Landon Donovan: ‘I absolutely deserve to be going to Brazil’

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CARSON, Calif.– Following his first practice with the LA Galaxy since his return from the USMNT camp in Palo Alto, Landon Donovan addressed the media for the first time since his shock omission from Team USA’s final twenty three-man World Cup roster.

“I’m not angry. I’m disappointed,” Donovan said. “I’ve spent most of my adult life, and the majority of my life in general, dedicating myself to this sport and my country, and representing my country. And so I was really looking forward to the opportunity to play in another World Cup and to help this team. Having been in camp for ten days, I really thought I was going to contribute in a real big way – probably bigger than I had expected going in.”

“Based on my performances leading up to camp, based on my preparation for the camp, based on my fitness, based on my work load, based on the way I trained and played in camp, I not only thought I was a part of the twenty three, I thought I was in contention to be starting.  That’s why this has all been pretty disappointing. And I think every one of my teammates (with the USMNT) would echo those same words.”

When asked how he felt about head coach Jurgen Klinsmann’s assessment of Donovan that there were probably several players that were “ahead of him” in camp, Donovan did not hesitate to refute the notion.

“I don’t agree with that assessment. I think I was as least as good as everybody else in camp,” Donovan said. “I think you guys that know me well, know that I’m pretty honest when it comes to my assessment. When I don’t play well, I say ‘I didn’t play well.’ When I say I played well, I think I played well. I think I trained and played very well in camp.

“I think I was one of the better players. So that’s why it stings a little,” Donovan added. “If I had gone in (to camp) and didn’t feel like I deserved it, then I can live with that.But that’s not the case here.”

The ever-taciturn Donovan did not bite when he was asked if the decision was based on personal issues between him and Klinsmann.

“I can’t speak to that. I don’t know.” And when asked about why Klinsmann’s son mocked him on Twitter, Donovan simply replied “to be honest, I don’t know his son well. I’m not really sure where that came from.”

However, Donovan reiterated his feeling that his omission was not based entirely on his performance with the national team.

“I think if I’m being judged solely on what happened in camp, then I absolutely deserve to be going to Brazil,” Donovan said. “I firmly believe I deserved it, and not just from what I’ve done in the past, but from what I’ve done in the last week and a half.”

As regards his future as an international player, Donovan didn’t close the door on a national team return.

“Honestly, I haven’t had much chance to think about that. I love this country, I love playing for this country, I have always loved representing this country, so I can’t imagine that, if I’m given another opportunity, I would say no,” Donovan said. “But at this point, I’m just trying to deal with the disappointment.”

“Of course I would say yes to it, if I was called in to play in the World Cup to represent my country,” said Donovan. “That’s what I’ve been working for my entire life. Though, I don’t wish anybody ill will. I hope everyone stays healthy.”

Despite the disappointment of being left out, Donovan reminded U.S. fans to continue supporting the U.S. team, as he plans on continuing to do.

“I think it’s also very important that after today, we all move forward and support this team, because they have a big task ahead, and I have a lot of friends on that team. I want to focus the energy and move it towards supporting them so that we can have a successful World Cup.”

Lastly, Donovan discussed his personal feelings on the exclusion.

“I’m disappointed. I’m sad. I, I’m human, and I wanted to go. I really wanted to go. But I’m at peace with it. I respect the decision. I just feel in my heart that I deserve to be there. And that’s the pill that’s hardest to swallow.

“To be honest, the support I’ve received has been really overwhelming, and I think it’s help me understand the impact I’ve had. It’s really been pretty amazing. Someone said to me, and I think it’s true, a lot of times you don’t hear those messages… unless you’re at a funeral. And so some of these things I heard were really uplifting, validates the way I feel about myself as a player and as a person. I really appreciate all the support I’ve had from everyone.

“I think it was very important for me, from both a personal and professional perspective, to address it (the omission), and speak about it. But after today, I won’t be speaking about it any more. I want to focus on the Galaxy, and doing what I need to do here. And I want to urge people to support the (US) team. I don’t want there to be a negative tint to any of this.

“We’re all professionals. We’re all men. We have to handle things like this. But I think it’s important to support our team and support our nation. They need us.”

The LA Galaxy host the Philadelphia Union at home at the Stub Hub Center on Sunday night. It remains to be seen if Donovan will play in the match.


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552 Responses to Landon Donovan: ‘I absolutely deserve to be going to Brazil’

  1. john says:

    Looks like it was a personal decision made by Klinsy. Not a good move.

    • The Dude says:

      It definitely seems fishy. The fact that the whole country is up in arms–and probably the core of the team–puts more pressure on the coach. He might have even lost the locker room. Dempsey and Bradley were clearly not happy about the omission. Personally, I’m deeply disappointed. Donovan’s playmaking ability and experience in big games is priceless. That ALONE should have been enough to bring him.

      • sammysounder says:

        The only people up in arms are ones who do not watch mls. Donovan has 0 goals and 2 assists. Donovan is not the same player as he was 4 years ago.

        He needs to shut it.

        • Paul6 says:

          Jozy has 1 goal in 30 something games.

          • "The TX 2 Stepper" says:

            IIRC That’s 1 more than Donovan in 2014 and the defenders Donovan is up against ain’t the same level either.

            • Duke says:

              And how exactly will Jozy fare against even better players? Landon can turn it on when he wants and at the WC, he would want. Jozy cannot do any more than he is right now and yet…JK props him up

              This was personal and most likely payback. JK is selling us down the river with with this move and in the end, it may just end up costing him his job.

              • Cylo says:

                You Landon suck ups will suck everything on him. The guy washed up. This teaches a lesson to every brat out there. DON’T TAKE 9 MONTHS OFF! Klinsy remembers hell I remember. See ya Landon.

              • Bitman says:

                Jozy Altidore is much better than Landon Donovan at this stage of their respective careers. There is no discussion.

              • US100Ebook says:

                Can someone do some dang math… Going on sabbatical from mid December to late march isn’t 9 months or a year. Donovan was back after three qualifiers but Klinsy didn’t call him In For another five months… That’s on Klinsy, not Landon. Get your math straight.

              • beachbum says:


                perfectly expressed. I appreciate what your post and perspective reveal. Thank you

            • The Garrincha says:

              Easy Paul and Texas 2 step.
              it’s not about LD or JA, it’a about the team,
              That’s the only way anyone is successful at a World Cup.
              As for me, I feel they both should be there.

          • Drew11 says:

            Jozy didn’t show up to a Nat camp with a boiler.

        • Paul6 says:

          Aron has 1 goal since like the beginning of March. Boyd was on a year. Stats don’t tell everything about a players form.

        • Nate says:

          true he is not, but you cant seriously think Brad Davis, or Wondo ,WORLD CUP ROOKIES at age 32 and 31, will be more effective against Ghana, Portugal or Germany than Landon Donovan, You cannot possibly think that.

          • Joe says:

            Brad Davis won’t play, but will be better in the locker room than Donovan would be. Wondo had a great camp, according to LD, himself.
            Personally, Green is the player I’m looking at. What did he do to deserve his spot?

            • Edmondo says:

              Why are looking at green? He was competing with corona. It’s Brad who took his spot. 2nd thing, it’s not 23 players better than LA (bothers me when peoplease say that). He is not a defender, goalkeeper, or box-to-box midfielder. So it’s really the front 4 positions. So ask yourself, are there 8 players better than him in those spots (not really).

              Green is there for the something special off the bench wity speed that he wanted from Shea and corona.

            • Nate says:

              how? This is all new to Davis. What exactly will he bring to the locker room?

            • Joamiq says:

              Why do you think Brad Davis won’t play? Your wing midfielders are Zusi, Bedoya, Davis, and Green. Unless you think 18 year old Green is going to be first off the bench, Davis is going to play.

          • Steve says:

            Davis is the best left footed deliverer on the team and is way better than Donovan on set pieces and corners. That’s how we can say that. Donovan has lost not one step but two steps. Look at this makeup. Young speedy players who might be able to run past some tired legs after grueling league seasons. Klinsman has won a World Cup in his native land making harder decisions than this one was. Anyone who thinks he cares what anyone thinks is crazy. He makes the decisions he needs to make and this was the correct one. Donovan is a has been.

            • smokeminside says:

              please clarify: “won a world cup”. Just wondering what you’re referring to.

            • Drew11 says:

              Davis is in way over his head in this group. He’s done nothing on the international stage to deserve this slot.

        • Benny says:

          And do you watch anything?

          • Rooney's Hairpiece says:

            The thing you want to do is reach peak form in Brazil. It sounds pretty clear that Landon felt his form was there and building. Klinsman was messing with him by bringing him to camp knowing all along that he would cut him. When he saw Donovan’s form he had to cut him before the friendly. The evidence (including the son’s email, timing, general concensus about Landon’s form at camp) is overwhelming for me that Klinsman based his decision on a personal grudge and not what is best for the team/country. As a manager you have to above such petty BS. They should fire klinsman and make Landon the new player/manager.

            • Byrdman says:

              To what end. To be criticized far and wide? He has to believe this for the best or why else go thrlu all the ripping?

              • Duke says:

                I think Landon is a thorn in JKs side that he wanted removed. You may be on to something though. If Donovan was looking good in training, then turned in a good performance in the friendlies, how could JK cut him? Solution… cut him now and say “others are ahead of him.”

                I am getting sick and tired of some of JKs player selections and also other players that should be in the mix that he ignores. He is zeroing in on a group of favs and ignoring other better players. The biggest crime is the omission of Lee Nguyen from consideration. He is absolutely on fire and yet, can’t get a look. Contrast that with Jullian Green who made the team based on WHAT?

              • CeezRBNY says:

                Lol Duke. I’m gonna screen cap your comment. That part about Lee Nguyen was absolutely hysterical!!

        • usmnt says:

          comments like this indicates you know zero about soccer must me a hater stirring up crap….

        • r.benjamin says:

          agreed. I’m sick of hearing about Landon already.
          We got 23 Landon is now slow and carrying 6 lbs.
          He never had the heart .. it’s caught up to him

          • Randall H. says:

            Are you kidding me? He never had the heart? I guess five goals in the World Cup is meaningless.
            You keep drinking the Klinsi cool aide if you think Green, Diskerud, Davis are better choices then Donovan. Klinnsman is an egomaniac who can’t stand sharing the limelight with Donovan, who also was in the know about how the players on Bayern Munich couldn’t stand him. Donovan might be a step slower but he’s still incredibly effective and his form has been fine at Galaxy. Klinnsman is clueless tactically, and more importantly has no idea how to build a team with his ridiculous motivational stunts. Remember how he dissed Michael Bradlley until it was just too painfully obvious that Bradley is the team’s best player. He brings in Green who has promise but is a child who looked totally out of his depth in his one US appearance. And Timmy Chandler who deserted the team during qualifiers. His little pet German “B” Squad also include Brooks who was a disaster against the Ukraine. Most importantly, the American team can’t get by on talent, we have always had heart and team spirit. That’s what Klinnsman is destroying by this move.
            Landon Donovan is a US Soccer icon who deserves at the very least to be on the plane to Brazil. Klinsmann was a world class striker who is a clueless coach, and a dishonest petty individual.

            • ann says:

              Chandler didn’t desert the USNT. Seems you don’t know anything about his situation at his club nuremberg at that time and what former coach Hecking was expecting from him. It’s the clubs who pay the players and if they lost their place there no one would be interested to see them again with the NT.

        • futbolisimo says:

          Couple points. Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t Donovan playing as a midfielder this season on the Galaxy? Wouldn’t that help explain, at least in part, the fewer-than-usual number of goals? Next, I kept one eye on the Galaxy/Timbers game the other week… Donovan, hands down, seemed like the shrewdest, most intelligent player on the field. Lastly, it’s important to remember how subjective and personal coaching can often be – even at the highest levels. That said, L.D.’s omission from the 23 seems naive, almost short-sighted. For U.S. soccer though, I’m excited; this ramps up everything.

          • Bac says:

            Almost every game he’s been a forward with Keane.. but he moves around

            • futbolisimo says:

              Ok, thanks. I suppose I thought that because his role seems less-“striker-ish” and much more play-maker/maestro-ish.

              • Bac says:

                Well he hasn’t looked strong, at least not in the games I saw, but the whole team looked disjointed. But he’s been lined up top with Keane almost exclusively.

            • St. Addi says:

              He has played 9 total games this year in mls and ccl. Started in midfield for 6 and forward for 3. It never ceases to amaze me the BS people feel the need to spew on this site. Seriously guys if you don’t watch certain teams play regularly, it’s ok to not comment on them. For example I watched almost all of Altidore’s matches this past season, but only one of Johannsson’s and none of Boyd’s. So in my mind I feel qualified to comment on Altidore’s form but not on the other two. Pretty fair standard really.

              • futbolisimo says:

                Chill homey… they’re just questions. Notice I use the word “seem”?

              • Freddy Adu says:

                THANK YOU for actually speaking to that which you know! I was so annoyed with Bac’s BS answer that I went and checked the stats myself and indeed Addi is 100% correct.

                Sure I think LD has been off a bit.this season, but to make up info about his start in position just to back up your point is absolutely ridiculous.

                Bac, be better than that

              • Bac says:

                Ok Addi, my bad, in the games I didn’t watch I remember looking at the espn gamecast to see where he was listed.. I wasn’t makin it up , that’s what I remember seeing.. If I’m mistaken.. I stand corrected

                As u could see I only commented on his performance in the games I saw, and thought the whole team looked out of wack, not just him

              • Bac says:

                Sorry Freddy, see my response to Addi.. my bad- I stand corrected

          • futbolisimo says:

            One other note. The Julian Green decision is troublesome. Of course, all of us Sam’s Army fans saw his inclusion coming, but now that it’s here the reality’s set in. I took a hard look at his face in the recent U.S./Mexico game. Bottom line, he does not appear ready, hungry, dripping with ecstatic confidence. By way of timely coincidence, go back in time to the 2002 World Cup: look at Donovan’s face; he was primed to perform. I could be wrong of course, but my prediction is the J. Green inclusion is a wasted card.

            • Bac says:

              Or if you read the article that came out today on the MLS site about him, you may have a different view – seems plenty of his teammates do

              • futbolisimo says:

                Can you post a link to the article?

              • Bac says:

                Sorry I’m on my kindle, it’s on the MLS site, titled Julian Green, The X Factor.. it’s good. You could probably link it from the espn Twitter feed also to any of the MLS posts and find it from there

        • solles says:

          Utterly, uttery untrue you clueless flounder

        • Mueller says:


          People aren’t taking club form into account at all. Landon has been poor. Even if some of the others like Jozy have struggled BPL and Bundesliga are much more difficult leagues. All you have to do is look at how poor Clint was playing in England compared to here or that Bradley Wright Phillips is leading the league in goals.

          • ED says:

            Why not give Donovon two more weeks then? And see how he does in the friendlies? Why would Klinsman cut him now?

            • Mueller says:

              It sucks but I think he had his mind made up before camp. And he brought the other 7 to motivate his 23 to train harder.

              I am not sure 2 weeks would have helped. Donovan has shown he is not a wide midfielder at this level anymore. Even though I think he plays it well, he pretty much can only play Dempsey’s role underneath Altidore which Johanssen and Diskerud can play as well. It probably just a matter of preference. Klinsmann was always to take 4 Forwards, 8 Midfielders and 8 Defenders. He just didn’t make a good enough case within the last 2 years or so.

      • BryanTheChamp says:

        How were Dempsey & Bradley not happy about the omission?

    • StillScratchingtillBald says:

      Too bad Klins isnt big enough to overlook the personal stuff. No player on the US team I would rather have taking PK’s under pressure than Donovan. Hope the team can get past the this move. Considering our last goal from a forward was McBride Klinsmann should have definitely kept Donovan as a forward or whatever title he wanted to give him. Class response Donovan.

      • Argy says:

        The snub was payback for disappointing Klinsy at Bayern Munich and taking a break during qualifiers. The kid’s Tweet indicates that Donovan is derided in their house hold. Really lame.

    • milbo says:

      Landon “deserves” nothing.

      • solles says:

        Of course he doesn’t, he has said that exact thing. But not to bring a guy who has so much potential to be such a game changer and who has proven his ability to come up big in big games just does not make sense. If the us goes 3 and out, this will be the topic no nor can escape for the next 4 years.

    • JJ says:

      “I thought I was in contention to be starting. That’s why this has all been pretty disappointing. And I think every one of my teammates (with the USMNT) would echo those same words.”

      Pretty bold statements by Donovan, who as we know, isn’t shy about admitting his own shortcomings.

      This move is indefensible by Klinnsman — I don’t know how people keep defending it or even accepting it. I fear for the impact it has on chemistry. This has disaster written all over it.

      • Joe says:

        Agreed. If Klinsy gets us out of the group, I will never question his madness again.

        • Paul says:

          The pool of players who are available for USMNT selection couldn’t get out of this group without some help from others in the group. Someone (Portugal) will have to underperform in group, and we’ll have to overperform (maybe just to get past Ghana).

          We could advance but odds are more likely we’ll go 0 for three. Maybe the middle of the probability bell curve is 1-3 points.

      • Recovered says:

        For all those thinking LD wouldn’t be a distraction in Brazil if he were relegated to the bench, think again. He’s fanning the flames and burning his bridges. LD is becoming the Abby Wambach of men’s soccer…the pleyer too popular to cut, too powerful to bench, and too old to effectively compete.

        • Bklyn says:

          I hate that it comes to this. I’ve always been an LD supporter, if never exactly a fan, you know? But this is absolutely right. We do not know what was said between the two; 17-year-old jackass tweets aside, we don’t know what the “family dynamic” was.
          But clearly Klinsmann is trying to win, and he has an idea. Is he not the winningest coach in USMNT history? I don’t like how this went down at all, but I have to believe I don’t know the whole story. I’m sure we all would have been appalled if we had seen the wind sprints the US hockey team did after a friendly in Sweden before the Olympics. (Again! Again! And if you don’t know what I’m talking about, for god’s sake go see “Miracle.”)
          But I do believe that if Donovan isn’t going to start, you don’t want him rolling his eyes and sighing heavily on the bench. Better to take somebody who doesn’t know that the team stands almost no chance of getting out of the group stages.

        • ann says:

          Then why Donovan’s “I can’t train 12 days in a row …” in camp? I really don’t understand. But everything is fine up to now until Donovan doesn’t start to criticise Klinsmann in public. Perhaps he knows what happened to Wörns in 2006.

    • MikeV says:

      For all the fools who think this was not a personal thing, Listen to what JK’s son posted on twitter. Not the HAHAHAHAHA post, the 2nd post 26 seconds before the account was deleted. He compares Donovan to another player on the squad and says he’s on the team because he would work harder that you.
      link to

      • Kosh says:

        It’s hard to take your argument(s) seriously when you poison/kill any room for debate with an attack. Unless one is quite certain that they are always 100% right and know absolutely everything then approaching a debate in this manner can be, well…foolish.

        • MikeV says:

          Those who make arguments not knowing all the facts are much more foolish in my mind. Did you know JK told twelmann that the bridge between he and Landon was burned during the Italy game. That was a long time ago, yet he kept leading LD on for what was it, a year or more.

          • Kosh says:

            Well at least it’s just in your mind.

            I find it funny that Twellman makes no mention if this on Ives’ show but states this “fact” on his site.

            LD was not available when JK was struggling in the early days. Did JK vent then? I can see that, but this vendetta that people like you want to happen…need to happen because you need some explanation to why JK dared to cut the uncuttabe…well you enjoy your facts.

        • solles says:

          Yeah yeah you know what he meant stop being such an obtuse pedantic doorknob.

    • whoop-whoop says:

      It’s always a personal decision when you tell someone they aren’t going to World Cup,

      • Kosh says:

        + 1

        Well, unless, you are trying to make the point that there’s more “there” there than really is there.

    • MikeV says:

      Just heard it. The bridge between LD and JK was burned a long time ago. Twellman, says JK told him so when the US played Italy in Italy. You have to hear it on the Big head Red head show. Also they talk about the 2nd tweet from JK’s son. Not the HAHAHAHAHA tweet.
      link to

    • GOYA-GOYA says:

      Call the wambulance!!!!!!!!

    • PD says:

      Personal shermsonal. LD, who has often gone from mercurial to petulant, has been borderline eccentric an indifferent the past two years, so it’s hard for me to take him at his own word. Say what you want about any agenda or beef JK has, LD has reaped what he’s sown and I think he needs to own that as much as he owns his issues. Frankly, many folks on this site need to do the same. When I think of how harsh folks are about Jozy and Deuce “disappearing” for stretches of matches, (when LD literally disappeared by going into semi-retirement and no one is talking about what potential they have to make some real noise over the next month. Nevermind the fact that we’re wasting all this oxygen holding LD’s guys hand and patting his head while ignoring the real amazing accomplishment of a players like Beasely (FOUR WORLD CUPS FOR HIM) or Wondo (echoes of Herc Gomez in 2010), players who climbed the ladder while being spat upon written off and derided the whole way by fans like us on posts like these.

      Only in US soccer could he get away with some of the stuff that he’s pulled, and frankly, it’s time we join the rest of the world in what we expect of folks who expect to be treated like the top 23 players in the country. If LD were a celebrity soccer player in any other country, he would be held in same company as Tevez and Suarez. For his sabbatical (abandoning club and country) and his public statements that he knows how to train better than the NATS physios that set a different expectation for him, a national side would pass on a call up, top clubs would get rid of him like a hot potato in exchange for equal talent available on the transfer market that was less bothersome, and media would begrugingly regard him for the talent he is while they opine that it’s right he be kept at arms length whenever possible because he comes with mental baggage, ambivalence, and a high maintenance price tag. Instead, because he’s in a closed market and has been the anointed one for so long, we still instinctively worship at his feet. Never mind the fact that it wasn’t until now, after he’s been cut, that we hear the first unambiguous statements from LD himself that he really wanted to go, honest. I’m not saying we disregard all that he’s done over the years, but we need to expect more in the here and now if we’re going to move on as a soccer culture.

      I for one was getting a little tired of how put upon this guy seems to be about being the apple of everyone’s eye. If it’s that much of a cross to bear then do the honorable thing and retire rather than force people to push you out. Cede the floor to others who have been dying for the opportunity to step out of your shadow.

      I only wish that we had the same kind of depth throughout the program to treat Timmy Chandler the same way, because if there was another player in our midst right now that could keep up with him I’m pretty sure he would have been sent home, too, because his ambivalence and issues have been every bit as tiresome as LD’s (funny how no one questions Donovan’s americanness though). Hopefully we’re not too far fro that day as well.

      • ann says:

        Very well written. –

        “If it’s that much of a cross to bear then do the honorable thing and retire rather than force people to push you out.” That’s what directly flashed through my mind.

