McCarty on USMNT radar after strong 2012 MLS season


Though he may not have won the Red Bulls team MVP award last season, Dax McCarty certainly didn’t go unrecognized.

After putting in perhaps his strongest year as a pro, the Florida native has drawn attention from the U.S. Men’s National team.

“My agent has spoken to (U.S. Men’s National Team coach) Jurgen Klinsmann and I think I am on his radar,” McCarty told SBI. “He was happy with the season I had and so now it’s just a matter of getting a chance to get called up for some friendly games, maybe January but I don’t know exactly if that’s happening or not. “

For the Red Bulls midfielder, it would be a just reward after a near team MVP season with New York. McCarty has spent the last few years on the outskirts of the National team spotlight. In fact, his last stint with the U.S.M.N.T. came in January of 2010 when he entered a friendly against El Salvador as a 78th minute sub. Prior to that, he featured prominently with the U.S. U-23 program.

McCarty admitted he hadn’t personally spoken to Klinsmann, but after the year he enjoyed with New York, he had always hoped his play would do the talking for him.

“I haven’t heard from anyone in U.S. Soccer personally, but obviously, that is a big goal of mine to be involved in the national team in some capacity,” he said. “Obviously, we are really deep going into this next cycle. I know a lot of guys are hungry just like me to be a part of it. It’s very competitive.

“I think I definitely made it known with my play that I still have an interest in being a part of the team. I’ve gotten a taste of the national team in some friendlies. I love the experience and am definitely hungry for more.”

McCarty’s path to the national stage mimics his 2012 season in New York. After a disappointing start to his Red Bull career, the young midfielder decided to regroup, reassess and refocus his energies for the 2012 season. After spending the majority of the preseason and the beginnings of the 2012 campaign guiding the young American core of the team, McCarty found an opening to make an impact himself as veteran players began to fall due to injuries, suspensions or, at times, national team call-ups.

When the opportunity arose, he made the most of it. Now, he hopes to do the same for the U.S. team.

“If I get a chance to prove myself, I will prove myself in front of them,” he said. “If not, then you just got to keep plugging away. Obviously it’s not easy to see rosters get named and not be part of them, but hey, that’s just more motivation for this year.”

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47 Responses to McCarty on USMNT radar after strong 2012 MLS season

  1. Isaac says:

    Hold up Dave…I think Dax’s last cap was actually against Chile in January of 2011… He CAPTAINED the team, dude…

  2. Tim P says:

    He did play against El Salvador in 2010, but didn’t he also play against Chile in January, 2011?

  3. Brain Guy says:

    Well deserved recognition for Dax. He was RBNY’s glue guy this year.

    Is it just me, or does anyone else thinks he looks a little like a young Mickey Rooney?

  4. Primoone says:

    Dax? How far down would this average player sit on the depth chart? 6 th at best?

    • ec says:

      Agree he’s way down the depth chart and I’m not totally sure what the point of getting Dax minutes is, but being on the depth chart makes him better than “average”.

      I just wish NYRB woud play him in the middle of the park, not on the wing. He’s a lot like Kljestan, but with his game more defensive and less of a playmaker. People thought Kljestan was pretty “average”, and he’s been terrific for Anderlecht.

    • patrick says:

      williams bradley jones edu beckerman, then MAYBE we can talk about Dax, but I’d even rather use Ream Cameron or Spector there before Dax.

      • Rees says:

        Have to disagree. I’d slot Dax in ahead of Beckerman – Dax is a more technical player than Beckerman – capable of a true box-to-box role. Ask any Dallas fan and they’ll tell you that Dax is more than capable of being the fulcrum in the middle of the park – the hoops are still looking for a suitable replacement with none on the horizon.

        • ec says:

          I think Dax’s ceiling is Kljestan but strong defensively. But NY foolishly didn’t give him the shot to play like that, and I’d like to see him do it for a stretch before saying he’s better than Beckerman.

        • Camjam says:

          Gotta disagree with your disagreement. I’ve never heard anybody talk about Beckerman’s technical ability as his weakness. I think Dax is a similar mold e.g. great passer, good stamina, less than desirable athleticism at the international level. Dax had a great year, and deserves to be looked at because at 25, he may still improve. But Beckerman has been at the top of MLS passing stats for years. Dax now has for 1.

