Roster questions and concerns as we head to Honduras

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by deuteronomy, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. deuteronomy

    deuteronomy Member+

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    The USA is opening their Hex account one week from today down in Honduras. It is the opener for all Hex teams and everyone is going to be geared up.

    It's been a bit of a secret who, exactly might be called in, the USSF says our roster will be announced Monday.

    Certainly, we expect many of the usual suspects, Bradley, Dempsey, Howard, Bocanegra, Cameron, Hercules, Altidore, Parkhurst and Guzan are the most likely to be named.

    Here are a few of the other questions, some of which may already have been answered.

    Jermaine Jones was suspended and has not played since the middle of December.
    http://www.sbnation.com/soccer/2012/1/5/2684369/jermaine-jones-suspended-schalke-04-marco-reus He is eligible for International duty, of course. I don't believe he has played in any competition, not sure if that or his actual suspension may hamper the possibility of his call up.

    Danny Williams has fallen from the starting lineup in a coaching maneuver to keep Hoffenheim's Bundesliege survival hopes alive. Will he be included?

    Fabian Johnson has suffered an injury and reports are that he is scheduled to play Saturday. He should be coming.

    Steve Cherundolo is injured and almost certainly a "no".

    It has been indicated that Timmy Chandler is ready to "pledge allegiance" and will be there. Of course, he could get hurt this weekend.

    Maurice Edu has been playing at Bursaspor after staying unused at Stoke practically the entire season. Will JK call him or perhaps use Kyle Beckerman?

    Will Joe Corona make the scene? What about Edgar Castillo? It seems likely that Sascha Kljestan will be included. Clarence Goodson may be done.

    JK indicated that as many as 6 or 7 players from the friendly last night vs Canada may be included. Sean Johnson, Eddie Johnson, Graham Zusi, Omar Gonzales, Matt Besler and the aforementioned Beckerman would seem the most likely. Who might be next? Benny Feilhaber? Bedoya? Will Bruin? Wondo ( I think not, but you never know)

    Any outside of the box surprises, we have heard nothing, nothing. Pontius, Lichaj, Shea, Boyd, Torres?

    Many questions, what are the answers?
    neems repped this.


  2. Sam Hamwich

    Sam Hamwich Member+

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    Klinsie roles out the dreaded 6dmid special we spend 90 minutes dispossessing each other.


    --------------Spector------------
    ----------Jones------Bradley--------
    -------Edu------Jtorres-----Beckerman------
    -----------Whatever-----------------------
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  3. jond

    jond Member+

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    I have a concern with every MLSer being out of form, even after a month long training camp. If what we saw was yesterday was in form players, that's a problem. Omar was the only one who made a case to start next week.

    I guess you have to start Zusi by default, but I'm not comfortable with what appears to be a slow, out of form Zusi against a Honduras with pace on the wings. Goddamnit Landon, we need you. You know, I might start either Chero or Lichaj at RB and move Chandler to RM/RW. Yes, I think I like that more, even if Lichaj hasn't appeared under JK.

    Also fairly nervous about no Fabian, especially with Clint most likely lining up on the LW. Clint's lack of pace might be exploited, and if it's Castillo back there who has to cover......not confident.

    In fact, Clint and Zusi manning the wings does not make me confident at all.

    I'd start Jozy. No way you sit such a hot striker.

    Jones/Bradley obviously pair together centrally and I'm pretty confident there.

    I'm however not confident about our DMid situation. Williams hasn't had a good year and lost his starting spot, and Beckerman is just not international caliber imo, he's not in form, and he's slow as a slug on top of that. As I said above, I have little confidence in MLSers starting this match, but Beckerman might have to start by default. Actually, I might consider moving Jones to the 6 and pairing Bradley/Kljestan as Sacha is in form and I'd prefer Jones at the 6 over Beckerman, any day of the week.

    Any lineup featuring Beckerman, Zusi and Castillo in an away WCQer against a pretty good country will make me nervous, especially when two of them aren't anywhere near mid season form.

    What makes me even more nervous is our coach's apparent inability to play the players he will have to their strengths. Three points out of the first three? I'll be pleasantly surprised if we get one and JK doesn't return with a fair amount of fire placed squarely under his ass.
  4. Martin Fischer

    Martin Fischer Member+

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    Why is Dempsey "most likely" to line up on the Left Wing? While this was a favorite of BB, JK has rarely played Dempsey wide and it really is one of the key differences between their approaches.