        But I’ve to admit that I think different about Chandler if I incorporated his difficult club situation during that time and the special expectations of his former club’s coach on him.

    • Grant says:

      How do you know you are a euro snob?

      When you ignore the inclusion of the Germans (especially Green) & trash guys like Davis & Wondo.

  2. Paul6 says:

    Gah, it hurts watching your favorite players start to decline. Hard to see them go.

    • Sandtrout says:

      A little-known player named Tim Howard didn’t seem to think Donovan had declined much. I’m not sad at LD’s decline; I’m angry at Klinsmann for pretending that it’s already happened.

      • Paul6 says:

        The decline has happened. He’s he finished? Hell no. But he has definitely lost a step or 2. Nonetheless, he should be preparing for Ghana.

        • Paul6 says:

          Is he finished?*

          • sammysounder says:

            No, but we have better players than current form Donovan. ESPN has a great road to the world cup that show him now and him 4 years ago. He does bot look like the same player.

            • Paul6 says:

              No one said he’s the same player as 4 years ago..? But he’s definitely one of our 23 best players.

              • MikeV says:

                Everyone goes through a run of bad form. LD is going through one right now and lots of yahoo’s point to it as justification for not having him on the team. My opinion is that even in bad form, LD is head and shoulders above many of the players JK selected. Not too long ago, Dempsey was in very bad form. Did that stop JK from playing him or calling him part of the spine of the team. No. But he did repeat over and over how LD had to earn his spot and that nothing was a guarantee. He said this even after LD showed his class as the best player at the GC. Why the double standard? Others point to the fact that JK wants to go with youth to be able to keep up with the teams in the group and LD has lost a step and now runs like he is stuck in mud. If that is the case, then why is Brad Davis on the team. LD may have lost a step, but, he is hare compared to Davis the turtle. Lastly for those who say JK knows best and we have not been there to see what he did, I give you both MB90 and Timmy H. Both have said this week that LD is one of the two best players on the team.

        • ED says:

          Oh it’s Paul6 “The Footy Career Decider.” LOL thanks for your opinion.

  3. Philadelphia Collins says:

    What a legend, it’s a shame Klinnsman dropped the ball on this one.. Love ya, LD

    • Drew11 says:

      What a shame LD loaded up on fat burgers and dared JK to cut him. This is a WC year. LD needed to be all in from the get go. He wasn’t.

  4. Braden says:

    What a class act. Someone might get hurt. Go tear it up in MLS and who knows.

  5. skatetyb says:

    DONOVAN WE MISS YOU…. I HOPE THEY CUT SOMEONE AND PUT YOU IN THEIR PLACE… YOU’RE TOP 3 on the national team and I hope klinsman gets fired after a crappy world cup showing. This is BS!!!!

  6. Vasco says:

    Just seems real weird that a man who can still do it, and has all the experience and has scored several last minutes goals for the USA will be watching on tv like the rest of us.

  7. Ben says:

    I didn’t hate the decision initially, but now I’m disappointed. Donovan, whatever one thinks of him, is self aware enough that he is usually fairly accurate in his self assessment, so I believe him

    • Paul says:

      Yep. I thought we’d hear something about how he’s disappointed but understood the decision. I wasn’t expecting to read what Donovan said above.

  8. Sandtrout says:

    I don’t doubt any of what LD said here. He’s generally been honest to a fault. Klinsmann’s decision stinks of an ego trip and/or personality problem, and it disrespects U.S. fans. If LD had sucked in practice, the decision would be fine, but everything coming out of the camp suggested he was doing well. So much for decisions based on merit.

    • Jesse D says:

      Exactly. This has stunk of a power play decision. Klinnsman doesn’t care about the results in Brazil as much as he cares that he is credited for the results. He isn’t “about the team” he is about his own ego.

      I’ve calmed down now. I still understand that Jurgen is a small minded man, but I’m ready to root on the players who are there and had nothing to do with this ego trip.

      • Sandtrout says:

        Klinsmann’s “speech” — delivered for the ESPN cameras as well as the players — after announcing the team seemed to fall pretty flat. The players seem to get it.

        • MikeV says:

          The players looked stunned. If I made the 23 I would be doing freekin summersaults. That speech got a tepid clap at the end.

          • Jesse D says:

            Only Wondo was smiling.

          • Joe+G says:

            Well, you’d have to ask the players who have gone through this kind of thing, but I’m guessing there are a lot of mixed feelings immediately after. Sort of like what happens immediately after a layoff.

            Glad he did it early in the camp rather than wait until June 2nd.

      • Gillallen says:

        US Soccer has an agenda and they knew the 23 prior to camp…

        The idea of Chandler and Yedlin playing nxt to Cameron and Gonzalez doesn’t make any sense based on whats been seen these past 4 years from those players.

        If I was playing FIFA 14 or FM14 it would make sense, which makes me think the technical staff relies highly on advanced stats.

        • Julio says:

          Next to Gonzalez? That would be on the bench.

          • Jesse D says:

            At least that would leave you the option to bring him in, or to have him start the 2nd game.

          • Gillallen says:

            * Gonzalez or Cameron

            Last time I participated in a serious conversation about Cameron at CB I thought It was the consensus among most that he needed to play the position for club because he was pretty hit and miss for the Nats on his appearances there.

            If so, I don’t see how a couple of weeks is going to get him comfortable paired with Besler and Chandler, nvm Gonzalez who’s not in form and who might even be behind Brooks in Jurgen’s eyes. Anyone’s guess with this man

  9. Reg Chapman says:

    When Brad Davis thinks about the question from JFK “ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country,” the answer has to be fake an hamstring injury so Donovan can go to Brazil, right?

    • Jack says:

      haha wow

    • Seriously says:

      I lol’d.

    • Jesse D says:

      LOL. Awww, poor Davis. This isn’t his fault. The guy did what he was supposed to. Showed up, did his best. Now many people are hoping he gets hurt. Not fair to the guy at all.

      • Brad says:

        Very true Jesse D. lol Maybe Wondo instead! Davis can send in some good crosses.

      • Sandtrout says:

        At least Davis clearly has something Donovan doesn’t — a fantastic left-foot for crossing. Julian Green on the other hand? Well, he’s got German heritage. Other than that, not much going for him right now. He’ll be ready in 4 years though, which is when he should have made his first WC team.

        • Eurosnob says:

          Brazil frequently takes their top young players, who are not ready to contribute immediately, to the WC. Even when they don’t play a single minute (e.g. Ronaldo), they get to experience the WC (crazy fans, media attention, team atmosphere), which gives them an edge when the next WC arrives. Green is one of the top three players in Bayern youth system and bringing him to the WC is an investment in the future. Also, Klinsi stated that he does not view Donovan as a midfielder so his real competition was Altidore, AJ and Wondo. I would have personally taken Donovan to the WC ahead of Wondo, but I think Klinsi’s decision may have factored the fact that Donoval was not available to help the team during the critical WC qualifiers due to the self-imposed sabbatical.

          • skyman says:

            I may be the only one who thinks this, but I’d take Green over LD in a situation where we need to score. There’s no question that he’s faster, quicker, an likely just as skilled as LD.

            Folks, JK did this because he sees LD as not being 100% committed, and he’s has shown that he’s not. Does Chandler get a pass on this? Yes he does, not because he’s GermanoAmerican, but because he has what we need: speed and some experience on the right back position against top flight (unlike Yedlin). Get over this folks, LD was not there for the beginning of qualifying, and if we don’t make it out of that, then what do we say of LD?

            I think our standard of what it takes to be top flight internationally is different than JKs, and JK started to see cracks in what could have been a world class player in LD, when he didn’t go aggressively to the goal with Bayern (I watched him play those games). It’s worth mentioning that JK lobbied for LD back then, at a vulnerable time for JK – he was fired shortly thereafter – and then when he’s vulnerable again starting qualifiers.

          • solles says:

            Ironically, this is what the USA did with Donovan, though Donovan ended up playing and playing well as a 20 yr old in 2002

      • Matt says:

        I hope it’s not a serious injury, because he’s a good guy…but I hope he gets hurt.

    • Alecko says:

      so… coming in as a sub in the 75th minute, who do you want serving a ball from the left flank?

      • That_Guy says:

        Someone who will actually create a chance to get a cross off… so Donovan. Even “losing a step or two” Donovan is faster than Davis. Davis is not going to have the time and space he has in MLS at the world cup. Donovan has proven he can find a way to make something happen. Davis is only good if the ball is not moving and he is guaranteed 10 yards or if the right back falls and breaks his ankle mid play.

    • JJ says:

      You joke and yet an injury real or fake is the only way out of this clusterfark.

    • Tordondo says:


    • Xander Crews says:

      Here’s the fun part of that: if Davis gets hurt, Donovan’s not getting the call (Corona would), because HE DOESN’T PLAY ON THE WING ANYMORE. Donovan was the fourth in his best position, the withdrawn forward/central attacking midfielder, and he wasn’t going to beat out Dempsey, Johansson or Diskerud. Do you really want one of those three getting hurt? All of them are head and shoulders ahead of Landon these days.

      Some of you people need to realize that it’s 2014, not 2006 or 2010 anymore. Landon’s not the player he once was.

  10. Dc says:

    So yeah, it’s official,Klinsmann has something personal against Donovan, right? That is the only explanation. I’m not saying that he doesn’t have the right, he is the coach after all. But it’s a shame he let something personal get in the way of making our team the best it could be.

    • Jesse D says:

      Where are all the commentators that have been saying “until Landon says it”. Well he did. He showed us he is a bigger man than Jurgen.

      • gabe says:

        No. He showed he’d rather be a distraction before the WC than take the high road publicly like so many other players before him. Jurgen could have fleeced his lack of commitment publicly and aired every coach’s assessment of his shortcomings. Instead, he was complimentary. And Landon is the bigger man? Give me a break.

        • QuakerOtis says:


        • JJ says:

          Well considering the Klinnsman apologists were citing Donovan’s own comments about not being up to snuff, I think it is important that Donovan sets the record straight. And it’s fair to say he’s earned our trust in making that assessment, especially since he brought up his teammates who think the same. How anyone could think that is a healthy thing for the team is beyond me.

        • That_Guy says:

          Klinsmann has been uttering such crap from his mouth. How is Klinsmann the bigger man? He made the biggest distraction possible by omitting Donovan. Michael Bradley, Tim Howard, and the USA captain Cint Dempsey all went on record saying how important Donovan is to the cause. Is that not reason enough to believe he was one of the best players in camp? You trust one coach over the voices of three players who have been next to Donovan for the past 6+ years? And since Klinsmann has made his decision, all he has been doing is lying to the media about the situation. He even said his son looked up to Donovan! That was laughable! Donovan has been honest. Klinsmann has not. No way Klinsmann is the bigger person.

        • Jesse D says:

          Jurgen didn’t make a soccer decision, what part of that do you not get?

  11. Chris says:

    I just saw the ESPN inside the world cup video and how can you call Donovan fat? He takes his shirt off and he’s still got a six pack. The number of lies spread on here is insane

    • sammysounder says:

      Compare him to four years ago and he’s put on wait and lost speed and quickness. His mos numbers are sad.

      • Julio says:

        I really hate it when I telephone someone and I am put on wait.

      • Chris says:

        Its weight homie. What are you 12 years old? No sh!t he’s not as fast as he used to be but he still scored 5 goals at the gold cup less than a year ago

  12. Tony in Quakeland says:


  13. JH says:

    Landon that was a classy response. I hope you still get to go to Brazil somehow.

    • Adam M. says:

      I thought it came off as petulant, as something, even if his self-analysis right (and I don’t know that), that added unnecessary fuel to a fire. A bigger man would have taken the high road and held his tounge until after the World Cup. Making this attack now, which clearly attempts to drives an emotional wedge between his “friends” on the 23 and their manager, not to mention second-guesses the starters before they have even been named, comes across as an attempt to get his side out publicly before results might impact how we all feel about his exclusion. He’d have done better by letting his play speak for itself for now. Disappointed.

      • Lil'Zeke says:

        I don’t know man. He wants to go, he thinks his presence would improve our chances, and humility has been tried.

      • Xander Crews says:

        Absolutely. Nothing like acting like a petulant little child instead of the 32-year-old professional you claim to be.

  14. JayAre says:

    It’s too late for this now. Where was this fighting attitude before and during camp?? All we heard before this was how he can’t do anything as much as he did before and his chances of making the team were slim.

    • Jack says:

      I think Howard was even saying I hope to make the team. That’s kind of meaningless.

      • JayAre says:

        I’m pretty sure Howard never said anything like that & Howard isn’t LD. LD is/was the face of the team. You want confidence from people like that……example Dempsey, Bradley and Jones all full of confidence and don’t back down! They are our spine!

        • Julio says:

          Of course Tim Howard never said he hopes he makes the team. Jack thinks………………… shall I say it…………..differently.

          • Paul says:

            It had to be nerve wracking for the three keepers, fighting for those three spots on the roster.

    • gabe says:

      Right on, Jay.

  15. gabe says:

    This may not be a popular opinion here, but I am going to express it with conviction. Donovan has, with this interview, reinforced to his critics why he is being left out.

    While he talks a good game about always wanting to represent this country – how he respects the shirt and wants there to be no controversy and only wants what’s best for the team – it is clear that Landon perceives himself as an exception to conventional metrics and measures of commitment.

    “Based on my performances leading up to camp, based on my preparation for the camp, based on my fitness, based on my work load, based on the way I trained and played in camp, I not only thought I was a part of the twenty three, I thought I was in contention to be starting. That’s why this has all been pretty disappointing. And I think every one of my teammates (with the USMNT) would echo those same words.”

    Sorry, but his form has been dreadful in the MLS. He hasn’t been a major part of the national team for a number of years. He quit on the team during a qualifying campaign to go on a journey of spiritual enlightenment in order to find motivation to play the game he professes to love?

    This interview was typical Donovan, the filter-free moanings of a man who has been coddled as the privileged child of US Soccer for far too long. This is a guy who had an entire ESPN special on him leading up to the 2010 WC, complete with guests, former and current coaches, etc. singing his praises and lauding all he has done for US Soccer. Here is a guy who draped himself in an American flag and cried crocodile tears after a tap-in goal that sent us through a group stage that we should have secured easily, acting as though we were through to the final. Here is a guy who did a shoot interview with Grant Wahl about how bad of a teammate Beckham was because he stole Donovan’s thunder in LA, his armband, and didn’t pay for a few team dinners. Here is a guy who repeatedly spoke about how soccer wasn’t as important to him as it used to be, who is not the same player he was, who hasn’t been the US talisman for quite sometime, and has repeatedly shown that he doesn’t live or die for the shirt.

    Here is a guy who thinks that US Soccer owes him their devotion, gratitude, and loyalty.

    What do we see from guys like Clint Dempsey? We see grit, determination, and an indomitable spirit that will never be satisfied. What do we see from Michael Bradley? We see a young man who has tested himself against the world’s best and knows that we can do better, that we should be better, and that won’t rest until we are better. What do we see from Tim Howard? We see a workaholic dedicated to getting better every season, staying at as high a level as possible, and leading my example and commitment as opposed to glitz, recognition, and IOUs.

    Klinsmann was right to leave Donovan off the squad. This is a mentality that has helped stagnate the progress of US Soccer for years. The kind of “we played them tough as we could” mentality that allows our players to cry in victory after a one goal win over minnows Algeria as if we had no business advancing out of that group…Klinsmann is trying to build a program that is competitive, both internally and externally, where a mentality of entitlement is shunned and a never-say-die workmanship is law. Jurgen is clearly trying to instill in these young players, as well as the veterans, that if US Soccer is ever going to accomplish anything then they need to have an indomitable spirit – something Donovan doesn’t have.

    So, even if Landon was one of the best players in camp (I doubt he was based on his Galaxy form), somehow out-rating the scalding forms of Bradley, Dempsey, Chandler, Johansonn, and Johnson, his weak mentality and self-centeredness is what disqualifies him from involvement here in Brazil.

    I wouldn’t mind this shoot after the WC. It is selfish for him to contradict the coach before the cup, to undermine his assessment, and even implicate the players as if they agree that he deserves to be there. I say good riddance. I’d rather see a Zusi on the field, who is going to play with all his heart until he can’t even stand, then indulge this self-entitled diva one more match in a US shirt.

    Bring on Brazil, because win or lose…at least we know this 23 is committed to the cause.

    • Dc says:

      Please, add up the number of players on the 23 who’s form has not been great. That didn’t seem to be a factor here.

      • gabe says:

        form & commitment level, more so commitment. I think it’s a mentality thing above anything else, and that is the essence of my argument.

        • Dc says:

          I agree with that, Klinsmann was visibly annoyed when he was dealing the sabbatical thing and it has never really been the same since. He is always going on about “hunger” and “passion,” so yeah, that makes sense.

          • Jack says:

            That was a year, just say he’s not part of the team then, why string him along,

            • gabe says:

              then we’d say “how can he not call him in to the group of 30?” and would be talking about it even longer. There is never a “good time” to cut the face of the program.

              • Jack says:

                no if he hadn’t been part of the team for months it would have moved on. now this going to be a shadow on the entire US world cup.

            • Gillallen says:

              To make it seem as if it wasn’t already decided

            • Gene says:

              Because if he is cut from the program a year or more prior to the World Cup, how fair would it have been? I have no problem with Klinsmann’s decision now not to take LD, but I think I would have had one if the coach did not give the guy a fair chance to play back on the team. And I am sure there would have been a huge media outcry if such separate happened well ahead of the World Cup, for the the same reasons.

    • Paul6 says:

      Shouldn’t you be preparing the team, Jurgen? 😉

    • Jack says:

      Fine then make the cut 6 months ago. Why bring him into the 30 man, why take him to the January camp, the gold cup. Why make him just through every hoop when you know you’re just going to pull out from under him at the last minute. This is just going to hang over this entire World Cup now. Every poor pass from Brad Davis the entire country will be saying, why isn’t Donovan there, for better or worse.

      • Rooney's Hairpiece says:

        The form thing makes no sense. If you go to any British paper/blog the headline is that Klinsman cut Donovan and took Altidore. Jozy has scored 2 goals in two EPL season (58 apps). Donovan scored 2 goals in his 10-game loan to Everton in 2010. I for one thought that when Klinsman said that he considered Landon a forward, he was planing to start Donovan in place of Jozy at forward.

        • Nate says:

          Jozy was The USMNT 2013 player of the year. not taking him at age 24 would make even less sense than not taking Donovan. Your comparison should be Wondo, a world cup rookie at 31.

        • Bitman says:

          Jozy couldn’t buy a goal this season, but if you actually watched the games you saw that he still contributed good hold-up play and linked well with his teammates. Fact is, they lost confidence in him. He couldn’t finish and they stopped giving him the opportunity at a certain point.

          He will turn it around in Brazil.

    • Steve says:

      And yet Timmy Chandler is going to Brazil.

      • gabe says:

        The RB position is weaker in the pool than winger or forward. If Donovan played RB, then maybe I’d agree. Still, Chandler’s mentality has changed. Jurgen has said so and so has the player. Landon’s? Not so much.

        • Jack says:

          hahaha so lets just take Jurgen’s word for everything

          • gabe says:

            you’re missing the point.

            • Jack says:

              the point is Chandler only wanted to go to a world cup and never wanted to be apart of this team and got exactly what he wanted.

              • gabe says:

                you have no evidence of that anywhere, just assumptions. Landon, on the other hand, has publicly shown his lack of commitment over and over. Why suffer through the Landon mind games now, especially with his lack of form and declining pace?

              • Jack says:

                Chandler’s history is this US is pretty clear, he hasn’t been with the team in 16 months.

              • Julio says:

                Okay Jack, you made me do it. You have no clue about what you are talking about, But you do love so much to hear your voice.

              • Julio says:

                And may I remind you Jack, it was just yesterday that you posted that you were “willing to give Chandler a chance…..” And yet here you are.

            • ronniet says:

              the only one playing mind games is clearly Klinsmann…..he just may be the biggest hypocrite there is and has just set back the US’s chances of doing something special this summer with his lies and treachery! Don’t say players are going to have prove their worth in camp to make the final roster only to overlook the play of the countries best ever player in camp(Bradley, Dempsey and Howard all said he looked great) to only then cut the camp short and keep players who had just arrived to camp and who were injured(TC and OG) before the announcement smh….sad state of affairs and criminal we won’t get this manager to be truthful about why he was really cut, oh wait, he hasn’t been truthful about a whole lot! At least Donovan was a man about his!

              • GW says:


                All you are saying is you believe Landon more than you believe JK. I’m pretty sure you were not at the camp and don’t have a personal relationship with either guy; so you have no real evidence one way or the other.

                And as for LD saying ask the remaining players, well what exactly do you expect them to say?

                Your boss fires your coworker and then the local paper comes to you and asks you so did they deserve to fire him? Talk about putting your “friends” in a bad spot. Yes LD is being a real man about this
                So LD says he deserved to go. What exactly did you expect him to say?

                That he let himself down and the US soccer public by settling for second best?

                JK wants to get to the semifinals. LD is happy to get out of the group. Landon is comfortable with what some call “settling for”.

                Someone asked why JK even bothered to take him into the 30?
                My guess is because the greatest US player ever deserved that last chance to make his case.

              • MikeV says:

                Anyone hear the 2nd tweet from JK’s son. Not the HAHAHAHA tweet, the one that came 26 seconds before the account was deleted. The one where he tells LD that another named player made the squad because he would work harder and he actually wants to be there. HMMMM, where did that thought come from?

          • JayAre says:

            Yeah thats basically why he’s the coach and reporters aren’t the coach. Its the USMNT coached by Jurgen Klinsmann not LDNT coached by LD

        • Jesse D says:

          Gabe, the LM pool is way weaker than RB pool. Donovan is way better than our other LM’s.

          • gabe says:

            you may be right, but Landon doesn’t play like a traditional left wing player. He likes to cut inside and isn’t a crosser of the ball per say. So, if we’re not playing with a traditional LM, I’d say play FJ for pace.

            • ronniet says:

              Neither is Zusi or Bedoya, who both like to cut inside like LD because they are traditionally central players so wha’ts your excuse for their inclusions??

              • gabe says:

                I’m not saying they are. I’m saying I rate them in current form, involvement, and commitment to the shirt as higher than landon at this stage, now, in 2014. The point is if we play w/ non-traditional wingers, Landon doesn’t make the cut. So if you’re trying to bill him as a winger, which he isn’t, how do you include him?

            • Colin says:

              He has more assists than any other usa player of all time, by double. Maybe you never watched Donovan player for everton, but when asked to cross the ball, he can be very adapt at it.

        • Matt says:

          Who is going to play on the left wing?

