing on the cake.

“This rivalry is very important,” Gonzalez said. “You never want to lose to your neighbor. In the past, these games have been awesome to watch and they’ve been really tough games and important games. I’m Mexican-American and that has a lot to do with it as well. There’s just a lot of history in these games and they’re always exciting to be a part of, and it’s a little bit extra for me this time because I’m in my home state, my family’s here and I’m just excited to play in front of them.”

Gonzalez will have an arsenal of supporters in the Alamodome tomorrow night with his mother and father in attendance, as well as his brother and sister and their families. Additionally, the match falls on his father’s birthday and he said a U.S. win would make for a nice gift.

“Maybe I can score my first goal for the National team as well,” Gonzalez said. “I think that would be the cherry on top.”

Tonight the U.S. MNT will look to continue its five-game unbeaten streak against Mexico and preserve its 20-game unbeaten streak on U.S. soil.

Lee Nguyen is looking forward to experiencing the classic matchup from the field for the first time in front of his dad, sister and friends who will be there to watch.

“This is probably the biggest rivalry in international football, I think,” Nguyen said. “USA-Mexico goes back a long way and this will be my first time being a part of it so I’m very thrilled and excited to be here. It’s always great to be back close to home where [my family] can come and watch live.”

Gallery: Matchday Minus One, MNT Trains at Alamodome

The USMNT trained onsite at the Alamodome on yesterday in advance of tonight's USA-Mexico match, Presented by AT&T. Kickoff for the 64th edition of one of international soccer's best rivalries is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1, UniMas and Univision Deportes Network.

Gallery: Monday MNT Training at Trinity University

The USMNT trained at Trinity University on Monday in advance of Wednesday's USA-Mexico match, Presented by AT&T. Kickoff for the 64th edition of one of international soccer's best rivalries is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1, UniMas and Univision Deportes Network.

Animosity at the Alamodome

History, geography and sociology have long dictated the soccer rivalry between the U.S. and Mexico. And while it’s always been somewhat heated, only in the last 20 years has it been anywhere near an even affair.

The numbers clearly reflect it as Mexico held a daunting 28-6-9 edge over its neighbors to the north prior to the turn of the century. And while the U.S. went winless against Mexico in the final seven matchups of the 1990s, one result in that span, the 0-0 World Cup qualifying draw at Estadio Azteca in 1997, set a course correction in the series that would push the U.S. to a 12-5-5 record against its rivals since the turn of the century.

In that match, the U.S. earned its first result in Mexico’s vaunted soccer cathedral, despite playing a man down for nearly an hour after defender Jeff Agoos was sent off for an altercation with Pavel Pardo in the 32nd minute.

“We showed a lot of resolve in that match,” said Cobi Jones who went 56 minutes that day. “Either at the youth or full team level, a lot of us had been part of tough results against Mexico, but the experiences gained built towards us earning a historic result that day.”

An unused substitute in that match as he was beginning to carve out his role in the U.S. team, forward Brian McBride says the result gave the team confidence, but also earned the team recognition where they didn’t have it before.

“The last 15-20 minutes the Mexican fans are jeering Mexico when they have the ball and actually cheering us on,” said McBride. “The first time we actually heard it in that game, we all looked at each other and said, ‘what’s happening?’ At that moment, we all said that Mexican fans respect U.S. Soccer, whereas before there wasn’t a lot of respect. I think that translates into our attitude, how we went about handling them. It affirmed it, once you get affirmation, we continued to grow.”

Under the guidance of former head coach Bruce Arena, the U.S. opened up the new millennium with two friendly wins against Mexico, building momentum towards a home World Cup qualifying match in Columbus, Ohio, on Feb. 28, 2001, and the start of a great U.S. Soccer tradition.

The smaller confines of Crew Stadium and a kickoff temperature of 28 degrees combined to give the U.S. a significant home-field advantage, but things didn’t go to plan early on.

Though not malicious, in his debut as a villain to American fans everywhere, Mexican midfielder Rafael Marquez clashed heads with McBride on a 50/50 challenge at midfield, causing the starting U.S. forward to make way for Josh Wolff.

There was little question about Marquez’s intent in the 36th minute, when in a sign of things to come, the future Mexico captain came through with a late, high challenge to chop down Wolff as he streaked through the midfield.

“I think I’m still feeling that foul,” Wolff joked. “Guys like Rafa and Claudio Suarez; there was viciousness with those games and violence at times.”

Though Wolff was alright, just before halftime, U.S. captain Claudio Reyna pulled up with a groin injury and Wolff’s childhood friend Clint Mathis also entered the match.

In what would become both players’ coming out party on the national team stage, Mathis sent a cutting ball over the Mexico backline and into Wolff’s stride.  The 23-year-old ran on, evaded goalkeeper Jorge Campos who’d come well out of his box and tapped into an empty net to take the score to 1-0.

“I’m sure they weren’t that worried about me or Clint coming in as reserves,” said Wolff, who was making just his fourth U.S. appearance in the match. “I was younger, had played against the Mexican youth national teams and had a good experience with the Olympic team, but I wouldn’t expect them to know that much about me or Clint, outside us being young players that are just breaking in.”

Late in the match, Wolff beat two Mexican defenders on the right before breaking into the box and centering for Earnie Stewart who finished from 12 yards out, creating the first of four staple “Dos a Cero” score lines in home World Cup qualifying matches against Mexico.

The victories over Mexico and the belief Bruce Arena instilled in his team built towards the rivalry’s biggest match to date in the Round of 16 at the 2002 FIFA World Cup.

 “When we knew we were playing them, we were overjoyed,” McBride said. “We knew them and we knew we could beat them. Any given day, anyone can beat anyone, but we were very happy to see them.

“Bruce has a confidence,” he continued “The way he goes about himself, it rubs off on you. He made some changes, moved things around all with the idea we were going to get the result.”

Perhaps remembering Wolff’s breakout performance 14 months earlier, one of Arena’s changes was starting Wolff, who’d played just eight minutes in the group stage, up top with McBride.

It took the forward tandem just eight minutes to link up for the game’s first goal as McBride quickly played a restart for Reyna on the right. The captain charged towards the end line before playing a square ball for Wolff who used the outside of his right boot to lay off what McBride called “the most perfect ball for a first-time strike”, as the veteran forward buried it past Oscar Perez for a 1-0 lead.

Chief among players Mexico would deem a villain, Landon Donovan would score the most significant of his six against El Tri off a cross from Eddie Lewis in the second half to take things to 2-0.

As time went on, the U.S. style of play, sitting in then springing quick counter attacks, frustrated Mexico throughout the match, and that’s where Jones earned his hero status in the rivalry.

Having played a mostly substitute role in his final years with the national team, Jones’s fresh legs kept pressure all over the field in the mid-day sun. He hadn’t been on for 10 minutes before Marquez played U.S. villain again, this time as Jones went up for a free header, the Mexican captain led with his studs up into Jones’ torso, before delivering a vicious head butt to the veteran winger.

Marquez immediately saw red, one of five in his international career and the first of two against the United States, while the dismissal effectively ended any chance Mexico had at a comeback.

“That was the moment where that all started with him,” Jones said. “He’s the captain of the team. He’s played at big clubs before and since, but he’s never known how to handle the high pressure situation of playing his archrival on the international stage and losing. That was the big issue for him and we see how he reacted to it.”

Moments later as Jones took the ball into the corner to kill off stoppage time, both Salvador Camona and Sigifredo Mercado came through and stomped on both of Jones’ legs.

“You could see the frustrations in their players because they couldn’t find a way to beat us,” Jones said. “Luckily, the referee blew his whistle not too long after.”

While the U.S. players celebrated a first trip to the World Cup quarterfinals, sportsmanship didn’t exactly rule the post-match festivities, as most Mexican players walked directly off the field.

“We were also ticked off at the fact that they weren’t necessarily respectful in loss,” McBride remembered. “There were plenty of times where we lost games where we thought we should have done better in, but still we never tried to injure anybody, never tried to not shake hands. That part was disappointing. Having said that, it’s the heat of the moment - a huge game for them and for us of course, and I saw some of the guys a month later and they were awesome.”

As the U.S. and Mexico renew the rivalry Wednesday night in San Antonio, a younger crop of players has brought a mutual respect between the two teams that wasn’t there in the past. And while the U.S. has leveled the series over the last 15 years, Jones appealed to the younger generation to shake off any complacency heading into a match against Mexico.

