Projecting Klinsmann’s XI for World Cup qualifying

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As we stand two months away from the start of the U.S. Men's national team's World Cup qualifying process, it is about that time to start considering just what sort of team we can expect to take the field for the United States in June.

Jurgen Klinsmann has never coached a World Cup qualifier before (Germany didn't have to qualify as World Cup 2006 hosts), but that doesn't mean he doesn't have some idea of what lies ahead in venues like Guatemala and Jamaica. He will spend the next two months scouting and figuring out which players to bring to his pre-qualifying camp in May, before embarking on the quest for World Cup 2014.

So just who might Klinsmann turn to once the matches go from being friendlies to being World Cup qualifiers: Here is a starting lineup I could see him work with against Antigua & Barbuda on June 8th:

PROJECTED USA LINEUP in World Cup Qualifying


F. Johnson———-Torres—————Donovan





Please note that the above lineup is the lineup I see KLINSMANN using, not necessarily the lineup I would use.

It should be noted that, yes, Oguchi Onyewu is currently injured and recovering from knee surgery, but he is expected back well before World Cup qualifying begins. If he cannot recover and be sharp enough to start, then Clarence Goodson would be the sensible pick to start alongside Carlos Bocanegra.

Some might question the inclusion of Jose Torres, but the fact is Klinsmann is a big fan and Torres has been playing well for Pachuca. Also, Antigua & Barbuda could be the perfect kind of opponent to showcase Torres' skills against.

If Klinsmann decides he wants a more attack minded squad to blow away Antigua & Barbuda, we could potentially see a lineup like this:


F. Johnson———-Dempsey————-Donovan




Herculez Gomez gets the nod in this lineup. He's in outstanding form right now, and with little more than a month to go before a national team camp convenes, it's tough to imagine Klinsmann not at least bringing him into camp.

For those wondering, this second lineup is the one I would trot out for qualifying, assuming Onyewu is healthy.

We will take a closer look next week at what a 23-man roster might look like for the U.S. national team camp. For now, give our projected lineupsc a look and let us know what you think and what you would change, if anything.

Who would you like to see earn a start in World Cup qualifying? Which if the players we listed do you NOT want to see in the starting lineup?

Share your thoughts below.

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205 Responses to Projecting Klinsmann’s XI for World Cup qualifying

  1. RobU says:

    Switch Johnson and Chandler in your first lineup and that’s what I think we see. Except with Dempsey behind Jozy in the roaming role and Torres back with Bradley.

  2. RobU says:

    ^ Meant to say Donovan and Chandler switching sides as well.

  3. TomG says:

    Disagree with switching Johnson and Chandler. Fabian is much more skilled and better suited to play further up the field than Timmy is.

  4. Murph says:





    Assumes Onyewu is injured

  5. bl says:

    Agreed although I think Chanlder will be on the right in front of cherundolo and donovan on the left.

  6. TomG says:

    I have not been overly impressed with what Torres has shown thus far, but I am willing to keep an open mind, esp since he is still very young and playing for a good team. I am a little leery of Klinsi’s penchant for falling in love with some guys, though, like he did with Beckerman. I wonder if there’s any chance that Stu could sneak back into Bolton’s lineup at the end of the year and get into form.

  7. wiger toods says:

    Does Lichaj get a look? Assuming he continues to get minutes…

  8. Marlon says:

    I’m not sure how much sense it makes to play Johnson in the midfield/on the wing when he is the only left footer capable of playing decently at leftback. There are a number of players in the squad who can play LM/LW.

  9. hogatroge says:

    Probably not in the XI–he won’t start over Cherundolo and Chandler/Johnson (whichever JK decides to deploy on defense). Should definitely be in the 23, though. We’re not THAT deep at fullback.

  10. Cairo says:

    I know people are down on him now, but I’d still start Shea at left mid, push Johnson to left back, and have Chandler (for now) be our super sub capable of playing at least three positions. We’ll see how Shea responds to the disappointment. Either he goes into funk for next month, or he uses it as motivation and comes out pissed off and guns blazing. When he’s aggressive he’s one of the best players in the pool.

    One other thing. Call me crazy but I’d consider starting Freddy Adu in Torres’ spot. He always shows up for Nats, and was the best player on the field in the second half against El Salvador. Torres is prob. my favorite player in the pool, but Freddy makes things happen.

  11. hogatroge says:

    I agree. There are definitely people who will be quick to jump down your throat and disagree.

    I personally think Johnson should play LB since he’s a natural left footer and played well there against one of the world’s top teams.
    Chandler’s a great defender, and maybe not as creative as Johnson, but he can certainly play wide in the midfield. LD can play on the left ably, and Chandler can man the right where he can more comfortably provide crosses without having to cut back to his right foot.

  12. chris says:

    Hes Right footed

  13. RobU says:

    Chandler’s skills are nullified on the left side. He needs to be on the right to whip in his crosses. Johnson is much better with his left as evident by Dempsey’s goal against Italy.

  14. hogatroge says:

    Personally, I think Chandler’s too good not to start. Plus, Shea’s best performance in a USMNT jersey (Aug. 2011 against Mexico) came from off the bench.

    I agree about Adu. I think Torres needs to be in the 23, but Adu’s attacking skills are superior.

  15. Jeremy says:

    uh hello, jermaine jones? he’s starting regularly right now for schalke, one of the best teams in europe. if you put him and bradley together in the middle, then dempsey, johnson, and donovan are free to attack at will.

  16. soccerroo says:






    If JK wants to truely try a 4-3-3 this is how I always thought it should look like. It also seems like early qualifying would be the best time to implement that system.

  17. bryan says:

    that second lineup is literally what i posted in the JK video thread yesterday. lol well, except i put Ream instead of Gooch since i forgot Gooch is supposed to be back.

    i think Shea needs to be a sub for us right now. i think both lineups above are great and they are exactly what i would do.

  18. chris says:

    Why not….






  19. elgringorico says:

    Ives lineup is better. Gomez is on FIRE right now.

  20. bryan says:

    i think the above lineups and this one. i think this would be fun to see.

  21. fifawitz1313 says:

    Coyle stated that Holden will not be back for Bolton this season.

  22. Vic says:

    That is a very attractive lineup that Ives predicts. I just hope half our team isn’t injured like the last game.