    • Sandtrout says:

      Your argument explains one of the key reasons I don’t like Klinsmann decision. I don’t care whether a USMNT player tries to reach the highest levels of European soccer. I don’t care if he needs to take a break for a couple of months to gather himself mentally. I don’t care if he looks “soft” to our Teutonic overlord. What I care about is what he brings on the game field, and Donovan has rarely faltered there. If Klinsmann’s decision was about “mentality,” then it wasn’t about what matters most — the play on the field.

      • gabe says:

        see world cup 2006 and say he’s never faulted on the large stage. i generally agree, though. mentally, the player hasn’t proven himself belong again.

        • Sandtrout says:

          You need to get over the idea that all USMNT players need to have the same (Germanic) “mentality.” They don’t.

          • gabe says:

            it’s not a germanic mentality. it’s called commitment. if you think Landon has shown this over the past couple years, then you’re dreaming.

            Dempsey, Bradley, Cameron, Howard, and co. are not German. Safe to say that it isn’t a Euro-snob thing. Lallas, Twellman, and Wynalda have all called out Donovan for being soft.

            • ronniet says:

              since when is being politically correct being soft?? Donovan has always answered questions this way, his honesty has always been refreshing to me! This commitment thing your speaking of is garbage, there hasn’t been a more committed player for the US like LD and I think he’s shown that on the field and more recently in the gold cup where he was the golden boot winner and I don’t care who he played against because that would also mean the Wondo’s scoring exploits for the NATS means nothing too and should not be on the roster!

              • gabe says:

                name me another player who went on a spiritual journey during a qualifying campaign and I’ll name you a player more committed to the side than Donovan.

        • Nate says:

          even the italians say he was our best player against them. you are holding Donovan to his own high standards, which is not the analysis. Even Jurgen says Dempsey is a selfish player–its why he made him captain. Look at all the world class US goals in big games, Donovan is involved. Who else scores that goal on the full break against Brazil? Who else sets up Charlie Davies on a platter in the azteca? Do Mexican fans hate Clint Dempsey like they do Donovan? Theres a reason for that.

          Bottom line is do you take Wondolowski or Brad Davis over Landon Donovan if you want to beat Ghana and Portugal? If so, why? What makes you think their “mentality” will make them any more effective than Donovan in those games?

    • Chris says:

      Yeah the most goals and assists in USMNT history and playing 156 games for the US shows no grit or determination. You don’t like Donovan because he came back to MLS, we get it. Now sit down

      • Jack says:

        No the US would have been better off with out him and going out at the group stage in 2010

      • gabe says:

        Dempsey and bradley came back to MLS. I’m a massive fan of them. You’re not getting the point. I loved Donovan 2002/2010. He’s not the same player and he’s never had a “take on the world” mentality. Ever.

        • EspinDOHla says:

          …and Brad Davis and Julian Green just exude that “take on the world” mentality? Umm, no.

          • EspinDOHla says:

            oh, and let’s not forget Timmy Chandler who wouldn’t “take on” a trans-Atlantic flight either.

            • gabe says:

              Timmy Chandler is the best RB in the pool and with Gonzo’s unreliability next to Besler, we need Cameron at CB. There is no glaring need for Landon to be in the team, except maybe on penalties. I shudder to think of a pen shootout with Dempsey stepping up

              • EspinDOHla says:

                I’m not arguing about Timmy Candler’s quality. He’s good. However, you can’t say that LD lacks a “take on the world” mentality and then just completely ignore it when another player can’t be bothered to get on an airplane to play in a game. If that’s not a lack of a “take on the world” mentality, then I don’t know what is.

                And back to my original point, what has Brad Davis and Julian Green done to make you think the exhibit this mentality and be there over LD?

                Landon pretty much single-handedly won the Gold Cup last summer and has carried the USMNT on his back and been the face of US Soccer for the better part of a decade.

          • gabe says:

            I’m not convinced that Davis is there to play as much as he is to prep the defense in training against well-delivered set piece play. Seriously. Situational preparedness is important, and coaches are known to bring in guys that can do certain things just to prepare the team.

            I agree about Julian Green, though. One thing about Jurgen’s statement that is obviously false is that this WC is not, in some way, meant to prepare young players. Obviously, we are going there with a “win now” mentality – otherwise why bring the other A-listers? But obviously Brooks, Yedlin, and Green are here for development. Who knows? Maybe one of them makes a difference. 20 year old Landon Donovan came, at least on the world stage, from seemingly nowhere.

            • Nate says:

              You cannot prepare for a well selivered set piece. Davis cannot come close to simulating a Ronaldo free kick, and it is asinine to argue that a player is on the plane to Brazil to prep the team…IN PRACTICE.

        • Matt says:

          Watch a replay of the goal he scored in the Confed Cup final

    • Carrie says:

      Galaxy and Donovan fan here and Gabe I agreee wholehsartedly with your statements. Anyone whose been watching him since his return (and Jurgen has been at the games) can see that his level of played has somewhat declined while others have not. Additionally, Jurgen is not working against the success of the USMNT or the US fans he has lived here for years and has been looking forward to this opportunity of changing the culture of US soccer for awhile.

      • Chris says:

        Please please tell me this “culture” of US soccer that JK is changing. Biggest bullish!t propaganda that people believe.

        • gabe says:

          funny thing is that the main players have talked about it as a real thing. good one.

          • Morrison says:

            Really Gabe? Some of our top players think JK is a FOOL…I wish I had your email so I can tell you what I know but JK does not have this locker room. Sorry to let you down

            And please tell me you were on peyote or something when you say that JK might have brought Davis in as a “situational” player for training.

    • Jesse D says:

      Gabe, for any of this to make sense you have to find 23 players who live up to the ideals that.

      There are plenty of examples of players out of form, and players who haven’t shown full commitment to this team, that still managed to make this squad.

      Donovan is absolutely one of our best 23 soccer players right now and belonged on this team. I know you haven’t watched many Galaxy games recently because Donovan has played pretty well.

      • gabe says:

        I watch most MLS games (live or taped) every week. I disagree with you. I think he has looked poor.

    • atleticodemadridfan says:

      gabe – that is a spot on in depth analysis of how as Bruce Arena said many years ago, “with landon, it’s always about Landon. = He’s small minded and selfish.
      Dig it.
      Let’s move on and look to the future.
      This team is about to morph into something we have never seen before for more than 5-10 minutes at a time.
      Landon – get over yourself. Thanks for the memories.

      • gabe says:

        of course the irony is that arena is an egomaniac as well, but yeah his analysis is dead on.

        I really do admire what Landon has done, but I am somewhat relieved his era is over…even if it’s a tough transition.

        If we don’t get out of this group, and we may not, it will be because Portugal and Germany are better teams – not because we left Landon Donovan out of the squad.

      • Julio says:

        I agree Atleticofan, Here is what I hope for. That the U.S., especially our back line, can play in Brazil like Atletico played in Lisbon.

        Even if we lose. But I have higher hopes.

    • Kojo07 says:

      Jonathon Klinsmann is that you!

    • QuakerOtis says:

      gabe has it right.

    • wandmdave says:

      I had the same reaction to Donovan’s comments. If you’re really such a good little soldier you keep your mouth shut until after the cup. I don’t find his comments to be class at all. More importantly than all that he should have had this kind of passion and drive the entire damn cycle. Instead he’s strung, JK, the team, and the fans out for at least half of it.

      LD is usually pretty honest so perhaps JK made a personal decision. That said the comment on the Inside the road to Brazil ESPN special by LD himself made it sound like he wasn’t able to keep up that pace and knew it. I guess its hard to say when that statement was recorded though. Either way, I’m still going to give JK the benefit of the doubt both because he’s been successful so far and because he isn’t going to get axed before the WC so rooting against him is counter productive. If I’m totally misjudging him and he knew he wasn’t taking LD all along then JK has some blame here. However, its not for leaving LD off but for giving him a chance to get back in after the LD abandoned the team.

      I also happen to love Donovan’s game and what he’s done for US soccer. I loved watching him play and will continue to watch him wherever his plays. I hope he finds a role to continue supporting US soccer after his retires. However I have always been frustrated by his flaky commitment to the sport and was down right pissed off by his sabbatical which in my eyes will never be excusable. If JK left him off for that reason and that reason alone then I support him 100% and I feel any true fan of the TEAM would and should support that reasoning as well. Obviously not everyone agrees but that is how I feel and will continue to feel about it.

      And before anyone says anything about Chandler, I was conflicted about his inclusion in the 30 and now the 23 because I perceive the same lack of commitment. For now I’m giving Timmy and JK the benefit of the doubt that his absence was just poor timing and everything else was rumor because I refuse to not think positively about the team. I’m hoping his commitment is beyond doubt in the future to dispel my reservations.

      • justin says:

        Why are you so upset over the sabbatical and why would you assert that any true fan should be upset? Maybe he needed it for his mental health. You don’t know so why are you being so judgmental? Or maybe he would have been completely burned out by now if he hadn’t taken it and is now better prepared to push himself further. I don’t remember any Bulls fans complaining about Michael Jordan coming back to the Bulls after he spent 2 years in minor league baseball because he felt like he needed to do it. Besides, as much as I love soccer, it really isn’t all there is to life when you think about it and maybe it’s ok for a player to have that realization before they retire. Doesn’t mean they don’t work as hard or aren’t as competitive. If Landon hasn’t put in the work, then of course he doesn’t deserve to go. But even Klinsmann is saying that’s not the case.

        • GW says:


          The sabbatical was a symptom part of an overall bigger question. Was LD really into it anymore?

          Compare it to his actions before the 2010 World Cup. LD engineered a loan to Everton to see how he stacked up against the best to make sure he would be ready for 2010 to make up for a so-so 2006. That loan was a spectacular success.

          Now compare that to his actions leading up to 2014. Basically he was not available for qualifying and instead of tuning up by facing the best in the EPL. he tears up the Gold Cup.

          It tells you he either does not care about 2014 or that he thinks he needs less a less challenging tune up than he did before 2010. Which logic would tell you does not make sense.
          The man is 32 , a few years older, and it has been a long time since he showed anything like his 2010 form.

          The expectation here seems to be he can just turn it on and off.

          At the World Cup against one of the toughest groups the US may ever have faced?

          Does any sane person believe that?

          I think we all want to. And maybe, just maybe he can but the manager can’t afford to operate on the assumption that the man is an immortal and his body and skills operate under different rules than us lesser mortals.

          Oh and this is not basketball. In almost all American sports because of the way substitutions work, older athletes can be applied as necessary. DH’s in baseball, a few minutes here and there off the bench in baketball , fewer plays in the NFL, more frequent line changes in the NHL .

          In soccer there is nowhere to hide. Substitutions are precious and once you are on, you stay on.

          As for his “locker room presence”, how does anyone here know what he is like in the locker room?

          The point is JK set a standard. Maybe no one likes that standard but the 23 met it. And I have to think LD could easily have met it if he wanted to.

          It it is clear to me, maybe not to you, that in his heart of hearts LD maybe doesn’t want to go all that much unless it is on his terms. And that is not how it works in the real world.

          • Kosh says:

            + 1

            Thank you, GW. Well put.

          • KingGoogleyEye says:

            GW: “The sabbatical was a symptom part of an overall bigger question. Was LD really into it anymore?”

            I completely understand LD’s sabbatical. What did he have to play for? He had accomplished everything that could reasonably be put on his to-do list: MLS superstar, Gold Cup champion and dominator, World Cup savior multiple times, WC quarterfinals, etc. Yes, one could dream about other achievements—World Cup champion or even CONCACAF Champions league—but those would be unrealistic. He could keep on winning in the MLS, keep on defeating CONCACAF teams, chalk up another 2-0 against Mexico, make it out of the Group Stage at another WC…basically Groundhog Day until he retired.

            I think he needed the sabbatical and I defend it as a great idea. (The timing could have been better, but so what?)

            And during that sabbatical he found some answers. He found reasons to come back.

            To paraphrase what you wrote in another comment: Past commitment is not indicative of future commitment. So Donovan was a devoted beast, then he grew lackadaisical, took a sabbatical, and came back devoted again.

            Now, did he come back more devoted than ever? I dunno. But he as well as anyone could see that the USMNT looked and played differently under Klinsmann—that if ever we would repeat or better the 2002 WC achievement, it would be with this team and this coach.

            Donovan went into the Gold Cup like a man determined to re-prove himself. Like a man who doesn’t want to win, but wants to dominate. And he did.

            From that alone, I would have said that Donovan was back—in form and in drive. And he certainly seems genuinely disappointed/angry at being cut, like making the team was something he really wanted.

            But as we all know, Gold Cup is not World Cup. So yeah, Donovan looked awesome in GC and I expected him to make the WC, but I’m not appalled or flabbergasted that a GC MVP could be slightly-below-cut-off for the WC. And he could currently want the WC with all his heart, but still not have the ability to make the team—the spirit is willing, but the flesh is over 30 years old.

            In short: I’m willing to give Donovan the benefit of the doubt: he really wanted to make the team, he really worked hard in ways he thought were right, he did everything right (in his own eyes and, according to Klinsmann himself), but just didn’t quite make it.

        • Johnathan says:

          Umm, Jordan didn’t take a sabbatical. He was stealth suspended by stern for gambling. I thought this was common knowledge now???

    • JayAre says:

      Thank you so much Gabe, I couldn’t agree with you more. People get blinded sometimes by the big name and forget that the field matters the most. The Beckham situation was a good example. If he really cared about the team he would have given the reported an answer like Goodson, Parkhurst, Corona and Evans. Not say he deserved a spot and cause more controversy.

    • Gill King says:

      GABE….”ditto”… Thanks for a posting that I’d have been proud to have created!

    • Kosh says:

      + 1

      Thank you.

    • That_Guy says:

      Gabe, I will try and cover most of your points mentioned in your post and comment, and I would be interested to see if you think of things a little bit differently.

      On Form:
      Many people in this thread or debating on the form of Donovan. Since he was listed as a Foward I will first cover the other players form who made the team.

      Altidore is coming off an abysmal season at Sunderland. The fact that he scored 1 goal in 30 PL games has been mentioned often, and people argue that the PL is tougher than the MLS. So let’s look at Altidore vs. weaker competition. Altidore scored 0 goals against Kid’minster (Conference) in two games, 0 goals against Carlise (League One) in two games, 0 goals against Peterborough (League One), and 1 goals against MK Dons (League One). So in 6 games against weaker teams than MLS, Altidore has 1 goal. Donovan has played 7 games in the MLS with no goals. Altidore always played as a forward, where Donovan has played in the midfield ad forward. Someone brought up in the comments that Donovan plays with weaker defenses and hasn’t scored yet, so I hope those stats put into perspective Altidores form when compared to Donovan in the MLS.

      Aron Johansson has had a stellar season and its hard to find fault on the beginning of the season. However his second half of the season says something else. To make this comparison fair, I will look at as many games as Donovan has played in 2014 because some one made the point that Donovan has not scored a goal this season yet. Since the start of the MLS season, Donovan has been available for 7 games so we will look at Johannson’s last 7 games. He has 1 goal in his last 7 games. Your opinion on the defense on the Dutch league and the defense in the MLS is yours.

      Clint Dempsey had a terrible PL loan, but has played well in the MLS so its hard to see fault there.

      Chris Wondolowski is coming into the World Cup with 5 goals in 9 games. Not bad numbers at all. Looks in form.

      Now using the heatmaps available through ESPN, Donovan has been used as a midfielder as well as a forward so I will look at some of the people he could have competed with.

      Julian Green speaks for himself. Has such little experience hat I can hardly find numbers for him. So him being in form is all based on his Bundeslinga II numbers, which I won’t even get into.

      Brad Davis has 1 goal and 5 assists in 8 games in the MLS. Davis in his last two USMNT games has not had a goal or an assist, where ESPN credits Donovan with an assist vs. South Korea.

      I would argue most of the other players in the midfield pool either play a different position than Donovan or were never in competition with Donovan.

      On Talking about Donovan’s form and his past:
      Many of the players on the team are not on form. As I mentioned above Altidore and Johansson are not in form compared just as much as Donovan is not in form (based on stats this year). Gonzalez is in bad form and Deandre Yedlin is in bad form. I think it is naïve to think that past form has not been taken into account for these four selections. If you truly believe that these fours most recent play has earned them a space on the plane, then I advise looking at a few of each player’s last games.

      On Form in camp:
      Bradley and Howard have spoken of the importance of Donovan since camp has started, so they obviously saw him as being useful to the USMNT. The fitness coach had good words regarding Donovan. There were no indications that Donovan was bad in camp.

      On Sabbatical:
      Donovan has played a total of 496 games of senior soccer in his life since he turned pro at age 20/21. That does not include the U23 games he has played in or the games he played for Bayer Leverkusen II. Dempsey has played in 408. Beasley has played in 413. Bradley has played in 331. The only player to play more is Howard, who has played in 528. No one else is close to playing in the number of games as these guys. Donovan turned Pro is a foreign country at the age of 17. Dempsey at age 21. Beasley at age 18. Bradley at age 17. Howard at age 20. Donovan made his first appearance with the USMNT at age 18. Dempsey at age 21. Beasley at age 21. Howard at age 23. Since his first few years, Donovan has been the face of USA soccer. I do not care what you think about that, it is a heavy burden to have. No other player has been the face of a federation for so long. There may have been better players on the team or more famous, but Donovan was always the face of US Soccer. At age 18, what were you doing? Were you being used to try and promote a sport to national recognition? If yes, well then I guess you may understand how this feels. Have you done something for 12 years straight? If you have, you may understand how he feels. If you haven’t, I would go ask someone how it feels to do the same thing for 12 years straight. Since 2010, Donovan has gone on two loans and played in 3 USA tournaments (World Cup, Gold Cup, Gold Cup). He felt he was being overworked and needed a break. Some understand that, some don’t. We can all agree that is a lot of soccer though.

      On comments about slowing down:
      As I said, Donovan has played 493 games. That is 44,370 minutes of soccer. Which is almost 31 days of soccer. He is being honest with his body. Donovan understands that the body decays. Him communicating that to the public is not him de-committing to the cause. I think that people arguing Donovan isn’t dedicated to the cause because he told people his body couldn’t handle 12 straight days of hard training after playing 31 days of soccer in 12 years is absurd.

      I can’t really see any justification based off of what people are saying for leaving Donovan off. The facts and numbers back his case. The only thing that is left is a personal decision made by Klinsmann. Donovan has not shown that he insnt good enough for the USMNT. Of course he has gotten slower, however he is still one of the most in form and best players the USA has. Dempsey and Bradley are the only definitive outfield players who are better. People who argue that this is a soccer based decision have not looked at the numbers or just do not like Donovan.

      These numbers were taken from ESPN and wikipedia. Please give a year here or there, I estimated ages using years, not months.

      • Bac says:

        Good for you by giving a rational discussion to make your points. Most on here are just flying off at the handle, on both sides of this discussion.
        I’ve written all night I don’t believe it was a personal issue and tried to give reasons for it, some have responded favorably, one has attacked.. that’s fine. I’m also on record saying I wanted Donovan to make the team, at which point nobody will respond.

        So if you are seriously interested in why I’ve been saying what I have, go to the following thread:
        Geoff Cameron Coy on his position….
        Go near the bottom, read the post started by Qozzel, followed by GW and myself… Too much to write here., but will only take a minute…. may shed some light…

        I’m just saying this because you took the time to make your points which I respect. You may agree or disagree…
        I interested in your thoughts…
        Respond to me there, look forward to it…

      • That_Guy says:

        “At age 18, what were you doing?” should be “At age 20-22, what were you doing?”

      • gabe says:

        Your response makes sense, although I contest that while Jozy has had a rough go in terms of scoring goals at Sunderland (so has everyone else in the red and white), his form through qualifying for the USA has been fantastic. I’ll stress again that, while the form argument is valid on both sides, this is ultimately – in my opinion – about JK believing that Donovan’s mentality and commitment isn’t up to the standards he sets and wants for his team. For me, this was the deciding factor. I think that, if Landon had said all the right things & committed 100% from the get-go when JK took over, we wouldn’t be having this conversation at all. Fair?

    • Relegate US says:

      +1 for calling this a shoot.

      Or maybe it is all a work?

    • Dirk McQuigley says:

      Let me say ITA w/ your comments and I AM A DONOVAN FAN. IMO, JK is frustrated from a lack of desire and sacrifice from LD. As a former World Class player, JK has a hard time understanding why LD wouldn’t try to better himself playing in Europe. He thinks LD is too comfortable playing for the Galaxy in MLS. And for LDs failures in Germany, there were too successful winter loans to Everton. He showed he could compete regularly against the best players in the world. But in Klinsmann’s view, Donovan was unwilling to test himself and put in the extra effort. Donovan was unwilling to play friendlies. He took a sabbatical. He played poorly against Jamaica and Mexico. He publicly said he needed to hold back in training to save himself for games. And he admitted that he couldn’t go hard for 12 days in camp.

      Now, I think this is a professional dispute, but LD is trying to make it personal. It’s not, IMO. Donovan is not hungry. He feels entitled based on his past. His comments were self serving and bitter. If he was working as hard as the other 29 lads in camp, he might have made the team. But he went to Stanford with a chip on his shoulder and just expected to be on the team and start.

      We do not know if his exclusion will make a difference for the Nats. They could have gone three and out with him or they could have surprised all the way to the quarters. They could go three and out or make it to the quarters sans Donovan too.

      This may backfire but it shows Klinsmann is not afraid to make unpopular decisions. He is not afraid of what other people think. Enough of the Steve Samson analogies. Not even close. And as bad as some of Samson’s decisions regarding tactics were, he was not screwing a teammate’s wife as his “captain for life” was.

      It’s going to take 11 guys to beat Portugal and Germany. BTW, did Donovan score against Spain in the Confed. semis? No he did not. Yes he played, but we won because Jozy was on fire and guys like Demerit played out of their minds. Donovan wasn’t on the field against Bosnia either or some other games where the Nats played well. They can win without him.

    • Xander Crews says:

      Absolutely brilliant response. Well thought-out and logically presented, instead of the emotion-filled responses from Landon fanboys, most of whom probably are unaware of the team’s history prior to 2002.

  16. Jesse D says:

    Well people who have been saying this was not an ego based decision, where are you now? Let’s add up the factors:
    1)Jurgen has been talking about Donovan like his delinquent step kid for 6 months now
    2)Jurgen doesn’t address, not willing to address Donovan being a better midfielder than the guys he took.
    3)Jurgen can’t point to what Donovan isn’t doing as well as other mid’s. Not attitude, not fitness, not touch, not vision, not finishing.
    4) Jurgen’s kid backs up our suspicions this has been all about personality
    5) Donovan gives an honest self assessment, he is better than many of the guys on that team and should have been in the battle for a starting spot.

