Is Clarence Goodson running his way on to the US plane to South Africa? We say yes. Here is the latest installment on everyone's favorite. For this we will take into account club success and the recent match vs. Honduras. Quick reminder, this is who makes the roster as if I was the head coach and if the World Cup was next month. Here's the roster:
GK: Tim Howard, Brad Guzan, Marcus Hahnemann
DF: Steve Cherundolo, Jonathan Spector, Oguchi Onyewu, Jay DeMerit, Carlos Bocanegra, Clarence Goodson, Jonathan Bornstein, Edgar Castillo
MD: Clint Dempsey, Stuart Holden, Michael Bradley, Ricardo Clark, Benny Feilhaber, Maurice Edu, Jose Francisco Torres, DaMarcus Beasley
FW: Landon Donovan, Josmer Altidore, Charlie Davies, Kenny Cooper
I just love throwing in some big surprises don't I?
Goalkeepers: Tim Howard and Everton have turned things around and has recorded two straight shutouts after today's win against Wigan. Brad Guzan continues to play stellar when the opportunity is presented to him, this spot is his to lose. Marcus Hahnemann, the elder statesman who has cemented the starting spot at Wolves puts him ahead of DC bound Troy Perkins.
Defenders: Steve Cherundolo continues to start and go 90 at Hannover, he keeps it up and his spot is assured. Jonathan Spector has recently worked his own way into the starting 11 at West Ham and his dependability along the whole of the backline puts him in the squad. Oguchi Onyewu is already running and aiming at being in the squad for the March friendly in the Netherlands, he's all but assured of his ticket. Jay DeMerit continues to go 90 minutes for Watford and continues to hold on to his spot. Clarence Goodson has moved himself ahead of Chad Marshall and Jimmy Conrad after the latter pair failed to play well against Honduras and Clarence provided the consolation goal. Jonathan Bornstein, probably the best player after the red card against Honduras, he has really impressed me in his last couple matches. Edgar Castillo, dark horse asks you? No says I, Heath Pearce failed to assert himself against Honduras, and I think Castillo could sneak on as the eight defender.
Midfielders: As Clint Dempsey's injury won't require surgury, he should be back before the end of the EPL season and ready to go for June. Stuart Holden's place depends on how much playing time he can manage with Bolton, but I still expect him on the plane, he can provide to much to be left at home. Bradley is making a name for himself at 'Gladbach and barring and injury, he's the incumbent starter in central midfield. Ricardo Clark didn't make the bench for Frankfurt today, and they lost, so maybe he gets a run out in their next match. Benny Feilhaber, apparently he's entertaining offers from some teams in Holland and Spain but I think he's found a home for the time at Aarhus and he continues to play well. If Maurice Edu can grab his starting spot back going into the back end of the SPL season he'll be back on the plane. Jose Torres continues to get solid minutes for Pachuca and I was very impressed with his play against Costa Rica. Hard to see him left at home. DaMarcus Beasley is a man renewed at Rangers and if continues his play after his most recent injury, he'll be back in the squad.
Forwards: Landon Donovan is enjoying a strong loan spell at Everton and there's no way he'd get left at home anyway. Josmer Altidore made his first appearance for Hull City in three weeks today after helping his family in Haiti, and acquitted himself very well with an assist and penalty drawn. Charlie Davies...yes, that Charlie Davies, he is making "amazing" progress in his rehab and has stated that making it back by May is easy. I LOVE IT! Kenny Cooper, yea, hard to ignore Casey, Findley, Cunningham, Johnson and Ching...wait. I think this loan move is exactly what the doctor ordered with Super Cooper and could force his way on to the plane if/when he starts scoring.
* Jermaine Jones is still on the shelf for the time being, and most US fans are starting to lose hope for this World Cup. Maybe he should go hang out with Jim Hashimoto, former US team trainer, who has Gooch and CD9 on the fast track to stardom in the World Cup. Don''t count him out yet, but don't be surprised to not see him even in a camp. I blame the German doctors on this one.
* Kenny Cooper hasn't played a game yet and he makes the plane? To put it simply, yes, at this point he does. Jeff Cunningham, Robbie Findley, and Conor Casey didn't play well at all vs. Honduras. Eddie Johnson did grab his first Greek goal today for Aris (Adu on the assist, hmmmm?), but those two have a good ways to go before they can punch their tickets. I think Kenny Cooper instantly becomes a starter at Plymouth and if he can grab a few goals and play some consistent big man minutes, Bob Bradley will be hard-pressed to leave him at home.
So there it is. Little different format, but all the same in the end. Your January edition of NP's 23 for 2010