Report: Klinsmann snubs Donovan for upcoming USMNT qualifiers

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Jurgen Klinsmann made it clear three weeks ago that Landon Donovan’s place on the U.S. Men’s National Team was no longer assured, and that it could be some time before we see the national team’s all-time leading scorer back in uniform.

Now we know that time won’t be any time soon.

Sports Illustrated is reporting that Klinsmann has left Landon Donovan off the roster for the U.S. Men’s National Team’s upcoming training camp ahead of a pair of friendlies and three World Cup qualifiers in May and June.

The roster for the camp will be announced on Thursday.

The news isn’t that much of a surprise given Klinsmann’s comments last month about Donovan, where he made it clear that Donovan’s absence from the team had hurt his standing in the USMNT pecking order.

“We observe what the players are doing in camp, how we’re going through that stretch of very difficult qualifying games. We see the chemistry of the team developing and we try to have a clear picture of every individual player and what they brings to the table in moving this team forward,” Klinsmann said last month.

“Most of the time (Donovan) was not part of that process,” Klinsmann said. “That was his choice, and I totally understand that, and it’s no problem, but at the same time we’re moving forward at our speed.

“There is a chemistry being developed of a group and you always have to feel where this whole thing is moving towards, and he hasn’t been a part of that development of this team most of the time over the past two years.”

While Klinsmann’s exclusion of Donovan will clearly surprise some people, the reality is Donovan has not been anywhere close to his best form since returning to the Galaxy in April after an extended break. Aside from one quality game against Sporting Kansas City, Donovan has been largely underwhelming and has missed a pair of penalty kicks along the way.

So what now for Donovan? He will be able to focus on playing for the Galaxy, and if he gets back to his best form, a call up for the Gold Cup in July seems like a perfect opportunity for him to be integrated back into the national team set-up. A strong performance in the Gold Cup could them draw him closer to a call-up for the next round of qualifiers, in September.

With Donovan not in the picture, Klinsmann will likely to turn to players such as Graham Zusi, Herculez Gomez and potentially Alejandro Bedoya and Fabian Johnson as wide midfield options.

What do you think of Klinsmann leaving Donovan out of the June qualifiers? Think it’s a good idea? Think Klinsmann is crazy for leaving Donovan out?

Share your thoughts below.

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232 Responses to Report: Klinsmann snubs Donovan for upcoming USMNT qualifiers

  1. DC Josh says:


    • Rory says:

      Pretty awkward that he made Donovan come in for the picture above taken at the announcement of the guys that did make the team. Very awkward.

      (yeah, I know)

    • kb says:

      JK is just doing his parental duty by sitting Donovan, similar to the Altidore situation. If he doesn’t discipline his players, than he will be viewed as a pushover. Once Donovan regains his form, he’ll be on the roster in September.

    • anti-TimVickery says:

      no, it was actually captain america who snubbed that kraut.

  2. Socom 2 says:

    Exclude Donovan ?

    but include Holden

    What a joke

    • DYCSoccer17 says:

      Holden was included in the Gold Cup roster, not the Hex roster.

      • Ives Galarcep says:

        Holden is going to be with the team for BOTH. Doesn’t mean he’ll play in the HEX games but he’s going to be in amp from the start.

    • QuakerOtis says:

      I understand this to an extent. Then again, one player has proven he wants to be there while the other has shown he doesn’t.

    • edrn says:

      Holden is being considered for gold cup roster …

      • Riggity says:

        Yes Holden is being considered for the Gold Cup but he is going to be training with BOTH the Gold Cup and WCQ Squads. I understand Holden is coming from a physical injury, but Donovan had some sort of mental injury. All I have to say is Klinsmann better win our next set of qualifiers, all three(AT LEAST 7 points)or he is going to have some problems.

        • RSLfan says:

          Its also Holden’s off-season, so comparing Holden’s situation to Donovan’s is comparing apples to oranges…

          • Braden says:

            +1 Having Holden in camp just makes sense: he’d be off training alone again otherwise. If Donovan isn’t going to start, he should be playing for his club team. I don’t know enough to know whether Donovan is back to a level where he merits starting, but JK seems not to think so. Let’s hope this is all behind us in the fall and a 100% LD is back in the starting lineup making contributions.

        • bottlcaps says:

          Totally agree. Klinsmann will win no points in the USSF, his bosses, if leaves off Donovan, one of the best footballers this country has, because he feels dissed that Donovan chose to take a break instead of kissing butt, and then drops points in the WCQ.

          Why is this important?. If Klinsmann’s job is ever on the line, the USSF will look back on choices made by JK, and this is a big one. It will be much easier for he USSF to say adios or Auf Wiedersehen, if his choices backfire.

          • LBC203 says:

            Nobody is seeing the real conspiracy here . . . Moyes has been given the nod to coach Man. U. and has not even tried to court LD from the Galaxy on loan or full transfer to replace Rooney! Because, obviously, an out of form Donovan is still the best USMNT player and thus, better than most Man. U. players! :),

    • Josh D says:

      This is apples and pears.

      Donovan chose not to play for us for the better part of two years. He chose to leave the game for months. And as a result, Donovan is simply not the player he was in 2010. Klinsmann is king of “you’re only as good as your last game.” Zusi is playing far better soccer than Donovan in MLS. While Donovan has been significant to the US, his decisions have forced Klinsimann to move on without him. Donovan needs to repair his relationship with Klinsmann and his teammates, who by interviews don’t appear to be hostile, but also aren’t eagerly awaiting his return.

      Whereas Holden has always been about the US and has always been there when called. Klinsmann is using this time to get Holden back in form. It’s an investment. If Holden gets fit this summer, he’ll play next year and be ready for the World Cup. If Holden doesn’t get fit and sits next year, we miss out on someone who could be key for us. So Klinsmann is rewarding Holden for his effort as well as investing. Plus, there are always three places on a roster that are usually reserved for young players/players coming back. I’d rather we see Holden there than Davis or someone else who isn’t going to help us anyway.

      • PanchoMiguelMoralesdeConejo says:

        To imply that Donovan has not been about the US is ludicrous. You don’t think that Donovan hasn’t been there ‘when called’? Maybe for important Club games i.e. MLS cups when the US game is in Europe….but blame the MLS for that, not Donovan. It’s his fault that his teams win?

        Also appalling is the ‘offense’ that Klinsmann continues to trot out. I guess Klinsmann is hanging his hat on the ‘new’ guys and if that is his choice OK…but just prove that the ‘new’ guys are better than the ‘old’…because at this point – that is not the case.

        • Josh D says:

          He hasn’t for the tenure of Klinsmann. He has turned his back on his coach, his team, and the fans. He only now wants to come back in the last year of qualifying. He’s changed since 2010, and the only thing bringing him back is the World Cup.

          So yes, he has not been about the US the last few years. While Holden was injured, he always talked about getting back onto the US team.

          Look past those stars and stripe sunglasses and see what’s happened the last few years. We’ve moved on from 2010, and Donovan has not earned his spot back.

          • Dan says:

            Before the last two qualifiers most games that Landon missed were also because of injury so I think that Klinsman’s comments that it was Donovan’s choice that he wasn’t there much for the last two years makes him come off a little petty. Having said that I’m not sure if Landon’s play since coming back merits a call at this point. Hopefully if his form picks up he’ll get a call just as any other player in MLS or elsewhere would.

      • Charles says:

        yeah it is apples and oranges. Landon won MLS Cup, probably twice during Holden’s injuries. I have nothing against Holden, he was one of my favorite players for Houston, just think Landon should be on there.

      • Chris says:

        Exactly! I love Donovan and only want to see him fit and inform playing in a USA jersey, but honestly he has not looked sharp since coming back from his break. I believe he will get back into it, but at this point his form does not deserve a call up.

