The US Men’s National Team is on a bit of break until this summer’s Copa America, but that doesn’t mean the team isn’t producing news. The club season goes on, with plenty of injuries and terrible play that can tank a player’s chances at national team selection. Let’s take a look at some of the movers and shakers out there in the USMNT Player Pool.
Established Veterans: Stock WAY Up!
The national team vets are seeing their stock rise drastically. Some of the new additions haven’t really worked out, and Jurgen Klinsmann turned to the trusty vets when the time was dire. Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, Geoff Cameron, and Graham Zusi were all in their normal spots for the critical World Cup qualifier versus Guatemala. When the chips are down, JK goes to the vets, showing the true pecking order.
Debuting Youngsters: Stock Up
Matt Miazga and Christian Pulisic have each had incredible rises at the club level over the past calendar year, and they have been rewarded with the national team too. Chelsea’s Miazga is seen as the future at centreback, while BVB’s Pulisic has a bright future as an attacking midfielder. Chelsea and Dortmund have some budding talents on their hands, but the young Yanks seem to be on the right path. Bobby Wood and Steve Birnbaum each put in some great shifts during the most recent round of World Cup qualifying as well.
Debuting Veterans: Stock Down
Darlington Nagbe was seemingly rising until a Nigel de Jong tackle ended that quickly. If that name sounds familiar to USMNT fans, that is because it should be. De Jong was the one who wrecked Stuart Holden’s career with a bone-crushing tackle. Lee Nguyen hasn’t made much of an impact with his chance either.
Aron Johannsson and Jermaine Jones: Stock Down
Johannsson’s hip injury and Jones’ suspension have led others to take the most of their opportunities in the players absence. Johannsson is still young and may rebound, but Jones’ time clock is ticking at age 36. Both players were regulars, but now are likely going to have to fight for a spot on the Copa America roster.
Post-DaMarcus Beasley Left Backs: Stock in the Cellar
No one wants to play left back for the US apparently. Jurgen Klinsmann even brought internationally retired Beasley back into the fold due to the lack of competent options. Occasionally someone will have a decent performance, but then either doesn’t get called in or has a terrible following appearance. The spot is up for grabs, meaning everyone has virtually zero stock.
US Goalkeepers: Stock Roller Coaster
The goalkeeper position is up for grabs. Tim Howard’s time away, combined with his diminished club form has made this race a true competition. Brad Guzan has played pretty well, but not well enough to cement himself as the #1. Heck, even the #3 backup spot is in flux, with plenty of guys pushing the envelope. William Yarbrough, Ethan Horvath, Sean Johnson, and multiple others have made their case to be included on the Copa America roster.