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Klinsmann on controversy: 'I think it's a great sign'
by Paul Kennedy, March 22nd, 2013 1:36AM

TAGS:  men's national team, world cup 2014


[USA-COSTA RICA] Jurgen Klinsmann's positive attitude was certainly tested during a week when he lost four players to last-minute injuries or illness and the work he has done for the last 19 months came under a blistering attack. But he remained optimistic on the eve of Friday's USA-Costa Rica game at Dick's Sporting Goods Park (10 pm ET, ESPN/UniMas).

In an interview with ESPN early in the day, he said the criticism in a Sporting News report was "normal" and he's certainly seen his share in a coaching career that saw him coach the German national team, the 2006 World Cup host, and Bayern Munich, a club famous for its public bickering.

Klinsmann pushed back, saying the criticism was a positive sign.

“What does it mean, 'anonymous quotes?'” Klinsmann asked during his media conference on Thursday. “That’s just part of our environment. Journalists and people can say whatever they feel, whatever they think, whatever they believe, which is important. I think it’s a great sign, all the debate that is going on about soccer in this country. It shows you that people care."

Klinsmann said the criticism did not bother him but seemed most upset with the anonymous nature of the criticism.

“It really doesn’t bother me that much,” he said. “If it’s true, which obviously it’s still a rumor because if you say ‘anonymous sources’ then you gotta name it, then you’d rather prefer as a coach or as individual, no matter who you are, that people talk to you directly if they have something to complain about. It’s as simple as that."

U.S. Roster:
GOALKEEPERS: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS: Tony Beltran (Real Salt Lake), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Clarence Goodson (Brondby), Justin Morrow (San Jose Earthquakes)
MIDFIELDERS: DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Michael Bradley (Roma), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Maurice Edu (Bursaspor), Jermaine Jones (Schalke), Sacha Kljestan (Anderlecht), Brek Shea (Stoke City), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS: Jozy Altidore (AZ), Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Clint Dempsey (Tottenham), Herculez Gomez (Santos), Eddie Johnson (Seattle Sounders FC)

Costa Rica Roster:
GOALKEEPERS:Keylor Navas (Levante, Spain), Patrick Pemberton (Alajuelense).
DEFENDERS:Juan Diego Madrigal (Santos), Christian Gamboa (Rosenborg, Norway), Michael Umana (Saprissa), Kendall Watson (Perez Zeledon), Giancarlo Gonzalez (Valerenga, Norway), Roy Miller (New York Red Bulls) Bryan Oviedo (Everton, England),  Christopher Meneses (Alajuelense).
MIDFIELDERS:Celso Borges (AIK, Sweden), Osvaldo Rodriguez (Santos), Cristian Bolanos (FC Copenhagen, Denmark), Ariel Rodriguez (Perez Zeledon), Keylor Soto (Perez Zeledon), Yeltsin Tejeda (Saprissa), Michael Barrantes (Aalesund, Norway), Bryan Ruiz (Fulham, England), Mauricio Castillo (Cartagines), Diego Calvo (Alajuelense).
FORWARDS: Alvaro Saborio (Real Salt Lake), Joel Campbell (Betis, Spain), Jairo Arrieta (Columbus Crew).

  1. Cesar Sastre
    commented on: March 22, 2013 at 8:53 a.m.
    Anonymous needs to man up and not only give a name but the specific basis of his criticisms. Of course that is assuming Mr. anonymous has the stones to own up to the criticism and more importantly, that he knows anything at all about the game of soccer, which would entitle him to a legitimate opinion. Otherwise, opinions are like noses...everyone has one. Let's play soccer and win! Go USA!
  1. Gus Keri
    commented on: March 22, 2013 at 9:28 a.m.
    It amazes me that at a time when the rest of the world is fighting and dying for the freedom of speech (like the Arab spring), you have people who were born and have lived all their lives in this free country resorting to "anonymous" to express their opinions. They are a bunch of cowards.
  1. Albert Harris
    commented on: March 22, 2013 at 10:01 a.m.
    If "Mr. Anonymous" exists I agree with you, Gus. However, given the source of the article, I have severe doubts about his existence. It wouldn't surprise me to find out the entire article was made up out of whole cloth.
  1. Daniel Clifton
    commented on: March 22, 2013 at 11:34 a.m.
    I am beginning the see this article as a flash point. The questionable sources for the opinions in the article coupled with taking opinions (such as Phillip Lamm) from years ago that are just opinions and also questionable has lead to people like the above commenters really calling into question the true intent of the article. Then you have guys like Dempsey and Bradley standing up and expressing their clear cut opinions about this so called controversy. Klinsmann has really handled this in a professional manner. I just hope this carries over to the team. This can be a rallying point. The team has some obstacles to overcome, such as no experienced player to play the outside back positions and little international experience at the center back positions. It can be accomplished. I think the game tonight is going to be a humdinger.
  1. feliks fuksman
    commented on: March 22, 2013 at 1:42 p.m.
    Go USA!!

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