  23. Vic says:

    Interesting question is who else gets called. Will Klinnsmann call some of the youth players like: Adu, Corona, Diskerkud, Boyd, Morales, Gatt and Gyau?

  24. nick says:

    If Freddy can keep his form going with philly he’s gotta at least be on the bench.. just as good a passer as torres and much more dangerous near goal.

  25. Spank says:

    That cross was made using Johnson’s right foot… Not his left

  26. Burnsy05 says:

    Called into camp: (GK)Howard, Guzan, (D)Whitbread, Bocanegra, Johnson, Lichaj, Chandler, Onnyewu, Cherundolo, Ream, Goodson, (M)Dempsey, Donovan, Bradley, Jones, Torres, Edu, Shea, Adu, Diskeruud, Corona, Gyau(F) Altidore, Gomez, Boyd, Davies.

  27. Joel says:

    Donovan. Altidore. Adu.



    Johnson. Boca. Gooch. Cherundolo


  28. Andy says:

    Morales, Adu, and Boyd and possibly Mix have a shot at qualifying. I think Gyau and Gatt might be good enough, but Gyau didn’t start for the U23s so that won’t help him, and Gatt has never been to a camp and he’s still very young (which I guess doesn’t exclude him. I just think he won’t get a call up).

  29. bryan says:

    i hope Adu, Corona, Morales and/or Gatt get a call up. my 23 (JK said 3 keepers, 20 field players):

    strikers: dempsey, jozy, gomez, adu, shea
    midfielders: bradley, jones, edu, torres, LD, williams, corona
    defenders: chandler, johnson, boca, gooch, ream, dolo, whitbread, lichaj
    GK: howard, guzan, hamid

    on the brink: beasley, goodson, sacha, spector, gatt
    potential surprise calls: boyd, gyau, mix, gatt, benny, wooten, fiscal, castillo, cameron

  30. marco says:

    Agree most part but no Gooch (inj), and Dolo sits (for bigger games) Johnson LB, Chandler RB, with Landon, and Deuce on wings will provide plenty of attack from deeper positions. Agree Gomez must start in a 4-4-2. I can see Torres and Jones splitting the 90 minutes. Shea and Boyd only two from recent U-23s to have chance at roster. Only question mark, who replaces Gooch, who takes considerable time to regain form after an injury.

  31. bryan says:

    for one, we will have 3 keepers, JK already has said that. and i think you’re crazy if you think adu, mix, gyau, corona, Boyd AND davies will be called in. some, but not all.

  32. Tom says:

    Wouldn’t be surprised to see Jones over Bradley at dmid.

  33. marco says:

    Klinsmann gave a very direct warning to MLS players, few or no minutes at club, no consideration. That’s my take on his comments.

  34. Who’s right footed? Chandler definitely is, which is a good reason to send him to the right since he’s looked very uncomfortable on the left for the Nats. Donovan’s left footed too, but he has played the left a very good amount before, spending some time there in almost every game he plays. He’s shown he can play the left with little to no drop off and Chandler’s most exciting showings were all on the right. I don’t understand why you would have a midfield with Chandler on the left and Landon on the right.

  35. Polo says:

    Jermaine Jones will start. He’s the best midfielder on one of the top teams in Europe.

  36. evan says:

    Adu can do everything Torres can do and more…

  37. marco says:

    I think you got it right with Gooch and Dolo sitting out the early games.

  38. wilyboy says:

    It’s a shame that we haven’t had Torres to work with over the course of the friendlies. If we want to play an effective 4-3-3, we need somebody who can sit deeper and pass effectively.

    We saw what Bradley and Edu can do against Italy, but if we want to do more than bunker and pray for Dempsey, somebody has to bring some finesses. In the absence of Holden, El Gringo has to do.

  39. As a union fan, I think he should get back into form with his club before we start looking at him with the Nats again. He’s played one game with the Union because of the Olympic Qualifying. He has always shown better for the Nats than for club but I still want to make sure he’s fit enough to do something for club. Not to say he shouldn’t be called up, a good two weeks or so would be enough for me to be comfortable calling him up. I don’t even ask for consistently good, just a good showing.

  40. bryan says:

    it’s true. i think it’s safe to say it’ll be jones or bradley. your guess is no better than ives’ though. in fact, i would say his is better! haha

    either way, i’d be happy.

  41. jon says:

    I guarantee you that Klinsmann will start Edu in every qualifying match.

    We are still very, very, very slow at center back. Boca and Gooch are bruisers in the box, but a Jamaican could burn them without a sweat. That’s where Ream should be effective.

    Why not try Freddy Adu in Torres’ central role? Between the two of them, Freddy has an advantage techincally, and he can blast a shot out of nowhere outside the box. If you go with Torres, we’re protecting our midfield possession game, but I like Freddy’s role as an outside shooter. Very deadly…

  42. beachbum says:

    good call Vic. Personally I’d love to see Adu, Corona and Morales with the big boys to see how they fit

  43. Davies? Really? I can see the exagerated excitement for the U-23 guys. Especially Boyd, Adu and Mix who have already been called in before, but Davies? He’s still miles away, he’s got 2 appearances with Sochaux and 1 shot. Far from a standout. I’d without any doubt rather have Agudelo in there.

  44. bryan says:

    what part of my comment made you think i believe daives should be there? i was calling out that dude for saying HE thinks davies, and all those others, will be there. come on dude, reading shouldn’t be greater than you.

    i’d also rather have agudelo there.

  45. bryan says:

    whoops, agudelo should be in the “on the brink” category

  46. bryan says:

    jeez, im out of it today, i meant to say agudelo AND morales should in that category.

    my 23 (JK said 3 keepers, 20 field players):

    strikers: dempsey, jozy, gomez, adu, shea
    midfielders: bradley, jones, edu, torres, LD, williams, corona
    defenders: chandler, johnson, boca, gooch, ream, dolo, whitbread, lichaj
    GK: howard, guzan, hamid

    on the brink: beasley, goodson, sacha, spector, gatt, agudelo, morales

    potential surprise calls: boyd, gyau, mix, gatt, benny, wooten, fiscal, castillo, cameron

  47. Eurosnob says:

    Adu appeared to be in a pretty good form with the U23 team. Of course, the genius, who coaches Union, would have to notice that.

