POSTED: Thursday, May 16, 2013 - 1:03pm
UPDATED: Friday, May 17, 2013 - 8:08am
Chicago — U.S. Men's National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has called in 26 players to begin training camp in Cleveland in advance of the five-game stretch in May and June that includes three FIFA World Cup Qualifiers and the Centennial Celebration Match against Germany. A total of 29 players will participate, including four MLS goalkeepers that will rotate through camp.
• Edgar Castillo and Joe Corona have continued the historic run with Club Tijuana in the 2013 Copa Libertadores, advancing to the quarterfinals to face Atletico Mineiro on May 22 and May 29.
The team will begin gathering May 26 in Cleveland, with players arriving at various times as they complete club commitments. The U.S. faces Belgium on May 29 at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland (TICKETS), followed by the Centennial Celebration Match against Germany on June 2 at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C.
The U.S. then resumes World Cup qualifying with its third road match in four games at Jamaica on June 7 in Kingston. Four days later, the U.S. returns stateside to host Panama on June 11 at CenturyLink Field (TICKETS) in the USA's first qualifier in Seattle since 1976. The team concludes the three-match set at sold-out Rio Tinto Stadium when it welcomes Honduras on June 18 to start the second half of the final round. Though the general ticket sale is closed, fans can still purchase tickets to the game via U.S. Soccer's Complete Travel Packages:
"We are very excited about the group we have put together," said Klinsmann. "The players understand more how we're working, what we're looking for, the way we want to play and the way we want to challenge big nations eye-to-eye. As we go into this stretch of two friendly games against Belgium and Germany and three big World Cup Qualifiers, we want to see more consistent performances. There is a huge opportunity to pick up a lot of points and put ourselves in a good position to qualify for Brazil."
U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION - DETAILED ROSTER
GOALKEEPERS (6) :Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tally Hall (Houston Dynamo), Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Tim Howard (Everton), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (8) : DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Clarence Goodson (Brondby), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim), Michael Parkhurst (Augsburg)
MIDFIELDERS (10) : Michael Bradley (Roma), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Maurice Edu (Bursaspor), Stuart Holden (Bolton), Jermaine Jones (Schalke), Sacha Kljestan (Anderlecht), Brek Shea (Stoke City), Danny Williams (Hoffenheim), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS (5) : Jozy Altidore (AZ Alkmaar), Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Clint Dempsey (Tottenham Hotspur), Herculez Gomez (Santos), Eddie Johnson (Seattle Sounders FC)
Currently in second place in the Final Round of qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the U.S. could earn as many as nine points in the trio of qualifiers ahead. The team is riding a 21-0-2 unbeaten streak at home in World Cup qualifying and is coming off a pair of impressive results, having collected a 1-0 win against Costa Rica before earning a point in qualifying in Mexico for only the second time in team history.
The roster is stacked with nearly the complete group from those matches, including the game-winning goal scorer against Costa Rica, Clint Dempsey, and Budweiser Man of the Match DaMarcus Beasley. In addition, both Tim Howard and Fabian Johnson return to the fold after missing the March games through injury.
With eight players carrying yellow cards into World Cup qualifying, having 26 players in camp gives Klinsmann flexibility in selections. Additionally, players who have completed their seasons in Europe and Mexico and are candidates for the Gold Cup will be able to continue to train and be evaluated.
The U.S. kicks off the summer schedule against Belgium on May 29 at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, with kickoff set for 8 p.m. ET. The match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, WatchESPN and UniMas. The team will host a public training session May 28 at FirstEnergy Stadium that is free and open to all fans.
The Centennial Celebration Match between the Men's National Team and Germany will be played on June 2 at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C., as part of U.S. Soccer's 100-year anniversary celebration. (Centennial Home) Kickoff is set for 2:30 p.m. ET and will be the first of two National Team matches that day as the Women's National Team takes on Canada at BMO Field in Toronto at 4:30 p.m. ET.
Fans can also follow all U.S. MNT matches through ussoccer.com's Match Tracker and via Twitter @ussoccer.