The U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team has never been one for controversy when it comes to player selection. That’s mostly due to the fact it has never aroused sufficient passion amongst American sports fans to induce a state of shock, much less outrage. Another contributor to the team’s drama-stifling selection process is the core of the team has always pretty much been a lock.
Times are changing. On Thursday, U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann gave American soccer its first ever shock announcement when he revealed his final roster for next month’s World Cup in Brazil will not include Landon Donovan. Donovan has been the face of American soccer for more than a decade, as well as the country’s most successful player as the all-time leader in goals and assists.
Here are those who did get a seat on the plane to the 2014 World Cup:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (8): DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Timmy Chandler (Nürnberg), Omar Gonzalez (Galaxy), Fabian Johnson (Borussia Mönchengladbach), DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders FC)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Julian Green (Bayern Munich), Jermaine Jones (Besiktas), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS (4): Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)