  48. Justin says:

    Landon is right footed

  49. MattG says:

    I honestly think chandler should start over dolo at rb and johnson. Chandler is dynamic when he gets forward on the right. he isnt the same on the left. I know dolo has experience but chandler is too dynamic.. which is something we dont have too much of

  50. TheFrenchOne says:

    donovan is right footed. he’s got a great left foot, but if watch you him carry the ball, it’s usually with his right

  51. Eurosnob says:

    I think he might call up a couple of players. Adu and Boyd have a good chance to be called up. Klinsmann singled out Adu for praises for his play with U23 and he offers a lot of attacking creativity. Boyd is a definite possibility to be called up as a striker after his performance against Salvador, particularly with Agudelo’s injury. Mix and Corona are also possibiities to be called up. I don’t think Morales (we have plenty good holding mids), Gatt and Gyua (lack of experience, but bright future) are likely to be called up.

  52. Roger says:

    If you compare the B team vs the US 23 team I believe only Boyd and Adu from the U23 made a case. The rest of the US 23 team can be replaced with the B team players.

  53. Sox05 says:

    Adu, Diskerud, Corona, Gyau and Davies wont get called in.

  54. Sox05 says:

    Boyd is a BEAST he is close to making the first team in a Elite Champions League club at Borussia Dortmund so I think he will get called in.

  55. Sox05 says:

    Playing Chandler in the left side is a waste of his talent he should be playing on the right side.

  56. Chef says:

    F. Johnson————————-Donovan






    F. Johnson——-Bradley———–Donovan




  57. fischy says:

    Probably not, but he should. I like him over Chandler.

  58. Michael F. SBI Mafia Original says:

    Is Torres the best we have there? I’ve seen him play only a few times but never came away impressed or even thinking he’s a starter. What say yous?

  59. Chef says:

    Wouldn’t be opposed to replacing Altidore with Gomez. Against weaker opponents Torres instead of Edu only because Torres has shown well against weaker opponents. Not really a fan of not putting your best squad on the field against anyone though. The next game is always the most important.

  60. Mat says:

    Gooch won’t be fit enough I’d imagine.
    I see Gomez getting called up and being successful in the friendlies prior so personally I’d like something like:

    Gomez, Altidore
    Donnovan, Dempey
    Bradley, Jones
    Johnson, Boca, Goodson, Dolo

  61. Mat says:

    Of course assuming Deuce and Landon will FINALLY play together…

  62. jon says:

    Take out Edu, and move Bradley further back into his position. Bradley doesn’t need to be that high up.


  63. Mat says:

    Also, look for Dolo to be phased out during the WCQ and Chandler to take over the starting spot eventually, though Dolo has the lock for at least another year I think

  64. Mat says:

    No Boca? He’s our best central defender when Gooch isn’t there. There’s no way he’s not in the lineup if healthy.

  65. Chef says:

    In addition to the starters in camp I could see;
    GK: Guzan, Hamid
    D:Lichaj, Goodson, Cameron
    M:Torres, Jones, Williams, Adu
    F:Gomez, Boyd, Shea

  66. danny says:

    I don’t see how any coach starts Torres over JJones. At this point, given that Torres hasn’t played with NATS for awhile, I’d start Edu ahead of Torres and I don’t even like Edu as a player.

  67. Chef says:

    This is definitely a lineup I could see for the actual WC but if we are talking about form as of right now I like mine better. I don’t really see Ream in this camp but who knows besides JK.

  68. Chef says:

    No he is not even close to the best we have but he has played well against weaker opponents.

  69. Steve McSteve says:

    To me, it’s a no brainer. Chandler at RM, and Johnson at LB. Why?

    Because that’s where they are playing for their club teams!

    Last 8 starts for both players are at those positions. Chandler literally has NEVER played LB except with the national team.

  70. Chef says:

    I’m tempted to agree with you. Also playing Johnson in the back is a waste but until we find a suitable left back (Lichaj) he has to play there.

  71. Chef says:

    No Chandler?

  72. beachbum says:

    could see everything you posted, and the Gooch question is big as there is no player in the pool with similar abilities to fill that role. Goodson is a nice player, but hardly a physically intimidating force in attending to his job, and that can filter throughout the team

    anyway, we’ll see. who are Klinnsman and the USMNT grooming to replace that role btw? since it seems to be key that Gooch is healthy

  73. Mat says:

    I hesitated with Chandler and Johnson as LB, but I personally prefer the left footed Johnson there. Since I can’t see Dolo starting on the bench right now, that makes me remover Chandler from the lineup. Only my opinion of course.

  74. Lost in Space says:

    This is a great lineup. Exactly what I’d hope JK uses. I believe that Johnson is our best option at LB and provides a great attacking treat up the wing in the 4-3-3. However, I’d see it deployed more along the following lines:
    Williams for Torres/Jones
    Lichaj for Johnson
    Dolo for Chandler
    Ream for Boca
    Whitbread/Goodson for Gooch
    Shea for Dempsey
    Gatt/Bedoya for Donovan
    Boyd for Jozy

    Gives an explosive attack while keeping a strong defensive structure and bite. Speed and Skill out wide while providing flexability of movement.

  75. hij says:

    Get ready for the reemergence of Eric Lichaj!!!

  76. beachbum says:

    all good except your center back pairing. Ream-Goodson…both nice players, but that pairing seems both slow and soft although smart technical players they both are

    Boca please :)

  77. away goals says:

    If ‘not playing with the nats for awhile’ is grounds for exclusion, wouldn’t that make it impossible for torres, gomez, holden et al to ever play their way back on to the squad?

  78. Steve McSteve says:

    Ream is certainly faster than Boca or Gooch but my concerns about him are threefold:

    1. His lack of physicality has him losing battles we can’t afford to lose
    2. His reading of the game is still a little too slow (i.e. the Ecuador header he gave up)
    3. His passing can be great but he gets overconfident and can give up bad turnovers that lead to breakaways

    I certainly hope his time at Bolton is helping, but I don’t think I’d trust him by the time qualifying starts.

  79. beachbum says:

    the chance to play a key role off the bench says me’s. when the game has opened up, and he is not tired but instead fresh, and he can’t get muscled as easily yet can go 100% for 30 minutes or so hard…

    with a lead this role is even more well-suited for him and his game

  80. Steve McSteve says:

    I agree with you about not having Chandler play on the left, but while Dolo is getting older he’s still our best RB. Meanwhile, our team is lacking in quality wingers (just look at the Danny Williams experiment!). So I think Chandler should play RM, not RB.