      • Jeffrey says:


      • bottlcaps says:

        I want some of the stuff your smoking. Donovan was injured for long periods of time and missed USMNT call-ups because of them. He then was not chosen on the behest of the MLS and the Galaxy as the Galaxy were in the playoffs or on exhibitions overseas.

        Zuzi cannot shine Donovan’s shoes much less fill them. If there are LEGITIMATE players ahead of Donovan in the pecking order, I have yet to hear of one, despite JK’s assertions.

        Holden is NOT BACK to full fitness and game sharpness following his injury, and there is a good chance, he will not be effective in either the WCQ or Gold Cup. He will need at least another 6 months of play to achieve full match fitness and sharpness. (This is according to a coach on Bolton, who were upset with Sheffield for his loan spell there not playing him enough, and then not playing him at all in their last game which they only tied and lost out to Leicester for the last EPL playoff spot. So if his own team evaluates his level as sub-optimal, why is Klinsmann singing his praises.

        Why? Because Klinsmann is playing favorites,a nd it will catch up to him when the US does not play up to par and the finger-pointing begins.

        Hopefully the USMNT will get past this bickering and do what they need to do, but I do not think Klibsmann is gaining brownie points, with USMNT fans and the powers that be.

        • malkin says:

          What gives you the impression Bolton were “upset” with Holden’s playing time? He started almost every game with Sheffield (unless there were back to back games), and there were never any public comments made by Bolton about not being happy. Only comments made were by Sheffield who said they were disappointed to lose him at the very end but that they completely understood given the circumstances.

          And regarding those circumstances, Bolton went on one of the most ridiculous runs of winning game after game after game right as Stu was coming back to form. But if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, so Bolton didn’t want to tinker with their lineup, and they kept winning (which is why they loaned him out in the first place). Then, they brought Stu back for depth for the playoff, but again stuck with the same winning formula for the one game he was back which unfortunately ended in a draw.

      • PetedeLA says:

        Re: “Zusi playing far better soccer than Donovan”


        Sorry about the caps, but Donovan was the superior player that day.

        I’ll certainly admit that Zusi has been far more consistent, but I’ll take an 80% Donovan over a 100% Zusi.

        Donovan’s ability to create chances where the pickings are slim is unparalleled in the national team this side of Clint Dempsey (and maybe Altidore).

        Zusi is great, but he’s not that player yet. And (if I’m honest) I doubt he will ever be that player.

        But this shouldn’t really shock any of us.

        Juergen snubbed Mehmet Scholl for the World Cup in 2006. At the time he was certainly one of the top 5 German players. Even if he was a bit old at the time.

        My gut feeling is that Juergen thinks Landon Donovan will have difficulty committing 100% to his rah-rah pep talks.

        But taking away your third best player does not make your team better when the options are so thin.

        But before I get flamed, I appreciate you having an opinion.

        Take it easy on me today, folks. It’s my birthday.

  3. Travis says:

    I get why Klinsmann did it but I just am not sure I agree with it. Yes he hasn’t been great so far this year but who else do we really have out wide with pace and skill? It is the clear hole on the USMNT roster right now

    • Braden says:

      Let’s not forget that he “punished” Jozy for one round of matches as well. Guy seems to think that he needs to send messages to players by leaving them out from time to time. Jozy kept banging in the goals and was right back in the middle of things. Hopefully LD will go the same way.

      • Josh D says:

        He punished Jozy because Jozy ran his mouth in an unprofessional way and wasn’t showing much of an effort. Jozy still hasn’t shown as much effort as many want to see, but he now knows his place isn’t set in stone. Especially since it’s been years since he’s scored in open play. Jozy has no room to speak when it comes to the US.

        • Riggity says:

          Um ya he does, have you seen our forward pool?

          • Josh D says:

            Have you seen Jozy’s production in a US jersey? All the forwards who have played ahead of him have scored more than him. Fact.

            • SoB says:

              Dempsey has you’re right. And, oh yeah Eddie Johnson has one more. So yeah all of them have scored more in the USA shirt than Jozy. Don’t be ignorant.

      • Old School says:

        Jozy is that you?

        Way to leave out an important fact of the situation for his exclusion…yeesh.

  4. Mike E. says:

    This should come as a surprise to nobody if you have watched him play recently. I think describing his okay as average would be a stretch.

    And as Ives just tweeted, Zusi has frankly been more dedicated and recently a league MVP Raquel player.

    Arenas pulling Donovan off penalties because he can’t handle the pressure is also not positive.

    • Mike E. says:

      Typos all over. Thank you phone.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Landon did not seem himself against Houston, so perhaps it makes sense that way; but the idea Zusi and Landon are interchangeable mis-understands their skill sets (Landon is more of a runner, Zusi more of a Preki type). I say that because one problem area in the US lately has been wing attack. Zusi is not as able as Landon to run by someone or get to the line and create room for his own crosses. One thing lacking in the US has been the burner element.

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        If you don’t get it from Landon it needs to come from somewhere. I’m a little leery of pure technical soccer players against Jamaican and Panamanian athletes.

        • byrdman says:

          You are correct. right now we have little if any wing play. LD is the best we have usually. Also I Usually try to support JK, but I think he called him out publicly, call him in this time. Let him sit a few games and then play him in the last 2 qualifiers if he is back to his normal level.

          • The Imperative Voice says:

            Heck, the history on this ain’t that old, Panama beat us the one game last Gold Cup, and then Jamaica last round. I think if we don’t put enough speed on the field, and we show up a little soft and cutesy, we’re ripe. But if we field some speed and athleticism I think we neutralize them on their own athletes and then the superior technique and endurance come to the fore.

  5. QuakerOtis says:

    LD has one goal since his return in late March, and the Galaxy have played like crap. Not too much of a surprise.

    • bottlcaps says:

      I agree that LD has not completely regained his match fitness and touch. But I feel he will regain those elements far faster than Holden. And when he does regain his match sharpness and when the Galaxy do get Robbie Keane back, whom Donovan plays extremely well , we will see s better LD emerge. As for Graham Zuzi, when he plays and scores in several World Cups, Hoists a few more MLS Cups and becomes the MVP in more USMNT games, we can call him a worthy and successful player and not only able but willing to fill the shoes of LD, When that happens, I feel most of us will have long shuffled off this mortal coil.

      • zztoppppp says:

        True, Zusi doesn’t have all the accolades that Landon Donovan does, but then again he has only been able to prove himself in the past year. I know Landon is a more accomplished player and is better than Zusi when he is on form, but you can’t discredit Zusi–someone who hustled his @$$ off in Azteca for us and has been working hard to be a part of the USMNT–just because you favor Landon.

    • beachbum says:

      just how many games have you seen him play in his return?

  6. kimo says:

    Invite him to camp but make him REALLY earn it back. To exclude him is a sodding joke and it says a lot about Klinsmann.

    • Mike E. says:

      That he won’t call up a player who has been awful? Better question you should ask yourself is why you want a player who isn’t mentally or physically fit to play for the team.

    • Old School says:

      I think your commentary says more about YOU, than Klinsmann.

  7. brian says:

    Klinsmann is too sensitive. Donovan off the bench would be a huge boost in the upcoming games as our attack is pretty feeble at the moment.

    • @USSoccer100 says:

      Excellent Idea. Imagine Donovan coming on for 20 minutes at the end when the other team’s a half-step slow due to tiredness.

    • beachbum says:

      of course. and why look to blend Stuart in now, who hasn’t been a part of the chemistry buildup either, but use that same excuse to exclude LD?

      anyway, he did not play poorly last week, he and Villareal were the only decent attacking players on the field for the Galaxy

      this is not surprising. Klinsmann very clear in building his team

      • Eurosnob says:

        Are you seriously suggesting that Holden’s return would negatively affect the team’s chemistry? Let’s not compare a player who refused to play in critical WC qualifiers (at Honduras, at Azteca, in the snowstorm against Costa Rica) with a player who is returning from a serious potentially career threatening injury.

