Thursday, December 22, 2011
© Copyright 2014
Gwinnett Daily Post
CHICAGO -- Young players, most of whom play in Major League Soccer, make up much of U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann's roster for his January training camp. The group includes Brookwood grad Sean Johnson, one of three goalkeepers on the roster.
Klinsmann called 20 players in for the camp, which will run Jan. 3-26 in the U.S. and Panama. Only two on the roster play overseas, and more than half of the players have two or fewer appearances with the senior national team. Klinsmann says the group is "next in line" behind the veteran mainstays, and the camp will "create more depth" for the Americans as they prepare for the start of World Cup qualifying next summer.
The U.S. plays two exhibitions during the training camp, facing Venezuela on Jan. 21 in Phoenix, and traveling to Panama for a Jan. 25 game.
Johnson, 22, has one appearance with the U.S. National Team. The 6-foot-4, 220-pounder, who plays for the Chicago Fire of MLS, is joined on the camp roster by fellow goalies Bill Hamid (D.C. United) and Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake). There is only one other Georgian in the camp -- 28-year-old midfielder Ricardo Clark. Clark and Benny Feilhaber are the only players on the roster who played in the 2010 World Cup.
"This is a very important opportunity for these players," said Klinsmann. "They are the next in line behind the established players, and this is a chance to prove themselves. We will spend the next few weeks introducing them to our ideas on how we want to play and what it means to be a part of the National Team. Ultimately, it will create more depth for us, which you need at this level. I'm very curious and excited to see this group."