When the U.S. Men's National Team takes the field at Estadio Azteca on Wednesday night, they will be facing arch-rival Mexico with a squad that will look far different from what most would consider an A team.
There is no Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, Carlos Bocanegra, Steve Cherundolo or Jozy Altidore, which means Jurgen Klinsmann will have to rely on some new faces to try and help the USA earn a result in Mexico City, a place the United States has never won a match.
The Americans will have some stars, such as Tim Howard and Landon Donovan, but they are likely to feature some starters who don't have many appearances. How those newcomers respond will determine whether the Americans have a chance, or whether Mexico wins in a blowout.
In case you missed who was called up, here are the players who will be available for the USA on Wednesday.
Who will Klinsmann turn to on Wednesday night? Here is one lineup we could see face Mexico at Azteca:
(UPDATED) PROJECTED USMNT ROSTER vs. MEXICO
Here are some thoughts:
The one change here from the original lineup we posted is Maurice Edu starting at centerback ahead of Michael Orozco Fiscal. Multiple reports from Mexico suggest that Edu is set to play centerback alongside Geoff Cameron. That's definitely an intriguing move by Jurgen Klinsmann, but it may be a good move from a long-term perspective because of the glut of central midfielders and dearth of quality centerbacks in the pool.
Beasley isn't a traditional forward, but can play wide in a 4-3-3 and has done so in the past. Klinsmann could very well go with Brek Shea in that left forward role, but you would imagine Klinsmann goes with an experienced player in a sold-out Azteca.
Orozco Fiscal hasn't been in the mix in a while, but he has played against Mexico before and isn't likely to be fazed by the atmosphere at Azteca. Matt Besler has been playing very well for Sporting Kansas City but it's tough to see Besler starting against Mexico in his first call-up.
Why no Maurice Edu? If he were in mid-season form then he would be a good bet to start, but since he hasn't been playing and awaiting a move away from Glasgow Rangers, it seems unlikely he starts. Beckerman and Torres are in season and Jones is about to start the Bundesliga season. (UPDATED- Klinsmann looks set to try Edu at centerback).
With only one natural right back on the roster, Steven Beitashour looks destined to start vs. Mexico. Seems like a crazy first cap, but it should be noted he started in the MLS All-Star Game against Chelsea and played well. He has been a standout for San Jose all season and should get the nod unless Klinsmann tries someone like Fabian Johnson or Edgar Castillo at right back.
Chris Wondolowski has enjoyed an outstanding season in MLS, but I see Terrence Boyd getting the call in this one. He's off to a good start with Rapid Vienna and is a good physical presence as the target forward in the 4-3-3. Even if Wondolowski doesn't start, he is a safe bet to see playing time in Mexico City.
What do you think of our projected lineup? Who would you plug into the lineup that we left out? Who was included in our projected lineup that you don't think should see the field?
Share your thoughts below.