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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 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).

Terrence Boyd and Aron Johannsson Q & A: “It definitely helps the more times I get called into camp because it … makes you more confident.” - AJ

ussoccer.com : You have 10 goals in all competitions for Rapid Vienna this season. That’s a good start .. .
Terrence Boyd : “Yeah, I’m off to a good start. The stats are looking good. I think I can bang in more goals, so there’s still room for improvement. It’s alright, but I can do better. I’m feeling comfortable at the club and know that I will improve over the next month and hopefully the goals will follow.”

ussoccer.com : Have you been able to take what you learn with the National Team and use it to make yourself better? What’s that process like ?
TB : “Jurgen Klinsmann told us to focus not only on the pitch but off the pitch. Live as a professional 24/7. That’s what changed my tune. I’m not going out that much anymore. I’m just more calm, eating better, acting like every day is a match day. It helps me during the game and practice because you have more energy. This is a big part of why I’m getting better now.”

ussoccer.com : Jurgen has challenged the younger players to make a mark on the team. What have you done to push the guys in front of you ?
TB : “First of all, I’m thankful for every call-up I get. Whenever I’m in the camp I’m trying to do my best and play to my strengths. Because we all play for the United States, we all want to succeed. In practice it’s a big test because everybody wants to get that ticket to Brazil. This mentality is for every player, just to bring our level higher up and it shows in the game. We need to step up every time, every game. I’m happy how consistent we play and you can see that the team gets better too. You just do what you can do, and hope you get more chances to prove yourself on the pitch.”

ussoccer.com : What areas in particular have you worked on and improved the most in the last year ?
TB : “There are many things, but the tactical things like how I hold my position better as a central striker. I’m a box player, so just focus on your strengths, and play easy. I’m working on the first touch. There are a lot of things I’ve been working on.”

ussoccer.com : Talk about the older players. How do you help them and they you ?
TB : “I learn a lot from the older guys. Jozy [Altidore] is a big role model for me. At the same time he’s a fan of mine, but you can learn a lot just by looking at him play. Jozy’s a big player and in practice you see a lot of things you can improve on yourself. I push hard to give a performance that’s worth something. I’m putting in work, so they have to step up too. The situation right now is good because I can work on what I want and feel free in practice and try everything I can to succeed. I’m learning a lot from the other players.”

ussoccer.com : You and Aron Johannsson are two of the younger guys. How do you two work to make each other better ?
TB : “Aron and I think similar about the situation. We just want to get our chance and use it. That’s all we’re waiting for. That’s why we keep pushing every practice and every game.”

ussoccer.com : You and Aron played together in the team’s 3-2 win in Panama last month. You played the ball to him when he scored. Do moments like that make you think ‘I can play at the international level’ ?
TB : “We just want to make a difference. It was nice to contribute to another goal. It was nice that we could make a difference. It was a beautiful strike from Aron. That’s what we train for. It’s good we can deliver on the pitch as well.”

ussoccer.com : With regard to your production with Rapid Vienna this season, what have you been doing well that has helped you capitalize on your scoring opportunities ?
TB : “This season I focus more on the tactical stuff. I’m keeping my position more. Last year, I was running around everywhere and our midfielders were doing the work but didn’t have anywhere to cross it into the box if I was playing outside. So I make sure I’m in the box and making trouble. I’m reacting faster. I’m the first one to the ball when a cross comes in when someone flicks it through. I’m getting more opportunities this season than last year. I’m quite satisfied with my midfield because they deliver a lot of good passes to me. The more chances you get, the higher percentage you will score.”

ussoccer.com : What does it do for your mentality to know that often times coaches from the National Team are at your games to watch you play ?
TB : “The fact that the scouts are watching the game with me, it’s nice. But, when you’re on the pitch you’re not thinking about it. It’s always good to know that they are watching you and you’re not forgotten. It’s a big motivation to deliver even more. I have more pressure when my stepdad watches because he’s even more motivated than me, so that’s funny. In terms of pressure it’s not a big deal, because during the game you don’t think about it.”

ussoccer.com : How has your club form helped you in the instances you have been called up to the National Team ?
Aron Johannsson : “It definitely helps me a lot because I’ve been playing a lot of games, scoring a lot of goals and getting more confident in myself. When I come here, I try to show it in every training and the minutes I get to play on the field."

ussoccer.com : Jurgen and the staff have really pushed always playing with the mentality of achieving the next level. How has that resonated with you personally ?
AJ : “I feel like now that I’m in Holland, I’m in a good league, but there’s always another step to a better league and a better team. Now, I just try to focus on playing well for my club team and for the National Team when I get a shot to play here. I just have to wait and see where that takes me.”