        • beachbum says:

          of course not…I love Stu

          piss off Euro

          • Eurosnob says:

            Glad to hear that you like Stu. I started to get worried for a second. :-)

            • beachbum says:

              no bigger supporter of his since his days at the Dynamo, where I said he should play left back for the NATS because he’s that good and versatlie


        • bottlcaps says:

          Let’s make it clear to everyone on this board. Landon Donovan DID NOT REFUSE to play in the WCQ, he was not chose by Klinsmann. He was not chosen by Klinsmann because he was not match fit. He was not match firt as he chose to take an extended break and one that was approved long ago by the Galaxy AND JK himself. When LD was coming off an injury last year he made himself available for the USMNT match and publically stated he wished to play. He was not chosen by Klinsmann who stated that he was not ready to come back to the US team. Tis was BEFORE the MLS CUP playoffs and before he took his break. It seems like JK wants to make a example out of Donovan and it does not matter if he is match fit or not.

          LD is well liked and admired by many of his teammates and part and parcel of the USMNT blow-up in the press before the CR game were some of the USMNT players voicing discontent over JK playing favorites.

          It is my belief that had not the USMNT not gained 4 points at CR and Azteca, JK would be history.

          LD has played with far too many USMNT coaches and far too many games and been through the ringer with Sampson, etc so he will weather the storm. The same cannot be said for Klinsmann.

          • Eurosnob says:

            Donovan was not available for Honduras WC qualifier. He decided to step away from soccer at the worst possible time for the USMNT. The WQ match at Honduras took place in February and Donovan did not return from his self-imposed excite until March – so it is fair to say that he refused to play in a WC qualifier. As for the March qualifiers, while Donovan returned to practicing with his club in March, did he make any public statements that he want to return to the national team? In any event, it would have been insane to field someone who is not match fit at the altitude in Azteca or in the snowstorm at Denver. I would love to have an in form Donovan back to help the national team, and he might be able to do it down the road, but unfortunately he is not in the top form at the moment and he would have to earn his place back. As you stated, Klinsmann’s job is on the line so if Donovan regains his form it would be hard to keep him out.

          • GW says:

            “the ringer with Sampson”
            Sampson was long gone by the time LD got his first cap.

            LD did play one year, 2005, for him with the Galaxy but there was no great controversy reported that year. Lalas fired Sampson at the end of the season.

      • bryan says:

        “of course. and why look to blend Stuart in now, who hasn’t been a part of the chemistry buildup either, but use that same excuse to exclude LD?”

        I thought it was very clear. Klinsmann is referring to the chemistry with the A team. Holden is only there to maintain fitness in order to be ready for the Gold Cup. if LD comes in, he’s not there solely for fitness reasons. That’s the difference between the two situations. LD can maintain fitness with LA. If he comes into the WCQs camp, he’s there to be a part of the A team. And, according to JK, that would be hard because the A team already has chemistry.

        I’m not saying I buy into 100%, but people are acting like Holden and Donovan are int he same situation and that couldn’t be further from the truth.

  8. Hogatroge says:

    I’ll take your lack of an exclamation point as sarcasm, since nobody should seriously be surprised by this.

  9. Mike E. says:

    Ives, could you add a bit about his very poor form? I liked your tweet about nostalgia playing a role in peoples comments and I think addressing that he isn’t the player he was would go a long way to spurring better conversation!

  10. soccerhorn says:

    1. Donovan has looked like crap since his return. 2. Klinsmann has an ego and this isn’t the first time he’s made sure that a USMNT regular knows who’s boss (Kljestan, Altidore).

    • soccerhorn says:

      3. plus this will leave room to add a fifth or sixth german player to the roster.

      • @USSoccer100 says:

        4. Which will appease the “cap him before some other country does and then finds out he can’t play” crowd.

      • louis z says:

        I see where you are going with this…..Wooten! he is going to surprise many LD fanboys.

    • Vic says:

      Chandler? Oh wait no he’s only tough on non-Germans.

      • Braden says:

        Yeah, well the fact is that we wanted to cap-tie Chandler. Any coach would do the same. The question would be if Chandler refused a call again would he get the same open-arms welcome. I think probably not. And that’s ok with me.

  11. Juan says:

    The article says “he’s set to not be called” not that he wasn’t. I cannot find the roster anywhere yet so I think this is all just guessing at this point. On the other hand, I don’t think he will be called. Not because of “chemistry” (the chemistry that results in few goals?) but JK has to send a message or he will have lost control of the team

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Unless there is a rapid denial I would assume this is legit, a test balloon being released by US Soccer to clear the air before the roster call and then camp starts. Games begin in two weeks.

      Also worth throwing out there that Klinsi could be handling it this way because of the Boca blowback. While to me a camp callin followed by a decision from group practice would be the smart way of seeing if he fits, maybe he wants to avoid the pressure and pain of cutting someone of his tenure before a big game, the whole series of events that made that Sporting News article. It would be a tad hypersensitive but it’s a practical solution to the conundrum. And though I have seen Landon look fine in some games, there is definitely tape out there to support the contrary conclusion also.

    • beachbum says:

      if that’s it, it’s crying shame it was allowed to escalate to that

    • Travis in Miami says:

      This whole JK needs to send a message he’s in control of the team is no argument. Unless one believes that JK should be so in control of the team (read: entire US Men’s player pool) as to deny a player personal time off. Keep in mind this is not an employer/employee relationship. That type of relationship is reserved for LD and Arena.

      Also, even LD said he didn’t think he was in a place to be called in. he agreed that there are players ahead of him and he would need to play his way back onto the team – echoing the sentiments from JK’s comments days prior.

      I think his inclusion would be bigger news (and I’m a LD fan).

  12. TomG says:

    I can see both sides in this one. LD hasn’t really been good enough to earn his spot on the one hand. On the other, though, if you get him into camp and he regains his form, you’ve got one of the best players in the pool at a position where he supplies something you are sorely lacking. From a man management sense, it’s also a mixed bag. You want to make point to LD and the other players, but is it a matter of cutting off your nose to spite your face?

    • Mike E. says:

      His form as oddly been getting worse. From your description I can’t see any coach decidingto include a player like that given the poor form, the message to the team, and the behind the scenes. That’s a big gambit on a huge if with little chance of positive impact.

      Zusi has been class lately as it is.

    • @USSoccer100 says:

      funny how klinsy’s “We observe what the players are doing in camp, … We see the chemistry of the team developing and we try to have a clear picture of every individual player and what they brings to the table in moving this team forward,” mentality didn’t exist when it came to Timmy Chandler last fall.

      • Al17 says:

        BINGO and his was clearly MENTAL based on what we were hearing in his regards to committing to play for the USA.

      • MFP says:

        Chandler was a promising up and coming kid who the US had been trying to woo for years. So when he was playing as well as any RB in the pool and finally willing to commit, he got called up and cap tied so the question of whether he is holding out for Germany would never be asked again. I think it made sense, and I don’t think it relates to the Donovan’s situation at all.

        • @USSoccer100 says:

          Yeah but it should blow you guys’ “but Landon didn’t want to play for us” crap out of the water… Landon wanted a break, Timmy wasn’t sure if he wanted to play for the US. I don’t think you say Landon is the lesser committed player here.

          • MFP says:

            I’m not one of the ‘you guys’ you’re talking about.

            I guess what ‘my guys’ would say is something like… Klinsmann shouldn’t be too extreme with the ‘people have passed him on the depth chart’ stuff, because we know how good he is when he’s on. But asking Donovan to be in form and playing like Landon Donovan with his club for a couple of weeks before taking someone’s spot for the Hex is reasonable.

