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Klinsmann Calls in 24 Players for Training Camp in Preparation for March 5 Match Against Ukraine in Cyprus

CHICAGO (Feb. 27, 2014) – U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has called in 24 players to training camp in Frankfurt, Germany, to begin preparations for its match against Ukraine on March 5 in Larnaca, Cyprus.

The match was previously set to be played in Kharkiv, Ukraine, but the location was changed due to current conditions in the country. Kickoff at Antonis Papadopoulos Stadium in Larnaca is set for 2 p.m. ET (9 p.m. local), and the match will be broadcast on ESPN2, WatchESPN and UniMas. Fans can also follow the match live on Twitter @ussoccer.

“In conjunction with the Football Federation of Ukraine, we have moved the match on March 5 to Larnaca, Cyprus,” said U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati. “We appreciate the efforts of Ukraine and the Cyprus Football Association as we worked through this situation.”

The last time the U.S. Men’s National Team played an international friendly on neutral ground was against Poland on March 1, 2006, in Kaiserslautern, Germany, where a goal from current U.S. captain Clint Dempsey sealed a 1-0 USA victory.

“Finding a solution and moving the game outside the country and playing in Cyprus is helpful for both of us,” said Klinsmann. “It’s definitely a very good ‘Plan B,’ and we very much appreciate it and say thank you to the Ukraine Federation and the Cyprus Federation.

The match falls on the only FIFA international fixture date before May, making this the one opportunity for European-based players to play for the National Team prior to the start of the World Cup preparation camp. The team will begin gathering in Frankfurt on Sunday, March 2, for two days of training before traveling to play for the first time in Cyprus.

“This game is a huge opportunity, mainly for our European-based players, for those guys to prove to us that they are eager and hungry to jump on the train to the FIFA World Cup,” said Klinsmann. “With this game being the only chance for these players before our World Cup preparation camp begins, it’s even more important they have a good showing.”

A total of 21 players on the roster ply their trade in Europe. Toronto FC midfielder Michael Bradley, Seattle Sounders FC forward Dempsey and Club Tijuana defender Edgar Castillo are the only representatives on the squad from North American teams. In addition, 18-year-old Bayern Munich forward Julian Green will participate in training camp, but is not yet eligible to play in a match for the United States.

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION – DETAILED ROSTER
GOALKEEPERS (3): Cody Cropper (Southampton), Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton)
DEFENDERS (7): John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana), Alfredo Morales (Ingolstadt), Oguchi Onyewu (Sheffield Wednesday), Will Packwood (Birmingham City), Tim Ream (Bolton Wanderers)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim), Jermaine Jones (Besiktas), Sacha Kljestan (Anderlecht), Brek Shea (Barnsley), Danny Williams (Reading)
FORWARDS (6): Juan Agudelo (Utrecht), Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Julian Green (Bayern Munich), Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar)