ussoccer.com : How much more comfortable are you since your first match with the National Team against Bosnia in August ?
AJ : “It definitely helps the more minutes I get and the more times I get called into camp because you get to know the whole staff and all the players. Getting to play with them on the field makes you more confident.”

ussoccer.com : How much do you think you have pushed the established players in your position since joining the team ?
AJ : “I don’t really know. I just try to do my best in every game and every training. In the end, it’s the coaches’ decision who’s going to play. We have a lot of good strikers. If I get any minutes then I’ll do my best and try to score some goals for the team.”

ussoccer.com : What has the competition been like in the deep group of strikers ?
AJ : “In this camp we have six strikers, and I think all six can play. They want to play and feel like they should play. I don’t know if there’s one or two positions we’ll be able to play in, but it’s a hard competition and you just have to show yourself every time you get an opportunity to do it.”

ussoccer.com : What areas do you focus on both on and off the field to help you get to the next level ?
AJ : “I think I can improve a lot of things. It’s not one thing in particular. I have to improve everything in my game. I’m playing well now, scoring goals and setting up my teammates, but to be able to go to the next level I have to improve a lot of things. I’m working on that with my coaching staff at my club and also when I come here.”

ussoccer.com : You recently converted a penalty for your club team AZ Alkmaar. Talk about what it means that your teammates believe in you in that kind of pressure packed situation .
AJ : “I’ve practiced penalties for a long time, but it’s never the same to take a penalty in training or in games. When we got the first penalty at my club, I demanded to take it and they gave me a chance to take it. I scored the first one and now I get to take all the other ones.”

ussoccer.com : You and Terrence Boyd combined well when you scored your first goal for the National Team. Talk about your relationship with him as another young striker in this deep group .
AJ : “We both came off the bench and helped each other to get the winning goal. When you’re on the bench and you get to come in the only thing you want to do is help the team in every way you can. He was unselfish and played me the ball, and I scored the goal, but in the end it’s a team sport and you have to do the best you can for the team.”

ussoccer.com : What can you take away from your experience with the National Team that will help you become a better professional every day with your club team ?
AJ : “When I come here, Jurgen is talking about players needing to go to the next level, and when I come here I meet guys that are on that level for me. We have players in the English Premier League and Italy and in a league that I would want to go to next time. So, I talk to them and they help me out.”

ussoccer.com : You have been part of the National Team since August. How have your conversations with Jurgen changed since then? What does he tell you he is looking for from you now that you have had time to settle with the team?
AJ : “Every time I come in, it’s the same thing - just try to do my best in training and show the coach that he should be picking me in front of someone else. If you put hard work in both training and games, that’s the only thing you can do. In the end it’s the coach’s decision to decide who’s in the roster and who’s going to play in the games.”

Jurgen Klinsmann Q&A Part II: MLS players will either go on loan or be in the mandatory January camp.

U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann is paying close attention to the MLS playoff race, as much for the players who will compete as for those who will begin their offseason. Klinsmann insists players must stay active until December, and he considers it critical that they either go on loan to Europe or join the mandatory January camp. He also talks about the performances this past weekend of Alejandro Bedoya and Aron Johannsson, and how he views their progress.

ussoccer.com: Some important goals were scored on the weekend by MNT players, including the game-winner by Alejandro Bedoya that has Nantes in fourth place. How have you seen him improve in the last year?
Jurgen Klinsmann:
“It’s exciting to see how Alejandro Bedoya is breaking through. The way he’s adapted himself in Nantes and scoring a decisive goal in a game like that is huge. Also, with our group, you can see that he is growing, becoming more and more confident, and that he understands now it takes a bit more to get to the next level.

“Everybody sees his talent. He’s very technically gifted, he can play both sides on the wing and can cut inside, he’s got a good shot and he’s got a good smell for where the ball could end up in the box to finish things off. We are very pleased with Alejandro’s development over the last six to nine months.”

ussoccer.com: Bedoya’s move fits in with your push to have players continuing to challenge themselves to reach the highest level. Is this an important example ?
JK: “Alejandro’s move to Nantes is very significant because he’s playing against guys we’re going to play next year in Brazil. If you have the chance to play against Paris St. Germain with Zlatan Ibrahimovic or other players, this is big. It is what we’re looking for. We want our players to get to the highest level possible in order to have that competition, in order to meet the guys they are probably going to play against in the World Cup. When this move happened in the summer break, we were all thrilled for Alejandro.”

ussoccer.com: Aron Johannsson also scored two goals and assisted on a third for AZ Alkmaar. In addition to scoring the game-winner against Panama, have you been pleased with his progress?
JK:
“Seeing Aron Johannsson breaking through and scoring goals at AZ Alkmaar, especially the way he scores goals, is really nice. We followed him for almost two years and obviously hoped he’d play for the U.S., which he ended up doing. Now you can see his confidence is getting stronger and stronger, week-in, week-out.

