Donovan not called as US eyes WC2014 qualifiers
Landon Donovan says he feels back to his old form but the all-time US scoring leader was not among the players named by US coach Jurgen Klinsmann on Thursday for three upcoming World Cup qualifiers.
Donovan, back six weeks after a break, scored a goal and set up two others for reigning Major League Soccer champion Los Angeles Galaxy in a 4-1 victory Wednesday at Philadelphia, saying, "I felt like I was back to my old self."
But he is not back to his spot on the roster for the Americans, who will go with Tottenham's Clint Dempsey, AZ Alkmaar's Jozy Altidore, Seattle's Eddie Johnson and Herculez Gomez of Mexico's Santos on the forward line instead.
"We are very excited about the group we have put together," Klinsmann said. "The players understand more how we're working, what we're looking for, the way we want to play and the way we want to challenge big nations eye-to-eye."
The Americans will have that chance once players gather May 26 at Cleveland, where they host Belgium three days later. Then comes a June 2 friendly at Washington against a Germany side likely to lack most of its top stars.
North American World Cup 2014 qualifying resumes for the US side on June 7 at Jamaica with the Americans returning home to Seattle on June 11 to entertain Panama and to Salt Lake City to face Honduras on June 18.
"As we go into this stretch... we want to see more consistent performances," Klinsmann said. "There is a huge opportunity to pick up a lot of points and put ourselves in a good position to qualify for Brazil."
The Americans are third on the qualifying table after three of 10 matches, with only the top three clinching berths in Brazil next year. The fourth-place team will play a two-game series against New Zealand for a trip to Brazil.
Panama tops the table on five points with Costa Rica, United States and Honduras all on four points, separated only by goal difference, and favored Mexico on three points after three draws, including 0-0 at home with the Americans.
The US side is on a run of 21-0 with two drawn at home in World Cup qualifying.
Goalkeepers: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tally Hall (Houston Dynamo), Bill Hamid (DC United), Tim Howard (Everton), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
Defenders: DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Clarence Goodson (Brondby), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim), Michael Parkhurst (Augsburg)
Midfielders: Michael Bradley (Roma), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Maurice Edu (Bursaspor), Stuart Holden (Bolton), Jermaine Jones (Schalke), Sacha Kljestan (Anderlecht), Brek Shea (Stoke City), Danny Williams (Hoffenheim), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
Forwards: Jozy Altidore (AZ Alkmaar), Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Clint Dempsey (Tottenham Hotspur), Herculez Gomez (Santos), Eddie Johnson (Seattle Sounders FC)
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