  81. Frank says:

    Ream is not exactly a speed merchant

  82. Steve McSteve says:

    Johnson at LB was able to get forward and serve in a ball that led to our goal, while also helping us keep a clean sheet. I fail to see how he’s wasted in the back.

  83. beachbum says:

    your concern #1 is troubling because of all the fouling and pushing in the away qualifiers that goes uncalled. have to be able to fight thru the inevitable BS because there will be pushing, grabbing, holding, pulling and more uncalled in the area especially

  84. Steve McSteve says:

    Johnson isn’t left footed. He’s got a better left foot than Chandler though

  85. Alex says:

    He probably meant to reply to the other guy.

  86. Chef says:

    I sure hope so. Johnson needs to be pushed up the field in a winger or ACM position.

  87. Alex says:

    Yes. A straight, vertical line through the middle of the field. Excellent. This is how we will beat all the teams.

  88. Mat says:

    Are you certain about Johnson not being left-footed? I could have sworn he shoots with his left.

  89. Chef says:

    I think both need to be on the pitch

  90. Chef says:

    Let’s just call it what it is. Johnson is a beast with both feet.

  91. Bumby Hemmingway says:

    Torres as a attacking midfielder? I always though he was more of a deep lying playmaker … out of a DM or CM position?

  92. Alex says:

    This is how I’d play: link to

    Obviously if Gooch isn’t all the way back you play someone else. I have Johnson at left back, but with Donovan playing on the left and having freedom to cut inside to create, he’ll have plenty of room to bomb up the flank. Jones and Bradley hold down the middle, with Bradley pushing up to support the attack, or at least making his famous late runs into the box. Chandler basically owns the right flank, staying wide, stretching the play, and whipping crosses in. I put Dempsey and Altidore up front, with Dempsey playing off Altidore. I could also see this slightly more structured formation happening:

    link to

    This formation has Donovan on the right and Johnson on the left of midfield, providing more width and more space for Dempsey to operate in the middle. If we wanted to get very adventurous I could see this:

    link to

    But we’ve seen how this team works in a 4-3-3 before, and we may be more suited to some variant of a 4-4-2

  93. bryan says:

    yes, boyd is a beast. who cares if he is “close”, he still isn’t. and JK literally just said the other day you have to be playing. i think with the rise of gomez, boyd could get pushed out. he’s no doubt the future, but i think for the upcoming camp, he could be on the outside looking in.

  94. luke says:

    we wont’ ever see that 2nd lineup. too attacking. even against slovenia we had bradley at RM who was essentially a RCM and didn’t play at all how donovan would play. that won’t happen…

  95. RM07 says:

    Zak Whitbread is the best defender the US has, the fact that some of you people actually believe a 33 year old Bocanegra should be starting instead of him is absurd.

    some of you need to come back to reality.

  96. andrew in tally says:

    Jermaine Jones has to be on the pitch. He is in amazing form right now. With him and bradley in the middle it frees up Dempsey and Donovan to spend more time in the attacking third. We need clint in the box. Gomez can come off the bench. He has not impressed me in a starting role in international games.

  97. Yoreau Snaub says:

    F. Johnson——–Bradley——Adu———

    Donovan, Shea, Guzan, D.Williams, Dolo, Beckerman, Altidore bench options

  98. Mat says:

    Boca has pretty much been a rock under Klinsy, and no one can deny his leadership on and off the field. His experience of many WCQ cycles and WC and Confeds cup, etc… makes him an invaluable defender. As long as he’s still starting at club level and healthy, there’s no way he’s not going to start in the WCQ defense.
    If you think we should just take Boca out and replace him a Whitebread, no offense, but I think you’re the one that needs to get back to reality. 33 year old is fine for a guy as fit as Boca. Not saying Boca at 35 will be our starter in the WC 2014, just that he’s our starter right now, which is all that matters for WCQ.
    Now, you can make an argument of trying Whitebread over Goodson should Gooch be out, but the Goodson – Boca pair worked well vs Italy, and I can’t see Klinsy messing with that with a green player like Whitebread. If Whitebread is healthy, no doubt he’ll get some minutes in the friendlies and climb up the pecking order. Whitebread’s main issue is he’s always injured, though.

  99. Mat says:

    There’s no way Corona gets a start ahead of Altidore, sorry. Altidore has shown well vs top teams as France and Italy and is scoring for AZ. If anyone is pushing on the door it’s Gomez, not Corona.
    Adu starting over Landon is also a huge stretch, though he’s shown some progress.

  100. PanchoMiguelMoralesdeConejo says:

    Correct. And it was not a ‘good’ cross; rather the play was made by Jozy…let’s give credit where credit is due.

    In the midfield count me in the F. Johnson>Chandler crowd. Given the choice between the two of whom I want to be more forward, I’d take Johnson. There are other alternatives to putting Chandler in midfield if you choose to play F. Johnson at LB…starting with the Mighty Herc.

    Torres is not a #10, Klinsmann sooner or later will see at best he’s a #8, bur way more suited for a 3rd line double D-mid role.

  101. PanchoMiguelMoralesdeConejo says:

    All 3 mentioned above: Chandler, Johnson & LD are ‘right-footed’.

  102. Yoreau Snaub says:

    Mmm, that’s all true about Altidore, Corona and Gomez. I didn’t think about Gomez when I was coming up with this lineup, and I was still fresh on the U-23s, so that clouded my judgement a little.

    I just think that Donovan has really missed the boat on the USMNT as of late, is not playing particularly well for the Galaxy, and others have shown more than he has. I know it is a stretch, and I know Donovan needs playing time, but I don’t see him starting.

  103. Wispy says:

    Both feet?

  104. Mat says:

    Ream isn’t ready to start for the USMNT. Boca is better. Goodson has peformed well with the Nats. With Gooch out with injury, Ream is in the mix for backup CD role, probably competing vs Whitebread, Parkhurst, etc…
    Central defense is something we shouldn’t mess around with too much and we need experience there. Gooch+Boca best option right now. Goodson + Boca alternate when Gooch is out.

