Galaxy’s Landon Donovan called up for crucial World Cup qualifiers
Galaxy captain Landon Donovan was among 24 players called up Monday by Coach Juergen Klinsmann for the U.S. national team’s crucial set of World Cup qualifiers.
The U.S takes on Antigua & Barbuda on Friday in Antigua before playing host to Guatemala on Oct. 16 in Kansas City, Kan. The Americans need a win and a draw in those two games to advance to next year’s hexagonal round of qualifying for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
“The mentality we are bringing into these two games is to get six points,” Klinsmann said. “It’s important that the players arriving into Miami prepare themselves for two ‘finals.’ We must have urgency within the group.”
Donovan’s call-up was by no means assured after he left the Galaxy’s 2-1 loss to Real Salt Lake last Saturday with a knee injury. Donovan, the U.S. national team’s all-time leading scorer, missed the September qualifying matches with a hamstring injury. The U.S. lost on the road to Jamaica — its only loss in the semifinals — then beat the Reggae Boyz in a rematch in the U.S.
Midfielder Michael Bradley, who also missed those two matches with injuries, was also called into training camp this week in Miami along with Clint Dempsey, who has scored in three of the four World Cup qualifiers the U.S. has played in this round. He now has eight career goals in World Cup qualifying, fourth-best in U.S. history.
Klinsmann must cut one player from the squad before Friday’s game to reach the 23-man roster limit. The team, with club affiliations in parentheses.
GOALKEEPERS: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS: Carlos Bocanegra (Racing Santander), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana), Steve Cherundolo (Hannover), Maurice Edu (Stoke City), Clarence Goodson (Brondby), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim), Michael Parkhurst (Nordsjaelland)
MIDFIELDERS : Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Michael Bradley (Roma), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Jermaine Jones (Schalke 04), Sacha Kljestan (Anderlecht), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), Danny Williams (Hoffenheim), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS: Clint Dempsey (Tottenham Hotspur), Landon Donovan (Galaxy), Herculez Gomez (Santos), Alan Gordon (San Jose Earthquakes), Eddie Johnson (Seattle Sounders).
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