    This stinks. All I want is the best 23 guys to get called in for soccer reasons. I don’t want to have to deal with a coaches ego being more important than the team.

    • Bac says:

      With all do respect:
      1. He’s not spoken any different about Donovan than anyone else, he’s called out plenty of his core players, but the Donovan comments get the press
      2.He said he wasn’t going to address any specifics about any player, but he did drop some hints, and a lot of people think he took the high road answering that question, and that’s why Ley didn’t press him further
      3.Same answer as #2
      4. Speculation. His kid deserves a smack in the mouth, a big one, but still speculation.
      5. “Donovan gave an honest self assessment”. Does that mean all his statements leading up to camp weren’t honest?
      Twellman himself even said last night, ” Part of this is on Landon too. The way he kept talking about himself. I wanted to reach through the TV screen and grab him and say YOU’RE LANDON DONOVAN, THE BEST EVER, START ACTING LIKE IT, but he didn’t have the right attitude”…. That’s from Twellman.. not me, or anyone here, but TT, LDs buddy

      One thing you didn’t address was Donovans quote about “if it was about what I did in camp I deserve to be there”… Well JK clearly addressed this in detail that it wasn’t just about the last 10 days.. he’s watched film, practices, games, etc, and did say it was about NOW, which includes current form, position, camp, all those things.

      2 weeks ago everyone was in shock when EJ got dropped, and some blamed it on his attitude. BS.. it was his form..

      I wanted Donovan on this team, but as of now he’s not… period…

      And everyone needs to stop using the “Best 23″ quote
      3 Keepers, 8 defenders, 4 center mids…
      At least say ” The best 8 attacking options”… that’s a more legit argument

      • gabe says:


        People act as though some of us want to see landon fail, or not make the team, etc. Not at all.

        I wish Landon had the heart of a lion, but he doesn’t. I am so grateful for what he’s done for the program thus far. He has been our talisman in the past, and has been a hero for us on many occasions. In 2002, seemingly from nowhere, this kid – who was too naive to know that some unrated American team had no business taking on the Portugese or Germans on the world stage – ran into our hearts. He’s done our country proud.

        However, it’s time to move on from him. I would have rather Klinsmann had cut ties earlier, but the media (and us) would have brought up his name every second something went wrong with the team, we didn’t score, etc. If he hadn’t included him in the 30, we all would have said “how can he not merit at least a look, regardless of form?!”

        We don’t know what’s happening behind the scenes, but anyone who thinks that Landon has shown the heart, desire, or mentality to be the integral part of this team that we’ve needed him to be over the last couple of years is having a laugh. It’s one thing to absorb a young kid like Chandler who is the best at a weak position for us. It’s another to have a guy like Landon in the team after such a strained relationship.

        Let’s let the lad go and stop pretending he deserves to be there.

        • Sandtrout says:

          Your obsession — Donovan’s alleged lack of “heart” — is largely disproven by his record. Nobody who lacks heart or desire could accumulate the record he has. So you want him to play in the Champions League? Fine, that’s you. Don’t impose your priorities or your “mentality” on other people.

          • gabe says:

            his record over the past few years proves my point, man. It’s not “my mentality,” either, or a UEFA CL thing strictly. There are players in the English Championship that don’t need a spiritual sojourn to Cambodia to sort out whether they want to be footballers or not…

            • Jesse D says:

              the couple JK supports keep saying. Last year, or last few months, ignore the past. Now you are trying to call out something from over a year ago. Since then he had a great run of form with the US team winning the Gold Cup.

              Chandler, very much the opposite (btw, I would bring Chandler), but if JK is being consistent he would have left Chandler home for the same reasons he left Donovan home.

              • GW says:

                Jesse D,

                Did JK say why he brought Chandler?

              • Jesse D says:

                Don’t know. I think I’m done listening to his double speak. I’ll watch the games and root for the players, but Klinnsman is an ego whore. I don’t need to hear his mind games.

          • Jesse D says:


        • Jesse D says:

          The facts are against you Gabe (cough cough Jurgen) I appreciate you trying to come up with a story to defend your Jurgen, but your client is guilty.

      • Jesse D says:

        fine, he absolutely one of the best 8 attacking options. No question.
        1) he has spoken differently about him
        2) not an answer to the point about him being a mid.
        3)high road, or convenient way to avoid the truth.
        4) you’re speculating that isn’t what it meant. The evidence backs me up.
        5)No it means they were honest, he wasn’t playing as well as he could. He was still better than Davis and crew.

        You just quote the exact opposite of what Klinnsman said. He said it was all about how good the guys looked when they came in for these 10 days. That would be the deciding factor.

        • Bac says:

          Oh Jesse, ok, you hate Klinsmann fine. Ok.
          One of the best 8 attacking options? Probably so- as a sub, like I said, I wanted him to make it..but as of now he hasn’t. And I actually don’t think he’s a 90 minute midfielder at a World Cup. A sub? Definitely a debatable topic…
          But you are still using your shock and emotion to create your own facts, and ignoring the parts you don’t like.
          So let me further help you:
          1. He didn’t treat him “like a delinquent step kid”. He didn’t call him up after Cambodia. He told him what to do to earn his way back. LD did that. It was over.. He never treated him negatively, but when he didn’t start vs Mexico everyone freaked…until afterwards when they found out he trained poor and was injured.
          He’s called out Deuce, Jozy, Bradley, Jermaine, Gonzo, just as honestly.. but you guys only CHOOSE to recall what u want
          2. You completely ignored what I said because you just didn’t like the answer. Would you have felt better if he would have said “The guy hasn’t scored since October, he can’t beat people 1 v 1 anymore, the midfielders I’m going with have more stamina for the hard training and travel the next 7 weeks, the formations I’m looking at don’t fit him, WHATEVER REASON… would that have made u feel better? Any answer HE woulda given woulda been the wrong one…. huh…. u wouldn’t comprehend he may be taking the high road, or not wanting to reveal anything about what his preferred formations may have to do with his selections.. it’s just easier to pick a topic and pile on…
          3. See number 2… again…
          4. Whatever.. look up the word evidence.. then look up the word speculation… Google is your friend..
          5. Ok, exactly.. He wasn’t playing well, and he said his body would break down.. so make up your mind which of his quotes fits your narrative… I also see you chose not to respond to a thing Twellman said…
          # Selective Memory…. again….

          And as far as how Jurgen described how he made his decisions who to bring in, and then who to keep, he’s been very clear that he’s been reviewing film, games, practices, having scouts everywhere, talking to coaches.. What do you think, when the players are at their clubs he’s twittling his thumbs? He’s taking all that into account, plus camp….
          And it’s about who can perform NOW…..
          So your comments are not only off, now you’re just making stuff up..

          Now I’m done with your education…

          “I BELIEVE”

          • MikeV says:

            Mr. Bac, have you heard the second tweet from JK’s son. If not, then you should see/hear it before you go on. Not the HAHAHAHA tweet, the one that came 26 seconds before the account was deleted. The one where he tells LD that another named player made the squad because he would work harder and he actually wants to be there. HMMMM, where did that thought come from?

            • GW says:

              If that is true then it sounds about right and is a good reason not to take LD.

            • Bac says:

              Mike, Yes I did hear about that second one, getting deleted 26 seconds later…heard the whole podcast, and yea.. it’s bad.

              But I’m not gonna sit here and say that all these conspiracies add up to JK literally going through all this just to cut him out of spite…

              Let me explain my opinion Mike:
              If you put the shock and emotion aside…
              Do you think JK would go through all of this, knowing the potential risk, from the media and players, his contract (which really means nothing other than they can still fire him and buy him out if they don’t like him) his reputation.. (ie if he blows another Hi profile coaching gig over spite) his focus for the team and himself to get ready for the group of death,
              AND THEN….
              Publicly open himself up even further by stating multiple times that if someone gets hurt Landon is the first one I’ll call…

              That he would go through:
              -Not calling him up after Cambodia and making him earn his spot back
              -Playing him in the Gold Cup and in some important qualifiers after that
              – Then calling him in to the 30 only to cut him based on everything I said above…
              – And still leaving the option open that he’s the first one on standby…

              I just think it’s too much of a reach… my opinion..
              Maybe his kid doesn’t like him, maybe his kid heard his Dad say something about Donovans work ethic,.. WHO KNOWS.. Yea it’s bad… but it’s not Proof of anything other than stupidity…

              I mean last night’s conspiracy theory went all the way back to Bayern, Berti excluding Lothar Matheas, and Lalas calling this a vindictive move….

              So to summarize:
              So what’s more likely,,, that JK would go through EVERYTHING I just named above…
              JK didn’t rate him high enough because he hasn’t played well since Mexico 2-0 and hasn’t scored since October??

              Just my opinion, but that’s a BIG stretch to really believe the first option over the second…

              And like I said Twice.. Twice… earlier…
              I wanted him to make this team…

              • Jesse D says:

                I think we would subject himself to whatever, just to prove it is all about him. That he is “the great one”.

          • Jesse D says:

            Thank you for your kind education. Look up the phrase high road, “patronizing” probably isn’t in there. So thank you BAC for proving you can’t take the high road. Are you really that arrogant to think you are educating people here, or was that some lame attempt at a joke?

            I didn’t read the Twellman quote, my eyes and ears are trained to skip anything coming from him. You should learn to as well.

            Jurgen needs to figure out which of his quotes fits his narrative That is the problem here, anyone can point to one of his quotes and find something they want, because he contradicts himself CONSTANTLY. It’s the behavior pattern of a compulsive liar. It’s absurd that he flip flops on every issue so much.

            I completely disagree with you on every point. I don’t think Donovan is the greatest soccer player on the planet, or even currently in the US. I do believe that he has a lot more to add to this team than some of the other players on the team. Jurgen didn’t make a soccer decision, and he has changed his mind on his own criteria so much that it doesn’t make any sense..

            • Bac says:

              Ah yes, the proverbial high road, which I attempted with you by leading my response with “With all due respect”
              Which you chose to trash..
              However as you have demonstrated for the 3rd time, you choose to read only what you want, and spin and answer only as it fits your narrative, regardless of whether what I said was my opinion, or based on other’s statements…
              So yes…
              Patronizing was absolutely my intended response… not education or humor.
              But everyone having selective memory certainly seems like a trend…

              And I see that you firmly think that all of this is completely 100% all about Jurgen and being The Great One…
              Well, that’s your opinion, I disagree

              And despite your selective memory and selective responses…

              I still wanted Landon to make the team
              I Still Believe….

              • Jesse D says:

                I’ve never said Landon didn’t play a part. Landon gave the coach a chance by walking away 2 years ago. That was what Landon did. Maybe it was the right thing for him mentally and physically but it gave Jurgen a bad impression and their relationship hasn’t been the same since. My impression is that Jurgen got fired in part for sticking by Landon at Bayern, when LD ditched Jurgen he took it personal. He hasn’t been able to let it go. We are all human, we make petty decisions or petty comments. Jurgen is held to a higher standard at an impetuous moment like this.
                By the way BAC, the reason I don’t respond to all your comments is they are so long I end up skimming them. So sometimes I’m missing portions of what you say.

              • Bac says:

                Ok.. fair nuf…

              • KingGoogleyEye says:

                fwiw Bac: I usually find that reading all the way through your lengthy comments is more valuable than commenting myself.

              • Bac says:

                Thanks King..

              • Jesse D says:

                BAC, I appreciate the comments and debate as well. I’m trying to multitask to often, whether on a conference call or dealing with kids. The fault was mine, but wanted to let you know I wasn’t intentionally avoiding a comment.

  17. President Obama says:

    Please sign my White House petition to send Donovan to Brasil…

    link to

    • Jesse D says:

      signed. I think there should be a petition to Sunil Gulati.

      • Dan says:

        Signed. I doubt it would ever actually get close to 100,000, but if it did and actually forced a response from the White House…. Oh boy, what a story that would be. And yes I know the President can’t actually do anything about it.

    • espada says:

      Get it through your head that the government cannot interfere with the national team or they will be banned from play… like what happened to Nigeria.

      • gabe says:

        i don’t think anyone is serious about the petition…

        • Jesse D says:

          not really, but fun to sign anyway. The petition should be to Sunil. That petition should be for Sunil to call Jurgen and tell him to stop playing silly games in the media and coach soccer like he is paid to do.

      • JayAre says:

        they are still stuck on stupid

  18. Anon says:

    I’m sorry, but I have to agree with Klinsi. LD hasn’t proved himself much in recent games and last usmnt game he was a complete liability ruining the second half. This is reminding me when LD went on his “soul searching sabbatical” and all the fans were hating on Klinsmann for not taking any of it…

    You can’t blame Jürgen for not kissing LD’s behind. He is of a different level, caliber … LD is only a big deal here in the US, beyond that he isn’t much.I respect that JK is trying to push the Americans into becoming world class players. LD sets a poor example by refusing to expand,skipping games, complaining and thinking of himself too highly. It’s true the US media do treat him like a “sacred cow” and it’s gone to his head…expects special treatment.

    This is of no surprise. Tough love sucks I guess. If he can’t even score in MLS these days you think he can outplay Germany? Portugal ?


    • gabe says:

      I agree with this +1000

      This constant “Donovan is the best player we’ve ever produced” is distinctly an American-only perspective. Almost all assessments from abroad rate Dempsey & Bradley much higher.

      • Sandtrout says:

        Donovan is the best-ever US men’s national team player. There’s a huge, important distinction between that and what he’s done on the club level.

        • gabe says:

          “he’s scored the most goals” is a better term I think. none of you would rate Wynalda over bradley or dempsey I think.

          • Ryan says:

            Considering Dempsey’s played up top at least as much as Donovan, goals and assists (both of which LD tops) is the right metric to use. Same for a Wynalda-Dempsey comparison.

            • Mueller says:

              Are we allowed to exclude PKs because outside of those Dempsey has a pretty much the same amount of goals as Donovan.

          • Chris says:

            Hes scored more world cup goals than Messi, Ronaldo and Van Persie combined. The BEST and MOST CLUTCH player the US has ever produced no question

        • atleticodemadridfan says:

          In terms of a an all around polished footballer, with dribbling skills, open field and one-on-one, vision, passing skills, leadership, and team changing mentality – I would say Claudio Reyna was a much better, top-drawer footballer. Unfortunately Claudio’s career was severely hampered by knee injuries suffered at the hands of cheap tackles and cynical “FIFA assassins” who stalked his every move and hacked him to bits. Donovan has never shown the ability to take players on one-on-one in a face off from a dead stop in the alley – he lacks the presence and aplomb, the grace, soul and vision of a true 10. For the kind of football we played under Arena and Bradley as a national team, bunker and counter – he was the perfect architect, the energizer bunny leading the counter. His broken field running and vision were superb – but he has many glaring weaknesses – mentally, physically and technically – as a player.

          • Nate says:

            Sorry man, you must have never seen Claudio Reyna play. He wasnt really even beating dudes one v one when he was at UVA. Technical player, yes, but Claudio could never have scored the goal Donovan scored on the full break against Brazil in the 2009 Confed Cup. He just never had that breakaway speed. 8 goals in 111 caps tells you the kind of player he was. Amazing at holding and distributing. Better than John Harkes.

        • JayAre says:

          He’s only been able to accomplish that because he plays in MLS where he was and to an extent still is the golden child and was never challenged because he plays in MLS, he was always available for more friendlies thus running up his cap numbers because he plays in MLS, less flight milage so he preformed better in qualifying because he plays. I’m not going to be blinded by the name, CLINT DEMPSEY is arguably the best player we have produced not LD

          • Nate says:

            Did you forget that Dempsey started in MLS and was not nearly as dominant as Donovan was?
            Lets compare skill set.

            Speed: Donovan wins hands down.
            Goals: For both club and country, not even close.
            Vision: Donovan has 58 USMNT assists to Dempsey’s 12 (TWELVE!!!!)
            Clutch: Dempsey came up big against England. Donovan gave us the win v. Mexico in 2002, huge goal against Slovenia and of course Algeria in 2010.

            By every metric, Donovan is the more complete player, creating and scoring goals both internationally and for club with far more frequency than Dempsey.

            • QuakerOtis says:

              1. Americans need to get over “metrics.” It’s just a pseudonym for statistics. Lies, damned lies, and “metrics.” “Metrics” say what you want them to say. But context matters, and you’re all missing major chunks of it.

              2. But let’s say your “metrics” matter. Guess what they show? Donovan had an incredible career, which spanned from 2002 to present. Let’s take a chunk of that time frame, say, the last 12 months. Is he performing at the same rate as the previous years, or is he not? The answer: he is not. Thanks for the “metrics.” This does not establish that he should not go; many players are in worse form than some past peek. But it does mean the whole “one of our best” thing is just not true anymore, no matter what his good buddy Tim has to say.

              3. So now we look to the “Best 23″ argument. This is where context comes in, and to a degree, this is a matter of perspective and coaching philosophy as well. Feel free to disagree. However, even if you feel the best 23 should go (regardless of position or matchups) then you must not only look at the best 23 “on paper” (or by “metrics”), but the best 23 FOR THE SITUATION. Here you have an old guy who has not taken care of himself, like a Wondo. Wondo has maintained and even enhanced his regimen over the years. Wondo, a former track and long distance runner from the East Bay, can run and play all day in heat (humidity is another story). So can Davis, who plays in Houston. Landon? Not so much, even at his peek. Of course, he might have proved me wrong had he opted to play qualifiers with his team in Honduras or Mexico instead of taking his sabbatical… like a tired old professor.

              4. As to all the other fallacious rhetorical comparisons, again, you folks don’t seem to have knack for context. Having set the top layer of your analysis (heat, situation, opponent, matchups, and player pool), you then look to position. Landon is not a winger. In speed and work rate, he is behind Bedoya, Johnson, Corona, and Green, Zusi has him beat on work rate and crossing. That’s at least two, possibly three better options on either side of the field. Landon adapted his game to this, enhanced his passing, and uses his vision as a roaming CAM type. So, he was actually competing against Boyd, Deuce, AJ, and Wondo, not Green, Davis, or anyone on the sides.

              But as to your specific rants:

              Green v LD: They did not compete. LD IS NO LONGER A WINGER. His best position is CAM, or a free-roaming guy like Deuce. This is a $tupid comparison. It’s the low-hanging fruit for knee-jerk reactionaries, because Julian is young and/or “not american” and or “not proven.” Not proven makes the most sense, but, if we stay hard and fast to this rule, we aren’t gushing over an Landon in the first place. Give the kid a break. He’s a strong prospect, and he was not LD’s competition.

              LD v. Jozy: Perhaps showing these names side by side will illustrate how dumb this comparison is. Sure, Jozy scored fewer goals than usual, is a goal total comparable to Donovan. But they are totally different players competing for completely different spots. Jozy is on the plain, because he’s the only holdup guy on the team (Yes Ives, Boyd is a big body, but that does not make him a “holdup” player. He’s more a poacher). In any event, when Donovan fine-tunes his 6′ frame for holdup play, then we can compare these two… derp.

              Davis v. LD: This is a matter of opinion. Not having been at camp, I personally take Corona. Davis is older and slower. But I also doubt he sees the field. Speculation, but I think Davis is the signal that this was about LD’s attitude. LD thought a starting spot was his to lose (and he would not lose), while Davis is overjoyed and giddy with the very idea of being there. Who do you want the next generation bleeding through a tough WC group with? Me, between LD and Davis, I’m going with a guy like Davis.

              LD v. Wondo: This was the real competition. Klinsmann chose Wondo’s attitude (see LD v. Davis above) and, I’ll even admit, a man of his own mold. Wondo is a poor-man’s Jurgen. Jurgen likes this. I like this. You may disagree. But Donovan’s “legacy” or “metrics” should count nothing in this head-to-head competition. Wondo is scoring, LD is not. Wondo is hustling, and LD is not. Wondo will fight for EVERYTHING. Wondo will sacrifice for the team.

              Landon will, apparently, sacrifice the team to get the last word.

              It’s Landon’s ego here folks, not Jurgens, that poses the real problem. Jurgen made the right move by dropping an entitled little ass who was hoping to ride “metrics” into a graceless retirement.

              • The Garrincha says:

                Somebody pass me the aftershave,
                I feel like we just got slapped.
                Good stuff Q, everybody should understand that metrics etc. can never hold a candle to the eyeball test.
                Anyway, I like much of your analysis
                although, The one argument that just does not sit with me, is knowing?, that Davis as you stated would probably not start. That makes him a bench/role player. I just can’t get over, or buy in the face of history and a proven track record, all metrics aside, that LD, would not be a great 1st, 2nd, or 3rd option coming of the bench to make an impact.
                Makes me feel kinda downright Grinchy.
                but I can not,
                will not buy it,
                no sir.

              • Nate says:

                A bit late, but had to respond to this…Glad you went on record as preferring Davis and Wondo, two world cup rookies at age 32 and 31 over Landon Donovan.

                So I used the term metric to “measure” or “compare” the skill sets of Donovan and Dempsey. Statistics are evidence of a player’s strength in a given skill set, but of course you know this. Otherwise, you’re just guessing.

                Which of course is what lies behind your choice of Wondo and Davis over Donovan. Let me put it this way, if I want a young player to learn something from a fellow teammate, would I want that teammate to be someone who has no idea of what they are walking into: “while Davis is overjoyed and giddy with the very idea of being there.” Your words there…

                Or would you want your young players learning from someone who actually beat Portugal in a World Cup, played on a team that outplayed Germany in a World Cup, and has tasted the bitter pill of being eliminated twice by Ghana in a World Cup. I’m sure you know that player is Donovan (and Beasley). But hey, why not have your World Cup rookies get blooded in alongside older World Cup rookies, who are just happy to be there, as if they were 20…
                Give me the guy who can say “We can play with these guys because we’ve done it before and I was there when we did it.”

              • QuakerOtis says:

                Thanks to you both for a reasonable response. I didn’t expect him to go, and it STILL surprised me.

                I wish I could edit out that “tired professor” and other “slapping” parts… was very upset by the xenophobes and non-starters, and I guess LD was the whipping boy 😉

                As to Nate’s argument: totally fine, as I still see it as a philosophical difference (but not a reason to bash the coach and the guys still on the team).

                I did not include this in my post above, but this veteran role is not something LD is suited for. Never had been. That does not make him a bad guy or a “cancer” s others said, but he’s never been a leader.

                Even if he had been, I think other players fill the “grizzled veteran” role AND are the top guy at their position — Howard, Deuce, Bease (debatable…), and Mikey. Landon isn’t bad or washed up; he’s just two or three spots behind on every position and never brought intangibles.

                P.S. — I will be the first to throw their TV out the window if Davis starts a game, or gets on the field before the 80th minute.