ROSTER NOTES

  • Clint Dempsey finished with six goals in 2013, which equals a career high that he set last year. He is concluding a two-month loan spell with Fulham and will return to Seattle following the match against Ukraine.
  • Tim Howard has earned 96 caps and is four shy of becoming the third goalkeeper in U.S. history to reach 100 appearances. He also has 34 career shutouts for the United States, holding second place all-time ahead of National Soccer Hall of Famer Tony Meola.
  • Jozy Altidore had eight goals in 2013 and has 21 all-time, including four in World Cup Qualifiers. He set a team record by scoring in five consecutive games, and with his three-goal performance against Bosnia became the third player to score two career hat tricks for the U.S. National Team, joining Landon Donovan and Peter Millar. Altidore’s Sunderland side faces Manchester City in the League Cup final on Sunday at Wembley Stadium.
  • AZ Alkmaar striker Aron Johannsson has posted 22 goals in all competitions this season, including nine in league play. Johannsson scored the game-winning goal against Panama in the USA’s last World Cup Qualifier in the 2014 cycle, a 3-2 win on Oct. 15, 2013, in Panama City. Born in Mobile, Ala., he completed his change of association from Iceland in time to enter as a substitute in the 63rd minute of the USA’s 4-3 win against Bosnia.
  • Terrence Boyd has 13 goals in all competitions for Rapid Vienna in this campaign, including eight in the Austrian Bundesliga and five in the Europa League.
  • Mix Diskerud is the only player on the roster to participate in the USA’s opening match of 2014, a 2-0 win against Korea Republic. He has appeared in 14 of the USA’s last 15 matches dating back to July 5, 2013, against Guatemala. Remarkably, the United States holds a record of 13-1-3 all-time in games in which Diskerud has appeared.
  • Geoff Cameron has snatched the regular role as right back at Stoke City, starting in 26 of 27 games in the Premier League this season. Having played as a central and wide defender as well in central midfield for the USA, he started in a total of six matches in 2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifying
  • Brad Guzan backstopped three huge results in qualifying in 2013, collecting back-to-back clean sheets against Costa Rica in the Snow Clasico and the historic 0-0 draw against Mexico four days later, and then helping the U.S. to a 3-2 win against Panama in the final game of the Hexagonal. He has posted five shutouts in eight career World Cup qualifiers.
  • Jermaine Jones joins the squad for the first time since moving to Besiktas on loan in January, although a groin issue has prevented him from seeing action so far in Istanbul.
  • Midfielder Fabian Johnson has secured a move next season from Hoffenheim to Borussia Moenchengladbach – the former club of Michael Bradley.
  • Hertha Berlin defender John Brooks gets his third look with the Senior Team. The 20-year-old dual citizen of the United States and Germany has made two previous appearances, having started in the win against Bosnia and the game in Austria.
  • Alejandro Bedoya, who transferred to Nantes in Ligue 1 in France last summer, got on the scoresheet for the first time in his international career when he tallied in the USA’s 6-0 win against Guatemala on July 5 in San Diego.
  • Brek Shea is back in the squad for the first time since helping the U.S. to the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup title. Shea scored the lone goal in the USA’s 1-0 win against Panama in the championship final.
  • Oguchi Onyewu returns to the U.S. fold for the first time since being a part of the squad that won the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup last July.
  • Tim Ream, a regular starter at Bolton, gets his first call up since the 4-3 win against Bosnia-Herzegovina in August.
  • It has been more than a year since Reading midfielder Danny Williams saw action for the U.S., having last earned minutes in the 2-1 loss to Honduras on Feb. 6, 2013, in San Pedro Sula. He has started the last 15 league games for Reading and has scored twice this month.
  • Will Packwood has the chance to earn his first cap for the Senior National Team. The 20-year-old defender plays alongside Jonathan Spector at Birmingham City. A leg injury prevented Packwood from participating in the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

MNT Weekend TV Schedule: Race for the World Cup Roster

The countdown clock continues to tick as the May deadline for FIFA World Cup-bound nations to submit their preliminary 30-man tournament rosters draws ever closer. U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann stating that, “The door remains open till the very last day,” for U.S. players in leagues all over the world, so the pressure to put in eye-catching performances increases with each match.

While, MLS-based players are gearing up for the domestic season, players abroad find themselves beginning their club campaigns in Mexico or cutting through the meat of seasons across Europe. With games taking place all over the globe from Friday night to Monday afternoon, Klinsmann and his staff will fan out across Europe to take in a couple games in person.

On Saturday, some of the coaches will pay a visit to Nurnberg to watch defender Timmy Chandler lace up his boots for a go-round with visiting Bayern Munich. GolTV will air the match live at 9:30 a.m. ET in the United States.

A second group will set up shop at St. Mary’s Stadium in Southampton, England, to check out Geoff Cameron and visiting Stoke City battle the Saints. The match will be available live on NBC Sports Live Extra at 10 a.m. ET.

Fans who wish to do some scouting of their own can check out the following list of games that will be broadcast in the United States this weekend, featuring up to 13 U.S. MNT players who will be looking to impress as the competition for a World Cup roster spot continues to heat up:

U.S. Men’s National Team on TV (all times ET) :

FRIDAY
ESPN Deportes
TIJUANA-MONTERREY (live) 10:30 p.m. (Liga MX)
Edgar Castillo, Joe Corona, Herculez Gomez

SATURDAY
GolTV
NÜRNBERG-BAYERN MUNICH (live) 9:30 a.m. (Bundesliga)
Timmy Chandler