  5. jond

    jond Member+

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    Who do you think is more likely?

    Torres fell out of favor.

    Jones has had no success when played there.

    Gatt isn't ready and showed that yesterday, much better on the right anyway.

    Landon isn't there to push Zusi to the left.

    Shea is injured.

    Beasley an after thought.

    EJ could, but I wouldn't say he's more likely and JK put him at forward yesterday.

    What JK has shown is he's willing to play Gomez on the RW. With an in form Jozy I could see Clint on the LW, Jozy at striker and Gomez out right. or maybe he sits Jozy and puts Zusi out right, non of which I actually favor.

    But it's JK, so who knows.

    But who exactly is more likely to start at LW?
  6. Martin Fischer

    Martin Fischer Member+

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    You make a good argument why Dempsey should play at Left Mid. I am not sure that it is a good argument what JK will do, since many of these conditions have existed for a while and he continues not to put Dempsey there. I guess I would assume a higher probability to the guy who played there in the last real match, EJ. We'll see.
  7. icebreaker

    icebreaker Member

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    RE Boyd:

    There have not been any news, because Austria is still on winterbreak (which is very long, in their case). They only start playing again on the 16th of February, so Boyd would have to come in in pre- season form.
  8. Martin Fischer

    Martin Fischer Member+

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    Doubt he will be called in. Same for Goodson. Danny Williams is a key player, but his lack of playing time might block him. Jones isn't playing but JK will call him despite this.
  9. TheHoustonHoyaFan

    TheHoustonHoyaFan Member+

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    Well JK has never played Dempsey on the wings. JK always plays him just behind the striker. There is a reason that the 4-2-3-1 is jokingly referred to as the Dempsey formation.

    The last 2 WCQ's EJ successfully played the LW slot.. At Guatemala JK played Jones at AMR to preserve the 4-2-3-1 and keep Dempsey in the center of the pitch.

    If Fab and Chandler are available, Edu getting playing time, and the lackluster performance by Zusi you may see the 4-3-2-1 Christmas tree we successfully deployed v Scotland with Dempsey and Gomez tucked in behind Jozy. The 4-2-3-1 with EJ at AML, Gomez at AMR, and Jones+MB in the -2- line seems to be a strong candidate starting formation.
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  10. MI-Soccerfan

    MI-Soccerfan Member+

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    Here is what I would do

    ---------------Jozy----------------
    Demps-----------------------Corona
    ----------------------Kljestan--------
    ---------Bradley---------------------
    -------------- -Edu/Dreads-----------
    FJ------------------------------Chandler
    ------------Boca------Cam-----------

    Dempsey is free to roam and FJ can create width on the left side. With the players that are out of form or injured, I believe this to be close to the best lineup we can put out.

    I prefer Corona over Gomez as I think Corona is more creative and is better at linking up with other players
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  11. Bolivianfuego

    Bolivianfuego Your favorite Bolivian

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    I hate to say it, but I see it like this:

    ---------------Gomez----------------
    ---------Demps--------------------EJ
    ----------------------Jones--------
    ---------Bradley---------------------
    -------------- -Beckerman-----------
    FJ------------------------------Chandler
    ------------Boca------Cam-----------

    I wish we'd have Bradley as the 6.... but it is what it is. This is what I project.

    Wing play coming from Chandler and FJ down the wings. Beckerman dropping back as a defenders when either of them make runs.
  12. QuakeAttack

    QuakeAttack Member+

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    Agreed.

    On the road against a potentially high scoring game, we need to come out slightly conservative and be patient in attack. Let Honduras get a little frustrated and increase the attack in the last 20-30 minutes.

    Keys to the game: Howard - needs to step up. No average game. Boca - Are we going to have brain fart Boca or Captain America? Altidore - Put some pressure on their defense so they have to sit back more. Oh yeah, score a goal or two.
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  13. FloridaFC2MLS

    FloridaFC2MLS Member

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    Williams hasnt completely fallen off the radar or anything at Hoffenheim. He didnt play last fixture but played 54 minutes on the 19th. Then he didnt play the match before that either but thats it really. Before that he was playing plenty consistently. He hasnt seen such little time that he deserves not to be called. If he's not called i'd be extremely surprised. Will he start though? Probably not. Edu will probably regain his starting role.
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  14. swedust

    swedust Member

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    Please, no Jones in the starting line-up. After all the hot air JK has blown about players performing with their clubs and being in form and competing for a spot, if he just drops JJ into the starting 11 I will be so burnt, after he has self-selected not to participate by way of suspension for reckless play.

