Daily news roundups

Reaction to Donovan snub, Edu available for LA game, Lahoud gets Sierra Leone call-up, more

Photo: Daniel Gajdamowicz. Landon Donovan at Lincoln Financial Field against Mexico, Aug. 10, 2011.


To the surprise of just about everyone given his recent comments that he would take his time in reaching his final roster decision, Jurgen Klinsmann’s 23-player roster for the World Cup was released on Thursday. While Timothy Chandler and Julian Green were surprise inclusions, the Union’s Maurice Edu did not make the final cut, nor did Terrence Boyd, Joe Corona, Brad Evans, Clarence Goodson and Michael Parkhurst.

Also left off the roster was one Landon Donovan.

Donovan wrote on Facebook, “To my fans, It has been an honor and privilege to have represented the US National Team in three World Cups. I was looking forward to playing in Brazil and, as you can imagine, I am very disappointed with today’s decision. Regardless, I will be cheering on my friends and teammates this summer, and I remain committed to helping grow soccer in the US in the years to come. Thanks for all your support.”

Klinsmann said, “This is certainly one of the toughest decisions in my coaching career, to tell a player like him with everything he has done and what he represents, to tell him that, ‘You’re not part of those 23 right now.’ I just see some other players slightly ahead of him.” Klinsmann continued,

In terms of now the last 10 days, he’s done everything right. He was always positive. He took it the best way possible…

His disappointment is huge, I totally understand that. He took it very professionally because he’s an outstanding professional player. And he knows that I have the highest respect for him.

But I have to make the decisions as of today. I have to make the decisions what is good today for this group going into Brazil. And there, I just think that the other guys right now are a little bit ahead of him.

Embarrassingly, Klinsmann’s son Jonathan, a goalkeeper who was called up for a recent US U-18 camp, tweeted after the roster announcement, ““HHAHAHAHAHAHAH DONAVAN HAHAHAHAA I DIDNT EVEN NOTICE UNTIL PHONE NOTIFIED ME HAHA.” He has since deleted the tweet and tweeted an apology that said, “I deleted the tweet. I realize it was VERY classless. My sincerest apologies to everyone who was offended.” After that, he deleted the twitter account.

A sample of reaction to Donovan’s exclusion from the roster:

  • PSP’s Dan Walsh says Donovan’s omission means Klinsmann has given up on the 2014 World Cup.
  • PSP’s Jeremy Lane says if the US performs poorly at the World Cup, “Whether he would have helped or not, if the U.S. struggles, the narrative will be about how Donovan wasn’t there.”
  • ESPN’s Jeff Carlisle calls Donovan’s omission “a stunner” and  “a move that has the potential to backfire completely on Klinsmann.”
  • At SI, Grant Wahl writes, “Cutting Landon Donovan will prove to be a mistake.”
  • Wahl also writes, ‘Dropping Donovan was undeniably bold, but now the coach will have to back it up. If the U.S. defies the odds and gets out of its group in Brazil, then Klinsmann will be a visionary. But if the U.S. goes three-and-out without bringing the best team possible? Then that’s on Klinsi.”
  • ESPN’s Paul Carr and Jonathan Costa look at the numbers and say Donovan’s omission leaves an inexperienced squad.
  • At the Guardian, Graham Parker calls Donovan’s snub ” a big risk,” adding, “Donovan will be seen as the personnel decision Klinsmann will stand or fall by.”
  • At SB Nation, Ryan Rosenblatt says Donovan isn’t on the roster because he didn’t earn his place.
  • At Goal.com, Ives Galarcep says Donovan’s omission shouldn’t have been a shock.
  • At World Soccer Talk, Kartik Krishnaiyer writes, “In taking this decision, the head coach has demonstrated his courage, leadership and vision. He has proven once again he is without question the right man for the job.
  • At the LA Times, Kevin Baxter looks at what is behind Donovan being left of the squad.
  • ESPN’s Adrian Melville says Donovan won’t be missed in Brazil.
  • At the New York Daily News, Filip Bondy writes, “This was the biggest U.S. roster cut since Steve Sampson dropped John Harkes before the 1998 World Cup in France.”
  • Bruce Arena said before the announcement, “If there are 23 better players than Landon, then we have a chance to win the World Cup.”

ESPN, MLSsoccer.com, and Yahoo! Sports round up the reaction on Twitter.

More on the roster announcement from Philly.com, ASN, Soccer America. At US Soccer.com, a quotesheet from Jurgen Klinsmann. At ASN, a look at the 23-player roster by the numbers.

At ProSoccerTalk, a look at US squad by defense, midfield, and attackers. ProSoccerTalk also looks at the cuts and the surprising inclusions. At SI, another look at some of the surprises.

At Goal.com, Thomas Floyd says Klinsmann’s selections show he he believes the World Cup is “a young man’s game.” The average age of the squad in 2010 was 26.9. The average age of the 2014 squad is 27.3.

