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Klinsmann Calls 23 Players for CONCACAF Cup tune-ups against Peru and Brazil

CHICAGO (Aug. 30, 2015) – U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has named the initial 23-player roster that will gather for friendlies against Peru and Brazil in the final preparation games before the decisive Oct. 10 playoff against Mexico at the Rose Bowl for a spot in the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup.

The U.S. faces Peru, which finished third in Copa America this summer, on Sept. 4 at RFK Stadium in Washington D.C. (7 p.m. ET; FOX Sports 1, FOX Sports Go, UniMas, Univision Deportes Network) and four days later meets five-time World Cup champion Brazil at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts (8 p.m. ET; ESPN Networks, UniMas, Univision Deportes Network).

“The bigger picture is to get some answers for how we put things together for the Mexico game a month from now,” said Klinsmann. “Obviously we want to continue to have a good flow of guys from the Gold Cup, but also to bring back guys who are in position to compete for a spot on the roster for Oct. 10.  Our message to these guys is simple: prove a point that you want to be at the Rose Bowl.”

A total of 15 players from the group were a part of the team that represented the United States this summer at the CONCACAF Gold Cup, and 12 join from the 2014 FIFA World Cup squad. The roster is loaded with experience, boasting an average of nearly 27 caps. Three players have 50 or more appearances, while only five have 10 caps or less.

Matt Besler and Jermaine Jones could see action for the first time since February and fellow 2014 World Cup teammates Geoff Cameron and Tim Howard are back in the mix for the first time in 2015. Meantime, SV Sandhausen forward Andrew Wooten will make his first appearance in an MNT camp, the 25-year-old having scored five goals in the first five games this season.

Toronto FC midfielder Michael Bradley and Seattle Sounders FC forward Clint Dempsey will be added to the U.S. roster for the match against Brazil, and goalkeeper William Yarbrough will return to his club and be replaced by Chicago Fire ‘keeper Sean Johnson. Any additional changes will be determined following the game against Peru.

U.S. Roster by Position: Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), William Yarbrough (Club Leon)
DEFENDERS (8): Ventura Alvarado (Club America), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Greg Garza (Atlas), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Michael Orozco (Club Tijuana), Tim Ream (Fulham)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Joe Corona (Veracruz), Mix Diskerud (New York City FC), Jermaine Jones (New England Revolution), Alfredo Morales (FC Ingolstadt), Danny Williams (Reading), DeAndre Yedlin (Tottenham Hotspur)
FORWARDS (5): Jozy Altidore (Toronto FC), Aron Johannsson (Werder Bremen), Bobby Wood (Union Berlin), Andrew Wooten (SV Sandhausen), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)

While the MNT works on the east coast, the U-23 Men’s National Team will hold a camp of its own in England, where it will play both England and Qatar in its final preparation before it competes for a spot in the 2015 Olympic Games in Rio at the 2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Championship, which runs from Oct. 1-13 in the United States.