“He has the qualities to be cold blooded in front of the goal. He has the quality to see through things and those two goals prove it. Also his goal in Panama was very focused, very dry. He said, ‘I’m going to put it in the bottom left corner,’ and this is really great to see for us. We hope to see him grow now every month a little bit more.”

ussoccer.com: The MLS regular season concludes this week and the playoff races have been extremely tight. What has been your impression of this final push, and are these the type of ‘competitive’ games that you want to see your players in?
JK: “I think it’s great to see MLS going into its final round and the race for the playoff spots, but also for the Supporters Shield is real exciting to see. It’s very even, it’s very balanced at the moment and anybody can beat anybody. I think it’s exciting. The stadiums are full. There are packed atmospheres in those places that are getting more intense every year, therefore it’s going to be an exciting couple of weeks.

”It also shows the players they need to be on top of their game. What we want to see from a National Team perspective is our players putting a stamp on the playoffs, putting a stamp in their performances for their team and not just go with the flow.”

ussoccer.com: This is also the time of the year when MLS players start concluding their seasons and head into the break. How important is it for these players to stay active in the offseason and keep making progress towards Brazil?
JK:
“The situation with the MLS players with the upcoming offseason is a big topic for us from the National Team side because we need them to keep going at least until the beginning of December. If they’re not going on loan to Europe in January, then they are coming into camp with us. Our priorities are set so that the first one is if you get a chance to go on loan to Europe, do it. Compete there with good players overseas. If not, we have to find a solution for the players that maybe lose in the playoffs to keep going until the first weeks of December and then they have a well-deserved, four-week break until the beginning of January.

“It is very crucial for us that the players understand that everything they do now today has an influence on Brazil 2014 next summer. They can’t take it easy. We wish that all of them can make it to the final and win the MLS Cup, but it’s only going to happen to a few of them. So, everybody who is maybe out earlier needs to have a plan in place to bridge that offseason period.”

ussoccer.com: What do you expect the makeup of the January camp roster to look like?
JK: “Whoever won’t be on loan in January or February overseas is going to be part of our mandatory January camp. We expect everybody comes in. We’ll try to bring in some younger players, have a look at them as well because we want to get a roster together of 20 to 23 guys that is highly motivated and inspired to go into the World Cup year.

“It will be exciting. Our plan is to break it down into two periods: one in LA and one in Sao Paulo, Brazil. They will get a first taste of Brazil in January. We’re looking forward to it, but again, if a player has the option - maybe in the case of guys like Clint Dempsey or Landon Donovan or Graham Zusi - go to Europe and get a European experience in and compete with the guys overseas. This is our preference.”

U.S. MNT Stuns Panama with Two Stoppage-Time Goals, Equals Best Hexagonal Performance with 3-2 Victory

  • USA Finishes Atop CONCACAF with 22 Points, Matching 2005 Hexagonal Point Total
  • Aron Johannsson Scores Winner in Third Minute of Stoppage Time, Preceded by Graham Zusi’s Equalizer One Minute Earlier
  • Michael Orozco Tallies Second-Half Goal for his First in World Cup Qualifying
  • U.S. MNT Next Faces Scotland on Nov. 15 at 3 p.m. ET; Broadcast Live on ESPN2, WatchESPN and UniMas

PANAMA CITY (Oct. 15, 2013) – The U.S. Men’s National Team shattered Panama’s hopes of a berth to the 2014 FIFA World Cup – and kept Mexico’s alive – with two stoppage-time goals to rally for a 3-2 victory at Estadio Rommel Fernandez.

Down 2-1 after a Luis Tejada strike in the 83rd minute, the U.S. got the late goals from Graham Zusi and second-half substitute Aron Johannsson, playing in only his fourth game with the U.S. MNT. Zusi’s equalizer came in the second minute of stoppage time, while Johannsson’s game-winner came a minute later.

With the victory, the U.S. MNT equals its best performance in FIFA World Cup Qualifying with a 7-2-1 record and 22 points, matching its point total from the 2005 Hexagonal.