  105. Mat says:

    I think if Klinsy wants to put the best players, he starts Landon. If he wants to send Landon a message, he benches him to show him he needs to stop making excuses because if he’s always away from the USMNT he’s going to lose his spot.
    You hear all kind of rumors about Landon and Klinsy bad blood, or Deuce vs Landon stuff… hard to say what’s true or not, but it is weird that Landon always seems to go missing since Klinsy has been at the helm.

  106. bryan says:

    there is so much wrong with this. corona isn’t going to start anytime soon for the senior squad. you need to switch lichaj and chandler. bradley isnt going to play up that high. you need to switch boca and goodson. beckerman isn’t going to be on our bench anymore. adu isnt going to start over LD anytime soon.

    i see four players in your lineup in appropriate positions.

  107. CroCajun says:

    We still haven’t seen Torres out there with Donvan and Duece in Klinsi’s possession minded system.

  108. Mat says:

    How long has it been since we’ve been seeking a decent LB??? Make it Johnson’s spot to lose.

  109. CroCajun says:

    No, Johnson is leftfooted.

    Leftys = Johnson, Shea, Boca, Adu.

    Everyone else is correct footed.

  110. Yoreau Snaub says:

    Yes, see above, but still I would put Gomez in next to Dempsey before Altidore, despite the minutes Altidore has been getting, and have Jozy be the first off the bench.

    As for Chandler/Lichaj, I am in the camp that thinks he does better on the left than Lichaj does, who is finding his rhythm with Aston Villa on the right. Is Lichaj a better RB than Chandler? No, by an astronomical unit. But is Chandler a better LB than Lichaj? In my opinion, yes.

  111. Primoone says:






    This isnt the lineup I would like to see however, I suspect this to be the lineup that JK goes with. There have been a number of different options at almost every position that have emerged under JK. With that said, you can plug in a few of the other alternatives and you won’t see too much of a difference in execution and athleticism. However, you will have a decline in international experience with players such as Johnson, Chandler, Brek, williams. The reason why torres gets the nod is because of the previous time that torres and LD were paired closely. They played well off of each other during the second half of the precious game vs Mexico. Klinsman spoke well of those two working closely in the middle. I think Klinsman will have to find a way to play Bradley and Jones together. What they bring to the team is class which is a rare commodity on our team at the moment. Maybe he can alternate them between. Exciting times are ahead.

  112. Matt says:

    where did people get that Tim Ream is slow? He is playing with some of the fastest players in the world right now. SPL versus EPL?

    By the way he is making a name for himself over there. Wanderers fans are impressed.

  113. Mat says:

    Wouldn’t you want to pursue the Johnson at LB experiment? He was stellar vs an elite Italian team. We’ve been so weak at LB for so long, that Johnson at LB seems a godsend.

  114. Mat says:

    Agree, Ream isn’t slow. His main problem is he is blunder prone, and it seems every time he makes a mistake the other team gets a goal. In other words, he lacks consistency, though it’s certain he’s been improving at Bolton. I have no doubt Ream will be in the camp for the upcoming friendlies, as a back up to to Boca/Gooch/Goodson.

  115. RLW2020 says:

    according to FIFA 12 Fabian Johnson is right footed. although he seem very comfortable playing the left flank and using the left foot

    and your “correct” = “right” is not appreciated. Lefty’s rule!

  116. RLW2020 says:

    thats a solid line up.

  117. Tjawandor says:

    I want Charlie Davies up their with Altidore. They are good freinds and Davies should get another chance

  118. RLW2020 says:

    Torres got plenty of looks in Klinsy first few friendlies last year.. he was good nothing special tho.

    and for your deep passer in the 3 man midfield i don’t think anyone is better for that than Michael Bradley.

  119. Salgado says:

    to Chris… Your lineup is Money! The best posted. You actually “get it”. And we’ll probably NEVER see it used.




    –disaster for us.——–Bradley————–


    Please God, just no more 4-3-3 at ANY level. It’s a disaster for us.

  120. Philly Union Rule says:

    No John Obrien? He is rumored to be playing the USA legends game vs the MExico legends. surely he could spray the ball around the field for the young bucks……….

  121. beachbum says:

    I did when Tejada ran by him a few times.

    He’s doing the USA proud in England. We’re all behind Matt.

    Go Tim!

  122. Soccer Rules says:

    Why use Bocanegra, Onyewu and Cherundolo when you have Ream, Whitbread and Lichaj who play in the EPL?

  123. VADCUfan says:

    +1 to your second point

  124. Angel in Los Angeles says:

    My 23 selection will be


    Foward: Agudelo
    Mid: Torres, Adu, Edu, Jones
    Defend: Goodson, Ream, Cherendulo, williams. Lichaj
    Goal: Guzan, Hamid

    But to be honest I think I will prefer to see Klismann with new national team, some of this player would even make it to the world Cup. Make a second National Team and make more friendlies that really won’t matter for the result but to groom out player since Olympic Team a disappointment. want to see in the Future just a list hope more players that are way better will come through the pipe.

    Forward: Agudelo, Boyd, Jozy, Wooten,
    Mid: Holden, Torres, Gyau, Corona, Adu, Bradley,
    Morales, Gatt
    Defend: Lichaj, Whitebread, Ream, Johnson, Chandler,
    Jones, Gonzales,
    Keeper: Guzan, Hamid, Zack

  125. Amru says:

    Man that actually made me lmao. Well played.

  126. Jim Morrison says:

    What happened to the 4-3-3 that was supposed to integrated down from top to bottom, that Porter was forced to play?

    Does everyone realize that in 2014 Gooch, Cherundolo, Donovan and Boca will all be 32?

  127. jim morrison says:

    Sorry, Cherundolo and Boca will be 35.

  128. Angel in Los Angeles says:

    If Klismann want to play a truly a 4-3-3 as Barca does
    he need to play two mid field that are creative and can go forward can and can defent.


  129. divers suck says:

    LOL, when was the last time Charlie Davies started for a club team? Last year with DC United? Charlie Davies is a LONG way from being called up to the NATs, if ever again. His friendship with Jozy means zilch.

  130. Joel says:

    on the Left I like Lichaj over Chandler, but on the right I’ll take Timmy.

