After roster changes, United States defender Clarence Goodson (pictured) could get a start against Panama in a World Cup qualifier on October 15, 2013. (Photo: Mexsport)
CHICAGO – Head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has made multiple changes to his roster in advance of the United States’ last match of 2014 World Cup Qualifying against Panama on Tuesday.
Landon Donovan (ankle) and Jermaine Jones (knee) have been released due to injury concerns. Matt Besler and Tim Howard have also departed as part of a planned player rotation.
“Landon is still struggling with the ankle injury from a couple weeks ago, so he will go back to Los Angeles and try to get back to 100 percent,” said Klinsmann. “Jermaine’s case is more of a concern. His knee was bothering him all night but he battled through. It’s clear that the issue with his knee is something that should be taken care of right away so he can be 100 percent for Schalke and the National Team as soon as possible.”
After earning his 33rd-career shutout, Howard’s departure means Brad Guzan will play against Panama. Chicago Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson replaces Howard on the roster and will serve as a backup.
“Brad Guzan has earned the opportunity to start against Panama,” Klinsmann commented. “He has been outstanding for Aston Villa all year, and he has been huge in the games he has played for us in World Cup Qualifying. As I said before, we have one of the best situations in the world when it comes to our goalkeepers.”
Defensively, Matt Besler is rejoining Sporting Kansas City and will not make the U.S. MNT’s trip to Panama.
“We wanted to get Clarence Goodson a game in one of the last two qualifiers, which is why we are now rotating Matt Besler out,” Klinsmann noted.
The United States sealed first place in the Hexagonal for the third-consecutive cycle following a 2-0 win against Jamaica on Oct.11 in Kansas City, Kansas. It completed the home campaign in the final round with a perfect 5-0-0 record, scoring eight goals and recording five shutouts.
UNITED STATES ROSTER
(World Cup Qualifying: October 15, 2013, away v Panama)
GOALKEEPERS: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa/England), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS: DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla/Mexico), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City/England), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana/Mexico), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders), Clarence Goodson (San Jose Earthquakes), Michael Orozco (Puebla/Mexico)
MIDFIELDERS: Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes/France), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg/Norway), Sacha Kljestan (Anderlecht/Belgium), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS: Jozy Altidore (Sunderland/England), Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna/Austria), Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar/Holland), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)