Beckerman, Rogers, Kitchen set for training stints with German clubs


Photo by Howard C. Smith/

A few more U.S. national team players will be extending their trips to Europe.

Real Salt Lake's Kyle Beckerman and the Columbus Crew's Robbie Rogers have had training stints arranged with Bundesliga club Kaiserslautern by U.S. national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann, joining the growing movement of MLS players getting training experience with top-flight European clubs.

They're not the only ones getting Bundesliga experience, either. 

D.C. United's Perry Kitchen, coming off a strong rookie season and an invite to the just-concluded U.S. Under-23 national team camp that was held in Duisburg, Germany, will train with SC Freiburg for the next week, sources told SBI. 

While Klinsmann arranged the training periods for Beckerman and Rogers, Kitchen's was set up independently.

"In an effort to have USMNT players stay more fit during the MLS offseason, Coach Klinsmann arranged for me to train at FC Kaiserslautern for a few weeks. I'm not sure exactly how long I'll be in Germany. So far we have been treated very well and I'm looking forward to this new experience," Beckerman said in an online statement.

For Rogers, who is set to be out of contract with the Crew and has expressed a wish to return to Europe, the training period is not a trial, but it does provide him an opportunity to catch the eye of Kaiserslautern coach Marco Kurz. He confirmed the training stint on his Twitter account on Wednesday.

Beckerman, Rogers and Kitchen join New York Red Bulls forward Juan Agudelo as MLS players training in Germany for the time being. Agudelo joined VfB Stuttgart on Wednesday.


What do you think of these developments? Happy to see more and more Americans get training time overseas?

Share your thoughts below.

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96 Responses to Beckerman, Rogers, Kitchen set for training stints with German clubs

  1. Gnarls says:

    Wow, Klinsy isn’t fooling around. I like this proactive approach.

  2. patrick says:

    a week’s worth of training for Kitchen? Getting over jet lag will take longer than that!

  3. vik says:

    well, he’s already in germany with the u-20/u-23’s; so it’s just a matter of traveling to freiburg.

  4. Vic says:

    Will some of these players even get a month off? The next USMNT games is January 19. Figure he calls players two weeks before hand then you have MLS preseason.

  5. I JIKI RED BULLZ says:

    Who are we playing January 19th? I thought the next game was on January 25 against Panama at Panama City?

  6. Joel says:

    I really like this trend. It’s a good way for MLS players to develop and possibly impress some foreign teams.

  7. Utahson says:

    This is why having a coach with European connections is important for US soccer. Whatever your opinion of Bradley and his firing, I doubt he had the kind of access that Klinsmann has. The MLS and the USMNT can only benefit from the exposure to a different style of play and training.

  8. Khan says:

    Klinsmann is hooking it up for EVERYONE haha. He’s buying shots for the whole bar.

  9. Drizzl says:

    Looks like Klinsi’s mancrush on Beckerman isn’t going away any time soon…

  10. Turd Bradley says:

    Robbier Rogers is the worst player in MLS. If I were Kurz I would make him train with the u12 until he can show he can hang with that speed of play. Can someone just stop him from playing all together or make him only play for someone like the Des Moines Menace?

  11. Vic says:

    So far his European connections have gotten him a worse record than Bradley.

  12. Billy says:

    So when do the players get off time to recuperate? It’s good for them to remain sharp, but we gotta make sure they don’t overextend themselves and run out of gas or get injured when we need them the most.

  13. DirtyLeeds says:

    Bradley is winless with Egypt

  14. TomG says:

    It’s good – best idea by far since he’s taken over. I haven’t seen much in the way of transformative action that was promised upon his takeover of the program, but this seems good. I’m surprised this wasn’t pushed before.

  15. I JIK I RED BULLZ says:

    That’s what I’m worrying about. Beckerman is just an MLS player nothing more let him just play for Real Salt Lake try to win MLS Cups for his Club and just stay out of the USMNT way. We have too many talented players ahead of him for the CM position but JK seems too hard headed to unserstand that. We have players like: Michael Bradley, Jermaine Jones, Danny Williams, Stuart Holden (He plays CM for his club Bolton), Maurice Edu, Jose Torres we have too many players for that specific position IDK how Beckerman makes it over all those players…

  16. Tony in Quakeland says:

    He got me laid, too.