            • gabe says:

              Comparing Donovan’s club goal scoring record in MLS to that of Dempsey in the EPL is ridiculous.

      • Nate says:

        Who cares about what they think abroad?

        • JayAre says:

          Soccer is an international game, way more international than football and basketball, so yes a lot of people including me care.

    • Dc says:

      I still think, if everyone comes in with a clean slate like Klinsmann has claimed, no way Donovan gets cut. I respect Klinsmann for wanting a team that is fully behind his vision, but as a coach you have to deal with all kinds of player motivation, all kinds of personalities to make the best team. Not everyone if 100% gungho like he is.

      And to your last comment, you can ask that question of over half our team.

    • Matt says:

      Disagree. LD has done a lot for soccer in the US. He’s also the only one willing to run at players, Dempsey falls down A LOT, Altidore problems w finishing… hm, let’s see maybe there’s been some change. You could be right, but it’s mean-spirited to say he’s “only a big deal here”. Who cares?! We live here.

      • gabe says:

        You’re living in the past. Landon isn’t a player that runs at defenders that much anymore. More of a passer now, which is fine, but we can’t pretend 2014 Donovan is anywhere near 2002 or 2010 Donovan.

        • Matt says:

          Possible. So who runs at defenders now?

          • gabe says:

            style of pal not built around running at players, but quick passing, constant moving, and superior spacing. Theoretically, though, our backs should make runs up the flanks with pace and send out swingers to the heads of Dempsey and Altidore.

            • gabe says:

              of play*

              • Matt says:

                Thanks, interesting. I just hope we have playmakers, that’s what I’m missing. Landon was a good passer even when he created plays by running at defenders. Just my thoughts.

        • Ryan says:

          Well 2013 Donovan was pretty damn good.

        • Gene says:

          I agree with your take and with JK’s decision not to take LD.

          I will say that the best argument for taking LD now would be his passing skills b/c his acceleration certainly is not where it was even a few years ago. But I will assume that JK considered it and determined that it was not enough to justify his inclusion. From everything that has been reported, JK sincerely believes this is a right thing to do and he is trying his best to put together a winning team. At this point, we should give him the benefit of the doubt. Time will tell if he is right.

          BTW, Michael Bradley has become a very good passer, which may be another reason why LD’s skill set was deemed surplus.

          • Nate says:

            MB has 8 assists to Donovans 58. Donovan might have lost his speed, but not his vision…

    • Jesse D says:

      It is not only about scoring. How many goals have Davis and Green scored in the past few months. Davis scored 1, Green zero. This isn’t tough love, this is having an ego be bigger than the team. Jurgen needs a little tough love, because he is out of line.

      • GW says:

        “Davis scored 1, Green zero. Davis scored 1, Green zero. ”

        Goal scoring isn’t Davis’ thing. As for Green it is hard to score when you are not on the field due to injury.

        • Jesse D says:

          Great. So let’s take a guy who doesn’t score goals but plays an attacking position and a guy who isn’t even playing.

          • GW says:

            Davis is there to provide service and Green is better now. Happy?

            • Jesse D says:

              thrilled. Landon can provide service too. Davis can’t work against tight defense. He doesn’t have the skill. I can’t comment much on Julian, I’ve seen him play for 30 minutes. He played poorly,turned the ball over a bunch and gave up a goal. Both options are scary unless we are already up by 2.

    • Jesse D says:

      Um, sorry did you comment that, if they can’t do XYZ how can play with Germany. Well the truth is none of our guys would make the German squad. Should we just no show up and forfeit?

      This decision wasn’t about looking for the best player, because he took plenty of players in worse form and with less talent than Landon. This decision was made a long time ago, when Jurgen wanted a team of his guys, rather than the best players.

      • ann says:

        Germany was interested in Green for the future and after striding through the youth academy of U-21, because it takes much longer to get on the German NT filled with many talented players.
        As German NT runs short of outside backs they would have also been interested in F. Johnson and perhaps in Chandler if the latter could go on consistently showing good performances like he did with Nuremberg before he got injured. But it was never an issue for German NT heads, because both players always made clear that they only want to play for USA.

  19. Lu says:

    Tell Landon that Real and Atletico are playing right now.

  20. shorembo says:

    To find out why Jurgen cut Donovan, all you have to do is go watch the press conference.

    Jurgen explained it all…. when talking about Wondo. Go listen to it (it was toward the end of the press conference). Jurgen fawned all over Wondo’s commitment to the team and his willing to do anything at anytime for the team. Jurgen was giddy about him.

    • Dc says:

      Yeah, as sad I am for Donovan, I am pumped for Wondolowski. That kid plays hard every game, I think he deserves this.

      • Nate says:

        Not pumped for Wondo, because he does not give us the best chance to beat world class competition. The guys on the 1990 US world cup team were hard workers, totally committed players, but guess what? They got waxed by Czechloslovakia and Austria! They simply did not have the class.

        We know Donovan has the class to hang with Germany, Portugal and Ghana. Can we say the same for Green, Davis and Wondo? Id rather be proven wrong with Donovan on the field, as opposed to the rest of those guys.

        • QuakerOtis says:

          “Id rather be proven wrong with Donovan on the field…”

          Thanks for honestly displaying your faulty logic and commitment to one man over the whole team.

          • 1st Time Caller says:

            Don’t be so dense. You know perfectly well the man was declaring that he would rather go into battle with the player who has proven on multiple occasions he can rise to the occasion at a WORLD CUP and win, then take a chance on a couple of WC rookies (who also happen to be over the hill…)

    • Can says:

      Agreed. Best team, not best 23 players. L D is a great player, but that might not be enough this time around.

    • Jesse D says:

      But Jurgen played dumb, “well Landon is a forward”. Yeah, Cameron is a Centerback, but if you had no other options at RB you would consider him there before cutting him. We have no other LM options, yet Jurgen stuck to the party line.

      • Dc says:

        That is the most annoying thing to me, hearing that he wasn’t competing against Davis or Green, of course he was. To say otherwise is ridiculous.

      • atleticodemadridfan says:

        Beasley can play left mid, Fabian can play left mid, Zusi or Bedoya can switch over and play left mid, even Dempsey can play the left wing.
        Cameron can play R-back, C-back or D-mid. Chandler can play L or R wing back.

      • jhawk says:

        +1 So if we are being asked to believe that LD is just a forward because that is where he was listed for camp, then I guess we are also being asked to believe FJ wont get any time at at LM because he was listed as a defender. Hollow arguement. We know that some of the strengths of those chosen are their flexibility (Cameron, FJ, Chandler). I am not buying the “Landon was only competing with the forwards” line.

        • QuakerOtis says:

          That’s because you’re not thinking clearly. Landon is not versatile. Landon does not add anything that you guys perceive him to add. Landon is a one position guy with less value than others at his position. Donovan is not a winger anymore. He is a CAM or CF, if that, at this level. His stats and current form are lower than others at those positions, excepting maybe Jozy.

          Let’s look at Jozy, who also has poor stats this year. Aside from his five assists in the EPL beating Donovan’s 2 in MLS, Jozy also has a large body and experience as a holdup guy in the EPL. Jozy therefore ADDS to the team in spite of his poor goal scoring form at a woeful Sunderland. Donovan… No. He used to be fast. He is no longer, hence the change in his game.

          Donovan is now a one position guy for country, and that position has Deuce, Jozy, and AJ (all unarguably ahead of Donovan… unless you’re just mad) as well as Wondo (more goals, ethic, and fitness) and Boyd (more goals, ethic, fitness, and future).

          The other versatile guys add just that: versatility, with equates to cover for injuries/cards and allows some tactical nuance (maybe). Donovan adds nothing aside from celebrity and, apparently, a poor attitude.

          I explain this all in detail in a post above (currently in moderation).

          • jhawk says:

            I see where you are going with that line of thinking, but the arguement fails when the idea that Donnovan has lost a step and is too old is followed by the inclusion of 32 year old Davis in his first World Cup. Donnovan is not competing with his former self, he is competing against other players that I simply dont think are better than he is. I will give you the forwards that made the roster, and even Boyd. However, I cant take the old, slow arguement on why he is not in the midfield when Davis is on the roster.

          • Jesse D says:

            Donovan is still faster than some of these guys who play wing like Zusi and Davis.
            Who is the backup CAM/CF to Duece right now? If that is the position you believe Donovan was competing for, who won it? It wasn’t Wondo, and Johannson doesn’t play CAM, he is a finisher not a visionary. Is it Mix then? Not really, Mix is the backup to Bradley if Beck is the backup to Jones.

            The math just doesn’t add up. Cut 2 CM’s, 1 CB, 2 RB’s, 1 Forward and Donovan. No wide midfielders were cut. Well except Donovan who plays that spot.
            At some point it is silly to keep arguing this. I know beyond a doubt that Klinnsman made this decision with significant non-soccer motives. I believe that to be wrong unless someone is a true cancer to the clubhouse.
            If Donovan was a cancer though, just say it, don’t go on praising him. Jurgen played this wrong, his messaging was inconsistent and left many of us angry and confused. If this was an attitude problem, then Jurgen should have called it out as such. At least we could understand that. To say he has been great and done everything he can, but is just “behind” some other guys is just not true. We all know that. Give me the truth, or keep your mouth shut is my message to Klinnsman.

            • QuakerOtis says:

              Fair enough to both of you. And thanks for replying with reasoned responses, though I want to point out that one does not have to be a “cancer” to just be second best at several things. Please quit with the hyperbole.

              As to positional battles see my looonnnggggg post above. I agree that the logic breaks down around Davis, but I think that’s fine. Reason being, I doubt Davis sees the field, and even if LD sees the field, he can apparently get marked out of the game by super young and super old guys on a Mexican B team. While no better on that count, Davis (who I doubt sees the field) is a pace horse in practice who also provides a good cross in training (which our defenders will need to drill on, for Germany and Portugal). Davis is also giddy just to be there, where others apparently thought they could just waltz in to a starting spot. As anyone who’s managed people before knows, attitude can make or break a team. Attitude IS a soccer decision.

              As to math not adding up: it does. Jurgen seems to have decided (correctly imho) that we won’t see enough of the ball to bring a play-maker. Our best bet is in out-hustling and/or outpacing tired teams on the counter. In either case, we need youth, athleticism, and speed. While still a decent athlete, Donovan is not faster or more athletic than most of our wide options. Yes, Davis and Zusi are exceptions, but Davis doesn’t see the field, and Zusi brings work rate, STAMINA (which LD admits he no longer has), and crossing which is on par with or better than Donovan’s.

              Davis also adds the attitude and ethic that Donovan has proven he lacks. Yes, this absolutely matters to many coaches. And yes, this IS a soccer decision. No “cancer” required.

              So, while you may not like or agree with the soccer reasoning, please don’t act like it isn’t there.

              • Jesse D says:

                I just don’t see Davis bringing anything to this team. He is a one trick pony, certainly not a versatile piece like Donovan.
                Jurgen’s quotes that I’m reading about here, behind closed doors to Lalas and Twellman are telling. Jurgen held a grudge. Grudges aren’t soccer decisions.

              • jhawk says:

                Good points and well reasoned. I didnt get a chance to read you long post last night, but did this morning and you make good points. My problem with the decision is for every reason somebody brings up for not including Donnovan, there is a contradiction on the roster. Seems you even have somewhat of a problem with my biggest problem,the inclusion of Davis. The rationale of Davis not seeing the field just isnt enough for me though. Lots of things can happen in a World Cup, and I believe even the 20th field player has to go with some thought he could get some important minutes. With that logic, I might be more inclined to agree with your other suggestion that it should have been Corona in that spot because he is younger with more speed. I would probably still disagree to an extent, but I would have much less of an arguement and really would have understood that selection much more so than Davis.

            • GW says:

              JK would be a fool to go all “scorched earth” with LD.

              He’s the manager and you are not.

              He may need LD.

              No sense in burning a bridge before you have to..

              That is how professionals operate.

              • Jesse D says:

                lies and deception, how all professionals operate.

              • GW says:

                Jesse D,

                That’s a pretty good description of your average big time coach in any of the major sport’s.

                What did you expect?

              • Jesse D says:

                I expected better. When you represent your country, how you go about your business is equally important to the results. This is more than a game, it is an international affair. Jurgen has embarrassed me, and made a mockery of my country. We should all be ashamed.

          • Nate says:

            Wondo is ahead of Donovan? Really? Based on what? Ethic and fitness?

            What the heck does “ethic” mean? And how do you measure it? It sounds like a made up criteria that conveniently allows you to disqualify Donovan based on his “sabbatical”

            But lets talk reality here. Are you seriously telling me that you think Wondo is more likely to get you a goal against PORTUGAL because hes scored 5 more goals than Donovan at this point in the MLS season? I guess I could see how you reach that conclusion if you ignore past performance and evaluate players based soley on a snap shot of this point of the season alone. But who does that? With no real international track record of success (not even at the youth levels) you have to admit, with this approach, you’re just rolling the dice on guys like Wondo, Green, Davis, Mix, etc. None of those guys have proven that they can perform under pressure at the highest international level. Donovan has.

            But hey, you have random stats on your side, so of course, go with Wondo and Davis. Why not pick the NCAA’s leading scorer while you’re at it. Hes scored more than Donovan this season.

            • QuakerOtis says:

              Again, you’re looking at the past.

              And yes, the snapshot is exactly what you look at. Otherwise, John O’Brien is on every team for eternity. I know Landon did well. As did EJ at various points. But even by your own “track record” criteria, Landon also has 2006, the Beckham debacle, the sabbatical, and now this. You guys keep cherry picking your info. I admit the Davis thing is weird, would not have taken him personally. And you are correct that “ethic” is a catch-all for Jurgen’s personal requirements. I happen to agree with them, and am ready to move on with supporting the team. Just got REAL tired of all the fanboy, newbies, and xenophobic rants.

              Fun practice for this second year law student… though obviously not practicing my editing 😉


  21. Richard Rygg says:

    Am disappointed and still in a bit of a shock that LD is not part of the team. And, I really admire his professional responses to all the questions.

    • Xander Crews says:

      His next professional response will be his first. He’s acting like a petulant child and proving why he was cut.

  22. Ryan says:

    The “commitment” line has never made any sense to me. 156 caps over 15 years, and people are saying on here that a three-month hiatus suddenly means he’s never really cared? What kind of logic is that.

    And, practically speaking, what are people even worried about commitment-wise? That Klinsmann would put him in the game and Donovan would go, “Eh, who cares” and not try to win the game? That wouldn’t be the mentality of *any* high-level player, let alone arguably the best US player of all time.

    • shorembo says:

      What kind of logic?


    • Bac says:

      Something to consider Ryan, maybe the “commitment” narrative has more to do with the commitment to keep pushing yourself mentally and physically to always being on top of your game.. or busting your butt to make that happen. The commitment to have a killer instinct and mentality, a winner’s drive no matter what the circumstances.
      As Bradley said, the commitment to suffer harder than anyone else…

      Nobody is questioning Donovan ‘s commitment to the Red White and Blue….

      I’m sure not everyone is in this line of thinking, but like I said, something to consider

      • gabe says:

        I question his commitment to the shirt when he takes a break from the team during the qualifying campaign to go “find himself.”

        • jenkins says:

          I’m getting kind of sick of the notion that a 3 month break means someone isn’t committed to his career. LD has never done anything in his adult life but play professional soccer. He had a rough couple of years personally, he’s getting older and the injuries linger longer than they used to, and in the midst of all that his fans were all still rabid and demanding more and more of him. I’d like to see anyone try to deal with fame, divorce, injury, etc. and come out on the other side with one tenth of Landon’s poise. Yes, he took a break. But that doesn’t make him “soft” and it doesn’t mean he doesn’t care about the team. He came back and he’s been working hard at it ever since. Nobody should take this kind of abuse for taking time for himself, which he had pretty much never done before. This discussion is ridiculous.

          • jhawk says:

            I am asking this question because I honestly dont remember. If I recall correctly, he started his sabatical toward the end of the MLS season (so around October), and maybe missed the first 2 qualifiers due to the sabatical, but was available for call up for the rest of the qualifiers. Jurgen didnt call him in because he had to “earn his way back”. Some people are making it sound like Donnovan bailed out on the entire qualifying cycle, when I think he was back playing for the Galaxy in around March and was getting reasonably good reviews shortly after returning saying he looked “refreshed”. Just seems people are making it sound like he abandoned his team, when a bulk of the sabatical was over the off season (and granted he could have gone to play at Everton if I recall correctly). If I do remember this correctly (and maybe I am not), sounds like even the sabbatical thing is really over blown.

          • Dirk McQuigley says:

            How many other players, at similar points in their career, needed a Holiday in Cambodia? His experience is the same of ever other player who went through the academy system in this country. Remember, he also chose to go to Everton and Bayern during previous off seasons rather than go on sabbatical. Donovan’s personal life was in shambles as he was emotional wrought from his recent divorce. But again, he’s not the first player to go through a divorce during their playing career either.

            So while burnout is a real possibility, Donovan was acting as if his situation was unique and that he alone was the first player who ever needed to recharge his batteries. It reeks of privilege.

        • Ryan says:

          You completely ignored my last paragraph. With as many comments as you’ve made on here, you still have yet to put forward anything to say how any player in Brazil wouldn’t give it their all. It’s the freaking World Cup, dude.

        • Jesse D says:

          Have you ever taken a vacation or a sick day? I hope not, that might make you a hypocrite.

          • gabe says:

            I have never taken 3 months off because I have lost the will to keep going with my professional soccer career. So, no. Sorry.

            • Jesse D says:

              I’d rather have a player step away if their heart isn’t in it, then continue to show up and not represent us with their full heart.

              You can question why his heart wasn’t in it if you want. But I feel it is too hard for us to judge because soccer is a game to us. For him it has been his every waking hour since he was 17. All American eyes have been on him.

              I accepted that Landon had recharged and found himself. He has played a year and a half of committed soccer since then. I believe he has rededicated himself. Jurgen either doesn’t believe that, or is holding some other grudge. This decision wasn’t made on soccer merits though. That’s for certain.

              • GW says:

                “This decision wasn’t made on soccer merits though. That’s for certain.”

                That is, of course, illogical.

                You have a vision of what constitutes soccer merits and others, as demonstrated by the other posts here, have a different vision.

                All these visions have their merits but unfortunately for you , your vision in not congruent with JK’s vision as it relates to LD.

                When choosing the final 23 is your responsibility, I assume you will follow your vision regardless of what other s think.

                I would expect no less of you.

              • Jesse D says:

                He has the right to make decisions and I likely would have disagreed with this decision regardless of the reason. However, if he would just say the truth, a reason that has some slight level of logic behind it, that would at least be honorable. Instead he made up reasons for the media, which dishonored him, dishonored the position, and dishonored the players involved.

    • Sandtrout says:

      Thank you. Key points. His record proves his commitment. That he’s not a soccer-obsessed automoton (as shown by his sabbatical) makes him a lot more interesting to me than the players Klinsmann seems to support.

      • gabe says:

        Would Lallas, Wynalda, McBride, Reyna, Dempsey, or Bradley take a break during a qualifying campaign to go soul-searching in Cambodia? Sorry, man, but that says something about the level of commitment to the side. Of course there’s more to life than football, but we’re not professional footballers! You want players in the side that bleed the colors, and I don’t think Landon does that.

        • Jack says:

          Then drop him 6 months ago if that’s what you have a problem with

          • gabe says:

            on this we agree. timing off, but i agree with the decision

            • Jesse D says:

              Jurgen screwed this up. that is my ongoing point. If this was an attitude issue with him and Donovan. Then say that and push him out of the team sooner. Jurgen continues to praise Donovan’s attitude and approach to this day, which is just a pathetic way to handle this. Completely illogical.

          • Bac says:

            Well Jack, maybe if Gabe were the coach he would have, but he’s not, so the question is really about JK. If anyone wants to recall what happened, JK said he would support Landon taking his break. But when those first qualifiers came up, he had to be ready to go without him. (And nobody wants to remember the off the record comments by players about him not being there etc) They NOW only wanna remember what they want to..# Selective Memory
            Jurgen laid out what he needed to do to make a comeback, Donovan did that. It was over.

            But it’s not simple enough for anyone to believe that JK just rates him below others RIGHT NOW… instead it has to be a conspiracy, or something more….
            I don’t know the true answer, but it does answer your question of why now and not 6 months ago… and even though Gabe and I tend to agree much of this discussion, I personally would have done the same. Make him earn his spot back, make him earn his way back with his teammates, and then assess his performance and make my decision…

            But like Twellman said last night, the way Donovan was talking the last few weeks, he didn’t make it any easier on himself… As Twellman said, You’re Landon Donovan, the best ever, start acting like it…

            • Jesse D says:

              That’s right because Twellman acts like he was the best ever.

              I don’t believe JK for a second on the reasoning for his decision. If it were really as you say a “RIGHT NOW” issue, Jurgen wouldn’t have to try to box Donovan into a Forward role only. Jurgen played his card wrong in trying to sell this to the public. His scheme should have ignore the part about Donovan only being a forward. That screwed him up. So now we know he was performing better than Davis or Julian, but he wasn’t competing against them. It is such a silly tangle of comments. Jurgen kept the guy off the team because he doesn’t like him and doesn’t like his attitude. If JK had said that from the beginning I could accept it. Unfortunately Jurgen has prove himself to be a game player and a politician.

        • Nate says:

          None of those guys, with the possible exception of Claudio, carried the burden of “future of US soccer” at Donovan’s early age. But even Claudio went to college. Donovan’s expectations went through the roof after winning the golden ball at the under 17 world cup. He gave EVERYTHING for the shirt, and you want to reduce those years of comittment from age 17 to 32 down to a 3month sabattical? and now his committment is somehow suspect? So much so, you put an 18 year old GERMAN on the team instead? Jermaine Jones doesnt even do interviews in English and you want to question Landon Donovan’s committment to the US shirt?

          • gabe says:

            Jermaine Jones has a massive American flag tattoo on his body. Someone’s ability to speak fluent English is a factor in their commitment to America? Maybe you’re thinking of England, because in the States lots of people speak lots of different languages.

            Good one.

            • Jesse D says:

              I’m not questioning Jermaine’s dedication to this team or this country, but it is hard for anyone to question LD’s commitment. He has shouldered the burden his entire adult life. He’s got an odd personality, and he plays mind games with himself. When the team truly needed him, he was ready to go. Jurgen gets to choose who he wants to go to battle with him. That is his option as coach, but choosing based on his own ego, and/or playing mind games with the media just makes him look bad. I appreciate straight shooters. Jurgen is anything but that. I hope we get a new coach soon. Bob Bradley was at least honest. He had some odd assessments of players, but he was straight with the fans and the players.