ROSTER NOTES

  • Six different players from this roster have scored for the USA in 2015: Jozy Altidore, John Brooks, Mix Diskerud, Aron Johannsson, Danny Williams and Gyasi Zardes
  • Brad Guzan earned Golden Glove honors as the top goalkeeper at this summer’s Gold Cup.  He has posted a 7-2-3 record since September of last year.
  • DaMarcus Beasley aggravated a right calf injury on Aug. 29 in a 2-0 win for Houston Dynamo and is not available for selection.
  • Gyasi Zardes was called in for his first MNT camp in January and has appeared in 13 games in 2015, starting in 10. The LA Galaxy forward has scored twice and assisted on three goals for the United States
  • Bobby Wood was given the summer off to settle in with his new German club, Union Berlin. Wood has started all three of the team’s 2 Bundesliga games and scored his first goal on Aug. 16. The Hawaii-native scored late game-winners in back-to-back appearances in June, burying a goal in the 90th minute against Netherlands and following up with another against Germany five days later.
  • The last time Tim Howard was on the field for the USA, he made 15 saves in the MNT’s Round of 16 matchup with Belgium in the 2014 World Cup.
  • Matt Besler is back in the mix for the first time since the Feb. 8 win against Panama. Besler is the captain of MLS club Sporting KC and is one of three MNT players on this roster – along with Tim Howard and Jermaine Jones - to have appeared in all four matches in the 2014 World Cup.
  • John Brooks has a pair of clutch international goals to his name. He headed in the game-winner against Ghana in the USA’s 2014 World Cup opener and scored the first of the MNT’s three second-half goals in the 4-3, comeback win against sixth-ranked Netherlands in June.
  • Ventura Alvarado has appeared in seven of the last eight MNT matches since making his debut in a U.S. uniform on March 25 against Denmark. He became cap-tied to the U.S. after starting in the first match of the Gold Cup against Honduras on July 7. Alvarado is a regular starter for the Club America team that captured the CONCACAF Champions League title and earned a trip to the FIFA Club World Cup.
  • Geoff Cameron has started and played 90 minutes in all of Stoke City’s 2015 Premier League matches. He last appeared for the MNT on Nov. 18, 2014, against Ireland. The game against Brazil will be a homecoming of sorts for the center back, who was born and raised in Attleboro, Massachusetts.
  • Michael Orozco returns to the MNT for the first time since June. Orozco – who moved to Club Tijuana this summer - came on in the second half of the game against Netherlands, where he played a part in the MNT’s comeback win.
  • Tim Ream, who recently completed a transfer to Fulham, earned honors as the Player of the Year for his former club Bolton in each of the last two seasons.
  • Jermaine Jones has recovered from the injury that kept him out of this summer’s Gold Cup and is back with the MNT for the first time since February.
  • Alfredo Morales played a key role in FC Ingolstadt securing first place in the second division in Germany last year and its subsequent promotion to the Bundesliga. Morales, who holds Peruvian citizenship through his father, has started in each of the team’s first three matches.
  • Yedlin has appeared in 13 of the 14 MNT matches in 2015 and has tallied three assists, which ties for second on the team with Gyasi Zardes, behind Michael Bradley’s five.
  • Jozy Altidore has two goals and an assist this year with the MNT. The Toronto FC forward was with the U.S. for the group stage of the Gold Cup. In six appearances with Toronto since the summer tournament he has scored three goals.
  • Aron Johannsson recently completed a transfer from Dutch club AZ Alkmaar to Bundesliga team Werder Bremen. In his final season with AZ, he recorded four goals in the team’s last three matches to help the team snatch the third spot in the Dutch Eredivisie and a place in the 2016 UEFA Europa League. Johansson made his Bundesliga debut in the opening game of the season against Schalke and followed up with his first start a week later in Werder’s match against Hertha BSC.
  • This will be the first camp with the senior MNT for Andrew Wooten. The German-American is off to a hot start in 2 Bundesliga at SV Sandhausen, having scored five goals in five games.

MNT Falls To Panama on PKs in 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup Third Place Match

CHESTER, Pennsylvania (July 22, 2015) – The U.S. Men’s National Team was defeated by Panama 3-2 in penalty kicks in the Gold Cup Third Place match Saturday afternoon at PPL Park. 

Trailing 1-0 at the tail end of the second half, substitutes DeAndre Yedlin and Clint Dempsey combined to level the match, 1-1. 

As the clock continued ticked away, both sides attacked and generated chances, but none found the back of the net, and after an additional 30 minutes of extra time, the match was off to penalty kicks. 

In PKs, the U.S. converted its two opening penalties, but then saw a miss and two consecutive saves by Panama ‘keeper Luis Mejia, which made Harold Cummings’s conversion in the fourth round the winning kick. With the result, the MNT finished fourth at the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup. 

Later this year, the MNT will face the winner of the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup – either Jamaica or Mexico – in a one-game playoff for a spot in the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup. The playoff pits the winner of the 2013 and 2015 Gold Cups against one another for a spot at the tournament in Russia the year before the World Cup. The USA last featured at the Confederations Cup in 2009 when the team beat then No. 1-ranked Spain and advanced to the Final against Brazil. 

Goal Scoring Rundown:
PAN– Roberto Nurse (Ronaldo Blackburn) 55th minute: Roberto Blackburn slipped a pass up to Nurse, who attacked U.S. defenders Tim Ream and John Brooks and pushed into the box. Nurse sidestepped Brooks, freeing himself to curl a shot around Guzan and into the net for the game’s first goal. USA 0, PAN 1 (SEE GOAL) 

USA – Clint Dempsey (DeAndre Yedlin) 70th minute:  Michael Bradley looped a long ball to Yedlin, who chested it down in the box, took a turn and sent it across to Dempsey on a late run. The defense and goalkeeper had collapsed on Yedlin, which freed Dempsey to bury his seventh goal of the tournament to level the game. USA 1, PAN 1 (SEE GOAL)