          • Julio says:

            I honestly don’t see what anyone sees in Beckerman. I think his level of play for the National team in Jamaica was just another in a litany of uninspiring games. I realize this is an apples to oranges comparison, but how has Wondolowski managed to avoid Klinsman’s radar for so long? Dax is solid, but there is more/better talent around.

            • Juan says:

              I put Dax ahead of Beckerman on ability and but both are behind Benny. Dax deserves his shot … Beckerman has had more than his share. Klinsmann should try to see if he can reach Benny rather than shun him. We need creative players on this team and that won’t come from Jones or Bradley (well some from Bradley). Torres has had a bunch of chances but hasn’t been overly impressive. Sacha is a smaller version of Jones. We have a big gap on the creative end. Give Dax a shot

            • Brian says:

              Totally agree. I’ve never been a huge fan of Beckerman in the international game. He seems rushed at times and just hasn’t convinced me he deserves to be a part of the team. Dax could be a good fit for the squad for these hex games. He’s not exactly pacy, but he never stops running and is great in the middle of the park. I could picture him having a role similar to David Luiz’s midfield role at Chelsea, just a little more disciplined. (not at all comparing the two).

      • Darwin says:

        With the Gold Cup and WCQ overlapping (and this GC doesn’t earn a Confederation’s cup spot), Klinsmann could produce two 23-man rosters. So, obviously he sees Dax as someone who can contribute to either/both title quests.

        So, what depth would we need with a 46-man roster?

    • Josh D says:

      Dax is the typical hard worker who due to his work ethic excels in MLS, but like all the others before him, isn’t close to performing at the standards we have at the national level. During his chances, he has never shone.

      When was the last time we actually had a central midfielder playing in MLS shine at the national level? Beckerman was efficient, but he quickly lost his place. In MLS we just don’t teach the speed, fast thinking, and passing technique to make it at the international level.

      I don’t even know if he has a place on the Gold Cup squad. I’d much rather see someone like Kitchen earn a starting role.

  5. David M says:

    Why does his agent need to talk to Klinsmann? Is the USMNT selected based on how hard players’ agents are lobbying?

  6. Old School says:

    If it came down to it, I’d take Beckerman over McCarty, if that means anything.

    • Andy says:

      30 year old Beckerman over 25 year old Dax? No thank you. Dax can actually be a dynamic player while Beckerman is slow and pretty much useless in the international game. Plus, Dax was more impressive this year in my opinion.He was the main thing that held NY together after Thierry.

      • OPMG says:

        He was the main thing that held together a slighly above average team. Not sure that says a lot. Beckerman > McCarty, regardless of age.

        • James J. says:

          Slightly above average. The Red Bulls made it as far as Real Salt Lake and had exactly the same amount of points (57) so by that logic Beckerman also held together a slightly above average team.

    • ec says:

      I would like to see Dax play his actual position in the middle of the field before making that call. But Beckerman is kind of at his apex and Dax is still growing. I do think Beckerman’s ability to hit from distance is a weapon he has that not enough other contenders to play CM do.

      And please, Klinsi, for god sakes don’t think about passing off Dax as a NT quality wing…

      • GW says:

        “Beckerman’s ability to hit from distance is a weapon he has that not enough other contenders to play CM do.”

        Bradley, Jones, Williams, Edu, Beckerman, Sasha, Clark, Benny, (did I forget anyone?) can all hit from distance.

  7. Gary Page says:

    I’ve been pushing this guy for a while now because I think he deserves consideration so I’m glad to see he is getting some. I watched him play in several youth tournaments and he always looked to be one of the best players on the field. According to his Wiki bio he was named to a CONCACAF best 11 as a result of one tournament. He’s become an accomplished defensive mid and has shown good passing ability in the past. I say give him a chance against Canada.

  8. B says:

    DMid pool rankings:


    D Williams



    • B says:

      If we’re taking ageand upside into account McCarty jumps over Beckerman… but doesn’t Kitchen at least pull even with McCarty?

      • GW says:

        At this time future upside is a minor consideration.

        The USMNT needs guys for qualifying now. Would Dax be a major upgrade over one of the other candidates? If not then I see no reason to disrupt the current player pool. So for now, McCarty needs to make his case with RBNY

        • Hogatroge says:

          Well, having guys for the Gold Cup is also a consideration this year. We not only need depth for WCQ, but we need a first team for the GC and depth for that squad.

