Thursday, July 19, 2007

US MNT Depth Chart

According to Ives, if the World Cup were next month, here's who we could expect to be starting and who would be waiting in the wings:

US National Team A

  • I don't have any arguments against this starting lineup, really. Mastroeni is the only player I'd quibble about (Bradley over Mastroeni first, then Clark) but if there were an important match coming soon, I'd expect Bob to play something along these lines.
  • Ching is undoubtedly our number one. After his performances at the Gold Cup (and especially the Gold Cup final) Brian Ching has to be considered as our top-choice forward. He wasn't great, but he was better than Twellman and Johnson.
  • Bornstein & Cherundolo? Well, 'Dolo's been our #1 right back for some time and I really don't think Simek or Spector were spectacular enough to warrant a change there. and I'd take Pearce over Bornstein, maybe, but I'm waiting to see how he does against the likes of Bayern Munich and Werder Bremen.
  • Our depth at center back means that our centers are pretty much interchangable; Gooch and 'Negra get the start simply for having more international experience. Although, if Gooch doesn't find a team better than Liege soon, I prophesize DeMerit usurping Gooch's spot very shortly. I would be disappointed about that.

US National Team B

Convey------------------------------Justin Mapp

Ives and I are pretty much on the same page concerning the USMNT First XI, but here's where we split.

  • I'm really not okay with Twellman and Johnson starting up top, not with Justin Mapp on the right flank. Granted, I've not seen how Convey interacts with the rest of this particular squad, but I think that Twellman and Johnson really don't stand a chance without Beasley and Donovan giving them service. I would rather keep experimenting up front than waiting for Twellman to retire and Johnson to pull through. Little-known names which come to mind: Jeremiah White, Kamani Hill, Cam Weaver, Jemal Johnson, Charlie Davies, Chris Rolfe. Considering just how poor Twellman and Johnson did in the GC, we really need to spend some time inspecting these likids and finding the right fit. This should be our top priority right now.
  • While I don't see Cherundolo being replaced any time soon, Hedjuk definitely seems expendable. Get him out of there. His expiration date is the 2009 Confederations Cup maybe; I really don't want to hear of Hedjuk any more after that. If it's going on January 2008 and Simek and Spector are both doing well, I'll start a petition for Hedjuk to retire.

US National Team C

E. Lewis------------------------------------Spector
------------Parkhurst-----C. Gibbs---------------
  • I'm in the dark about how Kenny Cooper is recovering and I'd rather see Bradley try some other options up front anyways (I'm all for giving Josh Wolff another try, despite his criticisms). At this point I wouldn't mind seeing some of our youth players creep into the fold -- Altidore over Cooper or Johann Smith over Ralston. I like Nguyen, Eddie Lewis, Spector, and Guzan where they are.
US National Team D

H. Gomez-----------------------------J. Smith
  • Simek being America's fourth-choice right back is outrageous. That's just stupid. Didn't he show well when Bradley slotted him at left back vs. Ecuador? Simek deserves better.
  • Perkins or Seitz over Cannon, maybe.
  • I like Smith and Altidore and Wolff and Olsen and Edu. Gomez and Barrett concern me, as does Boswell.

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