Penalty Shootout:
USA-Aron Johansson: Johansson sent the first shot right down Broadway and in for a score. USA 1, PAN 0
PAN-Roman Torres: Torres responded with a well struck goal into the top right corner. USA 1, PAN 1
USA-Clint Dempsey: In what was signature style for the month of July, having already chipped two goalies on PK’s, Dempsey did so again to put the U.S. ahead. USA 2, PAN 1
PAN-Abdiel Arroyo: Arroyo stutter stepped and blasted a shot low and hard by a diving Guzan. USA 2, PAN 2
USA-Fabian Johnson: Johnson came up third for the U.S. and sent his kick over the crossbar. USA 2, PAN 2
PAN-Armando Cooper: Cooper rolled his attempt and Guzan dove to his left and corralled it to keep the shootout level. USA, 2, PAN 2
USA-Michael Bradley: The U.S. captain sent a shot hard to the left, but Mejia guessed right for Panama and deflected it away. USA 2, PAN 2
PAN-Harold Cummings: Cummings sent a shot to the left, Guzan dove and got a hand to it, but the ball powered into the net. USA 2, PAN 3
USA-DaMarcus Beasley: Beasley blasted a shot toward the right side of the goal, but Mejia was headed that way, and he made a diving save to end the game in Panama’s favor. USA 2, PAN 3 (FINAL)

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
USA – Time Ream 36th minute: Armando Cooper intercepted an errant MNT pass and countered with pace down the center of the field. He attacked the box, beat a defender and then slid a shot past Brad Guzan towards the back post. Fortunately for the U.S., Tim Ream was there, booting the ball off the goal line and out of bounds for a corner kick.

USA – Fabian Johnson 54 minute: From a corner kick, Panama sent a ball in that forward Ronaldo Blackburn headed sharply at goal. Fabian Johnson was there to clear it off the goal line to safety.

USA – Brad Guzan (save) 81st minute: A Panama cross from the outside on the left found the head of Ronaldo Blackburn, who directed it firmly toward the back post. Brad Guzan fully extended and just reached the ball with his left hand, pawing it down before taking another dive to smother it.

USA– Brad Guzan (save) 108st minute: Roberto Nurse was freed on the left side for an attack at goal. As he wound up and fired off a shot, DeAndre Yedlin slid in and deflected it. The Ball continued to spin at goal, but Guzan was ready for it and knocked it away on a dive.

Coming up Next: #USAvPER
Location: RFK Stadium – Washington D.C.
Date: September 4, 2015
Opponent: Peru 

Milestone Watch:

  • Clint Dempsey’s game-tying goal was his seventh of the competition, which is the most-ever by an American player in a single Gold Cup tournament.
  • Dempsey’s 12 Gold Cup goals tie him with Mexico’s Luis Roberto Alves for second on the tournament’s all-time list behind only Landon Donovan (18).

Additional Notes:

  • U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann made six changes to his starting XI from the team that began Wednesday’s Semifinal against Jamaica: Timmy Chandler, Omar Gonzalez, Tim Ream, Graham Zusi, Joe Corona and Chris Wondolowski all came into the lineup.
  • Corona earned his first start of the tournament. 
  • Brad Guzan and Michael Bradley were the only two U.S. players to start all six matches of the CONCACAF Gold Cup.
  • The match was the U.S. MNT’s third in a Gold Cup third place match and marked the first time the team had not won the game (2-1-0)
  • The U.S. MNT record against Panama dropped to 12-1-4 (5-1-3 in Gold Cup games)
  • The MNT is now 3-2-3 all-time in matches in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Behind The Crest: Ep. 5 - #USMNT at the Gold Cup

The U.S. Men's National Team begins the knockout round with a comprehensive win against Cuba in Baltimore. From there the group shifts focus quickly to the semifinal where they meet Jamaica in Atlanta.

Flight Trackers

Keeping up with the Gold Cup when it’s not your match day can be a challenge.

Case in Point: The MNT’s Sunday night trip from Baltimore to Atlanta.

Prior to leaving for the airport and all the way to the tarmac, U.S. players tracked the match day’s first Quarterfinal between Panama and Trinidad & Tobago. Tied at the end of regulation, the U.S. team began boarding the plane as the match went into extra time. As has been the case throughout the tournament, the team was joined on the aircraft by Wednesday night’s semifinal opponent Jamaica as well as representatives from CONCACAF for the 80-minute flight. Both groups had already boarded and were also following along.

With takeoff time slightly delayed as baggage continued to be loaded on to the plane, the full complement of travelers were able to take in the beginnings of the penalty shootout, but just as the ground crew loaded the final bags on to the plane, the flight attendants gave that dreaded warning to “turn off electronics and set mobile devices to airplane mode”.

As the plane prepared for takeoff and flight attendants took their seats, one U.S. player, who may or may not be teammates with Panama goalkeeper Jaime Penedo at the LA Galaxy, continued to show the tiebreaker, holding his cell phone on the headrest of the seat in front of him for all behind to see.

The entire plane was captivated by the long-lasting shootout: a miss or two here and there to go with the successful conversions brought cheers and jeers throughout the aircraft as all on board hoped to see the result before the loss of cell phone signal.

