HOUSTON – Rosters for World Cup teams from all over the globe have trickled in left and right this week, with Jurgen Klinsmann set to announce his 30-man preliminary squad for the US national team on Monday.
In Houston, that means the focus is squarely on Brad Davis, who has one final chance to impress on Sunday when the Dynamo host unbeaten Real Salt Lake (7 pm ET, MLS Free Stream of the Week). And if his form stays where it’s been the past three games, there’s a good chance he’ll be in the running for the camp and possibly the 23-man roster to Brazil.
“[Klinsmann’s] said from the beginning, World Cups are about who’s on form at the right time, and who’s hot leading up to it,” Davis said Friday. “I know they’re watching. I know they’re keeping tabs on every single guy. It’s one chance to put 30 names on a list and one chance to put 23 names on a list, so I know he wants to bring in the top guys.”
While Davis said that he has not yet been told whether he will be on the camp roster, he’s certainly in form heading into the final weekend before the roster reveal. Healthy again following an ankle injury sustained earlier this season, he’s notched a goal or an assist in each of the Dynamo’s past three games, and they’ve posted a 2-0-1 record since his return.
“He’s always consistent,” head coach Dominic Kinnear said. “I always say he’s one of the most naturally gifted players I’ve ever seen and I’ve been around on a daily basis. He’s dying to play. He’s dying to play every minute. That has nothing to do with what’s going on with the US team.”
Davis has appeared in nine games for the USMNT under Klinsmann’s watch, the most recent coming in the team’s 2-0 win over South Korea in February.
“Away from the game when you’re thinking or preparing or afterwards, you’re thinking, ‘How’d I do? What do I need to do better? What did I do wrong?” Davis said. “I think you’ll drive yourself nuts if you think about it non-stop … Absolutely there’s pressure. There’s an unbelievable opportunity sitting here, but it’s not going to get any easier.”
Added Kinnear: “[I] think he’s played well enough this year on a daily basis to show he has the quality to be a good part of that team. I think we all want to see him on that plane to Brazil.”
Darrell Lovell covers the Houston Dynamo for MLSsoccer.com.