Mexico has won the last two Continental Championships in CONCACAF defeating the United States in the final on both occasions. Prior to that, the United States had won three of the previous CONCACAF Gold Cups, and had exerted a level of dominance over El Tri that perhaps led to a sense of complacency among American soccer supporters and elites.
But following the 2011 failure, Jürgen Klinsmann was hired to reverse the trend that was rapidly moving against the US. Klinsmann has been tasked with reviving the fortunes of US Soccer and the early returns have been quite promising. Today the United States manager named his squad for the competition, which is an interesting mix of regulars, experimental MLS or Liga MX based “B” teamers and veterans on perhaps their last shots.
Landon Donovan, Oguchi Onyewu, Michael Orozco Fiscal and Michael Parkhurst fit into the category of veterans needing an impressive Gold Cup to feature in future qualifying or next summer in Brazil.
An intriguing selection is Mix Diskerud who had been rumored recently to be considering a one-time FIFA switch to Norway. Diskerud, a cultured midfielder has been largely ignored in the US setup despite flashes of brilliance in his few appearances with the senior national side.
Josh Gatt who has been a regular for Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s Molde side has been a player that many US fans want to see more of. He will get his shot in the Gold Cup.
Klinsmann’s squad selection is neither a good nor bad move. It’s experimental but will give Klinsmann the ability to deepen the player pool and make decisions on who to integrate, if anyone, into the squad moving forward.