[WORLD CUP COUNTDOWN] Jurgen Klinsmann answered a lot of questions when he named his 30-player short list, but who will get the 23 tickets for Brazil and who will earn the 11 starting jobs for the World Cup opener June 16 against Ghana remains very much up in the air. Identifying the positions for three players will go a long way toward figuring out what Klinsmann has up his sleeve for the World Cup.
Where does he play Fabian Johnson?The German-American defender, headed to Borussia Moenchengladbach from Hoffenheim next season, may be the USA's best player at left midfield, left back and right back. Where Klinsmann plays him will go a long way toward solving a lot of the mysteries about the U.S. lineup. U.S. Soccer lists him as a defender, but the USA probably played best in the Hexagonal when Johnson was starting at left mid. Right back is perhaps the biggest question mark in the national team lineup, but it's hard to believe Klinsmann plans on using Johnson at right back when he is also bringing four other starters at right back during qualifying, plus DeAndre Yedlin, into camp.
Where does he play Geoff Cameron? One of those right backs is Cameron, who plays there for Stoke City, but he's looked more comfortable at holding mid or central defender for the USA. He's unlikely to take Jermaine Jones' job at holding mid so that leaves central defender -- a major problem area in the last two friendlies -- as Cameron's likely position -- if he is to start.
Where does he play Landon Donovan? Klinsmann answered this one in passing when he said Eddie Johnson wasn't going to beat out the other six forwards in camp. Klinsmann said he only considers Donovan a forward, and not a midfielder. More relevant to Donovan's case than the "where" question is the "if" question. If he plays, whose spot does he take? It's hard to imagine Donovan replacing Clint Dempsey, Klinsmann's captain and the USA's hottest MLS player, or Jozy Altidore, so that leaves the very real question, what role Donovan will play in Brazil.