If you are a fan of Oguchi Onyewu or Tim Ream (pictured) or Juan Agudelo, obviously there is reason to be a little excited today; being summoned by Jurgen Klinsmann for the training camp in Frankfurt and subsequent trip into Cyprus can only be a good thing.
But don’t get carried away. An invitation into this camp is a little like a first date; you’re in the game … but a long, long, long way from wedding bells and beach-side honeymoons.
“Wedding bells” in this case means a World Cup roster spot.
Here’s why this 24-man camp (which is really a 23-man camp, plus potential U.S. man Julian Green) is a thin representation of what the World Cup roster will look like: Most MLS men at the top end of the U.S. pool aren’t jetting across the ocean for this one, not with MLS openers set for a few days later.
Michael Bradley and Clint Dempsey are the exceptions. But there are at least eight MLS men (and potentially as many as 10 or 11) who will be on the World Cup roster but won’t be gathering in Frankfurt on Sunday.
Remember, whereas the last U.S. World Cup roster (For World Cup 2010 in South Africa) included just four MLS players, the land’s highest tier of professional soccer will carry a far greater representation this time around.
On the center backs, specifically, Omar Gonzalez, Matt Besler and Clarence Goodson, all in MLS, are almost sure to gobble up three spots more or less allocated for central defense. That leaves (again, more or less … none of this is “hard math”) one center back spot, and the best guess here is that it’s going to Anthony Brooks.