CONCACAF squad roundup below
Mirroring his provisional squad for the Gold Cup during the summer, United States head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has once again named a veteran-laden squad for the provisional round of the CONCACAF Cup to be played against Mexico on Oct. 10.
Twenty of the 23 players from the 2014 World Cup are listed on the 35-man squad. The team will need to be trimmed to 23 players by Oct. 1.
At the front end of the lineup, USMNT regulars Jozy Altidore, Clint Dempsey, and Chris Wondolowski headline the attack. One name to keep an eye on is 20-year old Jordan Morris. Morris currently plays college soccer at Stanford, but has already earned playing time with the USMNT, scoring his first and only international goal against Mexico in a friendly back on April 15. Even if he does not make the 23-man squad, it will be interesting to see how Morris holds his own against the United States’ veterans.
Kyle Beckerman, Jermaine Jones, and Michael Bradley headline the team’s midfield lineup. The X factor in the middle should be Graham Zusi, who has come on strong in recent international competition. Zusi, who has earned MLS All-Star honors each of the last four years along with MLS Best XI in 2012 and 2013, garnered himself attention with his vibrant play in Brazil last year.
On the backline, DaMarcus Beasley continues his comeback trail after coming out of retirement for the Gold Cup and showing some life in his legs. DeAndre Yedlin, who played his way into the EPL with his performance in last year’s World Cup, also returns. The John Brooks hype train also is keeping pace for the German-born American. Ever since Brooks notched the game winning goal against Ghana in the 2014 World Cup group play to help push the team into the knockout round, the 22 year old has been looked at as one of the main pieces of the puzzle to USMNT’s future.
Tim Howard and Brad Guzan round out the goalkeeper unit for the national team.
The USMNT is heading into a bit of a flux era. With the retirement of Landon Donovan, widely considered to be the best United States player ever, after the 2014 MLS season, Clint Dempsey (32), Tim Howard (36), and DaMarcus Beasley (33) have stepped into the forefront of United States soccer, with the enigmas of Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley right behind them.
Tournaments such as this year’s CONCACAF will be crucial to see which players will step up, and which players will fall to the wayside as Klinsmann prepares to welcome in a new generation of Untied States players.
Let the games begin. #SQUAD