“As far as the passion is concerned, I hope the younger players understand the history and tradition there,” he said. “The ‘Dos a Cero’ came from some place and I hope they understand that. I hope they take a look back to see what it’s about and have an underlying need and want to beat Mexico. If they take it too lightly, they have to understand that the other side will take advantage.”

Gallery: #USMNT Arrives in Texas for Clash with Mexico, Presented by AT&T

USMNT players began arriving in Texas on Sunday in advance of Wednesday's USA-Mexico match, Presented by AT&T. MNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has called 22 players into the U.S. squad, most of whom ply their trade in MLS or Liga MX. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1, UniMas and Univision Deportes Network.

USMNT - Five to Follow

With the seasons in Europe reaching their climax and MLS in full swing, there are Champions League and Europa League spots to be won, promotion to be earned, and streaks to be continued. Here's five MNT stories to follow this weekend.


  • Fabian Johnson and Monchengladbach can guarantee at least third place in the Bundesliga and an automatic spot in next season’s Champions League with either a win away to Wolfsburg on Saturday or if Leverkusen fails to win against Hoffenheim. [FABIAN FEATURE ON USSOCCER.COM]
  • Alfredo Morales and FC Ingolstadt can secure first place and promotion to the Bundesliga with a win against RB Leipzig on Saturday.
  • Aron Johannsson and AZ Alkmaar are tied on points (59) with Feyenoord but behind on goal differential for third place with one game to go. The third-place finisher gets automatic entry into the Europa League; otherwise they go into a playoff. Alkmaar is away to 15th place Excelsior on Sunday.
  • Ventura Alvarado and Club America go into the second leg of the Liga MX quarterfinal at home down 3-2 to Pachuca. Interestingly, in Mexico the tiebreaker in the series is a little different. If both the aggregate goals and away goals are equal, there is no extra time and penalties. Instead, the team with the most points during the regular season advances.
  • Clint Dempsey goes into the Cascadia Cup match against Vancouver on fire, tied for the league lead with seven goals and adding four assists. He has at least one point in 17 of the last 18 games for Seattle. 

Johnson and Monchengladbach on Bundesliga Hot Streak

U.S. MNT Midfielder Fabian Johnson has played a part in Borussia Monchengladbach’s surge in the Bundesliga, who are now just one win away from securing a place in the Group Stage of the UEFA Champions League. With huge friendlies against Netherlands and World Cup champions Germany on the horizon ahead of the vital Gold Cup this summer, Johnson looks to carry that form into the National Team.

After going an unbeaten 5-5-0 in the season’s first 10 games, entering week 13 Borussia Monchengladbach took a sudden skid in the form of three-game losing streak and fell to fifth place on the table. Seven weeks later at the week-20 mark, the team was still in in fifth. Now, entering the last two weeks of the season, ‘Gladbach is riding a 12-match unbeaten streak and holds on to the league’s No. 3 spot. U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder Fabian Johnson has played an integral role in helping make Die Foals the hottest team in Germany.

“We've just been trying to do everything we can,” Johnson said of the team’s success in the second half of the season. “I think the first half was also good, just not as good as the second half.  We have been able to win big games like against Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen that we missed in the first half of the season.”

The victory against Leverkusen was perhaps the most significant for the Foals, particularly with the clock ticking on the season. Going into the match, Leverkusen was just two points off ‘Gladbach’s third place position in the table, which is an especially valuable position to be in since the Bundesliga top three are ensured automatic bids in the group stage of the UEFA Champions League. Ultimately the hosts triumphed for their third-straight league win, with Johnson assisting on the game’s final goal of his team’s 3-0 victory and bolstering the team’s Champions League position. Johnson also assisted on ‘Gladbach’s game-winning goal in its 1-0 victory against Wolfsburg on April 26, that win guaranteeing his side at least a place in Champions League qualifying, but they want more.

“Getting to Champions league would mean very much,” Johnson said. “It was our goal to go to the Champions League. We've already achieved being in the qualification stage, but now we want to go to the group stage directly.”

Johnson said he’s never been a part of an experience like the one he is on right now, and said it’s a thrill to have played a part in it. In league games since January in which he has been in the Starting XI for Gladbach, the team has not lost. In that time frame, Johnson has settled into his role on the left side of midfield, scoring a goal and adding three assists.

“Right now I’m playing left mid. When I first when got to ‘Gladbach it was kind of difficult because it had been a while since I had played the position and I wasn't so used to it,” Johnson said. “After the winter break, I had a few good games and now I’m feeling better. I know where to run and where to pass and I’m feeling much more comfortable in the position right now. I like it.”

The team is now just a win away from that automatic group stage placement in Champions League, and they will have a chance to get it on Saturday when it plays Werder Bremen.

“In almost every game in the second half of the season we have had great team performances. Everybody worked for each other and gave everything in those games,” Johnson said. “I think we’re just having a great run right now and we’re trying to keep it going over these last few games. We have to at least win one more, and hopefully we can manage it on Saturday.”

‘Gladbach has had tremendous defensive success during this run, shutting out its opponent in nine of its last 15 Bundesliga games.

“It’s very difficult to score against us. I think we have a great defensive work and then as soon as we get the ball we are very quick in transition and work to score very quickly. We did a lot of good work on these elements during the Winter break.  We just feel comfortable out there and everybody’s positive, not just the players but the club and the whole area here.”

Borussia Park, the home stadium for ‘Gladbach, has a capacity of 54,057, of which 16,145 are standing-room only due to the team’s popularity. Johnson said the Foals fans are some of the world’s best, and that their support propels him and his teammates when they’re on the pitch.

“Our fans are just great,” Johnson said. “When we play road games, it sometimes doesn’t even feel like we’re away. They’re doing a great job and they’re always supporting us.”

Johnson isn't the only player with U.S. MNT ties that has given the Foals faithful something to cheer about. U.S. MNT Special Advisor Berti Vogts was a two-time Bundesliga Player of the Year when he played for Gladbach from 1969-1975. Vogts was a key player for the team in its Golden Decade in the 1970s, when he earned German Player of the Year honors twice (1971, 1979) and led the team to three-straight Bundesliga titles from 1975-77. Former U.S. MNT goalkeeper Kasey Keller captained the squad in the 2006-07 season.

 ‘Gladbach and Johnson look to continue the success and finish the season on a high note. From there it’s only a few short weeks before Johnson gets back on the field in a U.S. uniform when the MNT faces Netherlands on June 5 and World Cup Champion Germany on June 10 in international friendlies.

“I think these are great games and I think everyone’s excited for it,” Johnson said. “We’re going to play against the World Champion. We already played them in Washington D.C. and it was a great game. Now we’re playing them away and I think it’ll be a huge game. Everybody wants to play against the best players in the world so it will be fun.”

The U.S. lost to Germany in the group stage of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, last summer 1-0. This time around the game will be played on German soil in Cologne, which happens to be just a few minutes away Johnson’s home in Dusseldorf. His mother, brother and friends will be there to watch him play.

The proximity to home with these friendlies also helps because  Johnson has a lot to prepare for in the next few months with the end of the Bundesliga, the MNT friendlies with Netherlands and Germany, and the start of the CONCACAF Gold Cup just a few weeks after that.

Johnson said he’ll closely focus on his training to ready himself for the host of games he’ll encounter, while many of his club teammates will likely be on vacation. Johnson said that the significance of the games and the Gold Cup will fuel him as he works.

“The Gold Cup is very important,” he said. “We want to go to the Confederations Cup, that’s our goal, so we have to win the tournament.”

While Johnson’s club season is wrapping up, he knows his soccer year is far from over, there’s plenty more to come on the horizon with the U.S. MNT, hopefully Johnson says, when his year is over, he’ll have a Gold Cup to hoist and a Champions League group stage matchup to look forward to.

It has been close to four years since Johnson debuted for the U.S. MNT in its match against France in November 2011. He’s come a long way since, having played a big part in the U.S.’s run in the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, where he started all four games. Johnson hopes that this recent success proves to be a continuation of better things to come.


U.S. Soccer to Host Series of Fan Events in Europe for MNT's June Matches

CHICAGO (May 14, 2015) – The U.S. Men’s National Team will face a pair of European powerhouses in June as it continues preparations for the 2015 Gold Cup. The USA will face No. 6 FIFA-ranked Netherlands on June 5 at 2:30 p.m. ET at the Amsterdam Arena in Amsterdam, Netherlands, before clashing with 2014 FIFA World Cup champion and world No. 1 Germany on June 10 at 2:45 p.m. ET in Cologne, Germany.