            I haven’t seen any LA games, but it sounds like he hasn’t done that yet.

  13. Cairo says:

    This is so obviously a mistake. If Donovan wants to play and is in shape, he should be called in. People are saying he’s not in top form, but who is in better form and is a true winger? Zusi maybe, but that still leaves one side of the field. Do folks really think Beas (who I love), Shea (who isn’t playing), Brad Davis (a good player but a little speed challenged), or an out of position EJ are better options? At the very very least, Donovan is critical depth at three positions (both winger spots and forward). I guess if either Chandler or Johnson pushes up to the Wing then maybe we don’t need Donovan to start…but he’d still provide amazing depth. This is depressing if true…

    • Mike E. says:

      He isn’t even in average form. He’s been one of the Galaxy’s worst players. Villareal and Zardes have been outplaying him.

      He isn’t old Landon. Why pretend he still is?

      • PanchoMiguelMoralesdeConejo says:

        What games have you been watching?
        LD has missed 2 PK’s….that is the extent of his issues. His passing has been sublime and when Robbie Keane gets back it’ll be better because there will be another player of similar quality for the 1-2’s that spring players.
        Seriously, LD is FAR from the problem at Galaxy land.

        • louis z says:

          LD is not the problem but I doubt he is the ANSWER, it looks like his ship is sailing little by little down the sun setting horizon.

      • beachbum says:

        one of their worst players? not true. He missed the PKs tho…so don’t let him take them for the Nats, simple

      • juan says:

        Maybe he is the “OLD” Donovan? There has to be life past Donovan BUT we also need to qualify. Getting to the show is more important than JK sending a message and if Donovan can help, then he should be given the chance.

        We have had trouble scoring goals for multiple reasons. IDK anybody in the depth chart that should feel secure except Dempsey. Donovan should go to the Gold cup and try and regain form there.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Never let it be said Klinsi lacks a penchant for the dramatic.

  14. Bumby Hemmingway says:

    It is a reasonable proposition to ask a fading star to earn his place back in the starting line up. A waining Donovan still maintains a skill set above most players in the pool and his extensive international experience would be invaluable to younger players. The ego of Klinsmann is showing here. Donovan should be in camp. The fact that Donovan was the face of American soccer over the last decade should not be cast aside so quickly. Make him earn a spot in the line up … sure … But to not even warrant a invite is petty.

    • Mike E. says:

      But he didn’t earn his spot back lol. Have you watched him play? That’s rhetorical because your comment clearly says otherwise.

      Great veteran leadership abandoning the team!

    • Travis is Miami says:

      I.e Ronaldinho

  15. Iggy says:

    when should we expect the roster to come out? For once it would be nice if they announce it early (though this situation seems even more difficult to do so).

  16. Crewmudgeon says:

    This is no big deal. LD’s chance to return will come during the Gold Cup.

  17. Tony in Quakeland says:

    Klinsmann is a clown. It’s all about Jurgen, all the time.

    • Mike E. says:

      And Landon abandoning the team and losing all his form and fitness was….??

      • Tony in Quakeland says:

        Yes, this is the first bizarre, self-serving personnel decision made by Klinsmann. He’s an idiot. He has zero idea how to manage people. Tell you what, I work at an international company and talk to soccer fans from all over Europe (and some Latin America) all the time. They laugh at us about Klinsmann, the Germans most of all.

      • Ed says:

        …something you know nothing about, unless you are Landon Donovan

        • byrdman says:

          It seems that LD put most of that out there for the public to observe. Seems to me we saw him trotting the globe, watching ball games, and playing soccer in Tibet or someplace with children. All of those things are ok with me, but there is a price for everything. And right now JK is the guy marking the price tags. Part of being a player is submitting to the leadership over you. Unless you are Michael Jordan or someone of that ilk. LD has been great, but he’s no MJ of soccer. Especially in this part of his career. Remember it was his decision to go play those two offseasons in England. I personally enjoyed watching Everton when he played. BUT he made the choice and now he has to deal with it the fatigue that came with it. The fatigue necessitated a few months away from soccer and a lot of time away from USMNT. His choice. Now he has to pay the price. I want him back, but it appears a lot of the guys are not crying over his absence.

          • Ed says:

            Fair, but no one truly knows the reasons behind the break, I imagine fatigue was only part of it.

      • PanchoMiguelMoralesdeConejo says:

        Abandoning a team? He took a vacation. If the Galaxy were – oh…I don’t know Toronto FC…he would have had a similar time off…but because the Galaxy extended their season into the Cup…that is ‘abandonment’?
        Remember MLS plays a tournament winner, not a single table that provides the same amount of rest in between seasons.

        I agree with Tony…Klinsmann is all about himself. Listen to his discussions. When times are good it’s ‘We, Us”…when times are bad it’s “They, and them” …l

        Bring in Roberto Martinez already!

        • beachbum says:

          the whole abandonment thing is a crock…Coach flames that fire for the fans too.

      • Bac says:

        Well said

      • louis z says:

        what is worst than a clown?

        • beachbum says:

          this is your area of expertise louis…clowns :)

          where were you this weekend when Clint had ANOTHER clutch performance? hahaha

  18. Monarch Bay Beachbum says:

    Invite him to camp. If he doesn’t show he is ready don’t put him on the roster. Leaving him out makes absolutely no sense.

  19. Brain Guy says:

    Donovan is going to look back on his self-imposed exile with regret. For reasons that were entirely predictable, he will have removed himself from at least the first half of the most difficult stage of qualifying. I am NOT begrudging him the right to take a break when he felt he needed one, but the guy whom many people regard as the best American field player in history essentially took himself out of USMNT contention for what will end up being an entire year, during a critical stage in the team’s evolution and progress (we hope!) to WC2014. I would love to get inside the heads of guys like Dempsey and Howard to find out what they think of all this.

    • Mike E. says:

      Ives tweeted this, hinting at that.

      ” Seems easy to make this a Jurgen-Landon, Thing but would it be a surprise if some USMNT Players didn’t appreciate timing of LD’s Sabbatical?”

      • @USSoccer100 says:

        Weird thing is, didn’t we all think Landon was one of the pro-klinsy guys back in the day? Remember all that “they’re beach buddies” crap? Wasn’t the split supposed to be that Donovan was pulling for Klinsy and others were pulling for Bradley to keep the job? Funny how we were completely wrong from the outside looking in. Kind of like that massive divide between the Germericans and the Corn-fed Americans that the outsiders (journalist in this case) convinced us about early this year.

        • White Kix says:

          I see your point about the Landon/Klinsmann thing (I believe there there is a lot to this story that isn’t being told).

          However, how can you say that the German divide was all made up? Since that came out, we had one camp and only one German played half the games. It wasn’t evident because injuries forced Klinsmann to play Americans. But it in no way dispelled the rift.

          • @USSoccer100 says:

            Okay, not made up, just overblown. It doesn’t seem to have been a big issue and we still don’t know that ANY of the juicy comments came from actual current players and weren’t all from the disgruntled former players that B.S. interviewed. That’s the second oldest trick in the group of unnamed sources book: get a handful of ringers in the group to provide the juicy stories and pepper the article with boring bits from the regulars. The oldest trick is, of course, to make the worst quotes up.

  20. Ed says:

    Nobody is saying that Landon should be guaranteed a starting spot, or even guaranteed minutes.. But to not even call him in to assess form and fitness? Even Brek Shea was given the benefit of the doubt in March

  21. Steve says:

    I’ll start this off by saying Donovan IMO is the best USMNT player ever, and wildly underappreciated by way too many people. That being said, this was *clearly* the right decision. I understand he needed time away from the game…and now he needs time to (a) work back into top form and (b) work his way back into the team structure.

