[USA MEN]Jose Torres could be the poster boy for what Jurgen Klinsmann says is the biggest problem with U.S. national team players, their inconsistency. Dropped after the 2010 World Cup by Coach Bob Bradley, Torres, who has spent his entire pro career playing for Mexico's Pachuca, was recalled by Klinsmann after he replaced Bradley 13 months ago. The Texas-born midfielder has looked very good at times for the USA but was subbed at halftime of the recent Mexico-USA friendly, raising questions about his future on the national team. But Klinsmann has brought him in for the pair of World Cup 2014 qualifiers against Jamaica.
"Jose is at a stage where we would like to see him taking over more responsibilities, taking more control of the game and also making more decisive passes or plays in a game," Klinsmann said after announcing his 24-player roster for the Jamaica series. "He has that quality, we believe. He has the technique. He's quite experienced. He's not a youngster anymore, he's not the age of Joe Corona. He knows now what it is all about."
Torres, 24, is actually only two years older than Corona, but he is in his seventh season with Pachuca, one of Mexico's top clubs.
"The message to him is very simple," Klinsmann said. "He needs just to do more and to have more influence on the game. He didn't have that influence in the first half at Azteca Stadium. That's why I took him off."
After taking over for Bradley, Klinsmann immediately installed Torres back in the U.S. midfield, praising his passing, vision and change of pace.
Torres has looked best when he has played on the left side of midfield but has struggled as the attacking midfielder, a role he does not play at Pachuca.
Injuries sidelined Torres for the last two months of the 2011 Torneo Apertura (broken foot) and he was again injured in the opening World Cup 2014 qualifier against Antigua & Barbuda (ankle sprain).
"He will get always his chances and he will receive similar messages as I said now," said Klinsmann. "We want to give the players always the opportunities and chances to kind of grow into that role that we kind of want to see from them and then obviously down the road when it gets closer, hopefully after everything is working out positively with the qualifying campaign, we will make the decision [of] who's going to play in the World Cup, so we want him to make more ownership of this whole thing."