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May 20 Roster Release Quote Sheet: MNT Head Coach Jurgen Klinsmann

Quotes from U.S. Men’s National Team head coach regarding the May 20, 2012 roster release

“We are excited now to get towards full numbers with the MLS guys and also the players from Europe who are coming in with great form,” said Klinsmann. “We want them to pick up the rhythm as fast as possible and make them understand that we are taking the next couple weeks very seriously. We will continue with our rhythm of two trainings a day and see where the players are really at before we make our final decisions on the 23-man roster for the upcoming games.”

On the fact that many of the remaining European-based players are competing for trophies:
“It’s really awesome to see. Michael Parkhurst is playing right now for the chance to be Danish champions. Gooch is playing in the Portuguese Cup final. Herculez Gomez is playing for a title in Mexico. Terrence Boyd won the title with Dortmund Under-23 team and they moved up from the fourth division to the third. It would be awesome of these guys come in with their chests puffed out. The more success they have with their club teams, the more confident they are.”

On some of the newer MLS players who have earned the opportunity to be called in:
“Graham Zusi left a very strong impression in the January camp. Geoff Cameron is a guy that is really knocking at the door, with a very strong January camp but also very strong performances for Houston. You have Chris Wondolowski who is scoring and scoring. This is what he loves to do and his attitude and his spirit is just great for a team to have.”

On Juan Agudelo and his situation:
“We have Juan Agudelo coming in after a difficult first part of the season for him, not qualifying for the Olympics, struggling with an injury, and now with the trade to Chivas USA that we hope gives him a lift because he couldn’t pass by Thierry Henry and Kenny Cooper at the Red Bulls. He has an opportunity now, and we want him to grab it and make clear to everyone that he deserves to be a starter no matter where he plays.”

On Brek Shea:
“We have watched Brek during the last few months, and given his performances and some of the other issues we felt he should be on the standby list. He’s still a young player with a lot of talent, and also a lot to learn.”

On the process of cutting the roster down from 27 to 23 players by May 25:
“When you go into a training camp period like this you have additional players for several reasons.  First you want to see where they are at, you want to put them through testing, and you want to cover your bases. In our camps, because of the high intensity training sessions we always have the risk that somebody gets injured, so you need to understand where the pool of players is in case you have to make a change. There is the displeasure obviously of having to tell players that it was great to bring them and they brought everything to the table that they could, but now we have to choose the final 23 for the games. Those are very honest and straight forward discussions. Still, it’s important for the guys that don’t make the cut that they still feel a part of this process. They are knocking at the door to become part of the roster. Similar things will happen two years down the road. You start with a bigger group and step by step you cut it down, and basically on the last day you have to name the final 23. Now we have the advantage going into these four weeks that even if a player doesn’t make the cut, he’s still on the standby list in case something happens.”

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