Surely any second the internet access to the phone would die. Surprisingly, it stayed on long enough to allow all passengers to see Trinidad & Tobago twice have a chance to advance. Just as Panama forward Blas Perez set his ball on the spot, the signal finally died and the biggest collective groan came from all on board.

With no available Wifi connection on the plane, perhaps fittingly all passengers had to wait 90 minutes for touchdown in Atlanta to see who had advanced to Wednesday’s other semifinal.

As soon as the wheels hit the ground, whispers of “Panama” spread quickly, bringing to end any lasting speculation.

Highlights: USA Rolls Cuba on March to Gold Cup Semifinals

The U.S. Men's National team dominated its Quarterfinal match-up against Cuba at M&T Stadium, winning 6-0 to punch its ticket to the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup Semifinals.

An imposing defender who is dangerous on set pieces, Gonzalez has emerged as one of the most dependable options on the U.S. MNT’s back line, while also flourishing in Major League Soccer with the LA Galaxy. Appearing in three of the USA’s matches in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Gonzalez earned his first National Team cap in 2010 with a start against Brazil and in 2013 the dual U.S. and Mexico citizen became cap-tied to the U.S. National Team on Feb. 26. The 2011 MLS Defender of the Year was rewarded for his play with the LA Galaxy by signing a Designated Player contract late in the 2013 MLS season, where he now has three championship rings.

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

  • Appeared in three matches in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, including starts against Germany and the Round of 16 game against Belgium
  • Made a career-high 14 appearances for the U.S. MNT in 2013 and became cap-tied to the squad with his start against Mexico on Feb. 26
  • Named the 2012 MLS Cup MVP as the LA Galaxy won its second straight league crown
  • A four-time member of the MLS Best XI (2010, 2011, 2013, 2014)

2015: Named to the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup roster... Has played and started two matches for the MNT this year... 2014: Appeared in eight matches, with four starts … Made his World Cup debut when he entered in the 90th minute of the 2-2 draw against Portugal on June 22 in Manaus … Went on to start at center back against Germany and Belgium …  2013: Tied for third on the U.S. MNT with 14 appearances during the year and was second in minutes played with 1,172, trailing only DaMarcus Beasley … Gonzalez, who holds dual citizenship in the USA and Mexico, became cap-tied to the U.S. MNT with his start in the scoreless draw against Mexico on Feb. 26 at Estadio Azteca … 2012: Did not make an appearance for the U.S. MNT … 2011: Made one appearance for the USA, earning the start during the team’s 1-1 draw against Chile on Jan. 22. First Appearance: Aug. 10, 2010, vs. Brazil … First Goal: None.

2014: Gonzalez anchored a Galaxy backline that allowed an MLS-low 37 goals all season, starting in 22 regular season matches in addition to all five MLS Cup Playoff matches. In addition to his contributions from his position in central defense, he scored a career-high four goals and added a career-high two assists on the season. For his efforts, he was named an MLS All-Star, to the MLS Best XI and a Finalist for MLS Defender of the Year ... 2013: Tallied a goal and two assists in 27 regular-season games in his fifth campaign with the LA Galaxy, earning MLS Best XI honors for the third time in his career … Became the LA Galaxy’s third Designated Player when he signed a multi-year contract in August … 2012: Was loaned to Nuremberg in the Bundesliga at the start of the year, but tore his left ACL in training and never made an appearance … Played in 14 regular-season games during his shortened MLS season and then thrived in the postseason where he was the 2012 MLS Cup MVP as the LA Galaxy won its second straight league championship … 2011: Was named MLS Defender of the Year, MLS Best XI, was an MLS All Star, and led the LA Galaxy to its third MLS Cup crown … Was part of a Galaxy defense that allowed only 28 goals in 34 regular-season games.

College:

A three year starter at the University of Maryland, Gonzalez started all 69 of the games in which he appeared in for the Terrapins, helping them win the NCAA Championship as a junior in 2008 … Finished his college career with seven goals and five assists before turning pro after his junior season ... He had a career-high five goals to go along with one assist during his junior season in 2008 when he was named to the NSCAA/adidas All-American First Team and First Team All-ACC while also being named a semifinalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy, which is given out annually to the country’s best college soccer player … In the NCAA Tournament, Gonzalez spearheaded a Maryland defense that allowed just one goal in five games and was named the College Cup Defensive MVP … The 2007 ACC Defensive Player of the Year, Gonzalez was also named to Second Team All ACC and NSCAA/adidas All-American Third Team that season after claiming All-ACC Freshman Team and Soccer America Second Team All-Freshman honors the previous year.


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