U.S. Soccer, in a collaborative effort with The American Outlaws, will engage fans with several events specifically for U.S. Soccer faithful attending these European matches.

On the night before each game day, AO will host parties for USA fans at local bars. On match days, U.S. Soccer will host the ‘FanFriendly’ against local supporters, as well as FanHQ at venues conveniently located next to each stadium.

FanFriendly matches will be full 11v11 games played for 90 minutes, pitting U.S. supporters against fans from the opposing nation. The games have been organized in partnership with the Royal Dutch Football Association and the German Football Association.

FanHQ will bring together U.S. fans before and after the matches in Amsterdam and Cologne to celebrate the U.S. National Team. Fans who RSVP will have guaranteed access to the events. All FanHQ events will feature music from DJ Spin Easy, a NYC DJ who has opened all over the world for artists such as Snoop Dogg, Akon, T-Pain, Ice Cube and others, and brought his unique sets to FanHQ events in Brazil during the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Food and drinks will be available for purchase.

Further details on all events can be found below. All times listed as local.

U.S. MNT vs. NETHERLANDS || JUNE 5 || MATCH PAGE

AO NIGHT BEFORE PARTY
Thursday, June 4th 
American Outlaws Night Before Party
8 p.m. - close
Three Sisters Pub (Rembrandtplein 19, 1017 CT Amsterdam, Netherlands)

  • No RSVP is needed for this event. 

FANFRIENDLY

Friday, June 5th 
FanFriendly Match against Netherlands Fans
2 p.m.
FC Amsterdam (Zwartelaantje 51099 CE Amsterdam, Netherlands)
This is limited to the first 25 players who register. 

FANHQ AMSTERDAM
Pregame from 3-8 p.m.
Postgame from 10:30 p.m.-1 a.m.
Vanzz Loungebar and Restaurant (De Corridor 2, 1101 BD Amsterdam, Netherlands)

U.S. MNT vs. GERMANY || JUNE 10 || MATCH PAGE

AO NIGHT BEFORE PARTY
Tuesday, June 9th 

American Outlaws Night Before Party 
8 p.m.- Close
Kiez (Moselstraße 80 50674 Köln, Germany)

  • No RSVP is needed for this event 

FANFRIENDLY
Wednesday, June 10th 
FanFriendly Match against Germany Fans
3 p.m. 
Outside RheinEnergieSTADION at the corner of Oskar-Rehfeldt-Weg and Olympiaweg
This is limited to the first 25 players who register. 

FANHQ COLOGNE
Pregame from 4-8 p.m.
Postgame from 10:45 p.m. - 1 a.m.
Playa (Junkersdorfer Straße 1, 50933 Köln, Germany)

MNT to Face Guatemala in Final Gold Cup Tune-Up

CHICAGO (May 4, 2015) – The U.S. Men’s National Team will face Guatemala on Friday, July 3, at 5:30 p.m. CT at LP Field in Nashville, Tennessee. The game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1, UniMás and the Univision Deportes Network.

'We are thrilled to have the opportunity to play a team like Guatemala before the Gold Cup," said U.S. MNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann. "They are similar to our opponents in the group stage, so we couldn't ask for better preparation. Our goal is to win the tournament, and this will be an important first step. Nashville has always been a great home to the National Team, and we look forward to having a fantastic crowd at LP Field."

Tickets go on sale to the public on Thursday, May 7, at 10 a.m. CT through ussoccer.com, by phone at 1-800-745-3000, at all Ticketmaster ticket centers throughout Central Tennessee (including Kroger and Walmart stores) and the LP Field ticket office (open Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.)

Groups of 20 or more can obtain an order form at ussoccer.com or call 312-528-1290. Ultimate Fan Tickets (special VIP packages that include a premium ticket, a custom-made official U.S. National Team jersey with name and number, VIP access to the field before and after the game, and other unique benefits) are also available exclusively through ussoccer.com.

The matchup will serve as the final tune-up for the team before it starts play at the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup with an opening round match against Honduras on July 7 at 8:30 p.m. CT at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas. That game will also be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1 and UniMás.

The U.S. MNT competed in front of 29,059 fans the last time it played at LP Field in 2011, which was the largest crowd for a soccer match in the state of Tennessee. In three matches where the USMNT has played in Nashville, the average attendance has been 27,720.

The U.S. and Guatemala last met on July 5, 2013, in a game that also served as final preparation ahead of the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup. The USA prevailed in that matchup by a 6-0 score line, improving its all-time record against Guatemala to 14-4-6.

The USA has played five international friendlies in 2015, going 2-2-1. The year for the MNT has been highlighted by a 2-0 victory over archrival Mexico in April, a 2-0 win over Panama in February, and a draw with No. 9 FIFA-ranked Switzerland in Zurich in March.

Before the matchup with Guatemala, the U.S. will travel to Europe for a pair of friendlies with international powerhouse and No. 6 FIFA-ranked Netherlands in Amsterdam on June 5 (2:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, WatchESPN, UniMás, Univision Deportes Network), and reigning FIFA World Cup-champion and top-ranked Germany on June 10 in Cologne, Germany (2:45 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1, UniMás, Univision Deportes Network). Fans can also follow all matches on Twitter @ussoccer and @ussoccer_esp.

USA Beats Mexico 2-0 in Front of Sold-Out Crowd of 64,369 Inside Alamodome

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (April 15, 2015) – The U.S. Men’s National Team defeated archrival Mexico by a score line of 2-0 behind goals from Jordan Morris and Juan Agudelo in front of a sell-out crowd of 64,369. The match was presented by AT&T. The win extended the USA’s unbeaten streak against Mexico to a record six games (3-0-3), pushed the U.S. MNT’s current unbeaten streak on home soil to 21 games (18-0-3) and marked the ninth USA victory against Mexico by that familiar score line and eighth since 2000.

Twenty-year-old Morris, a sophomore at Stanford University, put the U.S. ahead after running onto a deflected ball and finishing under a sliding goalkeeper in the 49th minute.

In the 65th minute, Juan Agudelo replaced Morris, and on a Michael Bradley assist doubled the American lead. It was Agudelo’s first appearance since he last came on as a sub in the U.S.’s game against Ukraine on March 5, 2014 and his first goal since he scored against Argentina on March 26, 2011.

The result pushed the USA’s all time record against Mexico to 18-32-14. The U.S. MNT will be in Europe next time it convenes, facing off with the world’s No. 6-ranked team, Netherlands, in Amsterdam on June 5. The match kicks off at 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPN, WatchESPN, UniMas and Univision Deportes Network.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Jordan Morris, 49th Minute:
Michael Bradley played the ball into the middle of the Mexico defense to Gyasi Zardes whose return pass deflected off a Mexico defender into the stride of Morris. On his first MNT start, Morris took a touch and slotted a shot under sliding Mexico goalkeeper Cirilo Saucedo for his first international goal. USA 1, MEX 0 (SEE GOAL)

USA – Juan Agudelo (Michael Bradley), 72nd minute: Minutes after entering for previous goal scorer Jordan Morris, Agudelo expertly brought down a long ball from Michael Bradley at the top of the box. He cut to his right, got past his defender and blasted a shot that squeezed between Saucedo and the left post to double the USA lead. USA 2, MEX 0 (FINAL) (SEE GOAL)

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
MEX – Cirilo Saucedo, 26th minute:
Michael Bradley played a dangerous free kick into the box where Gyasi Zardes and Jordan Morris were converging. Saucedo jumped into traffic and was able to deflect the ball out of danger.

USA - Rimando (Save), 42nd minute: Mexico captain Luis Montes quickly brought the ball down from the right side. Near the top of the box Montes made a quick cut toward the center and hooked a left-footed shot towards the goal. The ball took one spinning hop before Rimando secured it.

USA - Yarbrough (Save), 58th minute: Erick Torres took a pass off of a Mexican counter and found himself in a spot with an opportunity to score, but he was unable to put a clean hit on the ball and Yarbrough simply scooped up the shot.

Milestone Watch:

  • Michael Bradley inched closer to the century cap mark with his 96th appearance tonight. The appearance pushed his him past Brian McBride and into a tie with Alexi Lalas for the 16th on the U.S. MNT’s all-time list.
  • Bradley’s assist was the 13th of his USA career and ties him for eighth all-time alongside DaMarcus Beasley and Clint Dempsey.
  • Ventura Alvarado and 20-year-old Jordan Morris made their first starts for the USA.
  • In his first start, Morris scored his first international goal.