            • Ryan says:

              Lol your selective responding is infuriating, Gabe. Nate brought up a ton of good points, but you only felt comfortable saying something about the last two.

              Good one.

            • Nate says:

              This back and forth illustrates how insanely subjective and meaningless your made up “commitment to the shirt” criteria is, but I’ll bite…

              First, you injected the word “fluent”, not me. I was addressing Jones’ choice to speak to American fans in an interview about his role on the US Soccer team, in German rather than English. You would think that embracing a nation’s culture, indeed its language, would demonstrate a greater commitment of time and effort, than sitting down and getting a tattoo. Plenty of European players (German, French, Dutch, Spanish,Portugese, Italian) do interviews in English when addressing an English speaking audience, and they dont have an american parent, nor are they playing for the United States national team. Its too much to ask of Jones?

              But then again, that’s me. If you think Jermaine Jones is more “committed to the shirt” than Landon Donovan because of a flag tatoo, then great. Do you. It just seems like a lousy criteria for selecting a World Cup team.

              Me? I would bring Jones because of his extensive international experience playing in the Bundesliga and Champions league, not becuase of my assessment of how “committed to the shirt” he may be.

              • gabe says:

                there is no national language in the USA, but nice.

                Jermaine Jones didn’t go on a sabbatical during qualifying. Pretty simple.

      • GW says:

        I’m sure Landon would be a wonderful dinner guest.

        Is that how you choose your 23?

        • QuakerOtis says:

          It’s how many choose their President, so… why not a popular attacking midfielder or two?

    • GW says:


      “means he’s never really cared? What kind of logic is that.”

      The what have you done for me lately kind of logic. Very common in sport.

      That was then. This is now.

      As for the commitment thing and what people are worried about it’s like this.
      The best player on your team decides his performance is good enough and that even if it is not top drawer it is good enough to get him on this team.
      That is not his call to make.
      The other five World Cup vets all made all kinds of signs that they were willing to sacrifice for the program to be ready for the World Cup. JK did not approve of all of it but at least they made the effort.
      Not Donovan. He decides when he is in good enough shape. He decides when in the right form.
      Well that is not for him to decide; it is for the manager. Of course managers all over the world put up with that from super stars but JK made the call that this guy wasn’t that much of a super star anymore and that his talent was not good enough anymore to make up for the bad example that he sets.
      And when that happens the player gets cut.
      And if you think JK did not want an in form LD with a good attitude playing for him in Brazil you are not very familiar with JK’s almost maniacal desire to win.

      • Ryan says:

        Yes, because an “almost maniacal desire to win” necessitates bringing only five guys with World Cup experience. An “almost maniacal desire to win” means you bring DeAndre Yedlin, an obviously world-class right back who didn’t help New England hang five on his team a couple weeks ago. An “almost maniacal desire to win” means you bring 32-year-old Brad Davis, who—let’s be real here—never contributed to the national team earlier in his career for a reason.

        Every coach wants to win. Klinsmann is, in fact, not unique in that sense. But he’s also a man of principle, which was reflected pretty clearly here. Bringing Donovan would have made his team better. And he didn’t do that.

        • GW says:


          Time to go cliche on you:

          “Past performance is no guarantee of future results”

          Clearly JK is gambling here and I’m assuming he has a much clearer picture of the odds than we do.

  23. Brad says:

    And Landycakes just torpedoed the WC team.

    • Matt says:

      No, he’s not on the team, duh.

      • Brad says:

        No he didn’t.

        • The Brad that started this post says:

          A better professional would have waited until the WC was over.

          • Matt says:

            That’s silly, get real.

          • Sandtrout says:

            LD simply pointed out the elephant in the room then said he was done. That’s not torpedoing. If you want to know who torpedoed the team, take a look at Klinsmann’s ridiculous speech to the 23 and how well that was received. They were just chosen for the WC team, and they reacted like they were at a wake, thanks to Klinsmann’s decision to cut LD.

            • Bac says:

              Or maybe they know it’s bittersweet no matter who gets cut and as soon as the camera stopped they were hugging and crying like babies because they were going to the world cup…
              And as far as how sad they may have been about Landon, ask which one is willing to give up his spot so he can go

              • Jesse D says:

                Come on BAC, that was a silly comment.
                …and maybe they all rode ponies and played and got matching butterfly tattoo’s!

              • GW says:

                Jesse D.

                How would you feel if a co worker had just been fired and then he went to the media and said the whole thing was BS and my co workers will back me up on it.

                Then how would you react if the national media put you on TV and asked you to take sides against your boss?

                Great team mate huh?

              • Jesse D says:

                I guess that depends. If this coworker is really good at what he does and would me better at my job or if my coworker had been fired because our boss still holds him taking a 3 month leave 2 years ago against him, I’d absolutely back him up. I’d have the same angry emotions he had. Of course when the media asked me, I would say no comment. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be glad he put our boss on blast for making bad decisions.

              • ann says:

                +1. They almost went through media training.

          • gabe says:

            THIS! +100

          • milbo says:

            . Donovan’s light is fading, get the candle snuffer

          • QuakerOtis says:

            Thanks for starting this post, The Brad that started this post .

  24. Benny says:

    As others have said, Klinsmann already had planned cutting Donovan; that’s why he made the cuts so early. If Donovan would have killed in the two the friendies, Klinsmann could not use form as an excuse.

    • Julio says:

      I disagree, I believe the cuts were made now to allow the team to become the best it can be.

      • Benny says:


      • Jesse D says:

        The best it could be would no doubt include Davis, because that guy has potential to be elite.

        • QuakerOtis says:

          Jesse D is correct to pinpoint the Davis inclusion. See my posts above for an explanation of why this is still OK, even though I would not have done it myself. It all boils down to attitude being an important factor in building a team. Attitude IS part of the soccer analysis, in general, and especially for a Klinsmann. I swear, that guy would make more money working for Silicon Valley VC than in global soccer, lol.

          • Jesse D says:

            If it was attitude then JK needs to say it. Calling it a skill decision is like trying to seat us all at the kids table. It is insulting to our intelligence.

            • KingGoogleyEye says:

              Jesse D: sorry, my perception may be way off, but it seems to me that there is nothing that Klinsmann could call Donovan’s exclusion that would appease you. If he says:

              it’s about skill = he’s treating us as kids

              it’s positioning = well Landon is versatile

              it’s current form = then what about Jozy or tonight’s result against Union?

              it’s past noncommittal = well if it’s about the past then what about Green (who has no past)?

              it’s a personal feud = that’s a bad reason

              it’s team chemistry = how can Chandler bring better chemistry than Captain America?

              it’s about speed = well Davis is slower

              it’s X = what about Y

              it’s Y = what about Z

              • Jesse D says:

                King, I reserve the right to disagree with Klinnsman no matter what, we all have that right. Our opinion doesn’t count for anything (except that I’ve decided not to buy this years World Cup jersey), but we can disagree.
                To your accusation. Some of those points are my opinion, but not all of them. If Jurgen had said something true like:
                It’s a personal feud or Landon doesn’t want it bad enough or doesn’t have the right attitude. At least it would have been honest.
                I can respect if a coach makes a decision on a player because of attitude. My perception: this is more about Jurgen than it is about Landon. Still, I would have appreciated a little bit of honesty. I thought Jurgen was a bigger man that what he has shown; I’m extremely disappointed. Up until this week I’ve like most of what Jurgen has done.

              • KingGoogleyEye says:

                Jesse D: Thank you. You confirmed what I suspected.

                “I reserve the right to disagree with Klinnsman no matter what, we all have that right.”

                If you can point to where I tried to deny you that right, then please do.

              • Jesse says:

                King, I confirmed your point? I guess I don’t understand your point then. Is your point that no matter I would be disappointed a guy I think still has something in his tank isn’t going to Brazil? Sure I guess I can confirm that, I would prefer a different selection. That is always the case though, we never predict the exact 23 correctly. I’d also have chosen Parkhurst over Yedlin. Your point stating – “nothing that Klinsmann could call Donovan’s exclusion that would appease you” is incorrect. I would have accepted the decision if JK had said it was “attitude issue, donovan doesn’t approach the game the way a representative of this country should” or “team chemistry, other guys don’t like the way he approaches his business”. I believe JK could justify his decision if those were the circumstances. Some of the other issues brought up, just aren’t true, so I don’t accept that “chandler is more committed” that “Davis is faster” that “whoever is more skilled”. I want the man who leads a team representing my country to have integrity. Is that too much to ask?

              • KingGoogleyEye says:

                Jesse D: first, are you “Jesse” or “Jesse D”?

                Second, no, you did not “confirm my point,” rather you “confirmed my suspicion.” I was not trying to make a point.

                Third, my suspicion is that you will not accept any reason for excluding Donovan. I don’t buy that you would have been okay with “Donovan doesn’t approach the game the way a representative of this country should.” I know you just said that you would accept that, but I don’t believe you. Maybe that seems unfair—to not believe you when you just came right out and said it—but well, you should know how that shoe fits.

                “I want the man who leads a team representing my country to have integrity. Is that too much to ask?”

                Yes, when “integrity” is defined as “Says what I want him to say and does what I want him to do.”

              • Jesse says:

                They are both me, IPAD has a different name stored.

                If you want to tell me what I believe and what I don’t believe, I’ll have to take your word for it.

                Clearly there is a reason JK left Donovan off the roster. I just think JK made up a convenient excuse rather than getting to the truth. The excuse wasn’t very believable in my opinion
                Plenty of things point to the fact that it was a rift between him and Donovan, not a decision based on skill, fitness, or club house demeanor. Indications like the way JK talks about Donovan, changes his mind about where LD is on the depth chart, how his son talks about Donovan, how shocked and disappointed Howard and Bradley were, etc.
                Even if you don’t believe a national team coach is held to a higher standard of truth, I do. He doesn’t have to make the decision I want, Bradley never did, but he does need to be truthful and respectful to the people he represents. Goodson called out JK on this too. Why won’t he be honest with his own player about why he is being cut. There is something called constructive criticism. Unless your motives are malice you ought to be able to tell an employee why someone else got a position they wanted. If you can’t do that, you are a bad manager. BTW I’m not accusing JK of malice with regard to Goodson, I just think JK is a bad people manager.

  25. Charles says:

    After my first reading of this article I moved a little to Donovan’s side. You see, my biggest hope it the we have 23 that will gel and play hearts out in Brazil and my biggest fear is that of team chemistry, the gelling part. Then I reread it and read the comments posted above. My first question was, how did they let Klinsmann do this, then I thought it over.

    I now believe that dropping Donovan was the right move and the team will be better for it.

  26. matt says:

    People talking about for he had in the past year. What about Dempsey? He was utter trash up until the last few months. His return to MLS he did nothing. His form with the National team was terrible. He dives all the time whines for calls all the time. Where’s his heart?

    This is an absolute joke. And anyone supporting the decision didn’t watch the gold cup, that US team was nothing without donovan. Green should not be on that plane. You don’t take players to gain experience to the world cup. You don’t bring who have only played 15 minutes in a national team jersey to the world cup. Players who play in the 4th division of germany. This is an absolute joke and there is no way to justify it

    • Charles says:

      You are 100% absolutely correct matt, “you don’t take players to gain experience to the world cup”.

      But you are also 100% absolutely incorrect about Julian Green.

    • Jack says:

      I don’t see how anyone can make the commitment case when Chandler is in this team.

      • Julio says:

        Jack, are you good friends with a commenter here known as Biff?

      • Jesse D says:

        It is really odd, this inconsistency in Jurgen’s mind.

        I’m for Chandler getting a shot, but certainly Landon has been more committed to this team that Chandler.

    • JJ says:

      Amen but you’ll find plenty of people here doing all sorts of mental gymnastics, contradicting themselves from one sentence to another — to justify this travesty.

    • Can says:

      Reyna was taken to ’94 to gain experience. As was fat Ronaldo. It happens all the time.

  27. nato says:

    get over it LANDON. this isn’t about you. it’s about the USA.

    he dropped you, stop crying. Be a man. support your teammates.

  28. Javier says:

    To all the Donovan haters, who do you think is a better player that deserves to be going? Julian Green, an 18 year old kid who plays for Bayern’s reserves? Brad Davis, who is also 32 and very slow? Do you think because Donovan is 32 and not as fast as he was at 20 he shouldn’t be going? I saw an interview with Bruce Arena last night on TWCSportsnet where he said to show him a player at 32 that is the same player he was at 20. There are some people that are confusing Donovan’s honest assessment of himself as arrogance. There are people that are saying Donovan isn’t playing as well with the Galaxy this year. Have you watched and paid attention to those games? Bruce Arena is switching between a diamond formation to a 4-4-2 sometimes within the same game. And not only is Donovan playing with several new players to the team Donovan changes position sometimes 2 or 3 times in a game depending on what formation Bruce Arena uses and what player substitution he uses. It’s tough for a player even of his quality to adjust to that. And by the way what he hasn’t contributed to in the offense he’s more than made up for by dropping back in the defense and helping out, and for those saying he’s out shape. Watch his games and you’ll see he’s still making runs out of the back and taking on players.

    Michael Bradley and Tim Howard both said the team plays better with Donovan than without him.

    I heard the post-selection interviews and JK never said specifically why Donovan wasn’t selected. I’ve read in several articles where it was a personal decision by JK to omit Donovan. I don’t know. But based on Donovan’s assessment, based on other articles I’ve read, and based on JK refusing to give specifics about Donovan’s omission I personally believe it was a personal decision and not a professional decision based on Donovan’s ability.

    There are plenty of Donovan haters out there who will never be happy with Donovan and will forever hate everything Donovan has done. No matter what is said about how much he deserved to be on this team they will argue against it. Know this Donovan even in his current form is able to contribute as much to this team as Dempsey, or Bradley, and more than any other player on this team.

    The world cup draw for the U.S. was always going to be tough with or without him. Without him I predict 3-and-out for the U.S.

    • Dc says:

      I completely agree with this. I watch almost every Galaxy game, and just because he hasn’t been lighting up the scoreboard does not mean he hasn’t been playing well. He is not as quick, sure, but I think it shows a good amount of intelligence and maturity on Landon’s part how he has changed his game to accommodate getting older and still be extremely effective, which he HAS been if anyone cared to actually watch his games. Just like in the Gold Cup.

  29. Dc says:

    Our group last world cup was just about as easy as it gets, and we BARELY got through the first round. I’m not saying it won’t happen, or that it can’t, or that I won’t be watching every minute in hopes that it will, I am saying that it will be extremely though, even if we play our best. If every team plays to their potential, then we will finish last, not because we lack talent, but because teams in our group are STACKED. Klinsmann will be hated and maybe fired, and Landon will have been spared all of the “Landon is fat and old” BS that people would be sure to throw around, so maybe he is getting lucky.

    Of course, here’s to hoping that we have another 2002!

  30. Julio says:

    It took awhile but I figured it out. Jack is Alexi Lalas.

    • Jesse D says:

      Alexi would think he is too good to be caught on a board like this. His Ego is almost as big as Jurgen’s.

  31. bryan says:

    Davis shouldn’t be there. LD should.

    but i am glad LD said he is done talking about this after today and says everyone needs to move past it. because that is 100% true.

  32. Anon says:

    The way many of you speak of LD, it’s almost as if he is the mascot not a player. By agreeing with JKs decision, does not discredit LD. Yes, he has experiance but he is becoming a drag, quite frankly. I blame his sabbatical drama – which was completely unprofessional- if he were smarter he would have faked an injury- you can’t judge that. But, he insisted on dumping his emotions on his fans , freaking everyone out. I remember the ” omg Landon’s quitting” phase. This is ego centric and selfish. Landon loves to play the ” gee golly I’m such a good kid, I’m not the best, it’s just perception” but his actions are anything but. I have jumped out if my seat at games cheering for Landon like the rest ! But, I find him a total drag now.

    As for Klinsi’s son- c’mon a snotty teenager who’s father is a legend? Typical behavior !

    JK is German and strict…not lazy. There could be a bit of a cultural difference too. LD is lazy at times. For example-When jürgen took over, shortly after there was a friendly against France – playing in Stade de France is a big deal. Landon snubbed this opportunity cause he only had 2 weeks to recover from jet lag. It’s poor excuses like this that really irk Jürgen, I assume.

    It’s time for US Soccer to get real. Sorry.

    • Dc says:

      I don’t disagree, you express it in a harsh manner, but most of that is correct. He really should not be so open with the press. No one needs to hear about his mental vacation or his body slowing down. I really value his honesty, and think it’s refreshing, but I don’t think it does his career any good. This is a ultra-macho sport, you can’t get all therapeutic on everyone and not expect people to judge you. I am positive that this is what did him in with Klinsmann.

      • MikeV says:

        According to Twelmann, JK told him that the bridge with Landon was burned long ago. They spoke back during the Italy game last year. If true, why would he lead LD and everyone else on for over a year. And if JK’s son was just a snotty kid, I don’t buy it. Not because a kid can be classless and tweet what he did, but because there was a 2nd tweet. The 2nd tweet named a player and told LD that he was on the team because he would work harder than him. The only way he could get that idea is from hearing it from dad. Remember, this kid is no where near the team to be able to make that assessment, so it had to come from daddy. If you think I am making this up, well listen for yourself.
        link to

        • Bac says:

          Mike I answered your earlier question, and saw that you posted this comment in several places..
          Didn’t know if you were planning to respond or just asking me rhetorically

        • Bac says:

          Sorry Mike I just scrolled down further and see you did respond… not sure if you were responding to my answer below or your original question…
          Certainly not skating your question at all

    • Jack says:

      That would all make sense to me if Chandler wasn’t in the team.

  33. Scott e Dio93 says:

    Because of Brad Davis I have to agree with Donovan.

  34. sam says:

    For all the jurgen supporters, don’t talk about Donovan form & attitude, if that was case, altidore shouldn’t have made the team & Timmy Chandler. Jurgen’s got way too much love for German based players (look how many Usa players play in germany) green hasn’t done anything, if jurgen can kiss @$$ with chandler for a year, he could have definitely did the same for LD. If anything he should have taken him, as this would be LD last world cup realistically

    Now to all Donovan supporters, he should have gone and played either with Everton or somewhere in Europe a couple of years ago. Jurgens the coach, and he chooses the players he wanted & he didn’t choose him. His form was off this year, then again jurgen played dempsey when he wasnt even playing at Tottenham.

    All in all, this is kind of reminds me of the USWMNT issue benching Hope Solo for Briana scurry. And just like that this too will pass. by the way, klinsmann is not going to be doing anything special other than what Bradley did. Just because a lot of players play in europe than before is not special, after all its 2014.

    • Julio says:

      sam, do you know your backside from first base? Landon did go to Europe, the Bundesliga, Bayern Munich in fact. How is it that you don’t know that?

    • TheFrenchOne says:

      And tell me, how did the whole benching Hope Solo for Scurry work out…?

      • Nate says:

        it gave them an excuse to cover up the fact that Brazil was the better team that day, and they needed to rely more on skill rather than athletics. But they didnt really pick up on that until they lost again in the world cup, this time with Solo in goal, again, to a more skillful team.

  35. FK pirin says:

    After seeing the 23 players chosen, I can’t say that Donovan was in worse form, or showed less commitment, or has less talent than the players chosen. So that can’t be the reason. A number of players on the team have stated that he is a top player on the team, so I can’t think that team chemistry is the issue. As for positions, I tried to look at the formations we have used in the past, and I can’t see Donovan being a starting forward with this group, however, if Dempsey got injured I would want Donovan to play as the withdrawn forward, rather than mix, wondrous, johansson, etc. Also for the left midfield position or wide left attacking position, I see a whole that doesn’t seem to be fillable by Zusi or bedoya, or Davis or green, or johansson. I can see who the likely starter and backup is for every other position. I am obviously not the coach, an in this situation I would put Johnson as left backand have Beasley play as a left mid, but I think Donovan is probably the best LM and left attacker on the team. The only reason I can see for not bringing Donovan, even though he is not as good as he used to be, must be to do with Jurgen needing to make a point with the team, and him not wanting Donovan to mess that up by not training as hard and then stepping it up at the games. My fear with klinsmann is that he forces the players to kill themselves in training, so that by game 3 of the group stage they will have nothing left. This is my explanation for the games we have seen where the US played with no energy like in Honduras.

    • Fredo says:

      Yep, Landon would have been very useful in a multiple of different situations. Odd that Klinsi couldn’t see that.

    • Jesse D says:

      Absolutely, a point I’ve been making for awhile. If God forbid, something happened to Duece, Donovan and only Donovan is capable of playing his role. He would play it differently, he is a better passer and has better vision, but is not the pure shooter or tight space dribbler Duece is.

  36. Eastbaygrease says:

    Both Friedel and McBride states they were shocked that Landon isnt on the roster and that it has to be personal.

    Thanks Klinsmann for ruining the world cup for US soccer fans. Schmid for Nats coach!

    • Julio says:

      Wait a minute, are Friedel and McBride on the 23? Let me go and check.

      • EastBayGrease says:

        Yes, because when a coaching choice is incomprehensible to two of the best players in the country’s history, that’s not a red flag.

        • Julio says:

          And who are those “two of the best players in the country’s history”?

          • Chris says:

            You’re not very bright It is blatantly obvious. To say Friedel and McBride are not two of the best players in USMNT history is ludicrous

          • EastBayGrease says:

            Brad Friedel was the most successful American player in a major European league. More than one highly respected EPL coach has called him the best goal keeper they ever coached.

            Brian McBride was the highest scoring American player in the EPL until Dempsey broke his record.

            Are they the two best American players in history? No. Are they two of the best American players in history? Yes.

    • Jack says:

      haha well lets just see what happens first

    • JayAre says:

      See what you did there? Schmid for Nats coach …. That makes you sound like a d*mn fool. Thats the same guy that can’t find a way to field the best team in Seattle without over exposing his young RB. He’s never won a WC or coached one to a third place finish. Progress not Regress

    • Zocklo says:

      I saw that also, you could tell both McBride and Friedel had a low opinion of Klinsmann;s decision, and they certainly know more about soccer than any of the commenters here.,

  37. Julio says:

    Let’s get it on! Our back line players: Cameron, Chandler, Bresler, Johnson, Brooks and Yedlin. With Beasley showing them the way will be the best back line in U.S. history. Until 2016 and the Copa that is.

    • Tim F. says:

      I wish I shared your enthusiasm but I feel the backline is the team’s weak link, especially the centerbacks. I really hope I am wrong.

    • Chris says:

      Sorry Julio you must be new to US soccer. Pope, Berhalter, Mastroeni, Regis, Agoos, Cherundolo, LLamosa and Sanneh were better and the results speak for themselves. Crawl back under your rock

      • Julio says:

        But Chris, I am talking about post world cup 2014, not pre.

        And, for your information, I live in a tent, I hate rocks.