NBC Sports Live Extra
SOUTHAMPTON-STOKE CITY (live) 10 a.m. (Barclays Premier League)
Geoff Cameron

ASTON VILLA-WEST HAM (live) 10 a.m. (Barclays Premier League)
Brad Guzan

SUNDERLAND-HULL CITY (live) 10 a.m. (Barclays Premier League)
Jozy Altidore

SUNDAY
USA Network
TOTTENHAM-EVERTON (live) 8:30 a.m. (Barclays Premier League)
Tim Howard

USA NETWORK, mun2
MANCHESTER UNITED-FULHAM (live) 11 a.m. (Barclays Premier League)
Clint Dempsey

ESPN Deportes
PUEBLA-CHIVAS (live) 1 p.m. (Liga MX)
DaMarcus Beasley, Michael Orozco

GolTV
SCHALKE-HANNOVER (live) 11:30 p.m. (Bundesliga)
Steve Cherundolo

MONDAY
beIN SPORTS

NANTES-LYON (delay) 12:30 p.m. (League1)
Alejandro Bedoya

MNT Weekend Round Up: Diskerud's Drive or Johannsson's Jive?

Mix Diskerud and Aron Johannsson are roommates on the road for the MNT - and pretty darn good bowlers as well, but that's another story. Each had a magnificent goal for their club on the weekend, sparking the debate: who had the better finish?

Start with Mix Diskerud, who scored for Rosenborg in the Norwegian Cup final against Molde. A nice bit of patience, a nice set-up touch, then, hello Upper 90!

Johannsson had what has become a typical finish for the young striker, taking on a defender and cutting back across the goal before finishing far post. The strike was his 15th in all competitions this season for AZ Alkmaar.

You can be sure these two guys are debating it, so now you decide...

In other highlights from the weekend:

  • Geoff Cameron and Brek Shea were on the winning end of their duel with Jozy Altidore as Stoke City won 2-0 against Sunderland.
  • The Merseyside derby produced a cracker as Tim Howard and Everton drew 3-3 with Liverpool.
  • Fabian Johnson returned to the starting lineup for Hoffenheim in his side’s losing effort against FC Augsburg.
  • The MNT will be well represented at the 2013 MLS Cup, as U.S. regulars Matt Besler and Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City) and Kyle Beckerman and Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake) have advanced to the Final that takes place Dec. 7 at Sporting Park. Sporting KC collected a 2-1 win in the second leg of the Eastern Conference semis against Houston, while Real Salt Lake picked up an impressive 1-0 win in the West semis on the road at Portland.

Two games remain on the slate for MNT players this Monday as Michael Bradley and Roma host Cagliari (2:30 p.m. ET, beIN SPORT) while Brad Guzan and Aston Villa are at West Brom (3 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network).

Heed the Word: U.S. Men’s National Team Players Produce Game Changing Performances

In an interview with ussoccer.com last week, U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann expressed his delight at seeing both Alejandro Bedoya and Aron Johannsson translating their international form into production for their respective clubs. The German manager went on to reiterate that he and his coaching staff continue to look for players who are not just playing with their clubs, but making a positive impact on the pitch.

With that call to arms sounding out across the U.S. MNT player pool, a large group of National Team regulars delivered game changing performances over the weekend in both leagues abroad and MLS.

Perhaps the best example of an American player translating good international form into production at club level this past weekend is none other than Jozy Altidore. After being handed the captaincy for the U.S. MNT’s final World Cup qualifier against Panama a fortnight ago, Altidore returned to England and in last weekend’s Tyne-Wear Derby, provided the game-winning assist in the dying minutes that gave Sunderland (England) its first win of the season.

Altidore wasn’t the only American striker to make the difference at a crucial moment in a European derby either. Terrence Boyd’s 88th-minute game-winner handed Rapid Vienna a 1-0 win over Austria Vienna (Austria) in the Wiener Derby.

American midfielders Michael Bradley and Sacha Kljestan also scored important goals for their clubs during the weekend albeit in different dramatic time frames. Bradley, coming on as a second-half sub for AS Roma (Italy), helped the Giallorossi continue their perfect start to the season by slotting home the match-winning strike in the 82nd minute against Udinese.

While his compatriots were delivering late-game heroics, Kljestan provided fireworks right from the opening whistle, scoring only 41 seconds into RSC Anderlecht’s 1-1 draw with Standard Liege (Belgium).