  17. SwerveZ says:

    Too early to have actual “transformative action”…but this is huge. New coaches typically need 2 years to really change a system over. Too many call for their heads, too early.

  18. SwerveZ says:

    So far. Love how people like to bash this early. It’s crazy if you think we’re going to take a magic pill with ANY coach, and change overnight.

  19. Eurosnob says:

    It is too early to judge. It is hard to compare the records of the two because different teams and players are involved. For whatever it is worth, there may be an argument that Klinsmann in certain respects already did better than Bradley. For example, Bradley lost his last game to El Tri and Kilnsmann’s team got a tie against the same opponent despite not having Dempsey available. And Bradley’s team tied Slovenia is South Africa, but Klinsmann’s team beat Slovenia at Slovenia. And Klinsmann’s team won in Europe – something that BB’s teams have been unable to do in the last 3 years.

  20. T says:

    Klinnsmann still has to scout our player pool and since we have limited depth he has to work with what we have, also Beckerman may have a specific role to play in Klinsmann system, nevertheless JK will have to wait for most of our key players heal or return from a tight club schedule to evaluate his options.

  21. Nick says:

    I believe the MLS offseason is way longer than the European offseason.. they’ll have plenty of time to recuperate. Training in that environment in invaluable for MLSers

  22. DCU says:

    can’t have transformative action when your players suck. talent pool is not exactly very good for the USA now, is it? at least by getting them some playing time with real pros, all Klinsi can hope for is that they learn a thing or two, if not that they will stay in shape in the offseason.
    it will take time to see transformative changes. next generation players such as Agudelo and Rogers have room to learn and grow.

  23. Khan says:

    As a good point man should. After all, Klinsmann does love wingers.

  24. brad says:

    Beckerman saw what was going on with the recent evictions in the Occupy Wall Street Movements, where he planned to spend his off-season, and said “Well, f*** that, I’ll just stay in Germany for the winter.”

    True Story.

  25. christian says:

    after the January camp, there are two months until MLS season starts, they’ll have plenty of time. and Yeah JK might as well come out like Maradona did about Mascherano and say something like “Beckerman and 10 others” I understand Beckerman is not a USMNT player but Holden is not fit (who knows if he ever will and for how long), Torres is out until who knows when, not sold on Edu and Jones is getting up there in age. so, as far as midfield goes, we’re not as “deep” as people may suggest we are. yes Feilhaber and Adu, but they’re not DM’s by any nature, only creative players. in International game we need players that can attack and defend well.

  26. D-Bo says:

    I like Beckerman and wish him well with club and country, but the friendlies he has participated in seem to show that he does not have the pace to play in the middle of the field at the international level. Perhaps training with German clubs can help him find a way to compensate for that in the future.

  27. Angel says:

    I hear ya, but klismann is not just showing love for Beckerman. What he want is for USA player get better and stay in shape. That is why he has them training with a European and that could help Beckerman and other player to do well for not only the USNMT but for the MLS. Remember that he is hooking up Agudelo, Hamid, Johnson, Shea, and now Robbie also. Also some of the youngster are getting some training from European team.

  28. Matt says:

    IN europe players get about a month off at most. they train 11 months of the year.

    THeir season is 9 months and they train with their club teams in July through August.

    They get June off mostly.

    In the US most players are done in October and dont play again till late January. Way way more time off than other players.

  29. CSD says:

    I think maybe Klinsmann might be sending all these USMNT players to Germany so they can hang out and find players with US ancestral connections that can join the team.

  30. FlyMaster says:

    Beckerman is there as a strong defensive mid. He’s better than Edu or Bradley in that regard, and Jones is inconsistent (and older than Beckerman anyway). Holden is injured. Williams is inexperienced. All of these are liabilities if the immediate goal is to work on shoring up the back line, who need a reliable defensive mid to give them breathing room while they sort things out.

