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)