Next on the Schedule:
The U.S. MNT faces Netherlands, on June 5 at 2:30 p.m. ET at the Amsterdam Arena in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Broadcast information: ESPN, WatchESPN, UniMas, Univision Deportes Network
Social: Twitter (@ussoccer@ussoccer_esp); FacebookInstagram )

Additional Notes:

  • The U.S. MNT began the game in a diamond 4-4-2 formation
  • In his first action with the U.S. MNT of 2015, Kyle Beckerman made the start at midfield. It was his first appearance since he started for the U.S. against Ireland on November 18, 2014.
  • It was the first time since the World Cup game against Germany on June 26, 2014 that Michael Bradley and Beckerman have started together.
  • Bradley has played every minute of the USA's five matches so far in 2015. In addition to Bradley, goalkeeper Nick Rimando is the only other player to start all five games. Two other MNT players have appeared in all five games in 2015: Gyassi Zardes and DeAndre Yedlin
  • In his first appearance since he was subbed on in the second half of the game against Ukraine on March 5, 2014, Juan Agudelo came on for the game’s first goal scorer Jordan Morris and netted his third career goal for the U.S. MNT. It was his first goal with the National Team since scoring against Argentina on March 26, 2011.
  • Texas native Greg Garza started the game at left back. He played in the last five games of 2014 starting three following the World Cup and also started in the match against Denmark on March 31, 2015
  • Joe Corona made his first start for the U.S. since the Sept. 3, 2014 match in Prague vs. the Czech Republic. It was his first appearance since the game against Honduras on Oct.14, 2014.
  • Corona and Garza both started on the left side for the U.S. The pair are teammates in Liga MX, with Club Tijuana.
  • Omar Gonzalez made his first start since the 2014 FIFA World Cup match against Belgium and his first appearance since coming on in the 62nd minute of the USA’s October 10, 2014 match against Ecuador.
  • Michael Bradley recorded his third-straight start as captain. He also wore the armband for the MNT on March 25 against Denmark and March 31 versus Switzerland.
  • Kyle Beckerman left the game in the 63rd minute with a left thigh contusion.

- U.S. Men’s National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. Men’s National Team vs. Mexico, Presented by AT&T
Date: April 15, 2015
Competition: International Friendly
Venue: Alamodome; San Antonio, Texas
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. CT
Attendance: 64,369 (sellout)
Weather: 73 degrees; Indoor 

Scoring Summary:   1          2          F
USA                            0          2          2
MEX                            0          0          0

USA – Jordan Morris                                      49th minute
USA – Juan Agudelo (Michael Bradley)        72

Lineups:
USA: 1-Nick Rimando (22-William Yarbrough, 46); 2-DeAndre Yedlin, 3-Omar Gonzalez, 19-Ventura Alvarado, 14-Greg Garza (11-Brek Shea, 46); 15-Kyle Beckerman (21-Perry Kitchen, 63), 10-Mix Diskerud (6-Brad Evans, 80), 7-Joe Corona (9-Miguel Ibarra, 46), 4-Michael Bradley (capt.); 20-Gyasi Zardes, 8-Jordan Morris (17-Juan Agudelo, 65)
Subs Not Used: 5-Matt Besler, 13-Lee Nguyen, 16-Julian Green, 18-Chris Wondolowski
Head Coach: Jurgen Klinsmann

MEX: 12-Cirilo Saucedo; 21-Hiram Mier (3-Oswaldo Alanis, 46), 2-Francisco Rodriguez (8-Luis Rodriguez, 60), 13-Carlos Salcedo (4-Julio Cesar Dominguez, 46); 7-Efrain Velarde, 17-Mario Osuna, 18-Carlos Esquivel, 15-Gerardo Flores (6-George Corral, 67); 10-Luis Montes (capt.) (5-Antonio Rios, 79), 9-Erick Torres, 20-Eduardo Herrera (19-Marco Bueno, 83)
Subs Not Used: 1-Jonathan Orozco, 16-Adrian Aldrete
Head coach: Miguel Herrera

Stats Summary: USA / MEX
Shots: 6 / 13
Shots on Goal: 4 / 3
Saves: 2 / 2
Corner Kicks: 5 / 4
Fouls: 13 / 13
Offside: 1 / 0

Misconduct Summary:
None

Officials: 
Referee: Ricardo Montero (CRC)
Assistant Referee 1: Leonel Leal (CRC)
Assistant Referee 2: Octavio Jara (CRC)
4th Official: Walter Quesada (CRC)

Budweiser Man of the Match: Ventura Alvarado

USA and Archrival Mexico Square Off in San Antonio, Presented by AT&T

For just the second time in 2015, the U.S. MNT is back on U.S. soil, where it has gone unbeaten in its last 20 matches. Now the team is set for 64th edition of the USA-Mexico rivalry, presented by AT&T, on Wednesday, April 15 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1, UniMás and Univision Deportes Network. Fans can also follow along on Twitter via @ussoccer and @usssoccer_esp. The match, which occurs outside of the official FIFA international fixture window, will feature U.S. and Mexican rosters mostly comprised of players from the MLS and Liga MX. 

Klinsmann has 22 players in San Antonio, including Michael Bradley, who has scored four career goals against Mexico, as well as eight other players from the 2014 FIFA World Cup Roster. The U.S. will be without the services of team captain Clint Dempsey, who is sidelined with a hamstring strain, and forward Jozy Altidore who is required to serve a one-match suspension following a red card he received in the USA’s last friendly, a 1-1 draw against Switzerland on March 31 in Zurich. The U.S. is riding a five-game unbeaten streak against Mexico (2-0-3) including, the USA’s first victory against Mexico at Estadio Azteca, and the 0-0 draw away in qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The U.S. has not lost to Mexico (2-0-3) since Jurgen Klinsmann took over the helm as head coach in the summer of 2011. 

The teams last played just over a year ago on April 2, 2014 in a World Cup tune-up that ended in a 2-2 draw. In that game, Michael Bradley scored the game’s first goal and assisted on Chris Wondolowski’s strike. Rafael Marquez and Alan Pulido scored in the second half to rescue a draw for Mexico. Overall, the U.S. is 17-32-14 all-time against Mexico, and is 12-5-5 since 2000. 

Mexico is coming off a 2014 FIFA World Cup where it advanced to the Round of 16 after defeating Cameroon and Croatia and tying World Cup host and then No. 6- ranked Brazil in group play. Mexico fell to the Netherlands 2-1 in the first game of the knockout round after surrendering a penalty kick in the fourth minute of stoppage time. Only three players from that World Cup team appear on the roster for this match. Mexico will provide another test for the MNT in a year of challenging matches, which includes a meeting with No. 5-ranked Netherlands in Amsterdam on June 5, and a matchup against 2014 FIFA World Cup champion and world No. 1-Germany in Cologne on June 10. 

In the meantime, the Under-23 Men’s National Team is coming off a camp in March where Andi Herzog earned his first win in his first game as head coach, defeating Bosnia 5-2 and his first loss, to Denmark 1-0. The team is team continuing its preparations for Olympic qualifying this October and will face its counterpart from Mexico on April 22 at 8 p.m. PT at StubHub Center in Carson, California. Fans can follow @ussoccer_ynt for updates on the U-23s and all U.S. Youth National Teams. 

USA VS. MEXICO:

  • The United States is 17-32-14 all-time against Mexico and is unbeaten in the last five games between the two teams.
  • Since 2000, the USA has posted a 12-5-5 record against Mexico, including a 10-2-4 record at home during that span.
  • The most recent encounter was April 2, 2014, in a World Cup tune-up that ended in a 2-2 draw. Michael Bradley tallied three points, scoring the game’s first goal and assisting on Chris Wondolowski’s. Rafael Marquez and Alan Pulido scored in the second half for Mexico.
  • The U.S. has gone 2-0-3 against Mexico during Jurgen Klinsmann’s tenure as head coach, including the USA’s first victory against Mexico at Estadio Azteca, and the 0-0 draw away in qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
  • It has been almost four full years since the U.S. last loss to El Tri. That defeat came in the final of the 2011 Gold Cup when Mexico defeated the USA 4-2. Michael Bradley and Landon Donovan scored goals for the U.S., which jumped to an early 2-0 lead in the first 25 minutes. Mexico would rally to score the next four goals, a pair of from Pablo Barrera and goals from Andres Guardado and Giovani dos Santos.
  • U.S. goalkeeper William Yarbrough and Mexico’s Luis Montes both play for Liga MX Club León. Greg Garza and Joe Carona are Liga MX teammates with Mexico’s Cirilo Saucedo at Club Tijuana. 