    That leaves Torres. Not sure why he hasn’t been called up lately.

  31. FlyMaster says:

    You don’t recuperate by resting, you recuperate by staying in shape. Depends on the type of training these guys will be doing, of course.

  32. camjam says:

    More likely planting the seeds for US hopes 20 years from now. That is some forward thinking!

  33. away goals says:

    JK has been the opposite of hard headed. He’s already let a couple of his pet projects (rogers, castillo, MOF) expire.

    33% of your cm list is injured.

    Give it a minute. If jones/edu/williams are better options than beckerman for that very specific role, JK will make the change.

  34. Rageman says:

    Apparently Bob Bradley’s previous formations have you confused as to what a defensive midfielder is supposed to be and also what he’s supposed to do. None of those players you listed are straight out d-mids and watching baby Bradley have absolutely no positional sense for the last 5 years, it’s nice to not see a huge hole in front of our defenders anymore.

    And please stop touting Holden. Until he can go three months of USMNT level of fitness . . . he’s JOB all over again.

  35. spencer says:

    Torres had an injury, not sure if he is still recovering though.

  36. away goals says:

    You leave our fine menace squad out of this.

  37. biff says:

    The German sports press is running small news items on the MLS players training at the Bundesliga clubs, I imagine because of the Klinsmann connection. It would be great if one or two ended up with a transfer offer. Here a link is with a photo of one of the players (Beckerman haters should not open the link):

    link to

  38. nato says:

    you sir are hilarious

  39. K-Town says:

    JOB had bad knees. Holden just keeps geetting hacked by hitmen.

  40. footyskillz says:

    Wow, happy for Beckerman and Kitchen, especially Kitchen. Freiburg, that’s my team. Maybe they’ll take a deeper look. Still don’t understand the RR obsession. Irritating.

  41. keadlehize says:

    all of you anonymous haters of whatever players (Rogers, Beckerman, Bradley, Sasha, bornstine, Jozey, and hundreds more) go tell them to their face. You are cowards and idiots. Anybody that puts the American uniform on deserves our respect and support. You are pathetic.Soccer is not a track meet.

  42. sammysounder says:

    Sack him!!!!

  43. Poqui says:

    I like Klinsmann’s proactive approach to improving the game. I like the change in formation that I’ve seen the past few games. I expect this move to become the norm for players with little European experience.

  44. PD says:

    it’s great that he has come street cred. lots of coaches couldn’t do this this kind of favor-asking. I hope that Beckerman and Kitchen make the most of this opportunity and hopefully Rogers figures his self out as well…

  45. PD says:

    so does this make JK a Eurosnob? Just sayin….

  46. PD says:

    I would humbly submit that quite a few european coaches couldn’t get this kind of thing done either. It’s as much ’cause the man was a legendary player as well.

  47. JohnC says:

    He will do better when his team gets out of WC group. However, just forgetting these games dont count Klinsi has done a poor job capping new players or really bringing in a barage of players to see in person but has done a good job picking from Bradley’s trash heap and thinking he can make Orozco, Rogers and Beckerman Int. players.

  48. Gnarls says:

    Bundesnob is more accurate. I think it’s great though. Regarding your other comment, I think you’re right. Klinsy has connections in Germany and across Europe that can only serve to benefit the USMNT, and MLS by extension.

  49. Gnarls says:

    Klinsy the wingman.

  50. Nick says:

    Just wish he’d get off of Kyle Borenstein’s jock… ahem i mean Beckerman!

    Seriously, if JK can’t see how much better Bradley is than Beckerman from the last match where they pretty much played side by side (it was just cherunderlo on that right flank offensively)then we’ve got a problem going forward.

  51. PD says:

    I will say this. Since Beckerman has been playing we have not seen a single early goal that developed just high of the 18. That was the USMNT’s calling card for awhile (that and run at Johnny B).

