U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann has announced his preliminary 30-man roster for the World Cup with the most notable exclusion being striker Eddie Johnson. The expected but still notable inclusion of newcomer Julian Green is the only unfamiliar name in an otherwise standard collection of players for the U.S.
Here's the roster in full:
GOALKEEPERS (3) :Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (11) : DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Timmy Chandler (Nürnberg), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Clarence Goodson (San Jose Earthquakes), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim), Michael Parkhurst (Columbus Crew), DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders FC)
MIDFIELDERS (10) : Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Maurice Edu (Philadelphia Union), Julian Green (Bayern Munich), Jermaine Jones (Besiktas), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS (6) : Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy), Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
Johnson has yet to score in his eight appearances for DC United this season and recently apologized to his teammates for saying his old teammates in Seattle were better and made it easier for him. He was the U.S.'s joint-second best scorer (four goals) in World Cup qualifciation with Jozy Altidore, who has struggled mightily at the club for Sunderland level this season. Johnson had a total of five goals in 15 appearances for the U.S. in 2013, with his last three coming against World Cup sides Honduras, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Mexico. The combination of his poor form of late and fellow fringe striker Chris Wondolowski's recent success (nine goals in the last eight months for the U.S.) was likely his undoing.
Some will point to the exclusions of defender and Bolton player of the year Tim Ream, as well as Europe-based midfielders Sacha Kljestan and Brek Shea as questionable omissions — even Klinsmann himself named them as difficult cuts — but they either haven't had enough time with a team that will need every bit of chemistry to survive Germany, Portugal and Ghana in the group stage or simply don't fit the squad as currently constructed. Then there was also the desire to give highly touted 18-year-old Julian Green a chance to prove himself after choosing to represent the U.S. less than two months ago.
Half of the 30 members of this squad play in MLS but only nine were on the 2010 World Cup roster. Klinsmann must next carve this collection of players down to a 23-man final roster by June 2.
- - - - - - -