    Think long term here. Donovan clearly isn’t one of the best XI today (he might be the 4th or 5th best player on the Galaxy today). And that won’t change with a week of practice. So calling him in puts him above the rest of the team, probably creates resentment, and doesn’t help us win. Leaving him off keeps the team structure, gives him time to round into form, and puts us in better position for Sep qualifying games and 2014.

    How is there even a debate?

    • Mike E. says:

      People either hate Klinsmann and will attack regardless or more commonly people view the sitatuon from a point of nostalgia, not accepting that the Landon Donovan that scored a lot of goals and was very fast is not here anymore.

      And as you said, he has been about as helpful these past games as Keane. Villareal, McLean before the injury, magee, zardes have all been better and more positive in the attack.

    • louis z says:

      I wonder if JK attacks would have been worst if JK had invited LD but didn’t play him.

  22. Mike E. says:

    Ives said it best,

    ” , the reality is Donovan has not been anywhere close to his best form since returning to the Galaxy in April after an extended break. Aside from one quality game against Sporting Kansas City, Donovan has been largely underwhelming and has missed a pair of penalty kicks along the way.”

    • @USSoccer100 says:

      But seriously, how close to old Donovan does he have to be to make an 18 man squad?

  23. Beto says:

    Not surprised, while i was excited to see his big return in Seattle/Salt Lake he clearly isnt playing like a national teamer. Hopefully he uses this time to get motivated and on good form with LA in time for a Gold Cup run. I believe that some players, like landon, step up when they need to and can flounder when the pressure if off. Hopefully this is that time for LD.

    And to all those saying he is better than Holden or other Euro based players; ya he might be but those guys dont have the option of playing in league games between May and the Gold Cup. Jurgen might not use (very much) Holden, Boyd, Goodson, Sasha, Williams, Edu, etc during the qualifiers but he isnt going to let them take vacation and then return to the US team for the gold cup. Instead keep them sharp, but not overused, and join them up with MLS stars (LD) for the GC.

  24. Automata says:

    Poor form or not, I don’t think any of the oppossing CONCACAF Coaches would be as quick as the messageboards to dismiss his talent and would alter their tactics, at least a little bit, to account for LD’s pace and based on past clutch peformances. I can’t imagine him not at least being one of our best off-the-bench options.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      I think Gomez is the one pushing him down at forward, but I agree about, is he not even worthy of the bench? I mean, when you get to the bench level we’re talking Jozy, EJ, Gordon, Bruin. Even 80% Landon doesn’t fit in there? So I’d say while I respect Klinsi trying to get the right, form players in his team, I don’t quite buy there is no room for Landon, that only seems to work if he’s competing against himself and not the other roster candidates.

      But then, we’ve played this same game with Jozy and Dempsey lately, Jozy in particular got left out even though I think he’s gotta be bench material, until Boyd pans out or not. If anything, Jozy offers size and some heading and Landon a speed element. To me it only makes tactical sense to include them just for variety’s sake.

      That being said, it’s a team in transition from the 2002 generation and Klinsi is trying to sort his way out of that. Like I said elsewhere on here, maybe it’s Klinsi’s adjustment from the backlash from cutting Boca at camp. OK, fine, I won’t even give the courtesy tryout to the off-form/off-fitness vets if I will get smacked for cutting them.

      Personally I think Landon should be involved, and don’t see a meaningful distinction among Lichaj, Holden, him, and a few others who probably could use an extended US run in both camps and competitions to get in shape and form. But Klinsi could make the distinction that most of the other players on that list, including Holden if he doesn’t have an O’Brien issue, have a couple cycles left in them. Landon’s last is surely 2014, so it’s kind of now or never.

  25. atd says:

    In case anyone actually cares about such things, Donovan has also had some strong outings. He was an absolute monster against SKC, one of the best teams in the league — a goal, an a$$ist, a key pa$$, a number of through balls and crosses, and more recoveries than anyone on the team except for Sarvas. He was also dangerous against Houston and Dallas — two more strong teams.

    Of course, he’s also had a couple bad performances, missed two penalties, and generally has looked a little off his 2012 form. Even so, I think “uneven” is a much more accurate description of his form than some of what’s been said above.

  26. Stephen says:

    I’m really just writing this to see what Mike E will say in reply.

  27. Frank says:

    I have a problem with Holden being in the camp and Donovan not being in only if Holden is taking one of the camp spots (I think Jurgen said 25-26 will be called in) because he didn’t earn it. If Holden is number 27 and Jurgen is doing him a favor just to regain fitness that’s fine.

    But I still would have gave Donovan a camp invite and see how he faired because we’re weak on the wings. If he didn’t look good in camp then leave him off the WCQ roster.

    • Ed says:

      Exactly, at least do an in-person assessment.

    • GW says:

      It’s a camp. JK can call in LD and Stu at the same time if he wants to.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      They have 30 provisional spots — which I think they can even change — and 23 game day spots. Those are by rule. Anything else is a coach-made number that should adjust to reality, eg, veterans or young players who need the work but might not be necessarily ticketed for the qualis…..the Holden scenario.

      You wonder if Klinsi thinks Landon is done or unmotivated because otherwise why not camp him for the qualis with an eye to the Gold Cup? Like Holden. If Landon possibly can be redeemed, that can benefit the team, surely that’s worth the risk of finding out he’s past it in the Gold Cup.

  28. MMV says:

    What’s changed? Donovan hasn’t been a part of the group for quite a while. So nothing will really be drastically different.. I love Donovan and what he brings to the table but for the USMNT’s perspective, it’s time to sh** or get off the pot. You either move on with or without Donovan. As much as it pains me, I fine with either. I’m just tired of the never ending saga.

  29. LBC203 says:

    LD is not in form yet . . . Landycakes has returned to play soccer again for the majority of LD’s play at the Galaxy this year and Mandon has only made one appearance with a goal and an assist for the Galaxy . . . Hopefully, LD gets a gold cup call up though!

  30. Scott e Dio93 says:

    Doovan kinda screwed himself, especially what Donovan did this year with Galaxy not being CONCACAF.

  31. RPH says:

    How about Mike. E gets a life?

  32. Juve177 says:

    Donovan physically and mentally burned himself out by playing with Everton, in the World Cup (and WCQ) and LAG all within a period of 2 years. On top of this he’s frustrated having to even play in the MLS and clearly wishes he was back with Everton. His Twitter description twice refers to himself as an Everton player (in addition to LAG) even although he’s not even signed with Everton and has never even played a full season there.

    He’s not over his burn out, has lost the drive to play for the LAG and even with the USMNT generally, yet yearns to play for Everton.

    Clearly it was the right decision to leave him off the USMNT squad.

    There’s also little doubt he’ll be back at some point in the not too distant future, and will be welcomed by all with open arms.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Everton player? Heck, Moyes is gone now. And they wouldn’t pay for him then.

  33. beachbum says:

    if Coach wants to get a view on someone in the pool who can help, call him in. Simple, unless there is some reason(s) in the way…….

    in viewing Klinnsman’s approach, my take is he will use this to try and motivate the others on the team, us against the world: do you read what they’re saying about us? that without Landon we cannot succeed? that we need to have Landon in here? Well, is that true team??? Prove it not’s true!

    somehting like that

    he’ll use it as a motivational thing imho, and has already used it like that (coaches challenge their players like this ALL the time), making it more difficult for him to call LD back in in my opinion.

    Coach likes the idea of doing it without Landon, proving whatever he wants to prove with that. Who disagrees with that?