For a few minutes, Mexico’s hopes of qualifying for the World Cup were on life support, only to be saved by Zusi’s equalizing strike. If the U.S. would have lost to Panama, Mexico, who lost to Costa Rica 2-1 this evening, would have finished in fifth place and missed out on their first World Cup since 1982. With the U.S. win in the final minutes, Mexico was assured a fourth place finish ahead of Panama. The USA’s rivals will now play the two-game Intercontinental Playoff against New Zealand on Nov. 15 and 19, with the aggregate winner advancing to the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

The USA finishes atop the CONCACAF region, followed by Costa Rica (5-2-3, 18 points), Honduras (4-3-3, 15 points), Mexico (2-3-5, 11 points), Panama (1-4-5, 8 points) and Jamaica (0-5-5, 5 points). The top three teams automatically qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Next up, the U.S. travels to Glasgow to face Scotland on Nov. 15 and Vienna to face Austria on Nov. 19. The game against Scotland kicks off at 3 p.m. ET and will be broadcast live on ESPN2, WatchESPN and UniMas. The Austria match will kick off at 2:45 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network. Fans can also follow the games on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and on Twitter @ussoccer.

The USA fell behind early as the U.S. had several errant passes and clearances on the damp pitch prior to Panama’s opening goal to open the door. In the 18th minute, U.S. left back Edgar Castillo had a giveaway and Panama countered with Alberto Quintero starting the attack to Marcos Sanchez, who laid the ball off above the box to Gabriel Torres. Torres’ right-footed shot was whipped into the lower left corner of the goal for a 1-0 lead as U.S. goalkeeper Brad Guzan had little chance to stop the attempt.

It stayed that way until Michael Orozco scored off of a Brad Davis corner kick in the 64th minute to tie the score at 1-1. While it was not clear if Orozco or Panama’s Carlos Rodriguez truly deflected the ball in, Orozco was quick to celebrate the tally that found the right side of the frame for the third goal of his career. It was Orozco’s first goal in qualifying as he made just his second appearance in this qualifying cycle.

With Mexico trailing in its match against Costa Rica, Panama moved back into the Intercontinental Playoff position when Luis Tejada scored a dramatic 83rd-minute goal for a 2-1 lead. Roberto Chen crossed the ball in from the right side of the box. Guzan deflected the cross, but the ball went directly to Tejada who slotted it home to rile up the Estadio Rommel Fernandez crowd.

The USA spoiled Panama’s party with the late heroics of Zusi and Johannsson. Approximately 90 seconds into second-half stoppage time, second-half sub Brad Davis looped his left-footed cross over the Panamanian defense and timed up perfectly with Zusi, who headed the ball into the left side of the net to tie the score at 2-2.

One minute later, with things looking like it would end in a stalemate, Guzan punted the ball deep to Terrence Boyd on the right side. He settled, took a couple of touches and saw Johannsson a few yards above the box. Johannsson lined up from 19 yards out and buried his low shot into the left side of the frame past diving Panama goalkeeper Jaime Penedo for the game-winner.

The U.S. MNT added to its record-breaking win total to improve to 16-3-2 in 2013. The USA is now 11-1-2 all-time against Panama and 3-0-1 on Panamanian soil.

Additional Notes:

  • U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann made seven starting lineup changes from the USA’s lineup against Jamaica on Oct. 11. The four same starters against Panama were Jozy Altidore at the top of a 4-5-1 formation, midfielders Alejandro Bedoya and Mix Diskerud, and defender Brad Evans.
  • Altidore wore the captain’s armband for the first time in his U.S. MNT career.
  • Goalkeeper Brad Guzan made his first appearance since he split duties with Tim Howard during the USA’s 4-2 loss to Belgium on May 29. It marked Guzan’s first start since he made three saves during the U.S. MNT’s scoreless draw against Mexico on March 26 at Estadio Azteca.
  • Guzan moved to 2-1-1 in 2013 and 10-7-3 in his U.S. MNT career. For just the third time in his eight World Cup Qualifying appearances, Guzan allowed a goal. He has five clean sheets in qualifying.
  • Edgar Castillo got the call at left back for his first start in World Cup Qualifying. It marked his fourth cap during this qualifying cycle and the 15th international game of his career. Clarence Goodson and Michael Orozco were paired at center back and Evans at right back.
  • Midfielder Sacha Kljestan earned his first start since May 29 against Belgium and his first start in this World Cup Qualifying cycle. Kyle Beckerman and Graham Zusi, who came off the bench to score the game-winner against Jamaica, also started in the midfield.
  • Brad Davis made his fourth appearance in this World Cup Qualifying cycle when he replaced Evans in the 56th minute. Bedoya dropped from the midfield to right back.
  • Aron Johannsson made his third appearance in qualifying and fourth career cap when he subbed for Diskerud in the 62nd minute.
  • Terrence Boyd made his third qualifying appearance in this cycle and 10th cap of his career when he replaced Altidore in the 76th minute.
  • Klinsmann is now 27-9-6 since joining the U.S. MNT in 2011. Klinsmann moves ahead of Steve Sampson (26-22-14 record from 1995-98) for sole possession of fourth place on the USA’s all-time winning coaches list. Klinsmann is three victories behind third-place Bora Milutinovic (30-35-31 record from 1991-95).
-U.S. Men’s National Team Match Report-

