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USA Roster Announced

Here is the group for the Cuba qualifier at RFK next Saturday:

GOALKEEPERS: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), Troy Perkins (Valerenga).
DEFENDERS: Carlos Bocanegra (Rennes), Danny Califf (Midtjylland), Steve Cherundolo (Hannover), Jay DeMerit (Watford), Frankie Hejduk (Columbus Crew), Oguchi Onyewu (Standard Liege), Michael Orozco (San Luis), Heath Pearce (Hansa Rostock).
MIDFIELDERS: Freddy Adu (Monaco), DaMarcus Beasley (Glasgow Rangers), Michael Bradley (Borussia Moenchengladbach), Maurice Edu (Glasgow Rangers), Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA), Danny Szetela (Brescia), José Francisco Torres (Pachuca).
FORWARDS: Jozy Altidore (Villarreal), Brian Ching (Houston), Charlie Davies (Hammarby) Clint Dempsey (Fulham), Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy).

For the complete press release, click here.

By Steve Goff  |  October 3, 2008; 10:25 AM ET
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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Next: Live From RFK


YES! No more Eddie Johnson. What's up with Troy Perkins?

Posted by: Har | October 3, 2008 10:34 AM | Report abuse

I like this. Adu Edu Jozy and Torres. I miss Troy Perkins

Posted by: Anonymous | October 3, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

The lack of EJ, combined with the inclusions of Jozy, Charlie Davies, Szetela, and Torres completely makes up for Cooper's absence.

Posted by: AndrewK | October 3, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

I have never seen Gooch play in person, I'm stoked!

Posted by: BobbyT | October 3, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

it's a bummer the Frankie got the call over Wynne, and Ching is still there instead over Cooper, but this is a sea change from BB's usual roster. Looking forward to the game!

Posted by: pat | October 3, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse

This roster is awesome! Really excited to see these guys!

Posted by: Dave | October 3, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse

Im not hih on Cooper at all, I can understand why Bradley doesnt select him. He is purely a number 9 who trys to play as a playmaker which he clearly cannot. Plus he is too slow for the international game.

Posted by: emilio | October 3, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse

I saw Gooch play in person -- too many times, as I was coaching against him!

When BRYC Warhawks and Potomac FC played each other, these players were on the field:

Gooch, Kyle Beckerman, Shawn Kuykendall, Abe Thompson, Clarence Goodson, David Stokes. Gene Mishalow went on to take the latter four to a national title. Great team to watch.

I like Bradley's picks, with the exception of Cooper's absence. Pretty exciting about Torres, too. Great stuff.

Posted by: Joe Doc | October 3, 2008 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Good to see Adu and Altidore - they should be fresh after (mostly) sitting on the bench for their respective clubs. A nice homecoming for Adu, Gooch, and Troy Perkins.

Posted by: SSMD | October 3, 2008 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Bradley actually gets it right! I'd rather see Wynne for Hejduk and Parkhurst for Califf, and perhaps Cooper or Buddle for Ching...but, otherwise, can't complain.

I love the midfield. The youth movement is in full force.

Posted by: Reston, Va. | October 3, 2008 10:50 AM | Report abuse

This is GREAT news. I am going to this game and am thrilled that Adu and Altidore with be there. I hope he starts them. Any chance Bradley wants to embarass Cuba after being mistreated down there?

Posted by: Eric | October 3, 2008 10:51 AM | Report abuse

What's the story with the mistreatment in Cuba? I don't remember hearing anything but positives from Goff about the trip and the people.

Posted by: Crippled Keeper | October 3, 2008 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Hah! That's funny. I wonder if Bradley called up Perkins because Perkins was considering obtaining citizenship with Norway and playing for them.

Szetzla has been very consistent for Brescia and I hope he gets some minutes. This is a nice reward.

Hejduk and Ching still have something to offer this team. I think they are both in it until 2010, but we'll see.

If you'll notice, less and less MLS players are being listed on the roster.

All in all very happy except for no Cooper.

Posted by: strago | October 3, 2008 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Troy Perkins!

Is this his first call to the roster? I don't recall seeing his name before.

Posted by: ML | October 3, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

I suspect, strago, that Bradley called in mostly European players b/c their clubs had to release them (it's an int'l fixture date). And most of the MLS teams are fighting for playoff spots, so Bradley only took the MLS guys he really wanted/needed. If the US rolls over Cuba, you might see all the Euro guys released and an MLS-heavy squad for the balance of games this round.

Posted by: Chris | October 3, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

This should bump those ticket sales up...

Posted by: RK | October 3, 2008 11:07 AM | Report abuse

I really like this roster. BB can keep his job for now.