  34. Sebastian Le Drew says:

    I think we have about 3 or 4 Zusi’s, but no players like Donovan

    Still not sold on Zusi

    • Rami says:

      Was one of if not the best player on the field for the USA against mexico

      • Sebastian Le Drew says:

        I actually agree, but the game plan was to play defensive for the last 70 mins against Mex… Still want to see him do something on offense that wows me

  35. joel says:

    I can understand where Klinsmann coming from however, there are not 4 better wide options
    than Donovan in these 3 upcoming qualifiers in June. I guess we will see him at the Gold Cup
    if we dont then thats it for Donovan under Klinsmann.

    • Dan says:

      If Donovan is the best we have we’re doomed. As a Galaxy fan I can tell you he is nowhere near good form. Slow, sloppy and looking a couple years over his age. I haven’t seen an MLS game yet where I would say he was a top 5 player on the field.

  36. shane says:

    Stupid is, is stupid does and Klinsmann one stupid . . . .

  37. AC says:

    Understandable. Work his way back for the Gold Cup and he should be fine.

  38. Alex says:

    I agree that he’s not in top form right now. However, no one in the US pool can do what a half-form Donovan can! Our offense lacks creativity, movement, options, finishing, smart crossings, aggresivness with the ball. Moreover, this is not a decision based on form, I’m sure we can agree that this is Klinsman’s way of saying “I told you so”. But, what is the difference between Donovan’s decision to move away from the way for a couple of months from Chandler’s decision to snub our National Team time after time because he wasn’t sure about comiting to the US Program permanently? This is a double standard. When Chandler wasn’t sure about comiting, Klinsman said he was ok with that and asked for everyone to give him time to clear his mind and make his own decision. When Donovan wasn’t sure about his desire to play football (which can happen after playing for so many years), Klinsman said he was ok with that, but…

  39. Cairo says:

    All of those criticizing Donovan’s form–please tell me who the other players in MLS who are are in better form and have any history of performing well in the USMNT setup. It’s easy to see that Donovan is not all the way back, but I don’t see any other great options out there either. Who are these players who are going to be better than him for the NATS? That team does not score, and quite a few have been tried. Donovan at the very absolute least gives us someone who can create something (anything, please!) on the counter. This is a bad decision…

    • beachbum says:

      well said Cairo

    • biff says:

      +1, Cairo. My feelings exactly. Donovan, of all people, should be called in for a look. This is obviously a power play by Klinsmann to publicly dethrone and humiliate a man who for the past decade has bled (literally) for the shirt. And it appears Klinsmann also is trying to turn USMNT members against Donovan.

      Sad what is happening here, compliments of Klinsmann. Bums me out. But, hey, I have no doubt that Klinsmann the tactical attack genius will whip the team in shape and we’ll probably score one or two goals in June during the 3 WCQ games.

      • the unmistakeable Ronaldinho says:

        I’m not sure Klinsmann is out to “publicly dethrone and humiliate” Donovan. I don’t think its as sinister as that. I do, however, believe that he was not at all happy about the way Donovan has handled his situation and is not going to do him any favors.

        With that said, I would have called LD into camp. He isn’t in top form, but what are our wide options right now? Zusi, Eddie Johnson, Gomez, Shea, Bedoya, maybe Fabian Johnson?

        There are 5 games to be played. Our attack has yet to click and we will need options to mix things up if we continue to fail offensively. I don’t think we had anything to lose by bringing LD in, but it could cost us. The Gold Cup keeps getting more interesting. Surely LD will be there.

  40. Charles says:

    How big of a mistake was playing in England for Donovan. What a bloody waste of his time/energy. I guess only he knows, but if it caused this, it was a huge mistake.

    How big of a mistake is this for JK ? IF the US loses while not playing their most influential player over the last decade plus, who isn’t old yet, JK and his decision will be blamed for the losses.

    • Kosh says:

      …and if JK plays him and they still lose? He’s not an automatic win just because he’s on the squad, you know.

      Why does it seem like leaving an out of form Donovan for this camp is such a massive gamble and monstrously terrible decision? If this is as tough as decisions get then JK must be living the life.

    • Ed says:

      Ha, yeah right Klinsmann will NEVER be blamed for anything.

  41. smokarz says:

    I agreed with what Juve177 says above:

    I think he’s yearning for Euro glory, at a time when his clock is ticking ever so quickly. He knows he won’t be able to get back to Euro and the biggest issue right now with LD is mental (not physical).

    I said it before, and I will say it again. The biggest mistake LD made in his soccer career is leaving Europe and return home during what is arguably his prime years.

    If he had decided to fight for success in Euro, not only his games would improve significantly by playing against top talents in the top leagues, but it would also keep in hungry. Hungry for trophies, CL/Europa, etc.

  42. Dan M says:

    Chuck, his England stint was an effort to pry open some interest in Europe. His performances were o.k., but not so awesome as to invite bids to LA ownership. It wasn’t a waste, anymore than trying your best is a waste everytime you don’t succeed. But it does show that Landon’s storied role in US Soccer is not a verification of his quality on the club stage. He was a pioneer, but he was not the true “breatkthrough” footballing messiah we still wait for. Add to that the fact that he is now older and offers less and less with each passing season. Klinsy got this one right.

    • CG says:

      Given the set-up of MLS and what LA/MLS would have (or perhaps did) ask for Landon in return, I think your assessment is a bit of oversimplification. Isn’t too high a price tag also a verification (validation) of sorts?

      Time will sort out Landon’s true legacy.

  43. Bac says:

    For everyone who is bashing JK for this…. just remember… Landyycakes created this current situation he now finds himself in… You make your bed you gotta lie in it….

    • Paul says:

      exactly! he also made a mess of his botched weak ass PKs.

      • Rami says:

        Its kind of sad how scared people are of life without LD. Its no news flash that players regress In their 30’s its inevitable people.

        • beachbum says:

          it’s much more sad that so many US ‘fans’ want their pound of flesh out of LD.

  44. Mad as Hell says:

    I’m going to be in Cleveland for the open practice and now my kids wont get to see Donovan. If Klinsmann thinks Landon needs to earn his way back then have him on the bench, but dont leave him out of camp all together. What a wad Klinsmann is.

    When you watch the Belgium match, I’ll be the one, probably of many, with a “KLINSMANN OUT” sign

    • Rami says:

      So we should bring in an unfit player because you going to be in Cleveland… yeah seems legit

      • Mad as Hell says:

        Hey Jurgen, I see you. You were all about Landy when you were trying to pull the wool over the eyes of Bayern. What happened?

        • louis z says:

          The wool got pulled.

          Fool once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. I think JK has learned his lesson.

  45. Mike Magee says:

    When am I going to get called in?

  46. wyofan says:

    Some thoughts with regards to some of the posts here. Jozy hustled like no other against CR in Denver. Tons of off the ball movement that may not have been on camera.

    CR left Zusi wide open on the wings and dared him try to hit good crosses. He failed over and over. Can’t help but think Donovan would have done far better. Or more likely would have drawn more attention opening the middle more.

  47. 2tone says:

    I can see why Klinsmann is doing this, and really Donovan hasn’t been setting MLS a light either. But and this is a big but, if the USMNT was to fail to get at least 6 points in these next three games then Klinsmann will be hugely under fire along with USSF for excluding the best field player the past decade.

    This is the most important month for garnering maximum points.

  48. Mike Magee says:

    Hello… I want in…

    • soccerhorn says:

      sorry Mike we didn’t want to disturb you while you were wrapping up Hangover 3.

  49. John says:

    This was a really smart move!

    the remaining Hex opponents

  50. chris thebassplayer says:

    JK’s ego is making him look like a fool. Yeah, LD hasn’t lit it up, but He is still good enough to compete with the team for playing time. JK is basically saying he’s not even good enough to bring to camp for a look…that is complete BS. JK is completely blowing this.

