The USMNT Soccer Roster Is Here, And Landon Donovan Is NOT On It

  • Eric Goldschein

landon donovan

Whoa. Big news today, as U.S. Men’s National Team coach Jurgen Klinsmann released the 23-man roster for the World Cup next month. Shockingly, Landon Donovan — who played with the national team as recently as the 2013 Gold Cup and in World Cup qualifying matches — did not make the cut.

That’s right: The best player U.S. player ever; the man responsible for arguably the greatest moment in U.S. soccer history; the nation’s all-time leader in goals and assists; the face of the team worldwide… and he’s not going to Brazil. Not even as a backup. He’s 32 years old — not young, but not ancient. Just yesterday, Dan Levy of Bleacher Report wrote an article titled “Let’s Stop Pretending Landon Donovan Isn’t a Lock for US Soccer World Cup Roster.” The SF Gate had him as a lock. Oops.

Here’s the roster:

Here’s the projected lineup, via Pro Soccer Talk:

Goalkeepers: Brad Guzan, Tim Howard, Nick Rimando

Defenders: DeAndre Yedlin, Omar Gonzalez, Timmy Chandler, John Anthony Brooks, Matt Besler, DaMarcus Beasley, Geoff Cameron, Fabian Johnson

Midfielders: Michael Bradley, Graham Zusi, Jermaine Jones, Kyle Beckerman, Mix Diskerud, Ale Bedoya, Timmy Chandler, Brad Davis

Forwards: Chris Wondolowski, Aron Johannsson, Jozy Altidore, Clint Dempsey

Predictably, much of the Twitter world is going nuts over the decision to leave Donovan off:

Remember this guy?

While some are defending the decision:

Whether you consider Donovan one of the 23 best players from the United States or not, you can’t say you saw this coming. If it pays off (i.e. if the U.S. gets past the group stage), we’ll call Klinsmann a genius forever. If not… well, best leave that for mid-July.

Photo via Getty