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Bad news day on national team front
by Paul Kennedy, September 15th, 2011 1:02AM

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TAGS:  men's national team

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[USA MEN] It was a bad news day on the national team front out of Germany. Former U.S. national team defender Tony Sanneh tweeted that German national team coach Joachim Loew was going to FC Nuremberg -- Sanneh's former club -- to meet with U.S. national team right back Timmy Chandler and the "rumor" was that Chandler was going to play for Germany. And out of Hoffenheim came the news that another promising German-American, Fabian Johnson, was sidelined with a herniated disk in the neck.

How solid was Chandler's commitment to play for the USA became a matter of speculation when he did not play at the Gold Cup, choosing instead to rest after his first Bundesliga season at Nuremberg.

If he had played at the Gold Cup -- an official competition -- he would not be able to change national teams.

Sanneh noted that, if true, Loew's interest in Chandler would stem from the fact that Germany, loaded at many positions, is thin at right back, Chandler's position.

And Sanneh also added that the USA will have no opportunity to "cup-tie" Chandler until next summer. Germany's next major event is Euro 2012 in June.

Sanneh later added that "this twitter stuff is dangerous." (There were no reports Wednesday out of Germany about Loew's "official visit" to Nuremberg.)

(Click here for Soccer America executive editor Mike Woitalla's recent interview with Chandler.)

Johnson, who joined Hoffenheim from Wolfsburg and started the first five games of the 2011-12 Bundesliga season, was injured at practice on Tuesday and is expected to be sidelined for about a month.

That would keep him out of the action for the U.S. friendlies on Oct. 7 and Oct. 11 -- if he was eligible for selection.

Johnson didn't play for the USA in its recent friendlies against Costa Rica and Belgium because no FIFA application to switch national teams has been approved. Johnson previously represented Germany at the 2009 U-21 European Championship.

(Players who represent one country in an official youth competition can later make a one-time switch if they were eligible for the second country at the time they played for the first country.)

Johnson has struggled with injuries over the past couple of years. He suffered an ACL tear in March 2009 and has been bothered by Achilles' tendon problems. He played just 16 games for Wolfsburg after moving up from Division II 1860 Munich.



18 comments
  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 8:52 a.m.
    Can anybody say karma?? It will take some time for Klins to reverse this spell. Looks like we will have even more Hispanics on the USA team than I expected. That'd if they don't get recruited by their countries. Maybe had USA been looking hard in the barrios in the first place it would have been more enticing for these Euro players to stay here. Just a thought

  1. john okeefe
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 8:56 a.m.
    Didnt really impress me. Let Germany have him.

  1. Margaret Manning
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 9:28 a.m.
    Karma? Hispanics? Huh? The kid's German. Where do you expect him to play?

  1. Scott O'connor
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 10:03 a.m.
    It's been pretty obvious that Chandler would prefer to play for Germany. Who wouldn't? They're in the top 5 in the world and getting better since they have such a young core of great players. The Gold Cup bow out was the absolute clincher to me. That said, I'm more concerned about the loss of Johnson who fits in at a much weaker position for us, left back.....

  1. David Huff
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 11:05 a.m.
    I wouldn't blame anyone who wanted to play for Germany over the US or Mexico for that matter given Germany's pedigree and quality of their program.

  1. Clear the Ball
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 12:49 p.m.
    I agree that we need to find the best talent no matter what the race and economic background. Our challenge is to find the kids who love the game, but can't afford "pay for play". I believe our national identity includes our "melting pot" nationality. Our best team will include players of all nationalities and economic backgrounds. Regarding Chandler, I can't blame him for wanting to play for such a quality side, especially considering he is German. I don't even blame Rossi, an American, for choosing to play for Italy. As the child of an immigrant, I still feel a lot of pride for the fatherland, even though I am US first.

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 12:49 p.m.
    David, there are few countries right now at the level of Mexico as a program. It can be said that it is at least at the level of Germany. You are correct however as far as USA level. Mexico has had the best soccer year of any other country. They won U17 W.C. with impressive wins over Germany and Uruguay. They finished in 3rd place in U20 W.C. after taking 1st place in Cpncacaf qualifying. The Men's team won the Gold Cup dominating and winning every game and has not lost one game in 14 matches under new coach including an impressive display vs Chile.

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 12:50 p.m.
    Ric, thanks for explaining it for Stuper. Hes a little slow.

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 3:05 p.m.
    Stuper, are you smoking Kryptonite? First of all that comment was not directed at you. 2nd, your facts would be great had I been talking about Mexico's performance since 1982 but I wasn't. I said this year and I did say as a whole, not just the men's side. You say you understand the comments you read but you fail to make valid or even logical points against them. To answer your last comment you are correct Mexico has not been at the same level as Germany from 1982-2010. This year is a Breakout year for Mexico and has a better overall international performance than anybody including Germany. Can your racism permit you to acknowledge or are you going to rant about the 1970s?

