Columbus Crew and U.S. national team veteran defender Frankie Hejduk is the second MLS player to be dropped from Bruce Arena's roster ahead of Wednesday's friendly in Dortmund against World Cup hosts Germany (2:25 p.m. ET, ESPN2). U.S. Soccer has announced that the right back has been sidelined due to a strained hamstring. Benny Feilhaber (Hamburg SV) has been called up to replace Hejduk.
The bad news comes just days after Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder Landon Donovan was dropped due to a right calf strain, though he was not replaced on the roster. With Hejduk's injury, the number of MLS-based players on the final 18-man roster drops to 10.
Like Donovan, Hejduk was one of the most experienced MLS players selected for the game. The long-haired California native has made 71 appearances for the Red, White and Blue, including three in 2006. He saw action for the U.S. in both the 1998 and 2002 World Cups, as well as the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games.
Hejduk also will miss out on a chance to play in his former home country, as he plied his trade in the Bundesliga for Bayer Leverkusen for four seasons. He spent time with the powerhouse club between 1998 and 2002 before spending a season in Switzerland prior to returning to MLS in 2004.
The U.S. team arrived in Germany on Sunday to begin a short training stint ahead of the game. The contest is the last friendly the U.S. team will play on German soil before Bruce Arena selects his 23-man roster for this summer's World Cup. The team will take on Jamaica on April 11 in Cary, N.C., before hosting Morocco, Venezuela and Latvia in the run up to the tournament.
Jonathan Nierman is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League soccer or its clubs.