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Nowak Gets Started

Peter Nowak, new coach of the U.S. under-23 national team, has invited 22 players to his first training camp. Because of conflicts with European seasons, all but two are domestic based. The group will gather Saturday at Home Depot Center and head to China next week for a pair of friendlies. CONCACAF Olympic qualifying will take place in March.

GOALKEEPERS: Zac MacMath (St. Petersburg, Fla.), Chris Seitz (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS: Hunter Freeman (New York Red Bulls), Patrick Ianni (Houston Dynamo), Jon Leathers (Furman University), Mike Randolph (Los Angeles Galaxy), Nathan Sturgis (Real Salt Lake), Tim Ward (Columbus Crew), Marvell Wynne (Toronto FC)
MIDFIELDERS: Arturo Alvarez (FC Dallas), Maurice Edu (Toronto FC), Eddie Gaven (Columbus Crew), Michael Harrington (Kansas City Wizards), Stuart Holden (Houston Dynamo), Sacha Kljestan (CD Chivas USA), Dax McCarty (FC Dallas)
FORWARDS: Josmer Altidore (New York Red Bulls), Adam Cristman (New England Revolution), Charlie Davies (Hammarby IF), Robbie Findley (Real Salt Lake), Robbie Rogers (Columbus Crew), Sal Zizzo (Hannover 96)

By Steve Goff  |  November 28, 2007; 1:39 PM ET
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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Next: United Waives Four


Is Eddie Gaven still under 23? Seems like he's been around forever. I hope someday he lives up to his potential.

Posted by: SSMD | November 28, 2007 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Aren't some of these players on a tour in Spain right now with Generation Adidas (per Ives)?

Posted by: RK | November 28, 2007 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Aaron Hohlbein of Kansas City was also called in.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 28, 2007 1:53 PM | Report abuse

does that mean leathers won't be available for the game against wake tonight? Hope so!

Posted by: southeasterner | November 28, 2007 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Interesting that Real Salt Lake has the most players on the team (3) (along with Columbus. Hopefully, they can build on these good young players for the future.

Posted by: timoteo | November 28, 2007 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Zac MacMath? we're bringing a 17 year old keeper who plays for a traveling team? he's the youngest player on the team? seems like there must be a couple of other players from the U-17 who could get blooded this early, no?

Posted by: northzax | November 28, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

on further review, MacMath is in residency at Bradenton, so I guess that makes sense. but still, no one else from the 17's? that doesn't bode well.

Posted by: northzax | November 28, 2007 2:07 PM | Report abuse

a little surprised omar gonzalez didn't get a shot, physically capable of competing and excelling in this type of tournament. put together a great year and has to be a rock solid pro prospect...would really like to see him get a shot with a US shirt on in a beijing

Posted by: terpfan | November 28, 2007 2:13 PM | Report abuse

The Furman Web site says that Leathers is a senior. Has he attracted any interest from the pros, here or abroad, before now?

Posted by: 22201 | November 28, 2007 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I assume the reason they didn't call up Feilhaber or Bradley is because of the European schedule?

Also, I've heard several different things about this: can teams still have three 23+ players in their Olympic teams?

Posted by: Amanda | November 28, 2007 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Amanda: Teams at the Olympics can have three over 23 or older players, but the teams that qualify must all be under 23. I think.

Posted by: Kinney | November 28, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

I can't believe nobody's mentioned the most glaring omission yet...

Posted by: Kenobi | November 28, 2007 2:45 PM | Report abuse

what's up with DC United's young players?

none are in the U-23 callup and it seems like none are on the Generation Addidas tour of Spain .

DCU has long been known for having good young players, but
i felt that our young players were one of the big weaknesses this past season. what's being done to improve them or acquire better young players?

Posted by: de | November 28, 2007 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Re: Kenobi

.....Michael Bradley?!?!?

Posted by: J-Mart | November 28, 2007 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Gaven is only 21...been in the league since 16 so it just seems like he's much older

Posted by: CJ07 | November 28, 2007 2:58 PM | Report abuse

I'm just happy to see a team of professionals. Someday our U-20's will get there.

Posted by: MFF | November 28, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Bradley is in Europe; thus, his omission is hardly "glaring". It is the inclusion of Davies and Zizzo, not the omission of anyone else based in Europe, that needs explaining.

Posted by: 22201 | November 28, 2007 3:03 PM | Report abuse

I hope these kids are ready to run, and run, and run and run some more.

Posted by: Brian | November 28, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Re: 22201

that was joke, I think Kenobi was referring to Mr. Adu, Nowak's favorite player!

Posted by: J-Mart | November 28, 2007 3:05 PM | Report abuse

J-Mart: That joke had occurred to me, too. However, quite apart from the Nowak-Adu angle, the idea of diverting Adu to some silly friendlies when he is on a roll at Benfica is, if anything, an even funnier joke in its own way.

Posted by: 22201 | November 28, 2007 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Re: 22201

I understand why Adu's not on the roster. I just can't believe it took 19 comments for his name to show up.