        • Chris says:

          “will be the best back line in U.S. history”. Please just stop. You have no idea what you are talking about

          • Julio says:

            How can you be so sure Chris, because I am talking about this team and how they will play in Brazil.

            Or are you a psychic?

            • Saul says:

              What I want Chris to do for me is to tell me what the lotto numbers will be this weekend.

    • Murray Braun says:

      Brooks-untested and not encouraging after Ukraine.
      Chandler-cannot ignore his lack of US commitment.
      Yedlin-only one professional year under his belt. Bad choice even if he’s speedy.
      Beasley-will get slaughtered by WC opposition.
      Fabian-how good is he at LM? Better than at LB?
      Besler-thought he was having a dicey season in MLS.
      Cameron-plays LB for Stoke. Now pegged at CB?
      This isn’t the best back line in US history–it’s 1998 redux.

  38. Fredo says:

    Absolutely Landon deserved to be there.

  39. Tim F. says:

    Klinsmann has made so many great moves. I am not going to kill him on one, bad decision, but this really sucks. I can’t understand why you wouldn’t want Landon to even come off the bench if the team was behind and needed a difference maker.

  40. Goalscorer24 says:

    It’s the coaches personal decision, it always comes down to a personal choice. He made this decision withi his Assistamt Coaches, so they must have seen something similar.

  41. 1776croatswede says:

    We will be fine. Yah it is a bummer Donovan got cut, but he cannot run forever!

    There are enough veterans in the group, and the youth will spark the team. We will get out, no worries

    Remember to 2002, Donovan and Beasley were 20!!!

  42. 1776croatswede says:

    But if I was the coach, I would have picked donovan, but as a special sub

  43. Dan says:

    We’re down a goal against Germany in the 75th minute with progression to the knockout rounds on the line.

    Someone please tell me who they would rather see step onto the field other than Donovan in that situation.

    No one said he had to start, but Donovan is the definition of a “Tournament Player.” In 2010 Germany took a “washed up” Miroslav Klose who had only scored 3 goals in 25 Bundesliga appearances and that seems to have worked out pretty well for them.

    The best teams respect their elders (see: Diego Forlan (35) Uruguay, Miroslav Klose AGAIN (35) Germany and Dirk Kuyt (33) Netherlands)

    Oh and btw, we have THREE midfielders on our roster who are 32. What a joke.

    • Julio says:

      Consider this imaginary image. We are up 2 to 0 against Germany in the 75th minute, we have already beat Ghana and Portugal, and both Germany and Portugal beat Ghana.

      What do we do? Who do we send in?

      • Baptista says:

        Since that must be a dream, your mother with refreshments.

      • start Wondo says:

        I enjoy this fantastical thought, and I hope it happens.

      • Julio says:

        Okay, that was maybe a bit too far. So let’s try this. We are leading Germany 1-0 in the 75th minute. We have already beat both Ghana and Portugal. Germany tied Portugal 6-6 in a wild match. In the 81st minute we get the news, Ghana tied Portugal 0-0. (btw, this is a more realistic scenario of what will probably happen).

        Green is playing lights out, Yedlin, Brooks, Besler and Cameron have shut down everyone, allowing Johnson to move up in mid-field, and Dempsey is screaming “give me the ball, give me the ball” an no one is listening. Now, what will we do?

        • GW says:

          It sounds like we are leading the Group.with 6 points. If Germany ties us I don’t know what that will do for them since I don’t know how they did against Ghana

          So I would give Dempsey the ball and try to hang on for 15 minutes.

      • Jesse D says:

        Oh Jurgen you silly boy.

    • ann says:

      Miroslav Klose is a fighter and working yery hard for a roster spot. Once he said that he can’t be any longer than 2 weeks without any training to stay fit. On a press conference some days ago he said that he’ll do everything that the coach can’t overlook him. For Miro it’s all about the team and not about himself. If the teams was better without him he would quit.

  44. Jack says:

    Great to hear Donovan standing up for himself.

    • Zocklo says:

      Yea, LD sounded very grounded and focused, can’t say the same about Klinsmann, who was sounded weaseley.

  45. AlexH says:

    I m disappointed at the headline writer. The quote taken for the headline makes LD’s long statements look more combative than they actually were. They were, taken as a whole, calm and reflective and probably the least combative thing he could have said. Given the amount of media attention this incident has generated I applaud LD for giving a calm, extensive and honest answers to the questions at hand which will probably do a lot to let the team move on and focus on the cup.

    • addage says:

      Gee. A sorts reporter trolling for a headline. Who would of thought it. Certainly not LD.

  46. MikeV says:

    Just heard it. The bridge between LD and JK was burned a long time ago. Twellman, says JK told him so when the US played Italy in Italy. You have to hear it on the Big head Red head show. Also they talk about the 2nd tweet from JK’s son. Not the HAHAHAHAHA tweet.
    link to

    • Julio says:

      Lalas added that Donovan let him down when Klinsmann brought him to Munich. Got him sacked because of it. Yes, these guys on this podcast have the inside info.

      • Bac says:

        Do you honestly think that Bayern Munich would fire the best striker in their country’s history, who led their team to 3rd place in the World Cup, solely because of anything to do with a player on loan from the US?
        Do you think that maybe there were other reasons possibly? Or are you seriously going to sit here and believe that Landon Donovan, and his short loan with Bayern, is the ONLY reason JK got sacked? In the myriad of possibilities, and that high profile club, can anyone without bias towards the last 2 days actions sit here with a straight face and say Landon is THE reason JK was sacked…..
        Well if you listened to the podcast you would also believe this conspiracy goes all the way back to Berti excluding Lothar Matheas because of JK, then on and on and on…..

        • That_Guy says:

          Di Mateo got fired after winning the Champions League. Rafa Benitez fired after winning the Europe. Mourinho wins nothing but is kept on as manager. Jupp Heynckes wins the Champions League and states he wants to stay on, but is then replaced. Boas lead Tottenham to their most points but is fired. Bob Bradley loses a Gold Cup final 4-2 because his starting right back got injured and is fired. Wenger is kept on as manager while not winning a trophy for 9 years. Managers are fired or hired for the most bizarre reasons ever. A player could easily cause some one to get fired in the world of soccer managing.

          • Bac says:

            Yes those things are true.. so more simply asked.. did JK get fired because of Landon. No.

            • Jesse D says:

              I heard the President of Bayern say “we needed ideas, and the only idea Jurgen has was Landon Donovan”

              That was his quote in response to why Jurgen was fired. There is real credence to the story. It isn’t just that people think Landon didn’t help him keep his job. Jurgen’s boss said that is why he was fired.

              • Bac says:

                Yea well I went and read dozens of articles before I posted my original response, and what I read was a lot of discontent over a lot of things, prior to Landon going on loan. Even where fans were calling him out after a few big losses. There were a lot of reasons, and I read a few that mentioned Landons midseason loan which ended early in March not going well….and one article saying it didn’t have a good effect-but by then the damage was done….

                But to suggest that this is THE reason he got sacked is ridiculous

              • Jesse D says:

                Not the only reason, sure I can support that. Certainly Landon didn’t help, and in fact hurt Jurgen’s credibility at Bayern.

            • That_Guy says:

              You miss the point. Landon may not have been the dciding factor, but if he had anything to do with the firing (like make it more likely) then he could hold a grudge.

              • Bac says:

                I didn’t miss the point. Julio quoted Lalas’ comments as THE reason why he got fired. That they have the “inside info”. I countered that claim. I did so after reading up on it again, and found a ton of stuff written that had nothing to do with LD. I did see a few things mentioned, but it paled in comparison. So I responded.

                U guys keep taking shots at me when all I keep saying is I don’t think this was some conspiracy/personal vendetta and I wanted him to make the team.

    • Dan says:

      Great link; provides a lot of valuable insight!

    • Bac says:

      Yes Mike, heard that also… you can see my response to you above and see if you can take an unbiased view based on my answer.
      I’ve also heard Twellman make statements like that coming from JK about other players too in other podcasts…

      If true….and I have no reason to think Twellman would lie…. it wouldn’t make JK the first coach of any sport ever…. to shoot off at the mouth in private about one of his players…

      But I still make my contention above…

      • Julio says:

        Bac, help me out here. Weren’t the 3 guys on the espn podcast better players for the U.S. than Friedel and McBride?

        • Julio says:

          Or was it Twellman? I must admit, I think we will surprise ourselves in Brazil but I don’t know my U.S. soccer history so good.

          • Bac says:

            No. Twellman was great in the MLS, but never much on the MNT. Lalas played out of his mind in 94, and seized the opportunity to extend that into a respectable career, but wasn’t a factor in 98, and was an outspoken critic of Sampson.
            McBride probably the best target striker we’ve had, and Friedel vs Keller for the best ever keeper.

            Really not an issue though.
            Read through these posts and ask these questions:
            1. If Donovan made it over Bedoya, or Mix, or AJ, or Wondo…
            Would Jurgen still be described as:
            – Only preferring Germericans
            – Only preparing for 2018
            – Contradicting everything he says
            – Having an anti American bias
            No… but that’s where a lot of these comments are going
            Selective Reasoning
            2. Would any of JKs past about Bayern, The German National Team and Loew come up with such venom?
            Selective Memory
            3. If Donovan would have performed well enough this season and in camp that there was NO WAY JK could have cut him.. would anyone have said JK kept his word when he said Donovan had to earn his spot on the team… And He Did?
            Selective Reasoning and Memory

            Is anyone on this board engaging in a rational discussion with someone who doesn’t agree that JK is the Devil with a 6 year plan of revenge to drive a dagger into LDs heart?
            Selective Reasoning
            Any rational discussion presenting the possibility that this isn’t a conspiracy is ignored in favor of responding to a post of how can I insult you more or your idea is idiotic because….

            In my opinion, all the ex usmnt players are hurt by this because they like Landon, they’re not on the inside of JKs decision making, and like most- they’re reacting with initial shock and emotion rather than taking a step back and thinking it through….

            As you may have noticed, no one has yet answered this simple question:
            Is it just possible that JK doesn’t rate him high enough because he hasn’t played well since the Gold Cup except Mexico 2-0 and hasn’t scored since October?? Isn’t that just a possibility????

            • Nate says:

              If that is the case, it is INCREDIBLY short sighted, because you are replacing a known quantity in this specific tournament with proxy data (what does a player’s performance in friendlies and in MLS since October necessarily tell you about how they will perform under the pressure of the World Cup?). In addition, wouldnt the spotty performances ( gold cup, dos a cero in qualifying, he assisted and scored) show that he can still rise to the occasion?

              • Bac says:

                Maybe so Nate.. very possible, and if you look at any of my posts, I never said anything about it not being short sighted etc… nor did I say it’s what I would do, despite 1 or 2 people following me around and attacking me..
                I just continue to introduce the possibility, reasons, arguments, and opinions- Why JK has made this decision, and I just don’t see this elaborate vindictive conspiracy..
                I think in HIS mind, he thinks he’s making the right call based on what he’s seen and is he a better option to help them win in the next 7 weeks.
                Apparently nobody reads the part where I say I wanted him to make the team.
                But this has shocked and polarized everyone that either JK is the Devil or Landon is Grandpa…

              • GW says:


                You all act as if LD can just reach down and turn on the “greatness” whenever he needs to.

                Do you really believe that?

                And if that is true why did he not turn on that switch to blow everyone away in camp, because based on his past history he is head and shoulders above very other player in that camp?

                And if there was some personal business going on hpw about how about turning it on a little earlier just to make sure there would be no doubt.

                If LD could not turn it on to save himself why should I think he can do it to save the US?

                Telling a living legend it is time to go home is never easy or simple but I believe in the old adage that it is better for a team to get rid of them a year too early than a year too late.

        • Bac says:

          Julio I responded but awaiting moderation.. patience sir..

      • MikeV says:

        Bac, I absolutely agree with your comment about JK being fired because of LD. Not sensible. That however, has nothing to do with the points I made. I spoke to the burnt bridge and the 2nd tweet from JK’s son. So either you didn’t understand the issues I was speaking to, or you are attempting to make an argument so as not to discuss the points I was referring to.

        • Bac says:

          Sorry, did you read where I responded up above to your first question? Almost 400 on here and definitely not trying to skirt the question at all

        • Bac says:

          Yea Mike, so with all the posts back and forth looks like u didn’t see that I had responded earlier to your first question.. definitely didn’t ignore it or skate the issue..
          This second one here was much later… so u can scroll back up and check out my thoughts on it…

  47. Baptista says:

    The WC for me and my kids has been ruined by Klinsmann’s unjust and personally biased decision. Thanks Jurguen.

    • JayAre says:

      Are you trying to use your kids to gain sympathy? Get over it dude. If you want to watch LD that bad he has a club team. Bale isn’t going to the WC and I’m pretty sure Wale will still enjoy cheering for/against England.

    • Rajon Rimando says:

      The important thing is you’re safe. Have a blanket and some Kleenex and we will file a formal report in the morning.

  48. Oliver says:

    First some disclaimers. Of course this is partly about sentiment. Sports is always about sentiment. If I weren’t sentimental about this team and these players, I would be rooting for Brazil. More likelihood for a positive outcome.

    And I disagree with some of the personnel decisions. I would rather have seen some more experienced defenders, like Goodson and Ream and Parkhurst added to the mix. And I like Edu more than Beckerman, since I think Beckerman is just a bit too slow for top level international. But no two people are going to pick the exact same squads, and there are a lot of decisions that are judgement calls.

    I also acknowledge that Landon Donovan is not as good as he used to be. In my opinion, probably Bedoya and definitely Zusi are ahead of him. They’re younger and more rugged and certainly better bets for going 90 minutes in the heat. But that’s not really the choice here is it? No, the choice is between Landon Donovan and one of Julian Green, Brad Davis, Chris Wondolowski, and a few others. We’re looking for a guy to maybe start the middle group game, or sub in for the final thirty minutes, if we need to hold on to a lead or score a late goal. By what plausible standard would you not want Landon Donovan to be there? And I get it, maybe Wondolowski has lights out form right now and he has to be in. Fine. But then someone else should be staying home.

    Wondolowski is an interesting case of course, since I feel like we’ve seen this movie before, most recently at the last Gold Cup. Remember that? He scored a bunch of goals in the opener. It was all aboard the Wondolowski train. Then when the competition stiffened, he couldn’t score. Finally, Klinsmann stopped using him. In the end, who scored the most goals (5) and had the most assists (7) in the tournament, carrying the team to victory while winning the player of the tournament? It was the guy who made this inch perfect 30 yard one-touch pass after playing 82 minutes of soccer: link to (Hint: his initials are LD) This isn’t some ancient history, by the way. It happened just under a year ago.

    And it’s not like he stopped at the Gold Cup. No, in the game in which the US qualified for the World Cup, a 2-0 victory over Mexico, Donovan had a goal and an assist. Think about that for a second. We had two goals. Donovan scored one and assisted on the other. This was late last year.

    Now we are supposed to believe that Landon is not the player he once was? The player he was just over six months ago, when he was the best on the field for the US in a game we needed a result in for qualifying? Those last six months must have been pretty hard on him.

    Of course, if you want to you can make pretty good arguments against just about anyone. Let’s try that. Jozy Altidore: one goal in the entire season and sent to the bench repeatedly by a collection of discarded and prospect forwards. Clint Dempsey: hurt and out of form for the better part of the last year, ineffective even on Fulham team that was just relegated, and just got suspended for a game for punching a guy in the nuts on the field. You think Donovan has lost a step? How are we going to do down a full man after our captain gets red-carded? Aron Johannson: he hasn’t been playing well the last several months and is coming off a bum ankle. Omar Gonzalez: out of form for his club team, and gives up goals in friendlies, watching the runs of guys he’s supposed to be marking. Deandre Yedlin: he just got benched by his MLS team because for all his speed, he can’t figure out where on the field he’s supposed to be.

    Of course, all that is ridiculous. I am fine with any or all of those guys going to Brazil. They are certainly among the best US soccer players, and I feel bad for picking on them, they don’t deserve it. The point is, you can make a bad argument against just about anyone. The question is, what is the relative merit of the players within the limited U.S. pool. And I am fine with it if a guy like Green was promised a spot. Only 11 guys get to start, and you only get six substitutes. You can afford to offer a guy a spot on the World Cup even if you have no intention of using him. And I certainly cannot imagine a scenario where we put an 18 year old whose sole claim to fame in US soccer is that he cannot run around on a manicured lawn for 30 minutes without falling over and hurting himself for several months. It’s not like he’s an 18 year old Michael Owens, scoring goals in bunches for Liverpool.

    So, by what standard are players being picked for this team? Clearly it’s not club form, or Jozy would not even be invited. Is it dedication to the program? Then how the heck is Timmy Chandler there? It’s not help in qualifying, since that would have to include Donovan, who did more than many (see above Mexico game.) It’s not a youth movement, since Brad Davis is just as old as Donovan, and never had the step that Donovan has so tragically lost. But it’s not experience either, since Yedlin, Brooks, and Green are on the team. Is it attitude? Well Jermaine Jones just left his long time club team in acrimonious circumstances. Is it because of some great tactical plan? Well, no, we bring in this guy whose best claim to fame is his set pieces and crosses, but do not bring the strikers (Johnson and Boyd) who could most take advantage of that. Is it ability to stop Christiano Ronaldo? Well, that would be nice, but if that’s really the criteria, they’ll have to cancel the World Cup altogether for lack of participants. No, there’s a completely pliable set of ever-changing criteria that somehow magically exclude the best player in US history, a guy that has contributed regularly and recently and has more World Cup goals than the rest of the roster combined.

    I could go on singling out the flaws of other guys, but it’s clear to any sane observer that Donovan deserves to make it on merit. Even if he was borderline, which he is not, it would be altogether appropriate to include him in the 23 as a sending off in preference to someone else, in recognition of his literal decade and a half of devotion to the program.

    Instead he is cut with a bunch of mealy-mouthed nonsense about other guys showing a tiny bit better than he did. Well, that’s not good enough. It’s not close to good enough. It cannot see good enough with powerful binoculars.

    If this is all there was, it would be enough to be outraged. But now we get to the infamous tweet. Now, I understand about 17 year olds. I’m two and a half decades removed from that age, and I still live with a foot in my mouth perpetually. But in the rush to excuse this as just an embarrassing misjudgment of youth, we have never received an explanation. If Jurgen’s son had wrecked the family car or posted a picture of himself taking bong hits, I would join the chorus of people saying we should make an allowance for youth. But unless the hip thing for high schoolers today is to make fun of Landon Donovan, we need an explanation, not an excuse. He did not say “These seven people are losers: Marice Edu, Terrence Boyd, etc.” He called out Landon Donovan. Why? Where there’s smoke there is fire. Klinsmann the elder owes us an explanation. To be clear, I call on Donovan here and now to be magnanimous and forgive the son, but that does not mean we should forego a demand for an explanation from the father.

    Am I just some crazy person? Well, maybe. And maybe Bruce Arena is biased, he always liked his own players too much, that was part of his weakness as a coach, but the guy has won league championships. He’s right that if we have 20 players better than Landon Donovan (a guy who has twice been part of teams that have advanced from the group stage at the World Cup) we are a threat to win it all.

    Of course we don’t and of course we aren’t. Even with Donovan, we have only an outside chance of making it out of our group. But Donovan makes our team better. To not bring him is a betrayal of his teammates, the program, the fans, and the United States. Sunil Gulati should tell Klinsmann that he’s going. Either Klinsmann should fix this, or he should be gone.

    • Julio says:

      Wow, what a post. Sorry Oliver, I couldn’t read it all, lost my concentration. But you didn’t mention a word, at least a word I read, about Brek Shea. How could you forget him?

      Unless you did, and it was in the part of your post I didn’t read, If so, then forgive me.

      However, kudos, great in-depth post…………..I think.

    • Razak pimpong says:

      +1 trillion, this post should be the response to all the USMNT fans that are trying to rationalize LD’s exclusion.Imagine if someone said a month ago that Brad Davis would make the squad but Landon would be cut.

    • start Wondo says:

      I get you, but everything will be fine if Klinsmann STARTS Wondo

      • Nate says:

        Slow your roll…we woouldnt be here posting if not for that whole #wodnoforbrazil thing…

    • EastBayGrease says:


    • TheFrenchOne says:

      This is top notch, Oliver. The clearest response to JK’s decision so far. I’m glad LD is holding back on any comments about personal beef, at least until after the WC, but I hope we get to truth someday

    • Jordo says:

      Absolutely fantastic post. It is hands down the best I have seen.

    • Nate says:

      Amazing post. Thanks.

    • MikeV says:

      Oliver, did you know about the kids 2nd post. Not the HAHAHAHA post. The one where he tells LD that an un-named player is going because he will work harder than LD. Wonder where the kid got that idea from?

    • Jesse D says:

      You’re absolutely right!
      No reasonable soccer or team related reason fits the situation:
      Cohesion, attitude, skill, form, fitness, experience…. nothing adds up.

      Jurgen didn’t like the guy, hasn’t liked him for awhile now. So why the dog and pony show… because Jurgen thought he was tricking everyone. FAIL!

      Jurgen should have just said it up front – I’m not bring Donovan to camp because I don’t like him.

      At least it would have been honest.

      • Okay. Enough. says:

        Completely ridiculous. “He thought he was tricking everybody”?!? How old are you? Six?

        Explain to me why a soccer legend, a World Cup winner, Euro winner etc. would waste his time with such an effort Literally months of time spent with Donovan. Hours and hours that could have been spent developing another player in midfield. For what? Causing some emotional damage to a player whose resume would never approach his, or even close? Unless LD murdered JK’s parents, I’m not sure what could possibly be reasonable here.

        Your conspiracy theory lacks motive, fellas. Wake up. JK cares about his resume. He should. It is exceptional. He is trying to add to it. He will take the team that gives him the best chance of achievement. Donovan didn’t show him quite enough to get himself included in that group. Bad assessment? Maybe. He has more info than you. LD is a nobody by comparison.

        Tricking everybody. Unbearably absurd. Hang your head in shame.

        • Jesse says:

          Well the insults really help. I love how you go straight there. Stay classy my friend! Where are all the people yelling that this comment was classless. Why are you talking about Donovan killing JK’s parents??? Just as bad as other comments that people went all PC on.
          What time did he waste? What else would he be doing? He has clearly held a grudge for a long time. Don’t know how you can even pretend to argue otherwise. His boy doesn’t make those kind of comments unless Jurgen has been moaning about how much he dislikes Donovan for a long long time. Also Jurgen told Lalas and Twellman that Donovan burned his bridges long ago. JK didn’t want Donovan around. I will grant you that JK thought Donovan wasn’t a required part of his starting lineup. JK thinks he can get the same results from Zusi and Bedoya. The problem isn’t there. Maybe he can get similar results from them. The point is players like Davis are not capable of filling in anywhere near as well as Donovan would be. I’m certain JK knows that. Leaving Donovan was about personal dislike.