At the opposite end of the pitch, two of America’s best goalkeepers also displayed game changing ability as Tim Howard’s Everton and Brad Guzan’s Aston Villa (England) sides faced one another at Villa Park. Although Everton kept a clean sheet in a 2-0 win thanks in large part to Howard saving a penalty kick, Guzan also showed his shot-stopping ability by making a couple key saves to keep the Villans’ hopes alive late into the match.

Across the Atlantic, a second shutout performance came from Club Tijuana (Mexico) defender Edgar Castillo who helped Xolos keep Jose Torres and UANL Tigres off the board in a 0-0 draw in Tijuana.

In last week’s interview, Klinsmann once again expressed his desire to see MLS-based players make loan moves to European clubs over the MLS offseason.

It should therefore please him to see Graham Zusi continue his good international form with Sporting Kansas City. The midfielder scored the opening goal in SKC’s 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Union that secured second spot in the Eastern Conference for the Kansas City club.

The boss will also be happy to see Clint Dempsey among the goals again. The former Fulham and Tottenham (England) attacker scored his first MLS goal since returning to the league in the Seattle Sounders’ 1-1 draw with the LA Galaxy.

And to cap it all off, Brad Davis – the man whose cross supplied Zusi for the goal that turned the Hexagonal on its head – served up a game-winning assist that secured the Houston Dynamo a berth in the MLS Cup playoffs for the seventh time in the last eight seasons.

Several Changes Made to U.S. MNT Roster for Final FIFA World Cup Qualifier Against Panama

CHICAGO (Oct. 12, 2013) – U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has made several changes to the team that will face Panama on Tuesday, Oct. 15, in the USA’s final match of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifying campaign. Kickoff at Estadio Rommel Fernandez is set for 9:30 p.m. ET, and the match will be broadcast live on beIN SPORT.

Landon Donovan (ankle) and Jermaine Jones (knee) have been released due to injury concerns. Matt Besler and Tim Howard have also departed as part of a planned rotation of players.

“Landon is still struggling with the ankle injury from a couple weeks ago, so he will go back to Los Angeles and try to get back to 100 percent,” said Klinsmann. “Jermaine’s case is more of a concern. His knee was bothering him all night but he battled through. It’s clear that the issue with his knee is something that should be taken care of right away so he can be 100 percent for Schalke and the National Team as soon as possible.”

After earning his 33rd-career shutout and moving into second place on the USA’s all-time list, Howard’s departure means Brad Guzan will play against Panama. Chicago Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson replaces Howard on the roster and will serve as a backup.

“Brad Guzan has earned the opportunity to start against Panama,” Klinsmann said. “He has been outstanding for Aston Villa all year, and he has been huge in the games he has played for us in World Cup Qualifying. As I said before, we have one of the best situations in the world when it comes to our goalkeepers.”

Defensively, Matt Besler is rejoining Sporting Kansas City and will not make the U.S. MNT’s trip to Panama.

“We wanted to get Clarence Goodson a game in one of the last two qualifiers, which is why we are now rotating Matt Besler out,” Klinsmann said.

The United States sealed first place in the Hexagonal for the third-consecutive cycle following a 2-0 win against Jamaica on Oct.11 in Kansas City, Kan. The USA completed the home campaign in the final round with a perfect 5-0-0 record, scoring eight goals and recording five shutouts.

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS (3): Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (6): DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Clarence Goodson (San Jose Earthquakes), Michael Orozco (Puebla)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Sacha Kljestan (Anderlecht), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS (4): Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)

Brad Guzan Q & A: ‘All the Little Things Make a Big Difference.’

ussoccer.com: After a tough start to the campaign, it must be nice to grab an away win at Norwich this past weekend.
Brad Guzan:
“It was a good result for us. Carrow Road is not an easy place to go and play. Not many teams go there and get points, especially three. For us it was a huge result, especially coming of the lackluster performance against Newcastle. It was important that we turned things around and put together a good showing.”