    Yes, I wish he was a better passer and a step quicker but he’s locking that down for every minute he’s on the pitch and I’ll give him full credit for it. I’ll take a clean sheet over a pretty pass any day. Can Jones do better or Edu? Maybe, but for now he’s doing what’s asked of him and he’s parlaying that into a stint in Europe. Good for him and good for US soccer. JFT has his work clearly set out before him. If he can tackle and hustle at the same rate that Beckerman has then I think position is his for the taking, But Bradley and Edu seem to figure in differently for JK. Besides, look how effective Junior is playing higher up the field.

  52. Gnarls says:

    If Germany doesn’t work out, he can always go on tour with Counting Crows.

  53. life says:

    when they are dead, Billy. They can rest when they are dead.

  54. my inner 12 year old says:

    your mom is a track meet.

  55. my inner 12 year old says:

    disagree Nick. Since Beckerman has been playing we have not seen a single early goal that developed just high of the 18. That was the USMNT’s calling card for awhile (that and run at Johnny B). Junior needs to be on the pitch, but not that deep. he was a terror because he had someone else tasked to be the deep DM. Are Jones and Edu better choices? maybe, but Beckerman isn’t nearly as poor as people are making him out to be.

  56. Gnarls says:


    There, there.

  57. Dominican Lou says:

    Wow. What happened? Did Rogers knock up your sister or something?

  58. Cairo says:

    Agree. Beckerman is the classic stay at home defensive mid, and we don’t have as many as people seem to think. He is not afraid to make tackles, and he plays the ball on the ground rather than just booting it forward. It’s not always perfect, but it seems fairly obvious why Klinsmann likes him. If we want someone to push forward from this position, then Beckerman’s not the guy. But as a fifth defender who can tackle and pass, he’s pretty solid. It’s not like we’re giving up lots of goals while he’s back there, and he breaks up a lot of plays.

  59. Scott says:

    Because he is hurt…

  60. Good Jeremy says:

    I seem to remember a ton of top-flight players being well below their usual level at the last world cup due to exhaustion.

  61. Stephen says:

    …I wonder if Klinsmann can get any players some training with Bayern Munich…

    Too soon?

  62. MJC-DC says:

    I think Beckerman has been pretty solid defensively in these friendlies. Great tactical awareness, good position and sound tacking help him make up his lack of speed.

    That said I think sometimes he has a tendency to sit to close to the back four (not a terrible habit for a d-mid), however it can leave lots of space in the center of the park for opponents to exploit … i.e. the second half of the Slovenia game.

    I should note that the issue I pointed out above is not could have been help out, to a large extent,if Klinsmann had made tactical changes earlier in the second half to cope with the added numbers Slovenia was dropping into the center of the park.

  63. JG says:

    Landon’s stint with Bayern was because of Jurgen (he was the coach).

  64. Neruda says:

    Yea beckerman is going to distribute calmly and snub out attacks. He’s done just that. Nothing sexy and that’s what all the negativity is about. During Slovenia he made one bad choice when he impatiently shot from distance. He didn’t have the best game but every defender was made to look silly by Slovenias young goal scorer (can’t remember his name but he’s very good) as he split double teams etc.

    Speed is important but it’s not everything. If it was Robbie Rogers might be starting.

  65. Neruda says:

    I wonder how these training stints are going down with MLS coaches like Jason kries. On one hand he’s happy to see one his best players get valuable experience in Germany. On the other hand he might be nervous about losing a player who has impressed enough to get an offer. I’m not saying offers are coming but I wouldn’t be surprised if a few mls players had offers after the training period is over.

    It would be cool to see Agudelo get an offer and get out of that joke of an organization in NJ.

  66. Bryan says:

    Anyone else think Beckerman looks like a mouse, or is it just me?

  67. betamale says:

    We didn’t score enough goals in Klinsi’s first few meaningless games. He should be fired effective immediately!!11!1!1

  68. Dennis says:

    I pretty much agree and believe that the reason he plays so close to the back four is he knows his speed limitations and does not want them exposed so he starts out deeper where he will not be called upon to retreat quickly. It is smart of him in the isolated sense that he will not show off his lack of pace so often, but not tactically smart from the point of view of helping the team keep its shape and being ready to pressure players sooner to prevent the kind of penetrating passes than can beat the back four. (Slovenia is a good team, but they had too much time to make through passes that caught our back four in tough situations, they are not that good that more immediate pressure would not have prevented some of those passes.)