  51. Paul says:

    if Landon cannot get in form under Bruce do you really think hill get in form un JK? Not likely one bit. Also is Landon still even going to be playing by the next world cup? Times are a changing and it’s pretty obvious many people don’t like it. Change is inevitable, and I personally like it. Quit living in the past.

  52. Todd T says:

    I am not sure I get the people who think Klinsi is crazy and letting his ego getting the better of him. What he has done so far is get the US through 3 WCQ games and earned 4 points. Pretty much right where anybody with an ounce of common sense could have hoped to be at this point in qualification.

    Guess what…we played those games without Donovan!!! We can play the next couple of qualifiers without him. Donovan made a choice to take time off. Maybe the smartest thing he could have done for his career but also incredibly selfish to miss the first 3 qualifiers. Action leads to consequence. He is not fit…he clearly is not the same player…yet!!!

    The coaches job is to prepare the team for the present and the future at the same time. Meaning he has to get ready for the decline or demise of Donovan’s skill set. He has to have guys ready to step and fill the void. Nobody will argue with the fact that we don’t have somebody who can do what he does. We still haven’t found somebody who could do what Reyna did but we moved on. Klinsi made it clear from the beginning that you have to earn your spot on this team. IF you don’t play at a good level in club you will not get called up…Boca….if you are not giving the effort required of you….Jozy….you will not get a call…if you chooses to take a vacation to work on your life problems….Landon….you will not get a call. But if you are working your ass off playing anywhere you can get a game and devote all of your energies to getting back to your team then….Stu….you get the call.

    Dropping Donovan is consistent with everything he has done so far. Landon has to show he belongs at this level again. Right now clearly he is not there….yet!!!! I expect he will be a part of the team and if he can regain full form will start during the Cup….but for now there is no free passes.

    That only leaves Sacha Kljestan. I am not sure what to say about him. He plays well for his team and his team is good for a medium level league but I am not sure he would do well in a mid level team in a top league. It is kinda like looking at Jozy’s numbers in Holland. They are impressive but can you make an impact in a better league. Of the two, Jozy seems to have the tools to move up.

    Kljestan is a defensive liability for the USMNT. Maybe if we had true wingers with speed that could compensate for his short comings….but we don’t. If Sasha is so good why hasn’t he moved to a bigger league and a better team? Klinsi has made it clear about getting out of your comfort zone and challenging yourself. Dempsey did with fair results…I hope he has enough in his tank to make another jump next season at Tottenham.

    So how about we support our coach even if we don’t understand everything he does and let’s root for the guys who show up to play!!!!

    • soccerhorn says:

      This argument is specious. The thing that bothers everyone about JK is that he says one thing and does another. For every “player in the doghouse” that Klinsman has snubbed (Kljestan, Altidore, Donovan), there’s another that gets off the hook – especially if they’re German. For example, Klinsmann made it quite clear that anyone who wanted to play for the USMNT would have to prove to him how bad they wanted it – and then continues to call in Timmy Chandler, who couldn’t have been more clear about his lack of desire to play for the US if he’d rented out an airplane and written it in the sky over JK’s helipad.

      • Todd T says:

        He called Chandler into camp to cap tie him to the US. Any coach that doesn’t try to get in dual national players if foolish and myopic in their coaching vision.

        Do you really think Chandler is disinterested in playing for the US now?

        If you are asking me would I take a “German” player over an “American” player especially one who has been brought up through the German youth system. I would take the best player with the best technical skill. Pragmatically (8 times out of 10) that would be the American who happens to be a dual national, born in Germany. What the worse thing that happens. They are not good enough and somebody else steps in…having depth has never been a USMNT strong suit. So build a German bridge and get over it.

        I am sorry but we do not produce a great number of technically skilled players. Ramos, Reyna, O’Brien, Dempsey…and Dempsey is debatable. Please don’t come back with what about Landon…I only have to say Leverkusen twice and Bayern Munchen. And yes I do believe he could have stayed at Everton and had an impact…if he had the heart for it but he didn’t. If he had half the heart that Dempsey has then he would be twice the player he is…but he has preferred to be a big fish in a small pond and not challenge himself.

        If Dempsey hasn’t achieved “shit” in Klinsi eyes(because all his accomplishments have been on small team and the small stage), which I understand the point….than where does that leave Landon…a complete failure? No one can argue his ability when he was younger. He was a great player but aside with a few cameos in England he hasn’t accomplished anything.

        As for Kljestan, what would he be in the dog house for? Not being good enough?

        I would agree with you about letting Jones play when he was on suspension and not playing at Shalke. But Jones is a tireless work horse and bleeds for the team. I would rather have Jones with his getting caught in possession than having Beckerman getting caught without speed.

        By the way Chandler was seen for the future rather than the present until Dolo got hurt…now Dolo is back and Chandler is hurt. When he come back from injury there has been some talk about Chandler playing on the wing and having Cameron at right back. Wow a skilled player that can play multiple positions better than most of the player in out player pool. Yeah your right…screw him…I’d rather bite off my nose to spite my face. That’s not being “Specious”…it is just foolish.

  53. CentralScrutinizer says:

    Anyone who has watched Donovan play for the Galaxy since he returned from his hiatus will understand Klinsmann’s decision. Landon hasn’t been very good. He lacks confidence and doesn’t deserve a call up. And I’m a huge Donovan fan.

  54. PD says:

    I’m going to reserve judgement about this call-up until later on in the summer. It would seem that JK believes –and I would say rightly so– that the US can handle these next two matches without him. That gives LD time to continue to find his form and fitness. I don’t think anyone believes that this is the end of LD in the red white and blue anymore than I think anyone would deny that we need to give the next generation minutes in games like this. It’s a call that makes sense and I do not think it hurts LDs chances on having a ticket to Brasil.

  55. David M says:

    It’s obvious that Klinsmann doesn’t want Donovan on the team, period.

    It’s interesting to note that under Klinsmann, the US have played really attractive, attacking soccer in just one game — the 5-1 win over Scotland. In that game, Donovan scored a hat-trick and had two assists. Klinsmann might be afraid that with Donovan the team might actually go forward, attack, and pass the ball towards the opponent’s goal. Not something the USMNT has done this year.

    • Todd T says:

      Genius…that’s it!!! Why didn’t any of us think of this before. Thanks for your insight!!!!

      • David M says:

        Are you planning on dedicating the rest of your life to defending Klinsmann?

        • Todd T says:

          No….but at some point we have to realize that he knows more than us. I honestly don’t think he is perfect nor do I think he is the best tactical mind. I do believe he has a unique understanding of what US soccer needs to do to move forward. I don’t believe he is afraid of Donovan or the idea of forward play. I think he is making Donovan earn his spot. The spot which he gave up voluntarily. If he was in top form and being left off then I might believe something else was going. I respect Klinsi because he said from the very beginning’ “no spot is safe”. He is being true to his word. The truth is in Donovan’s present form. We don’t need him for these games. Just like we didn’t need Jozy during the early rounds of qualification. Not for nothing, shouldn’t we defend our coach? Especially because he has played and won on the biggest stage. By the way I supported Bradley and Arena too.

          • soccerhorn says:

            No spot is safe unless you’re Timmy Chandler or Jermaine Jones.

            • Todd T says:

              Actually I think Howard, Bradley, Dempsey and Jones are locks. I think that Chandler, F. Johnson, Cameron and Gomez are mostly locks. I don’t disagree in the players you mentioned but I disagree that only Germans are locks.

              • Todd T says:

                By the way before the end of Bob Bradley’s coaching rein…he benched Donovan for being in ineffective during the Gold Cup.