Posted by: Kenobi | November 28, 2007 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Think of the possibilities. Nowak's current group looks pretty good. Toss in the obvious players not called up this time, and we should have a good shot to replicate the 2000 Olympic team (pending qualification, of course--which Landon and DeMarcus did not achieve prior to the 2004 Olympics).

Speaking of the 2000 Olympic team: pretty nasty roster, thinking back. Unfortunately, Cherundolo and Armas got injured, and weren't available for the tournament. Olsen, Albright, Wolff, blonde Landon, Agoos (over 23), Hejduk (over 23), and Friedel (over 23). That's the challenge for Nowak: Beat the 2000 squad.

Posted by: DWE4 | November 28, 2007 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Since when is Robbie Rogers a forward and Michael Harrington a Midfielder?

Posted by: Brian | November 28, 2007 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Brian: I think Columbus has Rogers listed as a M-F (heh). Since this team is pretty deep in midfield, maybe they're thinking that he's worth a shot up front?

Posted by: Amanda | November 28, 2007 4:05 PM | Report abuse

The midfield is pretty stacked as it is with young talent. Then you think that players that are missing like Feilhaber, Bradley,and Adu, and it begins to look pretty positive for the future of the USMNT. Happy to see Holden and Alvarez there, they seemed to be good revelations for their teams this year.

My surprise is that Devon McTavish is not on the roster, he is 23 right now and his birthday would come after the Olympic Games ended next year so, what's the deal?

Posted by: blackandredblood | November 28, 2007 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Novak favored the 3-5-2 here. I think he might go that way with this squad. Any two of Holden, Alvarez or Rogers in wide midfield; Kljestan, Gaven, and Edu in the middle, Altidore and another up front.

Posted by: Hedbal | November 28, 2007 4:42 PM | Report abuse

McTavish was 22 years old as of the last Hogmanay, so he could be on this squad. However, for Olympic purposes, it is the next Hogmanay that is relevant, so he would be competing for one of the three overage slots, and competing against senior internationals of all ages. For instance, Agoos was 32 years old when he joined the youngsters in 2000.

Posted by: 22201 | November 28, 2007 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Assuming the US qualifies for the Olympics who do you bring in for your three Over 23 players...much older US Internationals for one last shot at Olympic glory? or players who are just few years older and who will make up the core of the USMNT for the next couple of World Cup cycles?

Posted by: Tweaked | November 28, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Tweaked: Perhaps neither of the above, but simply the three people who would most improve the odds of winning an Olympic medal. Thus the question becomes: Which are the areas in which the under-23 pool is lacking, and could most benefit from an over-23 "ringer"?

Posted by: 22201 | November 28, 2007 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Adu, he didn't play in Benfica's Champions League 1-1 draw with Milan today. Anybody know if he's played in any CL games up to now, or is the team bringing him on slowly? Not that it really matters, now that Celtic is advancing...

Posted by: Juan-John | November 28, 2007 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Juan-John: Adu did come in for the last few minutes of the match today.

Posted by: therealfan | November 28, 2007 6:09 PM | Report abuse

He did? Whoops! Ok, thx! :-)

Posted by: Juan-John | November 28, 2007 6:20 PM | Report abuse

If Benfica coach was smart enough to bring Adu in early they probably have won the game. Dummy!

Posted by: td | November 28, 2007 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Tim Ward???
The disaster from this past summer???
I guess he has some upside???

Posted by: marksman | November 28, 2007 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Tweaked: For the the over-23 players, I'd say we take a goalkeeper as Seitz really hasn't played much and having an expereinced GK could give us a lot of leadership at the back, either Guzan, Reis, or Hahnemann would be good. Then a solid CB, maybe Conrad, Califf, Parkhurst, or DeMerit. After that not sure really, maybe a striker, winger, or fullback (as we are stacked for the most part in the midfield), could be a young guy like Convey, Mapp, Simek, Bornstein or Pearce or an experienced guy like Olsen, Twellman, Wolff, Razov, or Ching.

Though it is important to note that Match Day 1 of WC Qualifying will coincide with the Olympics, so one could assume that the three included aren't regular members of the USMNT.

Posted by: Chase | November 28, 2007 8:36 PM | Report abuse

Nice squad when you consider that the three best players (Benny, Michael, and Freddy) aren't on it.

On the topic of Gaven, it should be amazing to see the records for games, minutes played, etc. in MLS if he sticks around the league for his whole career.

Posted by: Todd H. | November 28, 2007 10:24 PM | Report abuse

I think McTavish will still be 23! Let's petition Nowak to pick him up for training camp!

Posted by: therealfan | November 29, 2007 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Looks like we're fairly solid up front and in the mids. It's that D that sends a shiver up my spine. But we might have some European talent that would bolster that, correct? How old are Simek and Spector? For that matter, how old is Gooch? Demerit?

Posted by: Matte | November 29, 2007 9:32 AM | Report abuse

If Nowak is serious about preparing for the Olympics next year, McTavish is of no use to him, regardless of his eligibility to be on an U23 team at this moment. The chances of his being chosen as one of three overage players are pretty slim.

Posted by: 22201 | November 29, 2007 9:36 AM | Report abuse

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