U.S. Men’s National Team by Position – Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake), William Yarbrough (Club Leon) 
DEFENDERS (7): Ventura Alvarado (Club America), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Greg Garza (Club Tijuana), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Brek Shea (Orlando City SC), DeAndre Yedlin (Tottenham Hotspur)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Mix Diskerud (New York City FC), Miguel Ibarra (Minnesota United FC), Perry Kitchen (D.C. United) Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution)
FORWARDS (5): Juan Agudelo (New England Revolution), Julian Green (Hamburg), Jordan Morris (Stanford University), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy) 

U.S. ROSTER NOTES:

  • Ten different MLS teams are represented on the roster, with no team having more than two members.
  • Four players from this roster come from Liga MX: Ventura Alvarado (Club America), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Greg Garza (Club Tijuana), and William Yarbrough (Club Leon).
  • A total of nine players on the roster were members of the 2014 FIFA World Cup roster that traveled to Brazil and helped the USA advance out of the “Group of Death.”
  • Perry Kitchen was added to the roster to replace Michael Orozco, who will not travel to San Antonio following discussions with his club.
  • Michael Bradley is the leading cap-winner from this group having played 95 international matches.
  • Bradley has scored four goals against Mexico, including a double on Feb. 11, 2009, in the 2-0 win in Columbus, Ohio, to kick off the final round of qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
  • Bradley and Chris Wondolowski both scored goals in the USA’s last match vs. Mexico on April 2, 2014, at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, which ended in a 2-2 draw.
  • Brek Shea has scored two goals in four matches to start 2015, including a free kick stunner against Switzerland. Bradley is the other goal scorer on this roster.
  • Liga MX-based Alvarado and Yarbrough both earned their first caps with the U.S. during the MNT’s March games in Europe. Alvarado entered in the 80th minute of the March 31 game against Denmark, taking over for Michael Orozco who was having knee issues
  • Yarbrough, 26, was born and raised in Mexico to two American parents and earned his first cap for the U.S. MNT on March 31 against Switzerland. He marshaled the backline for Club Leon to the 2013 Apertura and 2014 Clausura titles.
  • Kyle Beckerman returns to the team for his first international action of 2015 since playing against Ireland on Nov. 18, 2014, in Dublin. He played a role in the USA’s World Cup run in 2014, starting in all three group stage matches.
  • Juan Agudelo’s last appearance with the MNT came when he was subbed on in the second half of the game against Ukraine on April 15, 2014.
  • It will be a homecoming of sorts for four players, as Greg Garza (Grapevine), Omar Gonzalez (Dallas), Lee Nguyen (McKinney) and Brek Shea (Bryan) are all Texas natives.
  • Six players are alumni of U.S. Soccer’s Development Academy: Bill Hamid (D.C. United Academy), DeAndre Yedlin (Crossfire Premier & Seattle Sounders Academy), Corona (Nomads SC), Agudelo (New York Red Bulls Academy), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders Academy) and Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy Academy).
  • Greg Garza played in the last five games of 2014, starting three, and also started in the match against Denmark on March 31, 2015. The Club Tijuana left back has been a part of every level of U.S. National Team programming, beginning with the U-14’s.
  • Joe Corona is back on the roster for the first time since he helped the U.S. earn a 1-1 draw against Honduras on October 14, 2014, when he came on in the second half. Corona grew up with a foot in two countries, having been raised in San Diego, but spending time in Mexico where he built his professional career playing for Club Tijuana.
  • Omar Gonzalez is back on the roster for the first time since he came on in the 62nd minute of the U.S’s game against Ecuador on October 10, 2014. 
  • Julian Green made his U.S. MNT debut against Mexico, coming on in the 59th minute of last year’s 2-2 draw with Mexico.

Julian Green
Julian Green battled Marco Fabian and Mexico in his debut match for the USA in 2004.

IN THE RECORD BOOKS:

  • Midfielder Michael Bradley is inching closer to the century cap mark with 95 appearances since debuting for the MNT in 2006. He is tied with Brian McBride for 17th on the MNT all-time list.
  • Bradley is tied for 13th on the all-time goals scored list with Marcelo Balboa and Hugo Perez with 13 goals scored.
  • Nick Rimando ranks fifth on the all-time wins list with 12. The Real Salt Lake man is 12-2-2 all-time with the USA, including four shutouts.
  • U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann (34-17-12) ranks third among the USA’s all-time winningest coaches. Ahead of Klinsmann are National Soccer Hall of Famers, Bruce Arena (71) and Bob Bradley (43). 

2015 U.S. MNT SCHEDULE:

Date

Opponent

Result/Time (ET)

U.S. Goal Scorers/TV

Venue

Jan. 28

Chile

2-3 L

Shea, Altidore

Estadio El Teniente; Rancagua, Chile

Feb. 8

Panama

2-0 W

Bradley, Dempsey

StubHub Center; Carson, Calif.

March 25

Denmark

2-3 L

Altidore, Johannsson

NRGi Park; Aarhus, Denmark

March 31

Switzerland

1-1 D

Shea

Stadion Letzigrund; Zurich, Switzerland

April 15

Mexico

8:30 p.m.

FOX Sports 1, UniMás, univisiondeportes.com

Alamodome; San Antonio, Texas

June 5

Netherlands

2:30 p.m.

ESPN2, WatchESPN, UniMás, univisiondeportes.com

Amsterdam Arena; Amsterdam, Netherlands

June 10

Germany

2:45 p.m.

FOX Sports 1, UniMás, univisiondeportes.com

Rhein Energie Stadion; Cologne, Germany

July 7

Honduras

9:30 p.m.

FOX Sports 1, UniMás

Toyota Stadium; Frisco, Texas

July 10

Haiti

8:30 p.m.

FOX Sports 1, UniMás

Gillette Stadium; Foxborough, Mass.

July 13

Panama

9:30 p.m.

FOX Sports 1, UniMás

Sporting Park; Kansas City, Kan.

JURGEN KLINSMANN FACT FILE: Jurgen Klinsmann became the 35th head coach in the history of the U.S. Men’s National Team on July 29, 2011. Here is a look at the program’s achievements since that time: 

  • Overall, Klinsmann has a 34-17-12 record, third on the U.S. MNT’s all-time coaching wins list. The top five include: Bruce Arena (71), Bob Bradley (43), Klinsmann (34), Bora Milutinovic (30) and Steve Sampson (26).
  • He won a record-setting 13 straight games at home from June 2, 2013 to Feb. 1, 2014, and has guided the team to an unbeaten record of 17-0-3 in its past 20 matches on home soil.
  • He led the MNT to a 12-game winning streak in 2013, the longest in program history.
  • The U.S. finished 2013 with a 16-4-3 record. The 16 victories and .761 winning percentage are all-time U.S. MNT records for a calendar year.
  • The U.S. finished the final round of 2013 CONCACAF World Cup qualifying atop the Hexagonal with a 7-1-2 overall record, including an unblemished 5-0-0 home record that was achieved by pitching clean sheets in all five matches.
  • The team won six straight games en route to capturing the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup, during which the squad scored a tournament-record 20 goals.
  • Committed to challenging the group against the best, under Klinsmann, the United States has a 2-3-2 record against teams ranked in the top 10 in the world. With Klinsmann at the helm, the U.S. has also collected four historic victories:
    • Beating four-time World Cup champion Italy for the first time
    • Earning the first win against Mexico on Mexican soil
    • Defeating Jamaica on the road for the first time in World Cup Qualifying
    • Topping second-ranked Germany in U.S. Soccer’s Centennial Celebration Match
  • Klinsmann’s U.S. coaching debut was a 1-1 draw against Mexico on Aug. 10, 2011, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. During Klinsmann’s abbreviated 2011 tenure, the USA’s two victories included a 1-0 win against Honduras (Oct. 8) and a 3-2 victory against Slovenia (Nov. 15).
  • Klinsmann was named Germany’s National Team manager in 2004 and guided Germany to a 20-6-8 record and a third-place finish in the 2006 FIFA World Cup. He earned Coach of the Year honors in Germany, and two years later, he took over the head coaching position at Germany’s most high-profile club, Bayern Munich.
  • As a player, Klinsmann played 17 club seasons from 1981-98 with the following teams: Stuttgarter Kickers (1981-84), VfB Stuttgart (1984-89), Internazionale (1989-92), Monaco (1992-94), Tottenham Hotspur (1994-95, 97-98), Bayern Munich (1995-97) and Sampdoria (1997-98). During that time, he scored 226 goals in 506 appearances. He was named German Player of the Year in 1988 and 1994 and FWA Footballer of the Year in 1995.
  • Klinsmann earned 108 caps with the German National Team, scoring 47 goals. He participated in three World Cups (1990, 1994 and 1998) and won the 1990 FIFA World Cup.
  • Klinsmann was born on July 30, 1964, in Goppingen, Germany. 

