The USA roster for the upcoming World Cup Qualifiers versus Mexico and Costa Rica was released by U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann last night.
USA on record-high winning streak
With Klinsmann (24-8-6) just two years in at the helm, the United States is riding a record-high 12-match winning streak, including three wins in World Cup Qualifying and six straight victories en route to the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup championship. Click here for Klinsmann’s impressive record.
The U.S. currently sits in first place in the Final Round of qualifying, accumulating 13 points from six matches. To qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup after the Costa Rica match, the U.S. must beat Costa Rica, Mexico must tie Honduras, and Panama must lose or draw against Jamaica.
“The Costa Rica game in San Jose is the biggest game in 2013 for all of us because we want to win there,” said Klinsmann. “We want to qualify as soon as possible for the World Cup in Brazil. We want to get the first ever three points in World Cup qualifying in Costa Rica. Everyone needs to understand there will be a lot of tension.”
The USA will seek its first-ever away qualifying win versus Costa Rica on Sep. 6, at Estadio National in San Jose, Costa Rica at 10 p.m. ET. The game will be broadcast on beIN SPORT and ESPN Deportes Radio.
On Sept. 10, a sold-out crowd will watch USA-Mexico at Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, kicking off at 8 p.m. ET. It will be broadcast live on ESPN, WatchESPN, UniMas and ESPN Deportes Radio.
Players to watch
Clint Dempsey, who recently left Tottenham Hotspurs for the MLS Seattle Sounders, has 12 career goals in World Cup Qualifying, which ties him for first place on the USA’s all-time list. Dempsey is the only U.S. player to appear in all 12 matches and scored seven goals in this qualifying cycle.
Landon Donovan is the USA’s all-time leader in World Cup Qualifying appearances (37), and currently sits on 21 points (7 goals, 7 assists) in 2013. He owns the single-year point record of 22 set in 2007 (9 goals, 4 assists).
Jozy Altidore has scored in his last five matches for the United States, becoming the only player in U.S. history to accomplish this. In the USA’s recent 4-3 win against Bosnia-Herzegovina, Altidore scored three goals and recorded an assist and he is hot, hot hot.
Eddie Johnson accumulated four goals and one assist in 13 USMNT appearances in 2013.
Matt Besler and Omar Gonzalez paired at center back in the last four qualifiers, beginning with the historic 0-0 draw against Mexico on March 26 in Mexico City.
Brad Evans has started at right back for the last five games in which he was available, including three World Cup Qualifiers. In the USA’s last road qualifier, Brad Evans scored in stoppage time to deliver a 2-1 win against Jamaica on June 7 in Kingston, the first ever road victory in qualifying against The Reggae Boyz.
Dempsey, Altidore, Gonzalez and Michael Bradley are the only four players to have started all six games in the Hexagonal. A total of 11 players on this roster were part of the Gold Cup winning squad: DaMarcus Beasley, Kyle Beckerman, Alejandro Bedoya, Matt Besler, Edgar Castillo, Mix Diskerud, Landon Donovan, Gonzalez, Eddie Johnson, Michael Orozco and Nick Rimando.
Yellow card x-factor
A total of eight players on the U.S. roster are carrying yellow cards, which will result in a one-match suspension with the next cuation: Jozy Altidore, Michael Bradley, Geoff Cameron, Brad Evans, Clint Dempsey, Tim Howard, Fabian Johnson and Jermaine Jones.
GOALKEEPERS (3): Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (8): DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City) John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Michael Orozco (Puebla)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Michael Bradley (Roma), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim), Jermaine Jones (Schalke), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS (5): Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy), Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar), Eddie Johnson (Seattle Sounders FC)
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