Landon Donovan on USMNT hopes: “I’ll just keep going and I'll get my way back in”
In a Tuesday appearance on the Galaxy All-Access Podcast, the veteran star reiterated his commitment to earning his international place back despite reports that USMNT coach Jurgen Klinsmann has left him off the roster for the team's five upcoming matches.
“Jurgen and I have consistently spoken over many months now,” said Donovan when podcast host Joe Tutino asked him about SI.com's report that he has yet to win over Klinsmann. “I was not aware that that was information that was already made public. Jurgen has not told me that it was definitive that I wouldn't be there – you never know. All I can do, as I've said all along, is do what I do.
“But I really do believe if I get called in that I can help the team,” he added. “Even if I’m not playing, I think I can help. I think that my experience, having been through this three times, could be very beneficial, but if I’m not there, then it is what it is and I’ll just keep going and I'll get my way back in.”
Analyzing his own uneven performances for LA since returning from a four-month hiatus from the game, Donovan continues to display frank honesty about his own search for maximum performance, but says he's still “hopeful” of USMNT opportunities in the near future.
“I think I'm really close to being back to my normal self ... I need to do what I'm good at, and sometimes I get away from that too much, and I'm in one of those spells right now. So I need to get through that and get better about it,” he said. “If I'm looking at it objectively, do I think I can help the [national] team? Yes, absolutely. Do I think I've really earned my way back in yet? Probably not. So that’s a sort of six in one, half dozen in the other.”
It's much the same message that Donovan expounded to members of the Philadelphia media a day before LA battle the Philadelphia Union at PPL Park Wednesday night (7:30 pm ET, MLS LIVE), his 200th appearance in a Galaxy uniform.
“Any player that has a chance to play for the national team is always thinking about it,” he told reporters on Tuesday. “And the reality for me is that to get back there I have to play well here with the Galaxy. So I can think about it and dream about it all I want, but the reality is I have to play well here and eventually maybe I'll get my chance again.”