  131. Joel says:

    I don’t like Shea in that spot. He just can’t maintain possession and he isn’t the best passer nor great with decisions. I’d rather have a good passer there like Adu, Torres or Holden when he returns.

  132. bryan says:

    that logic makes no sense to me. you playing lichaj on the right is the issue. you are saying he isn’t as good as chandler at LB yet he is better than Dolo at RB? if you don’t want to play Dolo, than you have to play chandler there and rely on johnson or lichaj on the left.

  133. Yoreau Snaub says:

    It certainly is an experiment, and I think Johnson will definitely be deployed at LB in the Scotland, and possibly the Brazil and Canada friendlies. I think they will do some evaluating of both Johnson and Chandler at LB, and by the time the Canada friendly rolls around, we’ll probably see who won the starting LB position for Antigua.

    Johnson did surpass all expectations against Italy. I’m just not sure if it’s enough yet to put him above the work Chandler has already done there.

  134. Yoreau Snaub says:

    Lichaj is naturally suited to the RB position. He will eventually have to take the reins from Dolo, unless the Johnson experiment succeeds. He is improving his play rapidly with the Villains.

    I think Dolo has lost a step, which makes him a less-than-ideal choice for a high back-line playing style in Klinsmann’s system. I think Lichaj has the better pace, makes smart runs, and is an asset on corners and throw-ins. Dolo has been a rock for us, but he is being pushed by Lichaj and Chandler like never before, and I feel both young guys would be an improvement now and looking forward. But I would have Lichaj on the right, for the above reasons.

  135. Burnsy05 says:

    Your probably right, the more I think about it,Danny Williams will get called in, Adu and Davies left out. But I truly think they are going to try and Cap Tie Corona and Gyau very soon!! They may even try to bring Alfred Morales in too for a Cap Tie! I still stick with Boyd being called in, and Diskeruud is a possibility!

  136. Burnsy05 says:

    Love it!!

  137. Matt says:


  138. Louis Z says:

    Johnson is a righty but nevertheless plays LB better than anyone we have.

  139. Louis Z says:

    I concur, not sure where it started that Johnson is a lefty.

  140. Jamie says:

    Correct? Screw you.

  141. biff says:

    +1 MB will definitely get called into camp by Klinsmann, but it is far from certain — despite all the pleas from certain commentators and multiple postings from his fan club on the message boards — that Klinsmann is going start him.

    No way is Bradley going to be starting over Jermaine Jones, who is playing exceptional soccer in the Bundesliga and the just ended European League play and is now one of Schalke’s team leaders. After seeing the US U-23 team get shoved around by El Salvador, we’re gonna need a “bad-boy” enforcer like Jones on the field. Jones, also by the way, has improved his offensive capabilities, is attacking more often and making some very good forward passes. If Klinsmann goes with only one Number Six, MB will be sitting on the bench. Count on it. And don’t see Klinsmann slotting MB in an attacking midfield slot. He has too many other better options than MB.

    If Klinsmann goes with two Number Sixes, then maybe MB has a chance to be paired with Jones. But Klinsmann more likely would have Jose Torres playing as a forward leaning Six leading the charge forward.

    Defensively, Bradley is still very much competing against, Maurice Edu, who is a much better defensive player (albeit maybe not as good handling the ball or passing) and against Klinsmann fave Kyle Beckerman, who also is a better defender than Bradley. If Beckerman is not called into camp, I will be very surprised. What makes people think Klinsmann is simply going to love Beckerman and leave him?

  142. Louis Z says:

    Not sure why people think that LD should play the LM position, he mostly play RM even in the WC, I believed he only played LM the last 10 minutes of the England game. If LD is fit to play I would be surprised if he didn’t play his customary RM position

  143. Louis Z says:

    I just don’t see Jozy and Boyd at the same time, they are too much alike to be playing side by side.

  144. richd3668 says:

    I like this lineup.

    Does anyone seriously believe that Torres can give service to the front line as well as Adu did in the GOld Cup and with the U-23’s. Boyds first goal was all Freddy’s pass and he should have had another one with the pass Freddy put on his head from distance that weakly hit at the keeper’

    Torres is a good guy to hold onto the ball when you have a lead but cannot feed an offense

  145. DiBo says:

    I Like the front line and I would include Boyd subbing in for Altidore

    Torres is a better choice in a 4 midfielder formation.

    I would go with

    Jones Bradley Edu in a 3 mid setup. More physically able to manage the space and Bradley has grown into a very good playmaker.

  146. marco says:

    Johnson should be at LB.

  147. marco says:

    Agree with everything except Herc is the 2nd striker, not Boyd who’s third.

  148. anthony says:

    I like your formation but No Gomez? the guy is ripping apart the mexican league.

  149. anthony says:

    I realize Klisman like big strong forwards who can hold the ball. I think you might see Boyd in the line up.

  150. anthony says:

    klisman should call more than 30 players for the friendly and WCQ games.I know he is going try to win vs Brazil and Scotland. And I’m concerned the players will be exhausted.

  151. marco says:

    Don’t want to be a Debbie Downer to the Adu crowd, but I believe Klinsmann made it crystal clear that if your sitting out in MLS, you’re not going to be considered. I don’t think he’ll take a Part Time Adu, unless Torres is injured.

  152. Anthony says:

    Hello Boyd is playing and scoring goals like crazy in the Bundesliga 2. He hasn’t made the team Yet due to all those superstars in the team Dortmund; but he is getting lots Play time and getting close.

  153. Jon says:

    Funny how everyone on here has Shea written off already. He starts unless you want to keep him on the bench to try him out at striker in the second half and let him run.

  154. anthony says:

    You guys heard about Seb Hines? A british boy 23 years old with a US Passport. big defender playing tin the EPL (middlesbroogh)wants to join the team if Klisman calls him.

  155. Tom says:

    Who says Adu is sitting out for Philly this season?

  156. 2tone says:

    Fabian Johnson is a LB now and Chandler plays RW. Chandlers best position has always been RW. Why on earth would you take two players away from the starting positions on their club teams and displace them on the national team. Makes no sense.
    Starting 11 against Antigua.
    Dolo, Gooch, Boca, F.Johnson
    I have Jones over Bradley because Jones is better at the moment.
    Much rather see Donovan on the left where he will be an inverted winger. I think this gives him more freedom to attack. F.Johnson over lapping on the left putting in killer crosses. This would be the USMNT best line-up period right now.

