Twitter was abuzz with murmurings this morning that Brad Davis was on his way to Kansas City to join up with the US Men’s National Team.
The initial tweet came from Taylor Twellman, who did not know the specific reason for Davis’ alleged call in.
Now, with U.S. Soccer announcing the call-up of Michael Orozco (and no one else), as well as a Houston Dynamo tweet noting Davis’ appearance at training this morning, Twellman’s call seems to be a miss.
On Sunday, U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann called in 20 players to begin preparations for the final matches of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifying cycle.
The first match pits the U.S. against Jamaica this Friday in Kansas City before the Stars & Stripes complete the campaign next Tuesday against Panama at the Estadio Rommel Fernandez in the country’s capital.
Currently atop the Hexagonal standings, the U.S. has already clinched qualification to the World Cup meaning the final two matches present an opportunity to win the CONCACAF regional qualifying for the third consecutive cycle.
Beyond the glory of winning the region, the final two matches of the Hex provide an important opportunity for fringe players to impress Klinsmann in the hope of earning a spot on the team that heads to Brazil.
In the 20 man roster announced on Sunday, this is precisely the case for players like Orozco, Brad Evans, Edgar Castillo, Kyle Beckerman, Alejandro Bedoya, Mix Diskerud, Sacha Kljestan, Terrence Boyd and Aron Johannsson to make their case.
If, however, Twellman’s sources prove correct and Davis is called up it would be a massive opportunity for the 31-year-old.
Davis last found himself in a U.S. shirt for the 2-0 World Cup Qualifying victory over Mexico on September 10th, a match where he failed to feature. In that situation Davis was a late addition to the roster after three players picked up yellow card cautions in the 3-1 loss to Costa Rica on September 6th.
For the man with the sweetest left foot in Major League Soccer, a call up now would represent one last ditch opportunity to prove why he should be selected for the World Cup roster. It will be an uphill battle.
Landon Donovan has the left sided starting role locked down. If Donovan can’t go, Klinsmann has been known to use Eddie Johnson in that spot although the Sounders hitman clearly prefers (and deserves) to be finishing crosses, not providing them.
Graham Zusi typically plays on the right side but could be used on the left as cover, especially considering the emergence of Bedoya. Klinsmann also has cover on the left midfield through players who he typically deploys as full-backs, Fabian Johnson and DaMarcus Beasley.
Other possibilities at left midfield includes Edgar Castillo, who has performed well as a left wing back for Tijuana, and Brek Shea, who is coming off injury but has made an impact in the U.S. super-sub role.
So if the call does come, things could prove very difficult for Davis. But if there’s one thing that Klinsmann’s been over the last few years it’s fair to form. Earn your call up, perform well and it won’t go unnoticed.