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 15, 2011 at 4:55 p.m.
    My point was about our results in the last year and how it is proven that in the last few years we have done things right and better than most. You insist on talking about over 30years. Like I said ignorant people like you is what is wrong with USA. People like you root for USA victories and claim you are better but come up with every excuse when you lose like having athletese in other sports. You are dumb hillbilly

  1. Chris Snyder
    commented on: September 16, 2011 at 2:17 a.m.
    For some time now, I have tried very hard to resist responding to some of the comments I have seen on these pages but my will power can no longer supress my displeasure. I will not comment on specific soccer issues. Instead, I will say that in my opinion, soccer is a fanstatic sport that has brought me joy and thrills for over 40 years, in many countries all over the world as a player, coach, scout, and fan. To Mr. Arreola and Mr. Fonseca: I suspect you have had similar experiences to my own, yet you do not seem to enjoy the game in this country anymore, assuming that you once did. Nonetheless, I feel sorry for you both that you are not happy with the game in the USA. You should feel positive about the game you seemingly care about so much. So, while I firmly believe our borders should be open to all law abiding citizens of the world with good intentions, unhappy people should feel free to leave. If you truly want to enjoy soccer but can't do it here, please leave and enjoy it somewhere else; or at least spare the rest of us from what are interpreted by me (and I would guess many others), as bitter, hateful, inflammatory, and unnecessary comments. Yes, this is the land of free speech, but that right sure can be abused. I hope you find joy in this game, but if you can't, please keep it to yourself. Speaking for myself, I am not naive, and don't need you to point out or harp on everything and anything that can be construed as a problem in soccer in this country. I hope you receive this message in the spirit in which it was intended. Good luck.

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 16, 2011 at 10:25 a.m.
    Stuper, USA can surely learn from mostly anybody when it comes to soccer. I mention Mexico because it is the sudden boom in soccer as of late and is a neighbor to this country. I say "we" when I refer to both Mexico and USA but since you are racist you would only notice Mexico. Chris, how can the right to free speech be abused? Free is free and therefore will always be subject to debate as there will always be different opinions voiced freely. For you to suggest we leave because we excersice our right to sleek freely makes you less of a USA citizen than us. Ric has on many occasions declared his support for the USA team and coach. Our comments and critiques are observations to change the mentality of people like you that think soccer is run the correct way here. We do this to hopefully influence enough people so there is a change and a better soccer program in this country. There is always to see things. You both are choosing the negative.

  1. Power Dive
    commented on: September 16, 2011 at 6:20 p.m.
    Luis: "Our comments and critiques are observations to change the mentality of people like you..." In many ways I agree with you. I think Mexico has done a great job winning the U-17 and showing very well in the U-20's. If the USA had accomplished those feats, I would say that they are major accomplishments. Being our neighbor, we would be fools not to learn from Mexico. The recent article about the Alianza and how the Mexican U-17 recruiter was there, but USA wasn't is a huge red flag that we are not doing everything that we should be doing. To get better, the USA must do a better job of utilizing its latino/hispanic talent. With that said, your only hispanic only latino rhetoric comes across as being insular and narrow-minded. I personally think for the USA to become one of the best in the world it needs to draw upon all of its great resources (latino/hispanic, Italian, German, Asian, Dutch, French, African, etc.)and create a soccer team that truly represents this country (not just one or two aspects of it). Our diversity is our greatest strength and something no other country can even attempt to challenge us on. So, if your goal is to change the opinions of others, I think it would be much more effective to find some middle ground with people and entertain other viewpoints without casting them off as ignorant soccer fools with sarcastic insults if they have different opinions than you. To use an analogy, if you were a chef, it seems that you would make your gumbo with only the roux. For a truly great gumbo, you also need the rice, celery, bell peppers, onions, sausage, whatever. They are all integral parts. The roux might be the foundation and the most important, but to ignore the other parts is to ignore the dish in its entirety. Let's try and talk about gumbo on this board...it gets boring to only read about flour mixed with butter.

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 17, 2011 at 12:04 a.m.
    Power, the Roux should be the Latino main ingredient along with the rest of the ingredients. I agree with you. How can I not mention my comments in regards go Hispanic s in USA soccer when there has been a blatant disregard to pick and recruit the best players in USA for state, national team selection? When I see this change I will talk about something else. Its not my fault that Hispanics are the better players here in a majority.

  1. Hunter Pages
    commented on: September 18, 2011 at 1:05 a.m.
    Just want to say that the last roster had 4 Hispanic players. JF Torres, Edgar Castillo, Orozco Fiscal, and Juan Agudelo. You could even say Clint Dempsey since he grew up playing in local Mexican leagues in his area. Oh and Carlos Bocanegra is of Mexican descent so he counts too. You can't make the argument that the USA isn't exploring its Hispanic options. That's 5 players out of 20. 1/4 of the team! 6 players if you include Dempsey because of his style, I guess. Sorry but the "USA doesn't take advantage of their Hispanic options" argument doesn't work very well now. Especially with Klinsmann who is known to dig for talented players. So I'm just gonna say drop it, 'cause it's getting old.

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 18, 2011 at 10:02 p.m.
    Well said Ric. With LD that would be 4.5 Hispanics. That number will get bigger with Klins and prove my point. Hunter, if LD and Dempsey grew up playing amongst Hispanics and are undeniably 2 of the best USA players this is proof of where USA needs to look for the best talent. These 2 probably identified with the passion and love for futbol lived in the barrios and benefited greatly. The more you guys try to argue with us the more you prove our points.

  1. Hunter Pages
    commented on: September 19, 2011 at 12:18 a.m.
    LD grew up in the USA system unlike dempsey. You cant include donovan in the same category. Dempsey never got into the residency program and literally grew up playing in local leagues until he went to the dallas texans. LD went to bradenton and was raised in the USA's system. Either way ric reinforces my point in saying to expect more diverse players under klinsmann.

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: September 19, 2011 at 9:03 a.m.
    It seems it angers you guys that the more divers group you talk about will inevitably include more Hispanics. Klins will look for more talent and skill and that will translate into more Hispanics. Look for 1/2 the team to be brown.


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