US National Team
Last week, I asked Greg Seltzer and Travis Clark to come up with the 18-man rosters they would take to London if the Olympics started today. It seemed like an easy enough task at the time; both guys would cobble together their teams and the rest of us could hem and haw about which players should have made the squad or who didn't deserve the spot they were handed.
Both slaved over their choices for a couple days, emailing throughout to moan about how difficult it was to pare a stacked player pool down to 22 players, groups which included four alternates. And although they didn't always agree on who Caleb Porter should take to the Olympics, both came up with solid sides capable of competing for a medal.
You can find Seltzer and Clark's squads here: Olympic Roster Mock: Who should Porter bring to London?
On Thursday, Porter announced the 23-man squad that will train for 10 days at the end of February before taking on Mexico – a group that is likely to include many of the players who take part in Olympic qualifying. Because of that, I thought it would be interesting to see how Seltzer and Clark's squads matched up with group Porter called in, a comparison you can see below.
Clearly, this is not an exact science. Greg and Travis put together squads that assumed availability from all U-23 players. That was not the case for this camp and Porter's choices, which changes things. So take it with a grain of salt. It's all for fun either way.
Names that match up with Porter's 23-man group were left as is. Players who either guy included but didn't get the call are struck through. Anyone left out by both but called up by Porter is bold in the official roster. Obviously, overage players don't count in this exercise, so they weren't included in the rosters below.
Feel free to give your take in the comments section below.
GOALKEEPERS (2): Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire)
DEFENDERS (7): Greg Garza (Club Tijuana) , Perry Kitchen (D.C. United), Alfredo Morales (Hertha Berlin), Ike Opara (San Jose Earthquakes), Kofi Sarkodie (Houston Dynamo), Zarek Valentin (Montreal Impact), Jorge Villafaña (Chivas USA)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Mikkel Diskerud (Gent), Dilly Duka (Columbus Crew), Jared Jeffrey (Mainz), Amobi Okugo (Philadelphia Union), Michael Stephens (LA Galaxy)
FORWARDS (8): Freddy Adu (Philadelphia Union), Juan Agudelo (New York Red Bulls), Terrence Boyd (Borussia Dortmund), Teal Bunbury (Sporting Kansas City), Joe Gyau (Hoffenheim), Jack McInerney (Philadelphia Union), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), Tony Taylor (Estoril Praia)
GOALKEEPERS: Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire)
DEFENDERS: Perry Kitchen (D.C. United), Alfredo Morales (Hertha Berlin),
Danny Potts (West Ham), Zarek Valentin (Montreal Impact)
MIDFIELDERS: Freddy Adu (Philadelphia Union), Mikkel Diskerud (Gent), Dilly Duka (Columbus Crew), Amobi Okugo (Philadelphia Union),
Daniel Williams (Hoffenheim)
ATTACKERS: Joe Corona (Club Tijuana),
Josh Gatt (Molde), Joseph Gyau (Hoffenheim), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), Andrew Wooten (FC Kaiserslautern)
ALTERNATES: Terrence Boyd (Borussia Dortmund),
Sebastian Lletget (West Ham), Ike Opara (San Jose Earthquakes)
GOALKEEPERS: Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire)
DEFENDERS: Zarek Valentin (Montreal Impact),
Timothy Chandler (FC Nürnberg), Sheanon Williams (Philadelphia Union), Gale Agbossoumonde (Carolina RailHawks), Ethan White (D.C. United)
MIDFIELDERS: Perry Kitchen (D.C. United), Mikkel Diskerud (Gent), Dilly Duka (Columbus Crew), Amobi Okugo (Philadelphia Union)
Josh Gatt (Molde), Joe Gyau (Hoffenheim), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), Juan Agudelo (New York Red Bulls), Terrence Boyd (Borussia Dortmund)
ALTERNATES: Freddy Adu (Philadelphia Union), Teal Bunbury (Sporting KC),
Andrew Wenger (Montreal Impact), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana)
Oh, come on, you're not that surprised, are you?
The Washington Post's Steven Goff reported yesterday that former US men's national team coach Bob Bradley made $400,000 in bonuses from April 2010 to March 2011, a sum that put his total earnings at almost a million bucks.