IN FOCUS: MEXICO
Federacion Mexicana de Futbol (FMF)
Founded: 1927
FIFA affiliation: 1929
Head Coach: Miguel Herrera
FIFA World Ranking: 18
Best World Cup Finish: Quarterfinal, 1970, 1986
Leading Cap-Winner: Claudio Suarez (178)
Leading Goalscorer: Jared Borgetti (46)

MEXICO ROSTER BY POSITION:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Jonathan Orozco (Monterrey), Cirilo Saucedo (Club Tijuana)
DEFENDERS (9): Oswaldo Alanis (Santos Laguna), George Corral (Queretaro), Francisco Rodriguez (Cruz Azul), Julio Cesar Dominguez (Cruz Azul), Gerardo Flores (Cruz Azul), Hiram Mier (Monterrey), Luis Rodríguez (Chiapas), Carlos Salcedo (Chivas), Efrain Velarde (Monterrey)
MIDFIELDERS (4): Adrian Aldrete (Santos Laguna), Luis Montes (Leon), Mario Osuna (Queretaro), Antonio Rios (Toluca)
FORWARDS (4): Marco Bueno (Toluca), Carlos Esquivel (Toluca), Eduardo Herrera (Pumas), Erick Torres (Chivas) 

MEXICO ROSTER NOTES:

  • Since taking over in October 2013, head coach Miguel Herrera has helped lead the team to a 14-4-4 record, but he has never had a victory over the United States.
  • This is the first call-up for Carlos Salcedo, Luis Alfonso and Mario Osuna.
  • In the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Mexico advanced to the round of 16 after defeating Cameroon and Croatia and tying World Cup host and then No. 6- ranked Brazil. Mexico fell to Holland 2-1 in the first game of the knockout round after surrendering a penalty-kick goal in the fourth minute of stoppage time.
  • Three players from its 2014 FIFA World Cup roster appear on this roster.
  • Carlos Salcedo and Erick Torres, who currently play Liga MX for Chivas, previously spent time in MLS. Torres scored 22 goals in 44 career appearances for Chivas USA and Salcedo played in 25 games and scored one goal at Real Salt Lake. Torres will join the Houston Dynamo at the end of the Liga MX season.
  • Eduardo Herrera scored the game-winning-goal in Mexico’s most recent fixture, which was against Paraguay. 

omar gonzalez
MNT defender Omar Gonzalez wins a hearder over Mexico's Alán Pulido in the teams' last encounter, which ended in a 2-2 draw.

LAST TIME:

On the field against Mexico:
April. 2, 2014 – University of Phoenix Stadium; Glendale, Arizona – International Friendly 

             USA                2          Michael Bradley, 15’                         Chris Wondowlski, 28’
MEX                2          Rafael Marquez, 49’                          Alan Pulido, 67’ 

Lineups:
USA: 1-Nick Rimando; 6-Tony Beltran (2-DeAndre Yedlin, 72), 3-Omar Gonzalez, 5-Matt Besler (21-Clarence Goodson, 59), 15-Michael Parkhurst; 14-Kyle Beckerman (7-Maurice Edu, 72), 19-Graham Zusi (10-Landon Donovan, 59), 11-Brad Davis (9-Julian Green, 59), 4-Michael Bradley; 17-Chris Wondolowski (18-Eddie Johnson, 64), 8-Clint Dempsey (capt.)
Substitutions Not Used: 12-Sean Johnson, 16-Luis Gil, 22-Bill Hamid
Head coach: Jurgen Klinsmann

MEX: 23-Moisés Muñoz (1-Alfredo Talavera, 46); 28-Rogelio Chávez (22-Paúl Aguilar, 63), 6-Juan Carlos Valenzuela, 4-Rafael Márquez (capt.), 2-Francisco Javier Rodríguez; 27-Carlos Peña (9-Raúl Jiménez, 46), 17-Jesús Zavala, 7-Miguel Layun (16-Miguel Ángel Ponce, 68);  11-Alán Pulido, 18-Isaac Brizuela (10-Luis Montes, 57), 8-Marco Fabián
Substitutions Not Used: 5-Enrique Pérez, 26-Juan Carlos Medina
Head coach: Miguel Herrera

Perry Kitchen Added to MNT Roster for USA-Mexico, Presented by AT&T

CHICAGO (April 13, 2015) — U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has added D.C. United midfielder Perry Kitchen to the U.S. roster for USA-Mexico, Presented by AT&T.  Kitchen replaces Michael Orozco, who will not travel to San Antonio following discussions with his club. 

Kitchen made his Senior Team debut earlier this year when he entered as a substitute in the USA's 2-0 win against Panama on Feb. 8 at the StubHub Center in Carson, California.

The 64th edition of the USA-Mexico rivalry takes place this Wednesday, April 15, at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1, UniMas and Univision Deportes Network. 

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake), William Yarbrough (Club Leon)
DEFENDERS (7): Ventura Alvarado (Club America), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Greg Garza (Club Tijuana), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Brek Shea (Orlando City SC), DeAndre Yedlin (Tottenham Hotspur)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Mix Diskerud (New York City FC), Miguel Ibarra (Minnesota United FC), Perry Kitchen (D.C. United), Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution)
FORWARDS (5): Juan Agudelo (New England Revolution), Julian Green (Hamburg), Jordan Morris (Stanford University), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)

Klinsmann Names 22-Player Roster for USA-Mexico, Presented by AT&T

CHICAGO (April 12, 2015) – U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has selected a 22-player roster for the 64th edition of the USA-Mexico rivalry, presented by AT&T, on Wednesday, April 15 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1, UniMas and Univision Deportes Network.

With the game occurring outside of an official FIFA international fixture date, the U.S. roster is mostly comprised of players that compete with North America-based clubs. Thirteen players play their trade in MLS, while league rival Liga MX contributes five to the group.

The U.S. contingent, which continues preparations for the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup, includes nine players from the 2014 FIFA World Cup roster.

The United States will be without the services of team captain Clint Dempsey, who is sidelined with a hamstring strain, and forward Jozy Altidore, who is required to serve a one-match suspension following a red card he received in the USA’s last friendly, a 1-1 draw against Switzerland on March 31 in Zurich.

Klinsmann’s side has not lost to its archrival since he took the helm in the summer of 2011, going 2-0-3 in that span. The results include the USA’s first victory against Mexico at Estadio Azteca and the 0-0 away draw in qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Currently ranked No. 18 in the world, Mexico brings a 19-player roster with all members based in Liga MX. Mexico comes into the match having won both friendlies it has played this year against Ecuador and Paraguay by matching 1-0 score lines.