Posted by: td | October 3, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

when will the final 18 be announced? on game day?

bueller, bueller?

Posted by: myt! | October 3, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Now this is a roster call-up to be happy about. I still would have like to see Cooper but oh well.

Posted by: Excited | October 3, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

USA starting line-up (as read by Bradley's detractors)

GK: Howard
D: Too Old For 2010, Slow, Red Card Prone, Sieve
M: Not Starting for Rangers, Blatant Nepotism, Guaranteed Yellow Card, Also Not Starting for Rangers
F: Not Cooper, Should Be A Midfielder

Oh, :-) for those who need it

Posted by: I-270, Exit 1 | October 3, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

What? No EJ?


Posted by: zilla | October 3, 2008 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Ding-Dong The Witch Is Dead!

Posted by: EDDIE JOHNSON | October 3, 2008 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Ricardo Clark?

Posted by: abb | October 3, 2008 11:32 AM | Report abuse

I-270 -- you foolishly believe that Hejduk ages like a normal human?

Posted by: RK | October 3, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

I would like to see Cooper, but I can't fault Bradley seeing as he's already called Altidore and Davies.

But I hope as qualifying moves along, Bradley shows the confidence in the team to give real opportunities to Altidore, Davies, Adu and Cooper. Not all at once, but these guys have done enough to earn a a chance.

With Cooper in particular, I think Bradley is thinking too hard. He's scoring goals in MLS. Give him a try.

Posted by: dabes2 | October 3, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Good for TROY

Posted by: Anonymous | October 3, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Good job, Bob.

Posted by: Dan in FL | October 3, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

I'm pretty upset Landon Donovan was included on this roster with the Galaxy in a fight for thier playoff lives. This is a game the U.S. should easily win and there is no reason to include Donovan on this roster

Posted by: Javier | October 3, 2008 11:48 AM | Report abuse

For that reason alone, I love this pick.

Posted by: Str8red | October 3, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

The 18-man game-day roster is announced on the day of the game, though some players could be released early to rejoin MLS teams.

Posted by: Goff | October 3, 2008 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Any info on the Cuba roster?

(and I'm sure someone will inquire about the possibility for players to defect.)

Posted by: Fan | October 3, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

This is a game the U.S. should easily win and there is no reason to include Donovan on this roster

The best players get called to their National Teams.

There is no reason for MLS to schedule as they do (and create conflicts with the known Fifa dates).

If MLS wants to run a league where it plays games on dates that Fifa has set aside for international competition, than it is the league's own doing and the problem of players missing "important" club matches.

Posted by: lots of soccer | October 3, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Davies was agood call but disappointed that BB shows no love to Marshall or Robbie Rogers. They are in form and leading the team into the playoffs:

Posted by: Tom R | October 3, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

@RK "you foolishly believe that Hejduk ages like a normal human?"

How old is he in cave man years?

Posted by: AndrewK | October 3, 2008 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Crippled Keeper to answer your question...
In cuba we were forced to train and do our pre game prep while the Cuban players watched because they live at the training complex. We filed a grievance with FIFA. I dont know what the outcome was but I'm pretty sure FIFA said they couldnt do anything. The Cuban players have balconys that overlook the playing field. The US player were very annoyed by this.

Posted by: Eric | October 3, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

What a lineup. Happy to see Troy. Could you possibly interview him and see how he is enjoying Norway? I never thought I would miss him but I do. Excited as can be to see the Nats. Last time I saw them, Bobby Convey came back from Redding.

Posted by: VirginiaFan | October 3, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

One more note. This should be our World Cup line up sans Hejduk. I want BORNSTEIN. The kid has spunk. I like spunk. Also get Ching out and we're set. Many people dont know about Danny Szetela. The kid is legit.

Posted by: Eric | October 3, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Way to go Troy!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Now i'm infinitely upset i can't make this game... :(

Posted by: JB | October 3, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

From the US Soccer Press Release:

"At the other end of the park, the defense is backstopped by goalkeeper Tim Howard, the Sierra Mist Man of the Match against Guatemala, who has posted an impressive six shutouts in five all-time World Cup qualifying appearances."

Yes, quite impressive that.

Posted by: Matt | October 3, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse


I hope you weren't expecting sympathy.


I know the US technically does have a reasonable complaint there, but I also know that Bradley had no surprises up his sleeve anyway. Seriously, what did having practice observed do? Since I've seen no clever set pieces from Bradley in MLS or with the national team up until this point, I think it's safe to rule that out. What else is there to hide? If Cuba's coaching staff and players didn't know what we were going to try to do there, they are in the wrong profession.

