Quick breakdown of the U.S. Olympic qualifying roster

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U.S. Soccer went to the 11th hour to release its roster Tuesday, although there was scant mystery in it all. The official submission wasn’t due into CONCACAF until last night, so there was no reason to risk being a man short (through injury) by submitting early.

Qualifying begins Thursday in Nashville, where the United States takes on Cuba under threatening skies (which wouldn’t favor Caleb Porter’s U.S. side.) From U.S. Soccer’s roster announcement:

  • Porter originally named a 19-player training camp roster on March 12, adding Tony Taylor a day later. On March 18, Molde-based defender Joshua Gatt was recalled by his club after the team experienced a series of injuries.
  • Philadelphia Union right back Sheanon Williams was the final roster addition, the late replacement for Gatt. With three matches over five dates, look for every player on roster to participate.
  • Fourteen of the 20 are off MLS rosters.
  • Eight players have been capped by the full U.S. national team; Adu (with 17 appearances) and Agudelo (14) are the most experienced.
  • Adu has been named team captain; D.C. United defender Perry Kitchen is vice-captain.
  • The U-17 Residency Program helped develop 11 of the players on the roster, with several in residency during the same cycle. For instance, Freddy Adu and Michael Stephens were in the 2003 cycle; Jared Jeffrey, Amobi Okugo, Kofi Sarkodie, Shea and Williams were out of the 2007 cycle, and Juan Agudelo, Joe Gyau and Kitchen were out of the 2009 cycle.
  • Among the roster, 13 players have participated in at least one youth-level World Cup. Adu, Jared Jeffrey, Brek Shea and Seanon Williams have all appeared in both U-17 and U-20 tournaments.

The full group-play schedule is here. Semifinals are March 31 at Livestrong Sporting Park in Kansas City. Both semifinal winners qualify for the 2012 London Olympic games.