U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake), William Yarbrough (Club Leon)
DEFENDERS (8): Ventura Alvarado (Club America), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Greg Garza (Club Tijuana), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Michael Orozco (Puebla), Brek Shea (Orlando City SC), DeAndre Yedlin (Tottenham Hotspur)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Mix Diskerud (New York City FC), Miguel Ibarra (Minnesota United FC), Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution)
FORWARDS (5): Juan Agudelo (New England Revolution), Julian Green (Hamburg), Jordan Morris (Stanford University), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)

ROSTER NOTES:

  • The U.S. MNT is coming off a March camp in Europe that featured a last-minute, 3-2 loss to Denmark in Aarhus, and concluded with a 1-1 draw with then No. 12-ranked Switzerland in Zurich.
  • Ten different MLS teams are represented on the roster, with no team having more than two members.
  • Five players from this roster come from Liga MX: Ventura Alvarado (Club America), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Greg Garza (Club Tijuana), Michael Orozco (Puebla) and William Yarbrough (Club Leon).
  • A total of nine players on the roster were members of the 2014 FIFA World Cup roster that traveled to Brazil and helped the USA advance out of the “Group of Death.”
  • Bradley has scored four goals against Mexico, and scored a double against Mexico in a World Cup Qualifier on Feb. 11, 2009, in Columbus, Ohio.
  • Bradley and Chris Wondolowski both scored goals in the USA’s last match with Mexico on April 2, 2014, at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., which ended in a 2-2 draw.
  • Brek Shea has scored two goals in four matches to start 2015, including a free kick stunner against Switzerland. Bradley is the other goalscorer on this roster.
  • Michael Orozco scored the game-winning goal in the U.S.’s historic first win against Mexico on Mexican soil in Estadio Azteca on Aug. 15, 2012. It was Orozco’s first international goal.
  • Julian Green made his international debut for the USA against Mexico, coming on as a second-half sub in a similarly time friendly last year on April 2 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.
  • Liga MX based Alvarado and Yarbrough both earned their first caps with the U.S. during the MNT’s March training camp in Europe.
  • Yarbrough, 26, was born and raised in Mexico to two American parents and earned his first cap for the U.S. MNT on March 31 against Switzerland. He marshaled the backline for Club Leon to the 2013 Apertura and 2014 Clausura titles.
  • Kyle Beckerman returns to the team for his first international action of 2015 since playing against Ireland on Nov. 18, 2014 in Dublin. He played a role in the USA’s World Cup run in 2014, starting in all three of the group stage matches.
  • Juan Agudelo’s last appearance with the U.S. MNT came when he was subbed on in the second-half of the game against Ukraine on March 5, 2014.
  • Six players are alumni of U.S. Soccer’s Development Academy: Bill Hamid (D.C. United Academy), DeAndre Yedlin (Crossfire Premier & Seattle Sounders Academy), Corona (Nomads SC), Agudelo (New York Red Bulls Academy), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders Academy) and Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy Academy).
  • Michael Bradley is the leading cap-winner from this group having played 95 international matches.

Kasey Keller, Sigi Schmid and Glenn “Mooch” Myernick Elected to National Soccer Hall of Fame

CHICAGO (April 8, 2015) – Former U.S. Men’s National Team goalkeeper and four-time FIFA World Cup veteran Kasey Keller has been elected to the National Soccer Hall of Fame. Joining Keller in the Class of 2015 are former U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team and Major League Soccer head coach Sigi Schmid on the Builder Ballot, and the late Glenn “Mooch” Myernick on the Veteran Ballot. 

Further information regarding the induction ceremony will be announced at a later date. 

Keller, one of the most successful and experienced goalkeepers in U.S. Soccer history, enters the Hall of Fame following a 19-year international career, having played 102 games for the United States between 1990 and 2007. Keller participated in four FIFA World Cups (1990, 1998, 2002 and 2006), and is the USA’s all-time leader in shutouts with 47. Keller is a first-ballot Hall of Fame inductee.

“It’s a great honor,” Keller said of being elected. “You look at some of the guys that have been elected before; it’s not an easy process. It’s not like it’s an open-door policy. It’s cool to be voted in. I really saw it firsthand, when I was able to speak on (Brian) McBride’s behalf, of how cool it is. I’m proud and thankful for the people that helped get me to that point throughout my career: teammates, coaches, friends, family. It’s kind of a culmination of what you’ve done and how you got there and all the people that helped you get to get to that point, so I’m thankful for that.”

The two-time U.S. Soccer Male Athlete of the Year was the first American goalkeeper to become a regular in the Bundesliga, the English Premier League and La Liga. He played for various European clubs throughout his career including, Millwall (1992-96), Leicester City (1996-99), Rayo Vallecano (1999-2001), Tottenham Hotspur (2001-05), Borussia Monchengladbach (2005-07) and Fulham (2007-08). His last stint was with Seattle Sounders FC of Major League Soccer in 2009, where he played until his retirement in 2011 when he stepped down as the reigning MLS Goalkeeper of the Year. Currently, Keller works as the Sounders’ color commentator.

Schmid enters the Hall of Fame on the Builder Ballot after 35 years of coaching soccer in the United States, collecting numerous championships at the collegiate and professional levels. 

As the winningest coach in Major League history, Schmid has been a staple of excellence for many years, accumulating over 200 victories during his time in the league. 

He first brought success to the LA Galaxy from 1999-2005, earning MLS Coach of the Year honors during his first season with the team. He led the Galaxy to the 2000 CONCACAF Champions’ Cup title, the 2001 U.S. Open Cup title and its first MLS Cup title in 2002. After a year away, he came back to MLS to coach the Columbus Crew from 2006-08, helping the team win its only MLS Cup in 2008, and earning MLS Coach of the Year honors for a second time. 

Serving as the current head coach of the Seattle Sounders, a role he assumed in 2009, Schmid has led the club to four U.S. Open Cup titles (2009-11, 2014) as well as to the MLS playoffs in every season during his tenure. 

“I would like to thank U.S. Soccer for this incredible honor, as this is certainly right up there with the top moments I’ve experienced in this sport,” said Schmid. “I am honored to be inducted alongside Kasey Keller, who is a Seattle soccer icon. I knew Mooch [Glenn Myernick] for a long time, and as a colleague, a coach and a player, he dedicated his life to the sport, and he’s such a good person. Being inducted with those two guys is a tremendous honor, and I am very humbled.” 

For the USA, Schmid served as the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team head coach twice (1998-99 and 2004-05). In 1999, he guided the U-20’s to the 1999 FIFA World Youth Championship, where the team was able to advance out of the group stage but fell to eventual champion Spain in the Round of 16. Most recently, he led the U-20’s in 2005 at the FIFA World Youth Championship, where the USA once again bowed out in the Round of 16.

Schmid was an assistant to Bora Milutinovic for the 1994 World Cup team and also was head coach for the 1991 World University Games and 1995 Pan American Games. 

After a successful career as a midfielder for UCLA from 1972-75, Schmid found his calling as a coach, taking the reins of his alma mater in 1980. He coached the Bruins for 19 seasons (1980-99), guiding them to a 322-63-33 record, and the 1985, 1990 and 1997 NCAA Championships. 

The late Glenn Myernick, who passed away on Oct. 9, 2006 at the age of 51, will enter the Hall of Fame on the Veteran Ballot as an American soccer pioneer who represented the U.S. at every level as a player and coach across a lifetime of soccer success.  

Myernick served as an assistant coach for the USA at the 2002 and 2006 FIFA World Cups and was an integral part of the USA's quarterfinal run at the 2002 World Cup. He also coached the USA in its championship victory at the 2005 CONCACAF Gold Cup after head coach Bruce Arena was suspended for the final. 

“This means everything to us; his whole world was soccer,” said his wife, Nancy Myernick. “It revolved around the game from the time he was a little kid playing in Trenton, to youth soccer, and then going to college, and being with the National Team. He could never get enough. We built our lives around soccer, and we traveled the country to make it happen for him and to be involved in whatever level he could be. He put 110 percent effort into whatever he did with soccer. We wish he could have received this honor himself, but knowing the family will be there is a huge honor.”

Myernick played more games for the U.S. National Team than any other U.S. National Team coach, serving as team captain in 1978 and earning 10 caps. He also started four games for the U.S. Olympic Team in qualifying for the 1976 Games in Montreal. He began his international coaching career as an assistant for the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team in 1993 at the FIFA World Youth Championship in Australia, and then coached the U-17’s at the FIFA U-17 World Championship in Ecuador.  

After serving as an assistant coach for Arena at the 1996 Olympic Games, Myernick took the reins of the Colorado Rapids in Major League Soccer for four seasons from 1997-2000. He would eventually compile a 63-61-4 record and guided the team to the 1997 MLS Cup title game during his first season at the helm. 

Myernick took over as the head coach of the U.S. Under-23 Men's National Team in 2002, guiding the team’s efforts to qualify for the 2004 Olympics. 

He had a standout collegiate career at Hartwick College in Oneonta, New York, winning the Hermann Trophy as the sport's outstanding player in 1976. He also starred in the NASL with numerous teams, earning team MVP honors for the Portland Timbers in 1982.  

Complete information about the election and eligibility procedures is available online at ussoccer.com

The election process is being administered by U.S. Soccer Federation staff under election and eligibility guidelines established by the Hall of Fame Board of Directors.

Established in 1950, the National Soccer Hall of Fame is dedicated to the sport of soccer in America by celebrating its history, preserving its legacy, inspiring its youth and honoring its heroes for generations to come.