By the way, ten MLS players are on the roster, six more than in 2010, one fewer than in 2006 and 2002, six fewer than in 1998.

Michael Essien says Ghana has the quality to reach the semifinals.

Philadelphia Union

Maurice Edu tweeted after the roster announcement,

A Union spokesperson confirmed to PSP, “Mo will be available for Sunday’s game and next week against Chivas.” Presumably, so will Landon Donovan when the Union play the Galaxy on Sunday (8 pm: CSN, Univision Deportes, MLS Live, MLS Direct Kick, DirecTV, SiriusXM FC).

As Dave Zeitlin writes at CSN Philly, “Sunday’s game between the Philadelphia Union and Los Angeles Galaxy just got a lot more interesting.”

Delco Times has more on Edu not making the final cut.

Previews for the LA game from PSP, Philadelphia Union, Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, Brotherly Game, and David Murphy’s Philadelphia Union Blog, Also at the Union website, Kerith Gabriel has a scouting report.

Michael Lahoud has been called up by Sierra Leone for the second leg of the African Cup qualifier against Swaziland on May 31. He’ll leave for Sierra Leone after the game in LA and will not be available for the game against Chivas USA. Lahoud played the full 90 in the first leg on May 18, which ended in a 1-1 draw.

At Union Tally, Matthew De George considers some possible attacking targets for the Union in MLS and “freely speculates” about some options in Europe.

At CSN Philly, notes from Wednesday’s weekly Union press conference with John Hackworth.

According to a Spanish language report from Goal.com, former Union man Michael Farfan’s days at Cruz Azul are numbered (crappy Google translation here).

Now ex-Bolton defender Zat Knight, who you will recall was linked to the Union in the preseason, says he will weigh his options this summer, although he says he has not spoken to any MLS clubs.


Ocean City Nor’easters were defeated 2-0 by NPSL side Sonoma County Sol in Thursday nights USASA National Amateur Championship semifinal in Baltimore.

Reading United host Baltimore Bohemians on Saturday at 7 pm.


At MLSsoccer.com, a look at the renewed partnership in Montreal between former Union men Jack McInerney and Justin Mapp. McInerney has scored 5 goals in 7 games in all competitions (2 in 5 MLS games) since joining Montreal. Mapp’s assist on the goal in the 1-1 draw with DC on May 17 was his third for McInerney in five days.

DC Mayor Vincent Gray is expected to introduce legislation to the DC city council today outlining his plan for a new soccer stadium.

The plans for the new site now favored by Beckham’s Miami franchise group were unveiled on Thursday. More from Bloomberg.

The Miami stadium plan will have to be approved by a voter referendum and David Beckham will be campaigning to raise votes.

An announcement about whether or not the Orlando City USL PRO team will move to Louisville when the MLS team begins play next year could be made on June 4.


Check out the latest Footy on the Telly for listings of live soccer on TV, online, and on satellite radio for the upcoming week, including Saturday’s Champions League final, Sunday’s Union game against LA, and TUesday’s USMNT game against Azerbaijan.


  1. OneManWolfpack says:

    Completely agree with Dan’s article that JK has given up on this World Cup. I just listened to Taylor Twellman’s thoughts and they pretty much echoed the same thing. I think JK is looking 4 years down the line. Not sure it will work out, but to me this is one of those calls where if it works – he’s a genius, if it doesn’t – he’s an idiot. No middle ground here.
    With that said, even if Donovan never played a minute, he deserved to be there. And no way, NO WAY, is Brad Davis a better choice than Donovan. Period.
    I also don’t like Chandler on the roster. He’s shown me nothing. And not to get to conspiracy theory-ish but something smells when it comes to Green’s inclusion. Just saying…

    • Dan C (formerly of 103) says:

      Considering all that Klinnsman has accomplished in his career, you know, like winning EVERYTHING, I’m pretty sure he won’t look like an idiot either way.

      A couple years ago, everyone wanted Utley, Howard and Rollins re-signed. Had to do it. Look at everything they HAD done for the Phillies. They DESERVED it. Amaro had to get it done and he did so to placate the fans at the time. So, 4 years on, how happy are the fans with that trio now?????

      Unfortunately, people get old. Donovan was brilliant, but Klinnsman feels his time has passed. I’ll take the guy with the international pedigree as a coach and a player’s opinion over a reporters any day.

      • Thats a very good analogy.

        We ALL want the USA to become a top 10 team but it seems like most fans aren’t willing to take the first step of admitting something is wrong and cutting ties with the past. And accepting that it may get worse for a short bit before it gets better.

        Why are so many fans finally on board with the sixers? BEcause they put in place a long term plan, followed through with it, suffered through the season and NOW look at the position they are in!

