Jurgen Klinsmann makes significant changes to USMNT lineup ahead of Honduras clash

3 Comments

ARLINGTON, Texas – Player rotation within Jurgen Klinsmann’s national team for Wednesday’s Gold Cup semifinal was a given due to the taxing pace of the ongoing tournament.

But a couple of these are real surprises.

  • Klinsmann brought Omar Gonzalez in for the tournament’s elimination matches. He remained with the Galaxy for a weekend contest, then joined the United States in Dallas, his hometown. So it was a bit surprising when Clarence Goodson (pictured) kept his spot alongside Matt Besler. Does this mean Besler has lapped Gonzalez in the center back depth pool, as we had already suspected? Or, is it just that Gonzalez has been available for just one practice, and that a limited day-before walk-through.
  • Joe Corona has come along nicely in the tournament, contributing important goals along the way. But what do ya know, Alejandro Bedoya will man the right side tonight against Honduras.
  • Stuart Holden is back in the starting lineup ahead of Mix Diskerud (as the linking man, nominally alongside holding midfielder Kyle Beckerman but generally free to advance further up the field.) Diskerud was OK, but did not have his best outing on Sunday against El Salvador. Holden, meanwhile, was held out completely for the first time in the tournament.

(MORE: Holden talks about Sunday and about his ongoing recovery)

  • Eddie Johnson was preferred ahead of Chris Wondolowski, who was scoring almost at will earlier in the tourney but has been shut out in his last two starts.
  • This isn’t a surprise: Landon Donovan is in the lineup. Of course he is! Here’s the bigger-picture significance: Donovan is the only U.S. man to play every minute of the tournament so far.

U.S. lineup: Nick Rimando; Michael Parkhurst, Matt Besler, Clarence Goodson, DaMarcus Beasley (capt.); Kyle Beckerman, Stuart Holden, Alejandro Bedoya, Jose Torres; Landon Donovan; Eddie Johnson.

(MORE: U.S.-Honduras preview)