ussoccer.com: Why is this result so important at this stage of the season?
BG:
“We started off well with a big win at Arsenal. After that, we had some decent performances but the result weren’t there. It wasn’t our best showing against Newcastle and we knew it had to be better. In this league, every game and every chance to pick up points is vital. For us it was especially important since we have Manchester City on the weekend. Going away to Norwich was a huge change for us to put together a performance. Hopefully we can build on that this week.”

ussoccer.com: You had a couple key saves, including a stop on a penalty. How important is it for a goalkeeper to have those moments in terms of giving their team confidence?
BG:
“That’s part of being a goalkeeper. You want to give that confidence to the guys in front of you, the feeling that when things do go wrong or teams get a chance that you’re going to hopefully be able to make a save or bail them out. You need to try to make saves to give the team a chance to win the game.”

ussoccer.com: How would you rate the first part of your season?
BG:
“For me, I feel like I’ve been able to make a few saves. Obviously it’s not enough because our last three games weren’t positive for us. I’m trying to get better each week and hopefully prove to the manager that I should be in the team. I want to make saves. If I can do that, I’m doing my job.”

ussoccer.com: It’s been a pretty challenging schedule to start the season, with games already against Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea, and now you take on Manchester City. How are you gearing up for this weekend?
BG:
“We know that they are a really good team with some world class players. Our performances against the big teams have been really good, and that should give us confidence going into that game. Hopefully we go out and not hold anything back. We have nothing to be afraid of. We want to go out and get a positive result. Being at Villa Park is a huge advantage for us. We want to get the supporters behind us and make it a special day for everyone.”

ussoccer.com: The final two World Cup Qualifiers are on the horizon and the job of qualifying is already done. How does the team approach the games against Jamaica and Panama?
BG:
“Every time we come together it’s important first and foremost to get results. We want to win games and show the world, and especially our region, what the U.S. is all about. We have to use these times to continue to grow as a team.”

ussoccer.com: Beginning in October, there are only five international fixture dates before the start of the World Cup training camp next May. That’s not a lot of time together …
BG:
“One of the key factors is making sure we are continuing to come together on and off the pitch. There are a lot of experienced guys, and at the same time the manager continues to introduce new faces here or there. We have to make sure guys feel comfortable in the group. It’s all the little things that make a big difference leading up to the World Cup. We have to use our time together in a smart way.”

Guzan continues to demonstrate that he is yet another in the long lineage of quality U.S. goalkeepers, proving his ability to rise to the occasion in big matches. His strong work ethic and infectious positive attitude make him an important squad member for both club and country, in addition to his clear quality in goal. Guzan followed in the footsteps of U.S. goalkeepers before him by making the jump abroad to sign with Aston Villa of the English Premier League, where he has been taking advantage of the opportunities when called upon to stand in for long-time EPL veteran Brad Friedel.