    • Fan Futbol says:

      Been reading SBI since the beginning. Oliver — yours is the single greatest post ever.


  49. Tyrone says:

    The question for me is, when is Ives going to post about all of this??

  50. wandmdave says:

    Everyone wants a JK supporter to give valid player assessment reasons to leave Donovan off the team and so here’s my attempt.

    I can still see how Donovan wouldn’t have enough to offer the team. LD’s goal and assist stats are breathtaking but I took the time to watch the compilation videos of all of them and here is the breakdown.

    Of Donovan’s 57 goals 15 were from the spot. That makes 42 from the run of play or dead ball situations. Both Demspey and Altidore just about meet or exceed that strike rate per game for the national team when Donovan’s penalty taking is excluded.
    LD: 57goals-15pks=42 42/156caps=0.2675
    Video: link to

    Dempsey: 36goals-3pks=33 33/103caps=0.3204
    Video: link to (#36 was a PK vs CRC last year)

    Altidore: 21goals/67caps=0.3134
    No compilation footage of all or nearly all but he’d need 3 to be pks to make his strike rate drop to 0.2687 which is still slightly better than LD. I don’t remember him taking any pks at all though.

    Given all that its easy to see Dempsey and Altidore have better strike rates. If you look at the videos its also easy to see a lot of LD’s goals come from either blazing past a defender set in a high line to a through ball or running the break while Dempsey and Altidore do more of their damage around the 18. LD fit the US system like glove under Arena and Bradley were defending and countering was a bread and butter but that is rarely done these days even if LD still had the speed and stamina to break consistently and get back to defend for 90 minutes. Its pretty obvious JK values possession and building from the back LD’s strength isn’t utilized as much. If Donovan is coming on as a sub to get us a goal it will likely mean the other team has all the goals they need and will be bunkered in. There will be little opportunity to run a break or run in behind in that scenario unless the team is not disciplined and I don’t think we’ll see that from our WC competition this year. Corners, free kicks and crosses are much more likely in that situation and that is potentially what JK sees in Davis as a sub (delivering dead balls and lefty crosses) and Dempsey as a forward (a lot of Dempsey’s goals are nice headers). Donovan seems even with Davis on ability but Davis could have given him the edge. You can also use someone with blistering pace and an ability to run at people when down a goal at the end of a game. It forces the opponents lines to stretch instead of waiting in vain for them to over-commit to attack and earns free kicks and corners for our dead ball specialist. It seems like to me Julian Green and Break Shea fit that bill more than Donovan and Shea’s utilization and unexpected success as a sub this cycle bears that out. Even Green has some game footage going for him in this department despite his last minute addition to the player pool this cycle. He should have earned a penalty against Mex in the last game while Donovan didn’t do much of anything given the same amount of time in the same role on the opposite side of the field. Green really beat Shea for that spot and I think people would be happy with that decision in a vacuum despite Green’s complete lack of experience. You can easily argue LD is an exceptional penalty taker and I’d agree without question. I’d love if Donovan could still take our PKs because he is truly elite in that category even without grading on a curve because he is American. However that is a specialty that is rarely and inconsistently used and therefore difficult to harness from the bench. You really want that ability in a starter but as I’ll go into below its hard to argue he should start.

    Donovan’s assists are equally impressive as his goals but once again may not fit the system as well as they once did. A decent bit of them were from dead ball situations, which is great but we have others who can arguably provide higher work rates that can supply that production as starters and we’ve discussed how Davis could have passed him as a dead ball specialist substitute.

    Beyond the dead ball assists another good chuck are assists that come off of strong counters or broken plays. Nothing wrong with all that, it is all a testament to his excellent vision, decision making, and passing but running the break tends to be a midfielder’s job and JK doesn’t like to break nearly as much. Even if he did JK doesn’t rate Donovan at midfield due to his dwindling stamina which either effects his defensive work rate or his ability to go a whole 90 reliably. LD’s slow but sure shift away from midfield both at the club level and the national team level supports JK’s opinion. Considering our opponents and our totally inexperienced defensive line JK is likely looking for defensive work rate first as a requirement for the outside mid position before anything else is considered.

    Finally there is a 3rd good chuck of assists that are nearer to or in the box and appear to have been the culmination of slower buildups which is exactly what JK likely wants. However once you subtract those other assists other players come closer to his level of production on an assist per cap basis and probably overtake him this cycle but without sacrificing work rate. Really the ideal spot to utilize Donovan given the strengths he retains and the weaknesses age has induced is withdrawn forward. The Gold Cup was a perfect microcosm of that shift. At the start he was out wide and pundits and fans felt his impact was lacking. He was shifted to withdrawn forward and lit it up (also his most memorable assist was on a quick counter to Shea). However Dempsey stands in his way there on the A squad and his current form its hard to argue against. The backup in that spot is likely Johannsson. That is a closer call and comes down to this choice, do you take an older proven player in poorer form or a younger unproven player in good form to play 3 games in 10 days in the heat of Brazil? It seems JK opted for the latter.

    Donovan was a special player and still is in some aspects. No single player compensates for his loss by themselves. However given our new style of play, our opponents, our current player pool, and the strengths Donovan retains it seems that most of what he provides can be replaced in bits and pieces by several players or cannot be utilized due to other priorities dictated by our defense, the opponents, or the system.

    I can layer commitment issues on top of that (and I think they were a factor and rightly so) but I think that analysis provides a plausible explanation for his exclusion without commitment or personal issues between JK and LD anyway.

    • wandmdave says:

      *Donovan and Davis might be even in dead ball situations but Davis’s left foot could have given him the edge.

      • Jack says:

        With it looking like Cameron is going to be starting over Omar, do we really have any real threats off corners and set pieces anyway?

        • wandmdave says:

          The rest of my book is awaiting moderation which is why my comment was out of the blue.

          To answer you question though, Dempsey has scored plenty with his noggin and Omar could always be a late sub with Davis to look for a set piece goal.

    • wandmdave says:

      forgot the link to Landon’s assists.
      link to

    • atleticodemadridfan says:

      Great analysis. Measured, thoughtful and deeply incisive.
      Here we go.
      3 pre-WC friendlies, and another 90 minute scrimmage v. (?Belgium) in Brazil. Plenty of time to get these guys firing on all cylinders, in sync and ready to rumble.
      The team is the team JK chose. Live with it.
      Donovan’s style of play and current physical shape, mental-emotional mind set no longer fit into the evolving USMNT vision. So be it.
      Let’s go USA!

  51. anon says:

    so many knee-jerk reactions, here.

    It’s amazing how eager USMNT fans are to throw Jurgen under the bus. We havnt even played one WC game yet. JK has made this team better! Again, this is a broken record with irrational USMNT fans – LD doesnt get his way! Fire Klinsmann!

    During WCQ’s the “Landon-less” team and coach both had risen to the occasion, with all the LD drama in the background, of course! So, here we go again! As much as everyone is faulting JK, Let’s admit Landon’s faults, too. You can still appriciate LD and see where he went wrong.

    But, thats it- nobody can. Even during the “sabbatical” drama ( which should and could have been avoided) everyone cried along side Landon’s self pity. he chose the wrong time and the wrong person to play with. JK isnt playing, LD really did burn his bridge. And saying that I remember Bob Bradley benched LD over skipping training to attend his sister’s wedding… could be seen as petty/personal as well. A coach is a coach – some more strict and cut throat than others.

    Could you imagine , i dont know… let’s say Franck Ribery, for example, complaining about his life and how unfair everything is and he hasnt had a decent break? Or even this type nonsense from Robbie Keane?

    • milbo says:

      frame this

    • Bac says:

      Prepare to be:
      A. Vehemently attacked for presenting an opposition view
      B. Completely ignored

    • atleticodemadridfan says:

      Oh yeah.
      The team is the team JK chose. Live with it. It will be an interesting team to watch. They will be in GREAT physical shape, and tactically aware. The proof will be in the pudding.
      One game at a time.
      3 pre-world cup friendlies, and one closed door scrimmage in Brazil (v. Belgium?) – plenty of time to get these guys in sync. Spooling up the FTL, about to jump into hyperspace. t’s a new era for US Soccer. USA!

  52. Razak pimpong says:

    Part of me thinks this is all Klinsmann’s master plan after the Cambodia sabbatical.Yeah I’m going to string LD along and at the last possible opportunity I’m going to cut him to create a buzz around US soccer.Because I’m a egotistical maniac who would leave him at home because of a difference in footballing philosophy.Despite that LD is still clearly one of the best field players we have and that he can provide mutch in terms of experience and leadership in a World Cup.

  53. Thisten says:

    Landon, look on the bright side, you don’t have to wear one of those hideous Nike jerseys! How about that for a silver lining!

  54. Dean in Jersey says:

    I’ve been a fan of Donovan’s since he came up and the national team longer than that going back to 1994. I predict someone will get injured in the 3 warm up matches coming up, a slot will open for Landon, but the bad feelings of the Klinsman snub will be too great and he still won’t be called up. Bad mistake. We need Landon’s experience in the group of death. We have had other worse snubs in past cups that have cost us big. Here are my top 3 bone head snubs for World Cup rosters:
    1. Taylor Twellman 2006 (he was MVP of MLS the year before and won the Golden Boot Award; we bombed out without him)
    2. Kyle Beckerman 2010 (we desperately needed him in S. Africa and would have advanced past Ghana with his defense and superior ball distribution)
    3. Landon Donovan 2014 (let’s hope the rest of the team will compensate for the loss)

    If I were picking the team, I’d leave off some of the guys responsible for the debacle in Cyprus against Ukraine. John Brooks was torched there. Deandre Yedlin similarly embarrassed. Jermaine Jones was inept; send him to Brazil but don’t start him.

  55. Ac31 says:

    On the radio the other day, Twellman commented on how for the past several months Donovan’s comments in the press reflected a lack of commitment and confidence and felt in shows on the pitch. Harkes agreed with the statement.

    I think there is a lot we don’t know about the situation. Based on Donovan’s statements, it seems like he is unlikely to accept a secondary role on the bench. If that was what was offered to him and he reacted poorly, then the cut makes sense.

  56. Ah says:

    Never been that much of a Donovan fan until the last few years. He’s self aware and honest and while I admit he’s lost a step, there is no way Brad Davis has more to offer this team. Very disappointing from Klinsman.

    Regardless, I saw him as a sub and it’s unlikely that his presence or absence makes the difference in us getting out of the group. But you want your coach to field the best 23 and he sure as he’ll has not endeavor end to do that ( Yedlin?!).

  57. mikeg says:

    Klinnsman mentioned to Donovan about being consistent. Donovan mentioned I cannot be consistent 12 days in a row…blah blah blah…Two different thoughts here…Klinnsman from Germany as a player won a world cup and coached to a final 4 world cup in 2006. Donovan did not go through the school of hard knocks in Europe while Klinnsman climbed all the ladders. Donovan preferred the silver spoon he received from MLS. When Klinnsman realized Donovan was bringing his silver spoon to camp in Stanford Klinnsman showed he had the bigger ego.

  58. Joe says:

    If you watch the video on espn of the team after the final 23 were selected it looks like Klinsmann for the second time in 15 months has poisoned the locker room with bad chemistry. Klinsmann’s ludicrous pep talk caught on videotape will become the defining moment of Klinsmann’s time as USMNT coach. Probably the camp was abruptly closed early because Klinsmann’s preference for dual nationals of European origin was threatening to trigger another messy mass mutiny and Klinsmann the used car salesman had to quickly remove the seven losers and reassert authority among the few on the 23-man/boy roster who are not his brown-nosers.

  59. El Comandante Klinsmann says:

    I guess by now Klinsmann is wishing he had included Landon. And it’s only going to get worse. Now even Bradley is disrespecting Donovan.

  60. justin says:

    This is an honest question to anybody willing to respond on the forum and please don’t make it snarky. Why is/was everybody so bent out of shape over Landon’s sabbatical? I really don’t get it. People say that he let the team down (like the team risked not qualifying because of his absence) and also that the team didn’t miss him and showed that it doesn’t need him. So which is it really? I happen to live in Cambodia and found it refreshing that Donovan was over here playing soccer barefoot in rice fields with poor Cambodians without tv cameras documenting his “community service.” It seemed like it was an important part of his re-centering as he had completely lost himself as a person from the sounds of his interviews. I think the man’s motives and motivation are being harshly judged by people with very narrow world views. I would prefer to withhold judgment on the motives of all of our players since it’s conjecture and make an assessment based upon their ability to deliver on the field. If LD isn’t physically prepared, leave him home. But to refuse him a WC spot in 2014 based upon a trip that he felt he needed to take over a year ago would be beyond petty to me and I can only hope that has 0% to do with JK’s decision.

    • Bac says:

      Justin, I’ll respond.
      I personally didn’t have a huge problem with his sabbatical, but at the time I knew it came with certain consequences. Among them that he’d have to deal with any criticism..right or wrong.. and he’d have to earn his spot back…etc..
      Based on JKs comments back then, Landons actions and words to get back in the mix, and the fact that the issue basically died until a few days ago.. I still think JK made this decision based on what HE thought was the right soccer based decision.. based on a number of things.
      If you read any of the earlier comments.. I’m in the vast minority, and got blasted by a few because I don’t think JK is the Devil
      I also don’t have revisionist history..
      I wanted him to make the team..
      But I don’t think this is some conspiracy.. but I’m obviously in the minority

    • Bac says:

      I’ll add this too Justin, people don’t remember that there were “unnamed sources” .. players that did have a problem with it and made comments about going on without him etc etc..

      But people choose not to recall any of that.. but they choose to recall with remarkable clarity the Strauss article, Bayern, etc…
      They also choose to now place such focus on the German dual nationals… but they choose not to recall that 3 of these 5 got into our system before JK was named coach, and 2 others didn’t make the cut
      They also choose to become obsessed with the argument that this line-up is about the future..yet they choose not to discuss the fact that JK gave Wondo, Beckerman, and Davis shots when they had no Nat Team career.. or that he resurrected Beasleys comeback and did the same with EJ…
      Selective Memory=JK is the Devil

      • justin says:

        I agree it’s simplistic to say JK is the devil, but that doesn’t mean that he made the Donovan decision purely on playing ability in the present. That’s what the question is here. The fact that he preached that people had to earn it could excuse Donovan’s exclusion if not for the Timmy Chandlers, the Julian Greens, the John Brooks etc. Nobody is saying that they don’t have talent, but it looks like a different standard was given to Donovan than to others. That’s the rub here. And now that Donovan shows nice form for the Galaxy a few days after camp is finished, it reinforces the fact that he’s not washed up and it reinforces his argument that he had a great camp and should be on the plane.

        • Bac says:

          You make valid points that can be debated without all the mudslinging thats been going on the last few days, most of my responses have been that I just didnt think there was some big personal conspiracy etc…

          Your initial question was about the sabbatical. Looks like I was the only one that took the time to respond, gave you my thoughts..didnt have an issue with it etc..

          The 2nd part I added was to add a 360 degree view to the last 18 months The sabbatical question alone should have some additional context considering the level of hatred and conspiracy theories being thrown out additional points were more directed to those who are only choosing to remember what they want to.. (Like those taking shots at me without even reading the part where I say I WANTED him on the team).. follow me??…

          I asked a rhetorical question to someone yesterday, IF LD would have made it over Wondo, Davis, Bedoya, AJ, or Mix.. would JK still be accused of all these things? Including the double standard talk? I dont know, but I doubt it…
          I DO think JK throws out a lot of coachspeak, but what really matters is what he tells the players individually and collectively, which we DONT hear…
          I also think.. My opinion.. that LD was only competing against the forwards.. thats it..
          I never said I AGREE with the strategy, Ive said I think that I believe JK thinks hes doing what he thinks is best, and he saw LD as forward #5 behind the 4 that made it

          Once again, I dont think hes washed up, I wanted him there, I think JK does throw out a lot of coachspeak.. but I still dont think theres a vendetta conspiracy…

          But after 2 goals and an assist tonite.. a subnuclear meltdown may happen tommorrow

        • GW says:


          “And now that Donovan shows nice form for the Galaxy a few days after camp is finished, it reinforces the fact that he’s not washed up and it reinforces his argument that he had a great camp and should be on the plane.”

          How does playing well against the crappiest team in MLS tell you that? Is Ghana at the same level as the Union?

          JK never said he was “washed up”. In fact he said he wanted him to stay sharp in case injuries happen and he hopes he will play for him again. You can believe him or not but he did not have to say any of that.

          No player is picked strictly on playing ability alone, just like no one ever gets a job because their skills are clearly the best for the job. There are exceptions, like brain surgery, or bomb disposal but otherwise , for most jobs even that of soccer player, it is always a combination of things both on the field and off the field.

          It’s an equation. You add it all up and you get the total package and apparently JK thinks LD’s package is not as big as Dempsey’s and Bradley’s.

          Talk about personal animosity. Do you think JK was happy with Clint and Mikey slapping him publicy in the face with those return to MLS deals ? The spine of the team?

          But hey, it was too late to do anything before the World Cup, and he needs them so he made the most of it and they were playing well. Clint will be too old but lets see if Mikey makes the next WC squad assuming he stays with TFC.

          Everyone seems to be forgetting that JK himself has a record as a player that is arguably better than LD’s.

          I saw him play quite a bit and in many ways he was more like Wondo than LD. In other words not particularly big, strong fast or athletic. it’s obvious that he was that old cliche, a self made man. And he made himself into a great player through all those commitment things he talks about . That’s why he likes Wondo. He sees a lot of himself in him.

          When he looks at Donovan he sees a guy who might even be more naturally talented than JK himself was but yet seems a lot less hungry. I think he sees him as a wasting his talent. I also think that at 32 and given LD’s local sainthood, as we see now, there was little chance that he could rehabilitate Donovan like he has done with Dempsey by naming him Captain and Jozy by cutting him off for a while.

          I hear talk about JK dropping Mikey for a while too but that was right around the time Mikey was in limbo at Aston Villa and then moved to Italy. I’m pretty sure I remember JK being really happy about that move but also giving Mikey time to get settled into a new country and and a new team.

          I don’t think JK had much time with LD before he went off on his sabbatical and I suspect things went downhill from there.

          As I see it LD was not as big a part of this team in 2013 as he could have been so they just went off and proved they could do pretty well without him. It is of course unsurprising though disappointing to see that so many of you damm the other 23 with faint praise as if what they did w/o LD around meant nothing.
          I wanted LD on this team as much as anyone but I’m mad at him for not making the adjustments. Being a part of any team is largely about skill but there are a whole lot of other factors as well. It is an equation.

          It is up to the employee (LD) to adjust to the new bossman’s(JK) expectations. It’s called earning trust. Given LD’s talent this should not have not have been beyond him.

          Apparently, LD does not understand that the same work place politics that apply to you and me and most of us also apply to him.

  61. STX81 says:

    Too bad Landon didn’t show this much passion in his comments during camp.

  62. Joel J says:

    US Soccer’s Facebook shows a Diamond 4-4-2, hints at the formation maybe?

    link to

    • Jesse D says:

      Considering the have Dempsey listed as a Forward, I would guess yes. That is the formation they play against Ghana.

  63. stanson says:

    Here are the rest of Klinsmann’s son’s tweet after the HAHAH tweet and before he deleted his account, including the tweet that Donovan would not ‘give it his all': link to

    • Bac says:

      Well Stanson, congrats… u got the scoop huh…
      Looks like a new round of opinions and analysis and fighting is about to begin in..

      • stanson says:

        Here’s the first bit of analysis for you: If Klinsmann’s son was truly a fan and had his jersey in his room, wouldn’t he know how to spell Donovan’s name correctly?

    • Jack says:

      Yeah I honestly think its pretty clear Jonathan was really just as surprised as anyone.

  64. JH says:

    Hey everyone,

    Check out the link to a good article on 538. This shows stats for and against including Donovan. But all of the against stats are just based on the first seven MLS games of the year which can’t really be compared to previous years as the season is not complete yet. The decider for me is the startling stat showing Donovan as a dominant #1 leader in creating scoring chances in all 2013 USMNT matches. His closest competitor, Zusi only has created nearly half of the chances Donovan has. Based on this, I think JK is crazy for not bringing one of the best players on the team. I still think the US can advance to the round of 16 which will make everyone forget this, but the question will remain that is this US team better with or without Donovan. I say that this team is much better with Donovan on it whether the team makes it to the Quarterfinals or not.

    My final opinion on this is that this is a grudge between JK and LD. I really wonder to what extent LD’s injuries in late 2012, his sabbatical, and the March 2013 sporting news article have any relation to each other. We may find out years from now the true story, but it looks more than personal to me.

    link to

  65. Sam Nishi says:

    CAMBODIA Summer ’13 = LOS ANGELES Summer ’14!

    Plain and simple math > Ask BECKERMAN & WONDOLOWSKI where they spent last summer and where they will spend this summer .. ..

    What a NATIONAL SIDE MANAGER demands is far more important than what a self-centered player wished .. .. You had a choice LANDON and you made it .. .. Live with it .. ..

    • Pirithous says:

      To point out the rather obvious flaw in your “logic,” Donovan spent summer 13 not in Cambodia but being the best player at the Gold Cup (exactly where Beckerman and Wondo spent the summer). He was in Cambodia for the MLS offseason 2012-2013.

  66. beachbum says:

    Class act all the way, great leadership again even when not on the team

  67. El Comandante Klinsmann says:

    We need Carlo Ancelotti like now. Klinsman hates American soccer. He wants to Germanize it.

  68. Brett says:

    You guys are all sheep, doing exactly what Klinsmann wanted when he made the decision. He has stated publicly that he thinks the media lags behind in covering soccer here, and that trickles down to fan interest. Well look at us now. Every sports outlet is talking about the omission and fans are in an uproar of attentiveness ahead of a tournament that usually sees Anricans pulling for front runners instead of their own compatriots.

    JK is killing it right now. I’m all in for this team, Donovan or not.

  69. Johan Peeters says:

    Klinsmann was a player. He will never be a coach. In 2006 he was just a figure-head for a Germany coached by Löw.

  70. Jack says:

    Englands take on this has been kind of funny, seems like every single article is along the lines of “Sunderland flop Jozy Altidore going to Brazil over Donovan.”

  71. YouGoddaBeKiddinMe says:

    I still haven’t gotten over Landon’s omission from the team and I’m still rooting against team USA just to spite Klinsi and US Soccer. They screwed up big time here. This whole thing definitely stinks. Wouldn’t it be funny if Howard, Bradley and Dempsey walked off the team in protest?