And with all due respect, I disagree about Bornstein. He may have spunk, but he also hasn't played well since last year.


We'll still see all the veterans at RFK. Altidore or Davies might get in as a sub for Ching to give us more speed for countering late, but other than that there will be no real changes. Provided we beat Cuba, I expect players like Ching and Donovan will be sent back to their MLS clubs. Hejduk will probably stick around since Columbus is on easy street and you have to figure Cherundolo will start anytime he's available whenever the game carries any meaning to us.

Here's hoping the young guys prove in training and on the field that Bradley has to call them back for the big games as well as the ones that mean nothing.

Posted by: Chest Rockwell | October 3, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Alright Chest I'll concede on Bornstein. I just loved his speed. I've always wanted him to develop. We are undoubtedly weak at our outside back positions but many teams are these days. I was just hoping Bornstein would develop and lock down one of the spots.

Posted by: Eric | October 3, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

perkins..national team??! ouch..

Posted by: mizage | October 3, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

@ I-270 -- nicely played.

You might've added this, though -- Howard -- struggling with his club. As well as he played in the last qualifiers, and with the certainty that Howard isn't coming across the Atlantic to sit on the bench, I'd still like to see Troy play. I think the US could win with him, and Lord knows the crowd would go crazy. While I imagine Bradley might seriously consider playing a back-up after we've clinched advancement, we want to see Troy at RFK, not on TV against Trinidad.

Posted by: Fisch Fry | October 3, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

to Chest Rockwell and lots of soccer. I agree with you both. MLS shoots itself in the foot by scheduling games on international play dates. And no I don't expect any sympathy especially considering Toronto's misfortunes when they were forced to play missing 9 players due to world cup qualifiers. That was a game that should have been rescheduled which even it's opponent ChivasUSA was willing to reschedule.

I'm just a fan in support of my team wanting them to field their best player. And playing the devil's advocate, despite being a strong Galaxy fan, does a team that's only won 1 game in three months deserve to be in the playoffs? I want them there because I'm a Galaxy fan, but honestly they don't deserve to be there.

Here's to hoping MLS institutes a single table or at least a two team championship game with only the top team in the east and the top team in the west playing for the MLS Cup.

With additional world cup qualifiers on the horizon hopefully MLS can schedule themselves out of the mess they've created.

Posted by: Javier | October 3, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Whoa I'm surprised. Should be a fun game to watch. :)

Posted by: Krista | October 3, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

I want BORNSTEIN. The kid has spunk. I like spunk.

Posted by: Eric | October 3, 2008 12:31 PM


Apparently Eric like's Bornstein's spunk. Since this is a family blog, you'll have to supply your own punchline.

Posted by: Otis Spunkmeister | October 3, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse

start torres amd cap tie him to the US.

Posted by: steve-o | October 3, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Yes! That's an awesome line-up. Wish we had Cooper too but he'll probably play in subsequent games (i.e. Guatemala, T&T). I'm stoked to see the USMNT live at RFK for the first time! So glad Jozy's in the team.

Posted by: Robert | October 3, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

@ I-270, Exit 1:
Now, that's funny stuff.

Lineup I'd like to see ...
Cherundolo Gooch Boca Pearce
Donovan Bradley Adu Beasley
Ching Dempsey

Barring any injuries, bring on Altidore for whichever forward has impacted the game least at 70. Bring on Torres for Beas, also at 70, mainly just to cap tie him. If we're trailing late bring on Kljestan for Bradley. If we're up late, bring on Edu for Adu.

All in all, I like the roster. I'm happy to see Altidore, Davies, and Demerit. Szetela and Orozco probably need a little more seasoning, though a match like Cuba should be well within the level of their capabilities.

Finally, I'm happy to see Perk get a chance. He always impressed me with his coverage of crosses and positioning. And it sounds like he's in form at the moment. He's a less effective shot stopper than Howard, and I think Howard still needs to be the number 1. But I'm happy to see Perk get a call up. Well deserved.

Posted by: Matte | October 3, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

No EJ? boooooooooooo =P

Overall not bad, I like the young guys, I hope Danny Z gets some minutes. Only thing I would have changed is leaving Dempsey in Fulham and calling up Coop, but really a nice group overall.

Posted by: Thora | October 3, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

I haven'd heard much about José Francisco Torres, what midfield position does he play? Was this a case of calling him up just to make sure Mexico doesn't get him or does he have a legit chance to start in the future?

Posted by: JpJ | October 3, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Anybody else notice this about the midfield? Only one player was not age-eligible for the Olympics this summer.

