Monday, March 24, 2008

US roster for Poland match

US - Poland
26 March 3:30p ET/12:30p PT
TV: Fox Soccer Channel

Bob Bradley has called 18 players into camp ahead of this Wednesday's match in Poland. Since this game actually takes place in Europe on an official international date, it should come as no surprise that most of the players are not based in the US. In fact, only 3 of the 18 are from the MLS (Donovan, Ching, Clark).

Here is the full roster:

GK (2): Marcus Hahnemann (Reading FC), Tim Howard (Everton FC)

D (7): Carlos Bocanegra (Fulham FC), Steve Cherundolo (Hannover 96), Jay DeMerit (Watford FC), Cory Gibbs (Charlton Athletic), Oguchi Onyewu (Standard de Liege), Heath Pearce (Hansa Rostock), Jonathan Spector (West Ham United)

M (5): Michael Bradley (SC Heerenveen), Ricardo Clark (Houston Dynamo), Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy), Benny Feilhaber (Derby County), Eddie Lewis (Derby County)

F (4): Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo), Clint Dempsey (Fulham FC), Eddie Johnson (Fulham FC), Josh Wolff (1860 Munich)

Although I'm sure a few people will ask 'where is Adu?', since he is just getting back to his club after two weeks of Olympic qualifying, Bradley probably didn't want to call him in. In fact, since no players from the U23 squad are on the list, this reason should apply to all of them (Altidore, Holden, etc.).

So what about the names that are there?

Feilhaber gets called in after failing to impress Nowak for the U23s. With Feilhaber getting no playing time for the worst team in the EPL, why would Bradley call him in? I'm guessing Bradley believes in him and wants to give him a chance to show himself. Might be corny, but Feilhaber is better then how he is currently getting treated at Derby.

Brian Ching getting the pick is a bit of an eye turner for me as he hasn't looked 100% during any of the pre-season Dynamo matches I've seen. I do think Ching is national team material, but only at top form.

Ricardo Clark was probably an easy pick as he has been showing well in pre-season for Houston, plus he is still riding a 2-game MLS suspension so the international travel will not hurt his club play come opening weekend.

The mad man of Holland, Michael Bradley, gets a very deserved call as he has now scored 20 goals in all competitions, including 2 in a match on Saturday.

Great to see Gibbs back on the list.

Overall, this is really the core of the US national team right here. So what about the new faces? My thought is Bradley will use this game to evaluate the known players ahead of the triple threat matches (England, Spain & Argentina) at the end of May and early June. He will see what he has and then complement it with new faces.

As for a starting lineup, my guess is something like:

Labels: , , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home