Nov 11, 2010

Bradley Names 18-Man Roster to Face South Africa on Nov. 17 in Cape Town - U.S. Soccer

Today, U.S. Men's National Team Coach Bob Bradley Named and 18-Man Roster to Face South Africa next week. As expected, Bradley went young for this match next week.

GOALKEEPERS (2): Dominic Cervi (Celtic), Brad Guzan (Aston Villa)
DEFENDERS (7): Gale Agbossoumonde (Estoril Praia), Nat Borchers (Real Salt Lake), Jonathan Bornstein (Tigres), Clarence Goodson (Brondby), Eric Lichaj (Aston Villa), Tim Ream (New York Red Bulls), Jonathan Spector (West Ham United)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Alejandro Bedoya (Örebro), Brian Carroll (Columbus Crew), Mikkel Diskerud (Stabaek), Eddie Gaven (Columbus Crew), Logan Pause (Chicago Fire), Robbie Rogers (Columbus Crew)
FORWARDS (3): Juan Agudelo (New York Red Bulls), Teal Bunbury (Kansas City Wizards), Robbie Findley (Real Salt Lake)

What strikes me most about this squad is the midfield. The U.S. midfield usually boasts the most depth, and this midfield crew adds to that notion of developing depth. Brian Carroll, Eddie Gaven and Logan Pause, on almost any other day, would not get a call. Gaven, a nearly 8 year veteran MLS player at age 24 or 25, is a quality MLS midfielder, but has never shown that he can make the step up to the international game. Given the availability of Kyle Beckerman, I am surprised that he didn't get the call, if for no other reason than to put some age in that midfield. So what is to be inferred from this list--probably nothing. Bradley was a bit hamstrung by the FIFA date and the acceptance of the game in South Africa with a short period of time for the camp and game.

Canadian fans have to be worried about losing Teal Bunbury--but after turning down a Canadian call-up and holding dual citizenship, I am not surprised at Bunbury answering Bob Bradley's call. Canada, even under the revamped CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying, is probably at least 2 World Cup cycles away from making it to the World Cup. Bunbury probably wants to go to the World Cup and playing for the U.S. is probably he best bet. Bunbruy isn't cap-tied, yet. Under my understanding of the FIFA Rules, Bunbury could play in this game and still not be cap-tied, but if he plays in a Gold Cup match or qualifier--then he will be cap-tied.

The three players I am excited to see more of is Gale Agbossoumonde, Mikkel Diskerud, and Agudelo. I have not seen Diskerud in a full match, so I am hoping Bradley gives him some time. Agudelo impressed me with with New York Red Bull in the playoffs, but he is being asked to make a jump from Development Academy teams, to MLS first team to International all in the space of one year. He looks good, but I am not ready to jump on the Altidore--Agudelo bandwagon just yet.

So the question will be--what is the starting line-up? Here's mine:





I can see Bunbury and Diskerud getting about a 30 minute appearance. I could also see Spector starting rather than Lichaj to get him some time. The next big question will be Tim Ream. I could see Ream even starting rather than Borchers, but I think Bradley will want to see what is happening before putting the rookie into the mix.

The captain will be Bornstein or Goodson.

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