      • I respectfully disagree. I don’t think it’s a good analogy at all. We’re not talking about four years down the road or a long term contract for an aging player. We are talking about right now. Yes Donovan has declined but he’s not good enough to even make the team? God help me but I think Bruce Arenas hit it on the head with his quote above. Donovan is a proven veteran who has performed in the big games. Even if he wasn’t going to start he would be a nice threat to have coming off the bench. I consider myself a pro Klinsman fan. I think Klinsman has the pedigree to ensure a successful legacy no matter what happens. I don’t believe history will judge him on this alone. Having said that I do think it’s a bad move. A mistake. What’s more frustrating is that I believe it is not so much based on the quality of Donovan’s play but a more personal issue. Klinsmann has not made any secret about his displeasure with Donovan’s sabbatical from soccer. I think that soured him towards Donovan and nothing he has done since that time has been good enough to put him back in the coaches good graces.

      • The Black Hand says:

        Donovan’s vacation, to fluff his ego, soured a lot of us.
        Bottom line: if you want to and a roster…show up fit and ready to take your spot. Landon, in my opinion, might have been lax in training because he expected a guaranteed spot.
        Samir Nasri’s exclusion, from the French team, is an outrage. Landon’s…not so much.

      • George H says:

        Ok, so how do you feel about Chandler making the squad? He refused call-ups to qualifiers and now is in the team which is a lot worse than Donovan’s sabbatical.

      • The Black Hand says:

        I’m speculating here but; Chandler might have shown up fit and beat out players for his spot.
        If Landon had done the same, I would have no problem with his inclusion. BUT, don’t show up unfit , after the ego-trip, and automatically expect a selection.

      • and what positon is that?

      • The Black Hand says:

        We have some VERY good young prospects, to go with a young team overall. This cup experience, for these kids to learn from, could work wonders for the strength of our national program, moving forward.
        Let’s be realistic here, we are not (current) contenders. It’s all about the future!!!

      • Dan Walsh says:

        Fair point. But what do you make of Tim Howard’s comment about Donovan?

      • They’re friends. Teammates for a long time. Howard has class and expect nothing less but he’s not the coach.

      • Dan C (formerly of 103) says:

        Maybe Howard saw Donovan’s desire waning and was trying to inspire his teammate. Maybe Howard feels exactly what he stated….. that is why I trust Klinnsman, because he is there.

      • McMohansky says:

        Tim Howard should do A LOT less talking and a lot more blocking shots.
        Love the guy but please put the mic down and focus on getting your game back up to world class level.

  2. Wow, I’d hope Klinsmann’s son won’t be getting to many more camp invites any time soon. What a knob.

  3. I picture Landon in his living room watching the early matches on TV. He could invite a few people over, like, oh, I don’t know, Mario Gomez, Ronaldinho, Kaka, Robinho, Samir Nasri and Carlos Tevez?

  4. So with Edu back, I assume that we will never see Okugo at CDM again. It was so nice while we had it…

    It’s so cruel when your dreams get crushed like that. Okugo’s dream, not Edu’s

    • sieve!!! says:

      with Carroll back we weren’t seeing him anyway.

      • The Black Hand says:

        That is why we shouldn’t be seeing much more of “The Hack”!!

      • sieve!!! says:

        Can’t put this one on the Hack our back line is a sucking chest wound. We need Okugo and Berry to hold down the fort. Edu and Carroll will do the CDMish jobs.
        Its’ not perfect. maybe not even desirable but damn it is needed at this point.

      • The Black Hand says:

        I see it as going back to a flawed system (that sucked). Okugo in the mid showed too much promise to scrap. Put Shaenon at CB, with Berry, and ride it out.

      • 2nd’ed.

    • i repeat, one day soon we will be watching Okugo play DM for a 2nd division german club. they will rise through the ranks to highest levels, maybe qualify for champions league and we’ll be like, ‘oh hey look there’s amobi okugo playing in europe as a DM leading his team to victory against the best in the land- remember when it was necessary to have him play CB and he sure for a minute but NOT ON YOUR LIFE in 2015…..’

      • The Black Hand says:

        His deep passing vision gives us a threat that we have never had. He actually picks out a player. Carroll launches to no one and the rest play long over the top…straight to the defender. Hackworth would be a fool (will be a fool) to crack and put Amobi back at CB, where he isn’t as top-shelf as people believe.
        It’s Hackworth’s inability to see a path towards progression, that has me reaching for the guillotine.

      • Scottymac says:

        I think not. Maybe second division Sweden at this point. He’s played awfully for a team that would be fighting relegation anywhere else. Bundesliga? Nah. Not even the Austrian one.

  5. On The Right Track says:

    The thing is without BC shielding our back four we are like Spread Eagleville, PA. So I personally don’t think we can afford to keep Amobi in the midfield!

  6. On The Right Track says:

    The thing is without BC shielding our back four we are like Spread Eagleville! So I personally don’t think we can afford to keep Amobi in the midfield!

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