  69. Dennis says:

    Little Beckermans on the way!

  70. Dennis says:

    Anyone who claims that a young player will never be any good is just foolish.

    Wondolowski has won (or shared) the gold boot in MLS the past 2 years. While you can question his international performance, you cannot argue that he has failed to improve from age 23 to 27 (and scored more goals than any of the darlings many here promote in the process).

  71. primoone says:

    Nepotism at its worst…Klinsi got his son Robbie a training stint in Germany.

    Fire Klinsman!

  72. Eurosnob says:

    I think that you are a bit unfair to Klinsmann. He capped Fab Johnson, Williams and Shea. The did not play a single minute under BB. Klinsi also returned Buddle and Torres from the BB’s doghouse. And it was Klinsmann who discovered solution to the left back problem by making Chandler a regular starter at that position. And as for his WC record, it is quite a bit more accomplished that BB’s record. Klinsmann has already led his team far beyond advancing from the group stage to a third place finish in the WC, when he coached Germany. This is something that BB will probably never achieve in his coaching career. And as for Klinsmann’s record with the USMNT, as I stated earlier, it is too early to judge.

  73. pd says:

    I want to see him get Timmygaw to a bigger club…

  74. spencer says:

    they didn’t exactly have the same responsibilities. While I agree Bradley is a much better player, you are off on how you are comparing them.

  75. spencer says:

    considering the board fired him after i believe one season, doubt he gets people there. But if the player is good enough there is no reason to doubt they could make it.

  76. Hush says:

    I wonder if JK & Rogers have a Penn State thing going on… Sup!

    JK putting our some of our MLS players in Europe training camps is just magnificent. JK for president!

  77. frank says:

    I know this is out of the question but is THERE ANY WORD ON CHARLIE DAVIS GOING BACK TO FRANCE ?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  78. frank says:


  79. FlyMaster says:

    Well there you have it. Thanks.

  80. Dennis says:

    I think Goodson has done well for the US. However, he is old enough that he is not likely to improve much more (and may be on the decline).
    Parkhurst was called up for the 2007 Gold cup and played in against T&T. I don’t recall his performance, but it did not overly impress Bradley or his staff and he was never recalled. He is 2 years younger than Goodson and plays in the same league. Not sure there is that much upside for him, the others: Miller is 26 and was waived by DC and now plays in Sweden for Halmstadts where has 49 appearances since 2010. Kazlauskas is 29 and a right back for Helmond Sport in the Dutch Eerdivisie (and had 124 appearances for Dutch team Ossand 73 for Helmond). I’ve never seen him play. Rusin is 25 and has played professionally only in the USL until this fall when he signed with newly promoted HB Koge in the Danish Superliga where he has 6 appearances.
    I imagine only Rusin might have the most upside in the future since he is the youngest of the lot, Kaz is the most experienced in europe, but I am not sure any of them is really the answer for the future backline for the US.

  81. keadlehizer says:

    My Inner 12 Year old. If you will quit lying about my mother I will quit telling the truth about you.

  82. biff says:

    Dennis, I agree with you on Goodson. Although he played with total heart and had some good moments, he was the one player against France and Slovenia whose performances against France and Slovenia should probably exclude him from further call-ups and Klinsmann instead should start calling in guys like Gonzales, Cameron and John for tests. If you look at the game tape against Slovenia you will see that Goodson did not hold his position on the back defensive line on the first goal, allowing Matavz to break forward and catch the pass and score. Had Goodson held, as Chandler had done, then Matavz would have been offside. On the second goal, Goodson was guarding Matavz but slipped and fell to the ground, as he did on the France goal, allowing Matavz to break free and score. If Ream or Orozco would have made similar mistakes they would have been attacked mercilessly by some fans.