    Why is this more than just a rant against a player maybe that I have a bias against? Well, because the most recent Canada friendly has re-enforced my perception that Klinsmann has a blind spot for how the actual midfielders we have work (instead preferring to think that he is developing something new). Juergen is so intent that players "learn his system" that somehow teaching that lesson by rolling out Evans in the central midfield with Beckerman behind him made sense.

    No matter how thin you slice it, Juergen, it's still baloney.

    Give Bradley a dedicated 6 behind him and a partner in midfield who is looking at the whole shape of the team, not just a battle-winner. Jones is quality depth and I'm glad he is in the pool but he is not the right partner for Bradley imo, and therefore not a first selection player given the other options. No starting role for Jones (assuming MB is healthy), please.

    (And don't even get me started on how disrupted the squad might become during the hex if Howard picks up an injury, because guru Klinsmann has failed to test depth at the #1 in all his time with USMNT.)
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  15. kokoplus10

    kokoplus10 Moderator Staff Member

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    Questions and concerns? The defense. Same as it was when the cycle started.
  16. sidefootsitter

    sidefootsitter Member+

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    Well, if it keeps Beckerman on the bench ...

    JK may not know about it and Boca won't tell him either but Jerry Bengtson killed him a couple of years ago when both were playing in Ligue 1 (Bengston was on loan with Monaco). On a point-blank header goal, the Honduran striker must have risen two feet above Carlos.
  17. Excellency

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    I'd be worried about offence from the fb position, with Fabian injured, so I would start Lichaj at rb and Cameron at lb.

    I want scoring out of my cb's so I would play Gonzo.
    We need a good long passer in the back so I would play Besler

    Given the back four of

    Lichaj---gonzo---besler---cam-- I wud want two solid dmids in front
    --------Edu--------------Jones-- and a good shooter, dribbler, passer, defending AM
    ---------------bradley-------- And 3 who can score, from distance & aerial included
    -----zusi-----demps-----ej---

    Howard in goal.

    When we see how it goes we add Gomez or Altidore to taste
  18. Bolivianfuego

    Bolivianfuego Your favorite Bolivian

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    Don't be surprised if Castillo is our starting LB.
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  19. Excellency

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    I forgot that Dempsey is playing sunday, most likely. Dont see how he can fly t/a and be ready to play Tuesday.

    Bradley's game is today, Friday. That is good news.
  20. kokoplus10

    kokoplus10 Moderator Staff Member

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    I just don't see any coach taking a chance on someone who is realtive unknown to them in a meaningful game. I doubt Lichaj even gets sniff at a meaningful one until JK sees him perform in a camp/friendly.

    Impossible to predict any of JK's lineups because regardless of what he says he's not opposed to playing guys that are out of form. He's also not opposed to playing guys out of their natural position.

    Also, I don't feel we got too many answers from the Canada game other than we're still very thin and outside back, Evans isn't in the picture, and the international careers of guys like Davis and Wondo may have just died.
  21. QuakeAttack

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    Isn't the game on Wednesday (2/6)?
  22. Excellency

    Excellency Member+

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    My bad. Still, when would you expect him to arrive in Honduras after a long travel time with 30 yr old legs stiffening in flight after 90 minutes play on Sunday? I guess he travels monday, "trains" tuesday, plays wed with jet lag.
    It wouldnt be recovery for me at 30, but everybody's different.y
  23. TheHoustonHoyaFan

    TheHoustonHoyaFan Member+

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    I agree that Wondo and Davis did not help themselves but I heard that Evans' performance really got the staff's attention. At 27 he is only 1 year older than Zusi, looks more robust on the pitch, and has the speed and versatility to play FB.

    Evans may not sneak into WCQ's this spring but unless he has a poor spring MLS season, he is in the GC2013 roster.
  24. kokoplus10

    kokoplus10 Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm sure Evans and Davis make the Gold Cup (unless JK turns it into a U-23 affair). I was speaking to this upcoming game.
  25. QuakeAttack

    QuakeAttack Member+

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    I don't disagree. The travel definately impacts performance. I think that is why some of his performances in the Americas have been "inconsistent"...

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