  157. Chef says:

    One game doesn’t outweigh the beginning of the season he had with Hoffenheim. He play left mid and ACM and led the team in assists. He is more productive up front. However right now he is the only option we have at LB.

  158. 2tone says:

    Shea is a sub. Thats not writing him off. He just isn’t starting material just yet.

  159. Joamiq says:

    Love it. That’s a great lineup.

  160. Chef says:

    or ambidextrous…better?

  161. MicahK says:

    Dude, why would you put Herc as a winger ? He is not a midfielder he is a forward. -______-

  162. Doctor Detroit says:

    JK said in his teleconference this week that he would likely only call in 23 players. It’s time to be serious about winning games, not having a camp with players who have no chance to play in the games.

  163. Doctor Detroit says:

    That’s downright laughable. Michael Bradley is an AUTOMATIC inclusion in the squad. Did you not watch the Italy game? He was the single best player for us.

  164. Doctor Detroit says:

    The level to which you undervalue Michael Bradley is astonishing. Edu and JJ may be competing – but it isn’t with MB. It is with each other Bradley is automatic. The best midfielder the USMNT has and he’s still only 24 years old.

    The notion that Edu or Beckerman are better players in ANY way than MB is just silly.

    MB is is automatic on this team. Count on THAT.

  165. Doctor Detroit says:

    Dolo is by FAR our best RB.

  166. Doctor Detroit says:

    Johnson is terrific but he isn’t a BEAST with either foot, let alone both.

  167. Doctor Detroit says:

    Because Boca, Onyewu and Dolo are all better than Ream, Whitebread and Lichaj. That’s why.

  168. Doctor Detroit says:

    And your point is what? You don’t think any of them will still be playing with the USMNT then? You might want to reassess that opinion.

  169. Doctor Detroit says:

    A lineup that doesn’t include Michael Bradley is NOT the best possible USMNT lineup. Period.

  170. Bata says:

    Agreed that Boyd is tearing things apart for the Dortmund reserves (to the tune of 16 goals in 24 games). But the team plays in the Regionalliga, which is in Germany’s 4th division, not the 2nd.

  171. Matt says:

    I mean in 2014 Bocanegra is going to be 35.

    Tim Ream is going to be 26 and hopefully a starting CB in the PL with Bolton still.

    So….who do you guys think is going to start in Brazil?

    the guy who is 35 and old and slower or the guy who has 2 1/2 years experience ( hopefully ) in the PL?

  172. Matt says:

    by 2014 Ream, Lichaj and Whitbread will be in the squad so will Onyewu possibly too.

    Boca will be 35, Dolo will be 34 or 35.

    Writing is on the wall for those two. They will help qualify but they wont be there in 2014.

  173. matt says:

    Yep! Bingo. They can come in here these next two years for qualifying but once 2014 gets here the future has to be chandler, lichaj, whitbred, ream and goodison.

    I mean 35 yr olds rarely end up at the world cup in vast amounts.

  174. MiamiAl says:

    Unless he is hurt, no way Jermaine Jones is not starting. He is the nastiest player we have, and we need that nastiness! 😉

  175. matt says:

    Our best players for 2014 as of right now appear to be bradley, dempsey, altidore, johnson and donovan (everton form not LA form)

  176. Soccerfan172 says:

    I think this would be an interesting line (albeit highly unlikely):

    I loved watching Dolo, Gooch, and Boca, but I’m not sure they have another WC in them. I think Adu place well for the Nats. I haven’t been completely impressed when Jones plays for the Nats at midfield, but I like his physical toughness. Reminds me Boca. We’re pretty thin on our back line, and we need to find something back there that works. I thought I was really going to like Ream, but he hasn’t been as “calm on the ball” as advertised IMHO. I like Agudelo, Torres, and Shea in the mix.

  177. Sox05 says:

    Who cares what you think or I think its all about what JK thinks. Boyd will get called in just like how he got called in for the game against Italy.

  178. GW says:

    Probably, but you can’t trust Adu to be consistent. He only had one good half out of six in this latest tournament.

    He has a total of fourteen appearances for the Union.

    In the six seasons since he moved to Europe, he has 71 appearances in all competitions.

    Dempsey and Donovan both can probably beat that in two seasons.

    That works out to about 12 appearances (not full games)per season for Freddy.

    Klinsmann’s latest announcment was that his MLS Under 23’s needed to play more. Tell me he wasn’t talking directly to Freddy and Juan. He believes you cannot stay sharp and fit playing so little and it is very obvious that that is true in Adu’s case.

    Everyone keeps making excuses for Freddy but unless he starts dominating for Philly (actually showing up and getting on the field would be a good start) it is hard to see Adu being anything more than a bit player, a luxury player for this team.

  179. GW says:

    What you are describing, Holden does not do that. He’s no Pirlo.

  180. 2tone says:

    Wrong. But i don’t have the time to correct you.

  181. GW says:

    Williams was played at right midfield to add bite to the midfield defense, give the defense an outlet who can hang onto the ball for a bit, and to help close down the midfield.

    I seriously doubt that JK saw him as a competitor to Landon, Shea or Gyau.

    Williams represents JK’s “practical” side.

    Had he been on defense for the Under 23’s Alas never would have gotten that shot off.

  182. GW says:


    The reality is you can’t be the best defender for a team you have never practiced with or played for.

    Once Whitbread stops competing with Stu Holden in the category of “Worst timing of injuries in terms of your national team career” then maybe he can prove you right.

    Until then Whitbread is just a mirage.

    As for Boca, JK is the guy who has made it crystal clear that he wants Boca on this team. Why don’t you explain your views on absurdity to him?

  183. GW says:

    Are going to judge Ream for what doing now at Bolton?

    Or do you judge him based on what he did for NYRB and the USMNT.

    Would judge Jermaine Jones by what he is doing now in the Champions league with Schalke. Or will you judge him based on his performances when he was still recovering from a shattered shin?

    Will you judge Bradley by his performance at Villa or by his performance at Chievo?

  184. I JIK I RED BULLZ says:

    I’m done with Cherundolo, if JK wants to call him up that’s fine but he should be backing up Chandler at RB as for Lichaj backing up Johnson at LB.