          In the 2009 iteration there wasn’t a lot of overlap. I think Benny played in a game or two while also coming off the bench for the first team. I can’t speak much to the 2005 squad.

          With players like Bradley, Jones, Williams and Edu tied up with the first team, we’ll need at least 4 Dmids or two-way players for the GC roster. I’m assuming Edu goes out on loan in January and is playing, thus keeping him in the First Team picture. That leaves plenty of space in the picture for Dax. Especially since Beckerman and Ricardo Clark aren’t getting any younger.

          • GW says:

            In 2009 the Confederations Cup, the dress rehearsal for the 2010 World cup, was the priority. That’s why the GC roster had a “B” team feel to it. This explains why you had Jay Heaps starting.

            The main significant things to come out of it was the emergence of Holden and Goodson and the boost of confidence the 5-0 final pasting of the US gave to Mexico helping them to ongoing success.

            Next year’s GC is more important. With the failure to qualify for the Confederations Cup, the GC offers the US the only competitive games other than the Hex, in which to test guys.

            The question is does he use the GC to fine tune the starters or does he use it to audition depth? If Dax keeps his form a spot on the GC roster seems likely unless Alonso is declared eligible.

  9. omarvelous says:

    When has Beckerman played anything but average for the USMNT. It’s not a knock on Beckerman but if he get’s his (fair) shot in the camp why are so many people against Dax having chance. Especially given his play and the metric that say he had a better season than many other comparable position players last season in MLS. Nobody is saying he’s the answer but he does deserve a shot IMO

    • omarvelous says:

      urgh so many spelling errors. sorry guys

    • GW says:

      Why don’t you wait and see if he gets called into the January camp before you complain?

      Before then who should he have been called in ahead of? As for “not getting a shot”, he gets a shot everytime he excels for RBNY. If JK calls up the likes of Alan Gordon for important games, then don’t tell me he doesn’t keep a close eye on MLS players. Actually, it would have been more fun if he had called up Lenhart but that’s another post.

      I always thought that the people who blasted Chandler because he was using the USMNT as a forum to get noticed by Germany’s Lowe were crazy. Chandler plays in the Bundesliga. What makes anyone think Lowe does not keep an eye on his own domestic league for players?

      Dax is a young fringe player with a lot of good qualities but at this point he has a lot of better, proven players ahead of him. He has to keep tearing it up for RBNY and even then maybe he gets a shot maybe he doesn’t.

      If you are a real USMNT fan the fact that competition for call ups is really fierce should please you.

    • OPMG says:

      I didn’t really see any comments that stated that Dax shouldn’t get a shot. Everybody should get a shot if they’ve earned it. The people commenting just don’t rate Dax highly. Nothing wrong with that

    • Hogatroge says:

      Beckerman was excellent away at Mexico in August of this year. Aside from that, I agree with you.

  10. Brett says:

    I’d like to see him in the spot Danny Williams usually plays.

  11. Sabella says:

    Very happy he is being considered. Definitely RBNY MVP last year. He is well deserving

  12. Joamiq says:

    I like Dax. A lot. But I think he’s a B-team guy at best.

  13. Erik says:

    Well, I like Dax but there’s a lot of guys who deserve it that never get it. I’ll never understand why Brad Davis never got a sniff.

  14. Mario says:

    I think that the USMNT is quietly building a solid list of players for now and its future.
    Think about some of these players: Holden, Bradley, Dempsey, Shea, Agudelo,
    Wondolowski(has earned a shot), Zusi, F. Johnson, Corona, on and on….

    There are so many other young players that I did not mention, and it’s exciting!
    As long as the the level of play in the MLS keeps improving every year, we are
    most deffinately headed in the right direction…

  15. MiamiAl says:

    Rightfully so.

  16. jim morrison says:

    Nice, a new face in the midfield who wearing the US shield means everything to. Someone who would get goosbumps when they play the national anthem instead of another passport midfielder.
    Think that doesn’t matter then think again.
    Good for you Dax. You’re a class act!

  17. Crisbo says:

    Mccarty is going to be even more productive with Juninho in the midfield. They need to push Cahill up top where he can be a scoring threat.

  18. chris_thebassplayer says:

    I enjoy watching McCarty play in MLS, he’s a gutty smart player…don’t think he has enough to crack the depth chart for the nats, but I hope he gets a shot.