Reading that makes me think one thing and one thing only: Good for Bob. He earned that money, as far as I'm concerned. And even if his round of 16 finish at the World Cup wasn't enough for you (and if it wasn't, get over yourself), he still earned a reported 1.5 million dollars less than Jurgen Klinsmann will make this year.
Moreover, Bradley recently donated two months of his salary to the victims of the Port Said tragedy, so it's not like he's blowing his money on a third Bugatti. I don't begrudge the man for being good at what he does, and I don't mind that he's getting paid well for it, either.
It looks like there could be the new road kit for the USMNT in 2012-13.
Eurosport last night leaked an image of what looks like the future of the US kits, with plenty of turn-back-the-clock feeling.
Could this possibly be a throw-back of sorts to the old-school denim kit from the 1994 World Cup (right)? Take a look (The Denim Kit).
Welcome to the Depth Chart, a shallow look at the hot topics currently dominating the American soccer conversation. A story's RANK indicates its size, while its BUZZ (thumbs up, or down, or both) reflects its sentiment. Scroll beneath the image for links to the articles referenced within.
This week, familiar themes populate the Depth Chart: trades, the USMNT and yet another big LA acquistion.
The Canadian Soccer Association is set to make a few big announcements on Thursday, but who saw this one coming?
Rumors are that the CSA will not only announce the sites for Canada's World Cup Qualifying matches on Thursday, but it appears they'll also drop the news that Canada will host the US sometime in a friendly tuneup before the qualifiers. The US - who beat Canada in Detroit during the group stage of the CONCACAF Gold Cup last summer - have not played in Canada since a 3-0 win in Vancouver in 1997.
The Canucks lead the series 6-3-1 in matches played in Canada all-time, dating back to 1925. (CBC Sports - Canada to face US in World Cup qualifier tuneup)
When was the last time you saw an MLS player --or recently departed MLS player-- get the bedroom rock tribute song treatment? Personally, I haven't seen an acoustic anthem like this since Evan Brown was with Seattle back on 2009.
It's indeed a rare a treat and high praise that my ego is quite jealous of. How come no one writes anthems for bloggers?
Introducing the Depth Chart, a shallow look at the hot topics currently dominating the American soccer conversation.
If you've spent any time at MLSsoccer.com this week, you've got a pretty well-rounded understanding of Tim Ream's transfer to Bolton Wanderers, a sale that was long rumored but only recently completed.
There's still more to talk about today, specifically Ream and his new wife's sacrifice to get the deal done and his thoughts about where the move fits into his career trajectory. But there is even more that didn't have a logical destination, though that doesn't mean it isn't fascinating as well.
Check out even more insight from Ream below from his conference call with reporters on Friday.
On Stuart Holden's role in his transfer to Wanderers:
“He showed my wife and I around Manchester and took us out to dinner. We caught the Man U game with him. I think having him around will make the transition easier. I see how much he loves it there and how much he talked about the club and the people invlolved there. It definitely wasn’t the deciding factor, but he’s definitely eased my mind and helped in the transition.”
On the work permit process:
“We were pretty confident. I think there was only one point where we were 50-50. After seeing Robbie Rogers get his and having some of the people back us with some pretty good resumes, we were confident going in on Monday that we were going to get it.”
On the prospect, however unlikely, of facing former Red Bulls teammate Thierry Henry on February 1 when Bolton host Arsenal:
“That would be one heck of a storyline. I’ll be very honest: when this all started wrapping up and I saw that game on the schedule, it was something that I was aiming for just because of the headlines and being a teammate of Thierry’s just a few weeks ago.”
On where he stands within Jurgen Klinsmann's national team setup:
“I believe I’m in the mix, but at the same time I know that there are things that I have to work on and do better to solidify a spot as one of those center backs. I didn’t have a very good year with some of the games (I played) and the mistakes that I made. People make mistakes, and I learn more from mistakes than I do from playing really well. I’m going to take that and run with it and learn from it. Hopefully in the next year solidify my spot and make it on that World Cup roster.”
Graham Zusi may be a newcomer to the USMNT setup but he's definitely making an impression early on by adding creativity to a midfield that sometimes lacks in ideas. He's also adding goals to the scoreboard which also tends to help your cause.
Check out Zusi's game-winner against Panama tonight; it's a strike so deliberate that if the ball killed someone on the way into the back of the net he'd be charged with murder instead of manslaughter.