MNT Earns Hard-Fought 1-1 Draw against No.-12 Ranked Switzerland

ZURICH (March 31, 2015) – Defender Brek Shea’s first-half, free-kick goal helped steer the U.S. Men’s National Team to a 1-1 draw against No.-12 ranked Switzerland at Stadion Letzigrund in Zurich on Tuesday.

The U.S. had to play the final 20 minutes of the match with 10 men after forward Jozy Altidore was sent off in the 68th minute for protesting being called for a foul by head referee Luca Banti. Although, Valentin Stocker notched the equalizer for Switzerland in the 80th minute, the USA was able to repel Switzerland’s pressure to earn a result.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Brek Shea, 45th minute:
After Alfredo Morales was fouled in the closing moments of the first half, the U.S. was set up for a free kick from 20 yards out. Both Jozy Altidore and Brek Shea stood behind the ball but it was Shea that took the kick and bent it perfectly over the wall and into the top right corner. USA 1, SUI 0 (SEE GOAL)

SUI – Valentin Stocker, 80th minute: Following a short corner, Switzerland’s Granit Xhaka played in a cross from the left side. A group of players went up for it and the ball bounced off Silvan Widner into the path of Stocker, who poked home a shot from four yards out. USA 1, SUI 1 (SEE GOAL) FINAL

Milestone Watch:

  • The U.S. MNT now has an all-time record of 1-3-4 against Switzerland.
  • Goalkeeper William Yarbrough made his international debut for the USA, entering as a second half sub for Nick Rimando in the 46th minute.
  • Brek Shea’s goal was his second of the year and fourth of his career.
  • Jozy Altidore earned his 80th cap against Switzerland. The red card was the first he has received in his career with the USMNT.

Next on the Schedule:
The U.S. MNT faces Mexico, Presented by AT&T, on April 15 at 7:30 p.m. CT at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.  
Broadcast information: FOX Sports 1, UniMas, Univision Deportes Network
Social: Twitter (@ussoccer@ussoccer_esp); FacebookInstagram 

Additional Notes:

  • Michael Bradley recorded his second start as captain. He also wore the armband for the MNT on March 25 against Denmark.
  • Bradley is the only player to have played the full 90 in all four matches for the USMNT so far this year.
  • Danny Williams made his first start since Feb. 6, 2013, when he took the field against Honduras, and his first appearance since the U.S. played Ukraine on March 5, 2014.
  • With Shea’s goal, the USMNT has now scored in the first half of its last nine matches (the last time the team did not score a first-half goal was against Belgium in last summer’s World Cup). This is the fifth 1-0 lead the U.S. has taken into halftime over that stretch and the seventh lead overall.
  • The U.S. has not trailed at halftime of a match since playing Portugal at the 2014 World Cup when it went into the locker room trailing 1-0.
  • Jordan Morris came into the game in the 89th minute. Morris was called into the MNT squad on March 29 after playing with the Under-23 MNT against Bosnia-Herzegovina on March 27 when he scored the opening goal in a 5-2 win.  
  • Brek Shea’s free-kick goal was the first direct free kick score for the U.S. since Jozy Altidore scored from a free kick on Aug. 14, 2013 against Bosnia-Herzegovina.

- U.S. Men’s National Team Match Report -  

Match: U.S. Men’s National Team vs. Switzerland
Date: March 31, 2015
Competition: International Friendly
Venue: Stadion Letzigrund; Zurich, Switzerland
Kickoff: 12 p.m. ET (6 p.m. Local)
Attendance: 16,100
Weather: 48 degrees, cloudy 

Scoring Summary:   1          2          F
USA                           1          0          1          
SUI                             0          1          1        

USA – Brek Shea                                            45th minute
SUI – Valentin Stocker (Silvan Widner)        80

Lineups:
USA: 1-Nick Rimando (22-William Yarbrough, 46); 21-Timmy Chandler, 15-Michael Orozco (19-Ventura Alvarado, 46), 6-John Brooks, 13-Brek Shea; 14-Danny Williams, 11-Alejandro Bedoya (2-DeAndre Yedlin, 76), 7-Alfredo Morales (5-Tim Ream, 89), 4-Michael Bradley (capt.); 20-Gyasi Zardes (8-Jordan Morris, 89), 17-Jozy Altidore (sendoff, 68)
Subs Not Used: 3-Greg Garza, 10-Miguel Ibarra, 16-Julian Green, 18-Rubio Rubin
Head coach: Jurgen Klinsmann 

SUI: 21-Roman Burki; 2-Stephan Lichsteiner (6-Silvan Widner, 46), 22-Fabian Schar, 5-Steve von Bergen, 3- Jacques Fracois Moubandje; 8-Gokhan Inler (capt.) (10-Granit Xhaka, 46), 16-Gelson Fernandes (9-Haris Seferovic, 72), 7-Fabian Frei (17-Pajtim Kasami, 46), 23-Xherdan Shaqiri; 19- Josip Drmic (15-Breel Embolo, 56), 18-Admir Mehmedi (14-Valentin Stocker, 46)
Subs Not Used: 1-Yann Sonner, 4-Fabian Lustenberger, 11-Valon Behrani, 12-Marwin Hitz, 13-Ricardo Rodriguez, 20-Johan Djourou
Head coach: Vladimir Petkovic

Stats Summary: USA / SUI
Shots: 6 / 12
Shots on Goal: 3 / 2
Saves: 1 / 2
Corner Kicks: 1 / 8
Fouls: 14 / 13
Offside: 1 / 2 

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Jozy Altidore (caution)             68th minute
USA – Jozy Altidore (ejection)            68

Officials: 
Referee: Luca Banti (ITA)
Assistant Referee 1: Riccardo Di Fiore (ITA)
Assistant Referee 2: Filippo Meli (ITA)
4th Official: Alain Bieri (SUI) 

Budweiser Man of the Match: Brek Shea

MNT Beats Mexico 2-0 in Front of Packed Alamodome

The U.S. Men’s National Team defeated archrival Mexico by a score line of 2-0 behind goals from Jordan Morris and Juan Agudelo in front of a sell-out crowd of 64,369. The match was presented by AT&T. The win extended the USA’s unbeaten streak against Mexico to a record six games (3-0-3), pushed the U.S. MNT’s current unbeaten streak on home soil to 21 games (18-0-3) and marked the ninth USA victory against Mexico by that familiar score line and eighth since 2000.

Highlights: Morris, Agudelo and Co. Rack Up another #DosACero vs. Mexico

The USA beat Mexico 2-0 in front of a sold-out crowd of 64,369 in the Alamodome in San Antonio. Jordan Morris and Juan Agudelo scored for the U.S.

GOAL: Juan Agudelo Rings Up another #DosACero for USA

Juan Agudelo scored to make the U.S. lead #dosacero as the U.S. MNT took on Mexico presented by AT&T. Watch live on Fox Sports 1 and Univision.

GOAL: Jordan Morris Opens His MNT Account on Big Stage

Jordan Morris scored his first international goal to give the U.S. a 1-0 lead in #USAvMEX presented by AT&T. Watch live on Fox Sports 1 and Univision.

MNT Ready for Mexico Showdown in San Antonio

Watch how the ‪#‎USMNT‬ prepared in this short camp before ‪#‎USAvMEX‬ presented by AT&T.

More Than Worth It

The U.S. MNT closed out the 10-day European trip with a solid performance in the 1-1 draw against No. 12-ranked Switzerland.

Highlights: MNT Claims Result in Zurich against Switzerland

Brek Shea’s first-half, free-kick goal helped steer the U.S. Men’s National Team to a 1-1 draw against No.-12 ranked Switzerland at Stadion Letzigrund in Zurich

GOAL: Brek Shea Smashes Home First Half Free Kick Versus Switzerland

Break Shea scored from a kick kick to give the U.S. a lead just before halftime. Watch live on Fox Sports 1 and Univision.

Short, Short, Long: MNT Friendlies in Europe Serve Dual Purpose

The U.S. MNT's friendlies against Denmark and Switzerland in Europe have provided head coach Jurgen Klinsmann and the squad an opportunity to try out some new faces alongside the team's core group in the short term. However, the long goal is eyeing players who will help the USA win this summer's important edition of the Gold Cup.

Highlights: 91st-Minute Strike Beats MNT in Denmark

The U.S. Men's National Team fell 3-2 to Denmark in Aarhus, Denmark.
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