Match: U.S. Men’s National Team vs. Panama
Date: Oct. 15, 2013
Competition: 2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifying – Final Round
Venue: Estadio Rommel Fernandez; Panama City, Panama
Kickoff: 8:30 p.m. CT
Attendance: 18,254
Weather: 81 degrees, rain

Scoring Summary:    1      2      F
USA                            0      3      3
PAN                            1      1      2

PAN – Gabriel Torres (Marcos Sánchez)                   18th minute
USA – Michael Orozco (Brad Davis)                         64
PAN – Luis Tejada                                                 83
USA – Graham Zusi (Brad Davis)                             90+2
USA – Aron Johannsson (Terrence Boyd)                 90+3

Lineups:
USA: 12-Brad Guzan; 6-Brad Evans (15-Brad Davis, 56), 21-Clarence Goodson, 3-Michael Orozco, 2-Edgar Castillo; 11-Alejandro Bedoya, 23-Kyle Beckerman, 16-Sacha Kljestan, 8-Mix Diskerud (9-Aron Johannsson, 62), 19-Graham Zusi; 17-Jozy Altidore (capt.) (14-Terrence Boyd, 76)
Subs Not Used: 1-Sean Johnson, 22-Nick Rimando, 7-DaMarcus Beasley, 18-Chris Wondolowski, 20-Geoff Cameron
Head coach: Jurgen Klinsmann

PAN:  1-Jaime Penedo, 4-Carlos Rodriguez (22-Jairo Jimenez, 72), 5-Roman Torres, 23-Felipe Baloy (capt.), 17-Luis Henriquez, 6-Gabriel Gomez (2-Roberto Chen, 72), 21-Amilcar Henriquez, 8-Marcos Sanchez (18-Luis Tejada, 78), 19-Alberto Quintero, 7-Blas Perez, 9-Gabriel Torres
Subs Not Used: 3-Harold Cummings, 10-Eybir Bonaga, 11-Yairo Glaize, 12-Luis Mejia, 13-Richard Dixon, 14-Juan Perez, 15-Alex Rodriguez, 16-Rolando Blackburn, 20-Anibal Godoy 
Head Coach: Julio Dely Valdes

Stats Summary: USA / PAN
Shots: 12 / 8
Shots on Goal: 7 / 5
Saves: 3 / 4
Corner Kicks: 3 / 2
Fouls: 7 / 8
Offside: 4 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
PAN – Luis Tejada (caution)                              84th minute
PAN – Luis Tejada (sent off)       90+

Officials:
Referee: Courtney Campbell (JAM)
Assistant Referee 1: Garnet Page (JAM)
Assistant Referee 2: Kedlee Powell (JAM)
Fourth Official: Jeffrey Solis (CRC)

Budweiser Man of the Match: TBD

Forward Aron Johannsson’s Change of Association Approved by FIFA

CHICAGO (Aug. 13, 2013) – Forward Aron Johannsson’s application to FIFA for a change of association was approved today, and he is now eligible to play for the U.S. Men’s National Team. Johannsson formerly represented Iceland at the U-21 level.

Johannsson is an available option for U.S. MNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann as the team prepares for its international friendly against Bosnia-Herzegovina on Wednesday, Aug. 14, at Asim Ferhatovic Hase Stadium in Sarajevo.

“We are obviously very thrilled for Aron,” Klinsmann said. “It’s an exciting time for him. He’s done a great job in these couple days getting to know the guys. Hopefully if the game goes well tomorrow night, there will be a chance for him to make his debut with the U.S. National Team.”

“I’m super happy,” said Johannsson. “When I came here, I didn’t expect that I was going to be eligible to play. The coach told me right after training that the approval came through. I’m very excited.”

Johannsson was born in Mobile, Ala., and his family moved to Iceland when he was 3 years old. The 22-year-old striker plays professionally for AZ Alkmaar in the Netherlands’ Eredivisie.

The USA faces 13th-ranked Bosnia-Herzegovina at 2:30 p.m. ET (8:30 p.m. local) on Wednesday and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, WatchESPN and UniMas. Fans can also follow along live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and on Twitter @ussoccer.

The U.S. MNT is currently riding a record-setting 11-match winning streak.

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