Timmy Chandler’s on-again, off-again courtship with the US national team is about to get a whole lot more committed, if a report that surfaced on Tuesday is correct. And the news broke on – where else? – Twitter.
Citing an anonymous source, Brian Sciaretta of Yanks-Abroad.com and The New York Times tweeted that Chandler has been named in US coach Jurgen Klinsmann’s roster for next week’s World Cup qualifier at Honduras on Feb. 6 – and apparently the German-American has accepted, setting the stage for the outside back to be cap-tied to the United States.
Sources have told me that Nurnberg RB Timothy Chandler has accepted a call up for the #USMNTWorld Cup qualifier on February 6 vs Honduras— Brian Sciaretta (@BrianSciaretta) January 29, 2013
US Soccer officials declined to comment on the report.
Klinsmann’s first-choice fullbacks, Steve Cherundolo and Fabian Johnson, are both nursing injuries that could prevent them from making the long journey to San Pedro Sula for the Yanks’ opening match of the CONCACAF Hexagonal round, so Chandler would likely step right into a starting role.
Under FIFA regulations, taking the field in a competitive fixture like next week’s will bind him to the USMNT permanently, cutting off the possibility of German national team involvement that the FC Nürnburg defender has contemplated in the past.
A dual citizen of the US and Germany, Chandler spent time in the German youth national team system but made his US debut in a friendly against Argentina on March 16, 2011. He later raised eyebrows among US fans when he declined subsequent US call-ups, citing doubts about his desire to play at the international level and opposition from his club coaches, only to announce his renewed desire to join Klinsmann’s team late last year.
"I was a young player trying to get settled into my club team and wasn't sure about the long travel and everything that goes into being a part of this national team," Chandler told ussoccer.com last fall. "I spent a lot of time thinking this over. ... I finally feel ready to make the commitment."
US Soccer is likely to announce the full squad for the Honduras match at some point this weekend, possibly on Sunday afternoon, in similar fashion to the unveiling of the January camp roster.