Three takeaways from U.S. under-23 roster

U.S. under-23 national team coach Andi Herzog named 23 players for a camp ahead of the two-game playoff series against Colombia for a berth in the Rio Olympics. The series begins Friday in Barranquilla. The return leg follows four days later in Frisco, Texas. Here are three takeaways from Herzog's roster.

1. Brooks and Yedlin stay with senior team.

The U-23s' two most experienced players, John Brooks and DeAndre Yedlin, were not called up. Instead, they have joined the senior national team for its World Cup qualifiers against Guatemala.

Brooks had been with the U-23s once and Yedlin never played played with them. Both are starters in Europe and their clubs, Hertha Berlin and Sunderland, were not obligated to release them to the U-23s. Both could start for the national team in the World Cup qualifiers against Guatemala.

2. Carter-Vickers dropped because of injury.

One late scratch with an unspecified injury was 18-year-old center back Cameron Carter-Vickers, who started alongside Matt Miazga all last year on the U-20s through qualifying and the world championship in New Zealand and on the U-23s. Carter-Vickers was on the bench as recently as Thursday for Tottenham in its Europa League match against Borussia Dortmund.

His injury will force Herzog to make a change in the back. The choices are Tim Parker, Shane O'Neill and Walker Zimmerman.

3. Big changes since qualifying.

Carter-Vickers is one of 10 players from Concacaf qualifying -- half the team -- who aren't with the U-23s for the Colombia series. Besides Carter-Vickers, Boyd Okwuonu, Gboly Ariyibi and Alonso Hernandez also played in the 2-0 loss to Honduras in the semifinals of Olympic qualifying.

Goalkeeper Zack Steffen dropped out of the team on Sunday with an injury. Gedion Zelalem has battled injuries and illness recently at Rangers.

U.S. Roster:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Cody Cropper (Milton Keynes Dons/ENG), Ethan Horvath (Molde/NOR), Tyler Miller (Seattle Sounders).
DEFENDERS (8): Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas), Matt Miazga (Chelsea/ENG), Eric Miller (Colorado Rapids), Tim Parker (Vancouver Whitecaps), Desevio Payne (FC Groningen/NED), Shane O'Neill (Cambridge United/ENG), Brandon Vincent (Chicago Fire), Walker Zimmerman (FC Dallas)
MIDFIELDERS (9): Fatai Alashe (San Jose Earthquakes), Paul Arriola (Tijuana/MEX), Luis Gil (Queretaro/MEX), Julian Green (Bayern Munich/GER), Emerson Hyndman (Fulham/ENG), Jerome Kiesewetter (VfB Stuttgart II/GER), Matt Polster (Chicago Fire), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew)
FORWARDS (3): Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders), Mario Rodriguez (Borussia Moenchengladbach II/GER), Khiry Shelton (New York City FC)
3 comments about " Three takeaways from U.S. under-23 roster".
  1. John Soares, March 21, 2016 at 1:14 p.m.

    LAST CHANCE to qualify for the Olympics. Yet no Brooks or Yedlin, "our two most experienced players". Shouldn't we be fielding our best team possible!?...Just asking.

  2. Wooden Ships replied, March 21, 2016 at 2:33 p.m.

    John, not sure what JK and AH are thinking. Guatemala is more important, which is why Morris should be with the senior team. We shouldn't, IMO, put the Olympics anywhere near the level of qualifying for Russia. Frankly, I won't have a bad summer if we aren't in Brazil. I don't like our odds against Columbia and I'm worried about Guatemala. If JK doesn't get past Guatemala, then he needs to go and take Andy with him. He continues to use mostly the same ineffective style and players with insufficient technical abilities.

  3. Bob Ashpole replied, March 22, 2016 at 6:36 a.m.

    John, Brooks' and Yedlin's clubs did not have to release them for the Olympic qualifiers, but do have to release them for the World Cup qualifiers. MLS, however, will not refuse to release Morris for either. I agree that it makes better soccer sense to have picked Morris for the Senior team matches. The failure to demonstrate quality against the Group C opponents so far is worrisome to me too, not merely disappointing.

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