  • Served as a backup at the 2010 FIFA World Cup
  • Wore the captain’s armband and presided over the USA’s 1-0 victory against South Africa in the 2010 Nelson Mandela Challenge
  • Recorded a shutout in the 3-0 victory against Egypt that helped provide the U.S. the margin needed to advance to the semifinals of the 2009 Confederations Cup
  • Posted three shutouts and a 3-1-1 record in 2010 World Cup qualifying
  • Saved four penalties in one match on Oct. 27, 2009, for Aston Villa, one in regulation time and three more in a penalty shoot-out win against Sunderland in the Round of 16 of the League Cup
  • The 2007 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year and also a member of the year’s MLS Best XI, he was in the nets for the majority of Chivas’ Western Conference winning season
2010: Served as Tim Howard’s deputy at the 2010 FIFA World Cup … He made the most of his three appearances, twice earning ussoccer.com Man of the Match honors … The first came in his impressive 45 minutes in the 2-0 loss to Brazil on Aug. 10 … Guzan wore the captain’s armband for the first time and led a young U.S. squad to a 1-0 victory against South Africa on Nov. 17 in the Nelson Mandela Challenge … 2009: Made four starts … Played in the USA’s 2-2 draw in qualifying on March 28 in El Salvador … Faced nine shots in posting the shutout that earned the U.S. a 3-0 victory against Egypt on June 21 in Rustenburg and second place in Group B of the Confederations Cup … Started the USA’s final two matches of the year, the friendlies in Slovakia and Denmark … 2008: Featured in seven games, a career best … Started five games, with his substitute appearances coming against England at Wembley Stadium and Spain in Santander … Featured heavily in World Cup qualifying, posting clean sheets in both matches of the second round against Barbados as well as the final semifinal round group match, a 2-0 win against Guatemala on Nov. 19 in Commerce City, Colo. … Also started in the USA’s 2-1 loss in Trinidad & Tobago on Oct. 15 in Port of Spain ... 2007: Played the second half of both the USA’s 1-0 victories against Switzerland and South Africa in the fall … A member of the team which competed in the 2007 Copa America tournament … Made one appearance in Venezuela, starting the final group stage game against Colombia … Provided one of the highlights of the tournament when he saved a penalty kick during that game … Also a member of the 2007 Gold Cup winning team, though he didn’t make any appearances in the competition … 2006: Made his first appearance for the United States in goal during a friendly against Guatemala in February … Became the youngest to start in goal on his national team debut since Brad Friedel 14 years earlier … Earned a shutout en route to a 4-0 U.S. victory … Under-23s: Featured in all three games during the 2008 Olympics as an overage player, turning in a memorable effort against Nigeria and keeping a clean sheet in the opening match against Japan … First Appearance: Feb. 19, 2006, vs. Guatemala … First Shutout: June 15, 2008, vs. Barbados.
2010: Continued to serve as Brad Friedel’s deputy in league play … Started both of Villa’s matches against Rapid Vienna in Europa League qualifying on Aug. 19 and Aug. 26 … Started in the 3-1 victory against Blackburn on Sept. 22 in the third round of the Carling Cup … 2009-10: Finished the 2009-10 campaign with 10 appearances and a 1.20 goals against average in Cup competitions and Europa League action … Went the distance in both Europa League matches against Rapid Vienna, posting a 1-0 loss away and a 2-1 win in the return leg at Villa Park … Helped Villa to the Carling Cup final by posting a 1-0 shutout victory on Jan. 14 in the first leg of the semifinal and getting the win a wild 6-4 victory six days later ... Played in three other Carling Cup fixtures, collecting three victories and two shutouts, including a 4-2 win against Portsmouth on Nov. 30 in the quarterfinal … Saved four penalties in one match, one in normal time and three more in a penalty shootout win against Sunderland on Oct. 27 at the Stadium of Light in the fourth round of the Carling Cup  … Led the team to the title in the 2009 Peace Cup, with victories against Atlante, Porto and in the final against Juventus … 2008-09: Moved to Aston Villa prior to the start of the season … Finished the season with eight appearances, including five in the UEFA Cup … His lone appearance in the EPL came when he entered in the 63rd minute of a 5-0 loss on March 27 at Liverpool, surrendering one goal … Backed up Brad Friedel for Premier League games and featured on the substitutes’ bench for the majority of Aston Villa games in the second half of the year … 2008: Featured in 15 matches with Chivas USA before signing for Aston Villa on July 11 for a fee of around $1.2 million ... 2007: Named MLS Goalkeeper of the Year after sporting a league best 0.93 GAA over the course of the season … Made 27 appearances for Chivas, anchoring a backline that was the stingiest in the league … Helped the Los Angeles club to its first ever Western Conference Championship … 2006: In his second year minding the nets for Chivas, he struggled with injury and was scratched from the starting lineup for much of the season … Eventually, he regained his starting spot and went on to make 13 appearances for Chivas USA … Under Bob Bradley, he started for Chivas in both of the team’s Western Conference playoff games, marking the first time in history the franchise had competed in the MLS postseason … 2005: As a 20-year-old, he became Chivas’ first ever draft pick and the highest goalkeeper ever selected in the MLS Superdraft at the time … Went on to feature in 24 games for Chivas.

Represented the U.S. as captain when the team met with former South Africa President Nelson Mandela in 2010 after the Mandela Challenge Cup … Lists his idols in soccer as Brad Friedel and Kasey Keller … His favorite band is U2 … Threw out the first pitch for a Chicago White Sox game in 2008 ... Played club ball for the Chicago Magic, now a member of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy.

Played two years at South Carolina, captaining the team in his sophomore season and earning All-American honors … Was a starter as a freshman, and featured in every single match posting a 0.96 GAA … In high school he was a four-year letter winner at Providence Catholic (Ill.).

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