Jan 6, 2013, 6:14 PM EDT
If we look at the Jurgen Klinsmann’s roster for the January camp (announced earlier today) in terms of “opportunity factor,” the name right at the tippy top of that list belongs to Omar Gonzalez.
All the elements are in place:
There’s a need at the position, given Carlos Bocanegra’s age, the inability of peripheral center back figures like Oguchi Onyewu and Tim Ream to get the kind of minutes that might boost their places in the order, plus other factors.
Clearly, Gonzalez has the talent. The 2011 MLS Defender of the Year and two-time MLS Cup winner, has every single physical tool needed of a center back at highest level.
And the team’s coaching staff – heck, everybody in the U.S. Soccer scene, probably – are cheering for the big fellow.
So, yes, all the elements are in place, creating a high opportunity factor as Gonzalez joins his first extended camp under Klinsmann. If all goes well over the next three weeks, there’s no reason to believe Gonzalez won’t be in the starting lineup on Jan. 29 when the camp concludes with a Jan. 29 friendly against Canada down in Houston.
What does Gonzalez need to demonstrate, exactly, over the next three weeks? Here’s what Klinsmann had to say Sunday during Fox Soccer Channel’s Goals on Sunday show:
He needs to show to us that he is ready. That he is ready for a big step into international football. He needs to show us that he wants to break in. He needs to show that he is ready to guide a back line, and that he is ready to communicate a lot.”
Klinsmann has said repeatedly that Gonzalez would have been involved in the program to a greater degree already but for that serious knee injury from one year ago. Still, the U.S. manager is quite aware of how well L.A.’s back line leader rebounded over the second half of the MLS season. Klinsmann sounds like a guy who wants to be impressed and is hoping to be impressed, and says Gonzalez has all the ability he needs:
But the national team is another level. We are happy to have him finally with us in camp and to see him work on a daily basis.”
May 4, 2015, 4:53 PM EDT
Alexis Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey provided all the scoring Arsenal needed in a dominant first half, making it a comfortable victory in the end.
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The stars of Week 9 are recognized as MLS’s standout performers. Giovinco, Oba and the Dallas duo highlight this star-studded cast.
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Twenty-two players have hit the pitch for Chelsea so far this season. Let’s grade them out in order of Premier League import.
May 4, 2015, 2:30 PM EDT
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May 4, 2015, 2:05 PM EDT
Laurent Koscielny makes his 200th appearance for Arsenal, which seeks to move into second place in the Premier League standings.
May 4, 2015, 12:55 PM EDT
Inside: some keys to the fortunes of Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Juventus as the first legs begin this week.
May 4, 2015, 12:07 PM EDT
Arsenal still holds the inside track in the race for second place in the Premier League.
May 4, 2015, 11:11 AM EDT
Now, when United prepares for a home match, it can prepare for everything but the crowd.
May 4, 2015, 10:22 AM EDT
The Magpies have allowed multiple goals in all but two matches of the losing streak, and have dropped to just two points shy of the drop zone.
May 4, 2015, 9:39 AM EDT
Chelsea are the champions of England, and anyone holding a gripe with the Blues’ title simply harbors some other form of resentment for the London club.
May 4, 2015, 8:34 AM EDT
The 24-year-old right back has long been behind Dani Alves in Barca’s pecking order. Alves is out of contract this summer, but the 31-year-old is still wanted by Barcelona.
May 4, 2015, 7:49 AM EDT
Greaves also played for Chelsea, AC Milan and West Ham United during the prime of his career.
May 3, 2015, 11:10 PM EDT
Sour grapes from a manager who just lost his trophy.
May 3, 2015, 10:00 PM EDT
One miss and you’re out. That’s the Louis van Gaal way.
May 3, 2015, 9:10 PM EDT
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May 3, 2015, 8:40 PM EDT
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May 3, 2015, 8:00 PM EDT
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May 3, 2015, 7:03 PM EDT
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May 3, 2015, 6:30 PM EDT
Catch up on all of Sunday’s action from Spain and Italy’s top flights.
- Hull City 1-3 Arsenal: Gunners dominant in first half, cruise past Tigers 0
- MLS Player of the Week — Week 9: FC Dallas’ Fabian Castillo 0
- MLS Team of the Week — Stars of Week 9 0
- Watch Live: Hull City vs. Arsenal (Lineups and Live Stream) 0
- Five things to look out for in UEFA Champions League semifinals 2
- Newcastle United standing by Carver through final matches of relegation battle 0