  56. bryan says:

    while i do think having Donovan off the bench could be good, the truth is, he just hasn’t looked good in MLS. he’s CLEARLY going to be on the Gold Cup squad if left off WCQs. i think that makes sense to be honest.

    we have very few players who are dynamic as him, but he’s just getting back to himself. i can sympathize with both sides here.

  57. Brett says:

    I think Klinsmann challenged Donovan and was unhappy with his response (to slink away and collect himself). That bridge appears burned, which sucks, because Donovan was THE key man in the ONLY truly inspiring performance put in under Klinsmann (the thrashing of Scotland in which Landon scored 3 and assisted on 2 of the 5 goals).

    • Todd T says:

      Scotland was terrible….please don’t let that be your only argument!!!!!

      • Brett says:

        They certainly looked it, particularly with Landon shredding them up and down the pitch.

        We’ve played several opponents since then that are comparable (even worse) than Scotland in that match, and yet we still look like we don’t know how to play with the ball.

        • Todd T says:

          I don’t disagree with you there. I think we are still quite a ways from the type of team that we want to be. I think everybody thought this would happen in 1 WC cycle when it is obvious that it will take 10 years or more to have the developmental system changes to take effect. BUT most of the articles and pods that I listened to said Scotland was lifeless and disinterested for that game. If we are to believe we were as good as we looked against Scottland then we have to believe we are as bad as we looked against Canada. My point is have a little perspective. We are only a good team. Now you could make a strong case that we might not be any better than when Klinsi took over.

  58. Rami says:

    This Landon Donovan is god crowd cracks me up, only because in Landons best years there was a vocal Landon sucks crowd.

    • Lil' Zeke says:

      Not God, just maybe the best we’ve had

    • Helium-3 says:

      The team is always bigger than any player. Nothing new here.

      Donovan is a predictable player that relies on his fitness, quickness & speed to get
      around players. He needs space to play his game and if not given space, he doesn’t
      have the individual skill to beat players. This is why he drifts wide to get space because
      he doesn’t have ball skills to play in tight spaces in the middle of the field.

      When he plays, the rest of the team plays differently. There is too much reliance on him to make things happen so it’s better from a team perspective that he doesn’t play since it allows the team to be more balanced/dynamic.

      • Brett says:

        Every piece of evidence I can gather (match film) says that the USMNT is more dynamic in terms of attacking movement and possession play with Landon on the pitch than they are without him.

        It’s not a matter of Landon being this can’t miss player with tons of skill, he just makes our team better and without him we look like the third best team in our confederation.

  59. MLS_Soccer_Talker says:

    Honestly, If YOU were the Coach, and not a die hard USMNT fan who has been watching this team since 2002, would you call up players based on what they have shown in the past or what they have shown under your tenure…..realistically, Donovan had 1 good outing for the USMNT all of last year and then he left the team..since coming back tosoccer he has looked rusty…why would you call in a player who isnt even in form? The only thing people on here keep sayin is “well in the past” Donovan did this/that…. Well guess what?? The game is played in the present. How about we get behind our Coach who hasnt let us down thus far and get behind the players who have been with team through out the WCQ process.

  60. SoB says:

    If we had a pool of prospective players that had what LD brings to the table then it would make sense to not call him up. We don’t. I want to go to the World Cup. we need Landon. Winning is the most important objective and we are about to be to the midway point of the HEX. This is no time to experiment. I can’t stand Landon sometimes but I couldn’t imagine a World Cup without the USA (I was 4 last time it happened). All of this barking is pointless. If Klinsy thinks that the best USA 18 doesn’t include a healthy (if not in top form) Landon then maybne he knows something we don’t, but not inviting him to camp?

  61. Goalscorer24 says:

    It all comes down to this: If we win in June Klinsmann is a genius, if we lose he is a fool.

  62. KG says:

    could mean the difference between six and nine points this summer. Stupid move.

  63. Gary Page says:

    With so many comments, don’t know if anyone will read this, but, IMHO Donovan isn’t in form. In fact, he is not near to being in form. The penalty kick he missed recently is indicative. From his approach on that kick it was obvious to me that he is really lacking in confidence now. Also, he seems hesitant about taking on players and just looks unsure at times on the pitch. Until he can regain his form/ touch, and confidence, I think he would not be of any great help to the USMNT.

  64. Joe Dirt says:

    Truth is Donovan is better at Yoga than Klinsmann., which f’s up Klinsmanns Yen.

    Later they’ll get a couples massage and make up.

    Seriously, you leave off our best player for frickin WCQs. That’s insane, JKs officially on crack.

    Form is fleeting, but class is permanent.

    Last I checked we need some speed on the wings, wtf Klinsmann.

  65. Mig says:

    So is it possible that JK can get fired at any point short of the US not qualifying? If we take 2 points from our next three games…does he go?

    Looking for a bright side to all this. Maybe it will snow for the Jamaica game.

    And I’m only joking a little bit.

  66. Michael F. SBI Mafia Original says:

    I’ve had enough of this clown. No player can do what LD does especially Zusi.
    Are we really having this conversation?

    • biff says:

      Last week the web site posted a video on its Home Page of Klinsmann in the 1990s throwing a temper tantrum when he was playing for FC Bayern. Herr Klinsmann was angry because he was pulled out of a game. As he went to the sidelines he yelled angrily at his coach and then kicked a hole in a big advertising container. The video is linked below.

      As your watching it, just keep in mind that this same man 20 years later is making the decisions that will decide the fate of USMNT players. And, after promising to give several coaches tryouts for assistant jobs, he changed his mind a few weeks later chose Martin Vasquez as his assistant. Oh yeah, he also promised attacking soccer and up to this point the USMNT under his guidance has not scored one goal on a counter attack. Not one single goal. If you want to see a team that knows how to counter just watch Egypt under Bob Bradley.

      link to

      • Marco says:

        Is he the same guy who is undefeated in Mexico?

      • GW says:

        “Last week the web site posted a video on its Home Page of Klinsmann in the 1990s throwing a temper tantrum when he was playing for FC Bayern. Herr Klinsmann was angry because he was pulled out of a game. As he went to the sidelines he yelled angrily at his coach and then kicked a hole in a big advertising container. The video is linked below.

        As your watching it, just keep in mind that this same man 20 years later is making the decisions that will decide the fate of USMNT players.”

        So what?

        I followed JK as a player and the about those videos is that it confirms what I’ve always known, the man is a very poor loser.

        He will do anything to qualify. Maybe he’ll even bring LD back to the team if Landon actually starts playing like a real national team player.

        He will do anything to get as close to winning the World Cup as possible.

        As a USMNT fan I view the willingness to do anything to win in a manager as a positive.

        “And, after promising to give several coaches tryouts for assistant jobs, he changed his mind a few weeks later chose Martin Vasquez as his assistant.”

        So? BFD.

        “Oh yeah, he also promised attacking soccer and up to this point the USMNT under his guidance has not scored one goal on a counter attack. Not one single goal. If you want to see a team that knows how to counter just watch Egypt under Bob Bradley.”

        Better yet watch any USMNT game when the team was managed by Bob Bradley.
        Counter attacks are the hallmark of a team focused on defense first. By definition, a “counter” is given AFTER the opponent throws the first blow.

        Bradley’s teams primarily scored off the counter, and then set pieces. USMNT fans found this negative and boring and is one reason y’all lobbied for and got his head.

        Counter attacks have nothing to do with what JK promised.

  67. Micah says:

    When will the roster be announced?

  68. Pingback: Donovan shines as Galaxy rout Union | Soccer By Ives

  69. dcpohl says:

    If Donovan plays well in MLS, he’s probably going to play a part later in qualifying. Heck, I bet a reinvigorated Donovan even goes back to England for a loan as the final preparation for his last World Cup. That sabbatical he had was the last time he’s going to get a break until the end of the 2014 MLS season. Then he’ll retire.