Posted by: Gregg | October 3, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Troy is getting some front-page love at this Norwegian newspaper's sports site:

Posted by: Dan in FL | October 3, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse


Check two blog posts ago. That should be all the information you need. That, or try and find a torrent of DCU-Pachuca from the Champions Cup

Posted by: AJ | October 3, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Off topic but someone mentioned above Gene Mishalow -- great coach.

Posted by: Not Mishalow's Son | October 3, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: psps23 | October 3, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

@ Dan in FL -- thanks fo r the link to the Norwegian paper. We need more of ht here.

Apparently, Troy is doing well in Oslo.

Perkins har en god sesong bak seg for Oslo-klubben.

I thought I read that Valerenga played out in the boonies -- but, no matter. Maybe that was from a piece about another American playing for another Norwegian side.

Seems like Troy is saying all the right things:

- Det blir spennende. Men jeg må konkurrere med Tim Howard som er en fantastisk utøver, sier han til

But then there's this:

Perkins har tidligere uttalt at han vurderte å skifte statsborgerskap for å kunne spille for Norge.

"Perkins har tidligere uttalt"??? Say it ain't so. "å kunne spille" -- that can't be good.

Actually, based on what someone else said earlier, I'd have to guess that this says Perkins was considering shifting his citizenship to play for Norway. Anyone know if the Norwegians were looking forward to this?

Posted by: Fisch Fry | October 3, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for answering my question. I had heard that the Cubans observed our practice but didn't realize we filed a complaint with FIFA. Thanks again for the info.

Posted by: Crippled Keeper | October 3, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

For all the Cooper fans, even Goff reported that this squad is only for the Cuba game. Dallas plays Saturday the 11th and they are in the play-off hunt. We'll see if Bradley calls him in for the Trinidad away match.

Donovan--don't expect to see him start. Galaxy (still hoping for playoffs) play on the 12th, so get out of Donovan's way for the red-eye to L.A.

Good to see Perkins in the mix although unless he gets capped, he could still get Norwegian citizenship (I don't really know if that is in the mix or not) and play. But if Bradley cap ties him, that is all she wrote. Given that Bradley is not likely just to screw with Perkins, I think Troy is getting a look because he has earned a look, not just to cap tie him.

I like that Bradley has included Davies, Szetela and Torres.

Anyone notice that the average age of this midfield list is less than 22? A lot of youth for that role.

Posted by: Matt Johnston | October 3, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Four of the 23 are current MLS players. Moral: if you want to see the best US players in action, watch European soccer. If MLS doesn't get its pay scale up, it will become irrelevant to many of us. Better, in my view, to have used the DP money for a salary cap and roster size increase.

Posted by: Dave | October 3, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

i also miss troy. although he made a few mistakes, he always took control of the box and could make those quick reflex saves.
wonder if our season would be any different if he stuck around

Posted by: the dude | October 3, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Moral: if you want to see the best US players in action, watch European soccer. If MLS doesn't get its pay scale up, it will become irrelevant to many of us. Better, in my view, to have used the DP money for a salary cap and roster size increase.

Posted by: Dave | October 3, 2008 4:16 PM

You think it grows on trees? Europeans pay higher salaries because they can. Besides, money is hardly the only reason US players go abroad. You're a professional soccer player -- you want to go where the game is played truly professionally.

Posted by: Anonymous | October 3, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Dave, keep in mind that of the 19 Euro-based players, 11 of them played in MLS. If we adhere to your advice, we would of never have seen any of those guys as they first came into their own. I for one, am proud of what MLS has become over the last 5 years, producing players like Edu, Bradley,Bocanegra, and Beasley, as well as the others.

Posted by: SonicDeathMonkey | October 3, 2008 6:57 PM | Report abuse

I love this, but I would have loved to see Wynne and Jeremiah White also. Great selection by Bob and it's a shame people resent his conservative style. Also the Torres kid from Pachuca is a huge plus. He ran circles around DC in Mexico, but after a full season of watching DCU, that is not saying much.

Posted by: USNAT | October 3, 2008 7:28 PM | Report abuse

Goff has made this point over and over again. For the MLS to be successful the teams need to own their stadiums. DC is on the right track here. I think LA, Chicago and Houston own their stadiums. Not sure who else. But as long as we move in the right direction the MLS will grow. Pulling players from Central and South America has been absolutely wonderful for the league. In time (maybe a lot of time) the MLS will be a formidable and will retain the best American players.

Posted by: Eric | October 4, 2008 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Troy Perkins? Please dear lord, don't let him near the USMNT box...He was sent out of here on rails for a reason...He was shell shocked from that first game in Super Liga, and he never recovered. The only keeper worse than him is Wells.

Posted by: Alan | October 4, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

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