    The collapse against Slovenia of what had previously been excellent USMNT defense was troubling. I agree with MB supporters that MB had a solid game game against Slovenia taking over the right wing spot that Danny Williams had been playing, was much, much calmer and better handling the ball than Williams. And Dempsey was much better at offensive central midfielder, the slot that Edu had been playing. But both those changes, I think, at the same time weakened the defense considerable, with several major defensive lapses already in the first half and in the second half the defense totally fell apart. We lost the second half bad. It was great to finally have some luck and hold on to the final whistle for the win, but I don’t think we will ever see that starting line-up again, at least not against a better team. France would have destroyed that line-up, which, actually, shows how clever Klinsmann is for not trying it in Paris. He still has a lot of tinkering to do to find the most effective players and combinations before WCQ.

  83. Annelid Gustator says:

    “Had Goodson held, as Chandler had done, then Matavz would have been offside. ”
    Chandler had broken the line well before Goodson dropped back–the attacker closer to him could have made the exact same run with even more space.

  84. frank says:

    Well thanks for the info, brad RUSIN should get a look for sure

  85. JimJimmyJim in DC says:

    Yeah, he was pretty solid watching the 2nd Slov goal.

    but that being said, Beckerman makes solid training ground fodder.

  86. Knowitallz says:

    You got it all wrong. Criticism is fuel of growth. Negative criticism of specific players doesn’t mean they are “hated”(although I kind of hate Beckerman’s “hair style”. jesus, dude, it’s soccer not hackey sac. Is it a requirement for the US to have at least 1 cartoon character on the team – Lalas, Jones,Agoos, now Beckerman?)

    oh wait, where was I? oh yeah, I hate Beckerman Rogers and Bornsein. and would prefer that they never get called in to represent the US again.

    no that wasn’t it, oh right, uhmm Penn State.

  87. D says:

    Did he really set up Shea’s? I thought that was all from Arsenal interest.

  88. PetedeLA says:

    He’s a professional athlete in his early 20’s, playing for the opportunity of a lifetime. Somehow I think he can cope.

  89. A-Lott says:

    Actually, Bob Bradley gave Shea his first cap against Colombia in September 2010. Bradley capped Shea again in January’s friendly with Chile.

  90. Jason says:

    Beckermann should go to St. Pauli. His hair and hacky sack abilities should fit right in there.

  91. GW says:

    ” Klinsmann. He capped Fab Johnson, Williams and Shea. The did not play a single minute under BB. Klinsi also returned Buddle and Torres from the BB’s doghouse. And it was Klinsmann who discovered solution to the left back problem by making Chandler a regular starter at that position.”

    Those who are heavily criticizing JK are way too early. He is just barely getting started. And most of the criticisms tell you much more about the comparative ignorance of his critics.
    Nevertheless your defense of JK and attack on BB is equally ignorant and unfair.
    Bradley capped Shea at least twice. JK has benefited from the fact that by the time JK got the job Shea was on fire for Dallas. So the guy to be credited is Hyndmann not JK.
    Williams and Johnson were not officially eligible for the US before BB got the axe. Johnson had filed his switch and Williams had not even gotten his passport. Thanks mostly to Rongen, the dual national thing was well on its way before JK got the job though he obviously adds something to it.
    BB barely had time to see Chandler at right back let alone convert him to left back. At the time Lichaj was doing fairly okay with his own conversion to LB. Lichaj has since been injured so the necessity to convert Chandler became more urgent. The idea that BB somehow was too stupid to convert Chandler to a left back is very unfair.

    And as for his WC record, BB had the US players in South Africa and JK had Germany’s players, at home no less. Who do you suppose is likely to have a better World Cup record?

    JK was a timely hire but you needn’t tear down BB in such an ignorant fashion just to elevate JK.

  92. GW says:


    “If Ream or Orozco would have made similar mistakes they would have been attacked mercilessly by some fans.”

    The difference is Goodson has 27 caps and a pretty good track record.

    He has been a pretty solid player for the most part. He is normally quite dominant in the air but it was insanely foggy and that does tend to favor the offense when it comes to an aerial attack.

    Plus he is the captain of Brondby and that really means something in Europe. Everyone slips and falls at times.

  93. frank says:

    What about Charlie Davis any word on him going back to sochoux ??