    Starting XI
    ST: Jozy Altidore
    CAM: Clint Dempsey
    LM: Fabian Johnson
    LCM: Michael Bradley
    RCM: Jermaine Jones
    RM: Landon Donovan
    LB: Eric Lichaj
    LCB: Carlos Bocanegra
    RCB: Oguchi Onyewu
    RB: Timothy Chandler
    GK: Tim Howard

  185. GW says:

    Gio Van Bronckhorst was the starting left back I believe for Holland in the 2010 World Cup. He played very well.He was Reyna’s teamate at Rangers in the late 90’s and was 35 years old in 2010

    Being 35 in and of itself will not determine whether Boca starts. His play will.

    Klinsmann scored three goals in the 1998 World Cup for Germany. He was 33-34 and he was a striker. So you know he isn’t going hold Boca or Dolo’s age against them.

    If they are still playing well they will start. If Ream beats out Dolo good for him but saying he SHOULD and actually doing it are two very different things.

    The Under 23’s should have qualified for the Olympics but they didn’t did they?.

  186. GW says:

    “Why on earth would you take two players away from the starting positions on their club teams and displace them on the national team. Makes no sense.”

    Because it often works and is a pretty common occurence on other national teams over the years.

    You may be a star center forward for your club but if you play for the Ivory Coast, you are either going to play elsewhere on the field or you will sit behind Drogba.

    You need to watch more intertnational soccer and be a little less rigid and narrow minded in your thinking. Soccer isn’t like the NFL. Good to great soccer players should be able to play several positions. Rooney would be great anywhere even keeper.

    Besides it’s not about the individuals, its about the team. Chandler and Johnson are both versatile, both talented, both fundamentally sound soccer playrs. JK will play them where he thinks they will best benefit the team and they will be fine with it.

  187. elk_GER says:

    According to link to LD is right footed, whereas Johnson and also Chandler are two footed.

  188. elk_GER says:

    As Johnson himself mentioned his preferred position is LB.

  189. elk_GER says:

    @Jeremy & @MiamiAl: I absolutely agree.

  190. elk_GER says:

    This looks fine to me, and as subs for Altidore I’d go for Gomez (right footed)/Boyd (two footed).

  191. elk_GER says:

    Correct. – He consequnently showed this e.g., with Herculez Gomez. But imho, Klinsmann repeatedly indicated that Gomez currently has a good chance to be called in.

  192. elk_GER says:

    +1. – Boyd is doing very well at Dortmund Reserve Team not only scoring 1 but frequently 2 goals each game. The only reason currently not to start with 1st team – but regularly training with them – is that Barrios and Lewandowski are in front of Boyd. Barrios wanted to go to Fulham which didn’t happen this time but he is willing to leave. Borussia Dortmund’s coach Klopp has a high opinion of Boyd and it is said, Terrence will get his chance next season.

  193. elk_GER says:

    Boyd is regulary and very successful playing with Dortmund II and training also regularly with the 1st team. As I mentioned above, the only reason him currently not to start with 1st team Borussia Dortmund is that Barrios and Lewandowski are still in front of Boyd. Hopefully, Terrence will get his chance next season.

  194. elk_GER says:

    Truly, it doesn’t depend on the age but only on the working rate. Nowadays best example: Klose with German NT who is settled for EC 2012 and still aiming at WC 2014.

  195. elk_GER says:

    Ahh, like link to . Not take this too seriously 😉

  196. hogatroge says:

    Donovan and Johnson/Chandler will start on the wings when the squad is at full strength. Shea will sub for one of them.

  197. Lindsay says:

    If Klinsmann is still enamored with the 4-3-3, I can envision 2 good line-ups with Torres and Gomez being swapped for each other. The more attack minded lineup features Gomez with Torres appearing in a more possession minded lineup.
















    Torres and Bradley could potentially switch places but I don’t recommend it. While Torres plays further back for Pachuca, he is a little slow on the ball due to the slower pace of the Mexican game. That could be very dangerous, so pushing him further up the field could make it less costly if he is stripped of the ball.

    I think Chandler is better on the right but is a great sub for either Johnson or Cherundolo. I don’t see Edu as a starter but he can fill in reliably in central mid. I sincerely hope the love affair with Beckerman is over. Shea will add a spark coming off the bench but is not starting quality just yet. I’d like to see Whitbread get a chance at center back until Gooch is healthy. Boyd should get a chance coming off the bench for Altidore. Dempsey, Donovan, Bradley, Bocanegra, and Howard need to stay on the pitch for 90 minutes.

    Gomez has to be in the squad. We need a striker who is scoring goals! I’d like to see Corona get his first official cap against Antigua & Barbuda so he is permanently locked-in to the USA pool. We don’t want him playing for Mexico. Since the US is still short of decent options at striker, Robby Findley might deserve another look. Still waiting for Adu to take it to the next level but man does that kid have skills! I think he should at least make the squad. While Klejstan hasn’t really performed at his best for the Nats, his play for Anderlect shows he has the ability to play at the highest level and should be given more opportunities.

  198. hogatroge says:

    Chandler’s overall a better player than Lichaj, but Lichaj’s more comfortable on the left side. They both need to be involved in qualifying, but Chandler and Dolo will start over him.

  199. jerry says:

    i guess Klinsi most show a mix of young players and older because cherundolo, bocanegra, donovan , dempsey, jones, howard are so old and the beginig of tournament is very easy dont need these players to win better idea is showing the new generation like boyd, diskerud, corona, gyau, lichaj, chandler, morales, guzan, williams, johnson, and prevent players with dual nationality just play four usa.

  200. marco says:

    Side note, Morales who Hertha would not release, has not play one minute since going back to Berlin. In fact the club failed to dress him the weekend the USA tied El Salvador. Is there some bad blood between Hertha’s coach, and Klinsmann, or is Morales undecided?

  201. Jerad says:



    Donovan Chandler

    Edu Bradley

    F,Johnson Goodson Boca Cherundlo

  202. marco says:


  203. elk_GER says:

    No, that isn’t the case. The real problem is, Hertha is struggling to stay in the 1st Bundesliga and they are in the final phase of relegation battle. After Rehhagel got hired in Feb, he appealed not only to the whole team but also the whole club now to stand together as one and lead off the fight (e.g., link to ). And that’s the only reason Morales wasn’t released.