Jozy? Chandler? January? Klinsmann still seeks answers
Even after 15 months in charge, there's plenty still very much up in the air for US national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann.
First, it's still unclear what his roster for the Nov. 14 friendly against Russia is going to look like since the MLS Cup playoffs could yet wreak havoc on his selections if Graham Zusi, Landon Donovan and other selection candidates make deep runs with their respective clubs.
But even the annual January camp, traditionally used as a proving ground for young, up-and-coming American talent, is a big question mark.
Klinsmann indicated on a Thursday media conference call that for 2013 he may take a whole new approach, but that there was still "homework to get done" and "deeper discussions" to be had about it.
Factors include the MLS schedule as well as the USMNT's opponent and travel for the opening of the CONCACAF World Cup qualifying Hexagonal round on Feb. 6.
The draw for that CONCACAF Hexagonal will be held by FIFA on Nov. 7.
"What we need to sort out is maybe we reduce the time of the camp," Klinsmann said. "Maybe we lean the camp into that Feb. 6 fixture date, so we start it much later in the middle of January and go straight into that 6th date."
But there is also plenty of uncertainty on the player front. The Landon Donovan story has been well documented. And then there is Jozy Altidore, who was left off the most recent World Cup qualifying roster by Klinsmann for technical reasons.
"No, we had no further contact since then and I haven’t made my mind up yet if I call him in for Russia," said Klinsmann of Altidore, who happened to score another two goals for AZ Alkmaar on Thursday in a Dutch Cup win over a third-division side.
And how about Timothy Chandler? The US right back is still yet to fully commit to the US World Cup qualifying process, but Klinsmann seems to be content to wait on him as he will with Donovan.
"I’m in contact with him and I always told him that we take him at his pace. It’s similar to Landon," Klinsman said. "They have to make their own decisions sooner or later and they will do that.
"We’re in touch and we respect his decision so far. He wasn’t part of the qualifiers, but the World Cup is coming along pretty soon and we’re going already into 2013. It’s totally up to him how fast the decision on his end will be made."