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Omar Gonzalez ruled out of U.S. qualifiers, Michael Orozco to replace

Oct 8, 2013, 12:22 PM EDT

United States' Gonzalez celebrates their victory over Mexico in their FIFA World Cup qualifying soccer match in Columbus Reuters

U.S. Soccer is reporting that United States center-back Omar Gonzalez has been ruled out of the World Cup qualifiers against Jamaica and Panama with a hip injury.

Gonzalez will be replaced by Puebla’s Michael Orozco.

Orozco will join U.S. Men’s National Team camp on Tuesday afternoon in Kansas City after Gonzalez was forced to withdraw with a left hip strain, presumably suffered in the first half of the LA Galaxy’s 5-0 win against Chivas USA on Sunday.

The loss of Gonzalez means that Sporting Kansas City defender Matt Besler and Stoke City’s Geoff Cameron are the most likely central defensive pairing for Friday’s World Cup Qualifier against Jamaica.

The addition of Orozco allows Klinsmann the option of playing Cameron at right-back where he plays for Stoke. In the past, however, Klinsmann has been opposed to such a move, believing that Cameron’s best place on the field is in the center of defense or as a holding midfielder.

Orozco has played five times for the USMNT in 2013, including four appearances in this summer’s CONCACAF Gold Cup title run. Overall, Orozco has reached 10 caps for the Yanks.

  1. hildezero - Oct 8, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    Oh, no! Not Orozco! What’s wrong with Klinsy calling up Orozco? There’s a big difference between those two players.

    • talgrath - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:25 PM

      What options does he have that are better?

    • bear06 - Oct 9, 2013 at 1:23 AM

      Orozco is a good player.

  2. interesting29 - Oct 8, 2013 at 1:37 PM

    With Klinsmann calling up Orozco and not looking at Bocanegra at all, I guess this is the end of Bocanegra’s time with the USMNT, shame, because while he’s slow, I thought he was a solid defender. Granted, that was three years back since I’ve last seen him, haven’t seen him with Chivas yet though.

    • bear06 - Oct 9, 2013 at 1:23 AM

      Yeah, Bocanegra is way past his prime.

  3. tylerbetts - Oct 8, 2013 at 1:55 PM

    I really don’t get the hate on Orozco. He will forever be the first US man to score a game winning goal at the Azteca. And, beyond that, he’s a serviceable and versatile defender who knows the current system, schemes, and structure – exactly what you want to call in to cover injury.

  4. hildezero - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:18 PM

    No it’s not. On your “scoring at Azteca” point, yeah that’s true, but you have to look pass that. Orozco is not a great defender, let alone, a great overall player.

    • bear06 - Oct 9, 2013 at 1:24 AM

      He’s might not be a great player but he’s a good player.

      • bear06 - Oct 9, 2013 at 10:06 PM


  5. hildezero - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:59 PM

    There’s a lot of better options. Boca, Chandler, Parkhurst, Ream, Whitbread, etc. just to name of few players that are better than Orozco. Orozco has become Klinsy’s “Bornstein”. I’m a Mexican, so I know what I’m talking about when I say that Orozco is one the least important and inconsistent players in Puebla’s lineup.

    • tylerbetts - Oct 8, 2013 at 4:24 PM

      Parkhurst isn’t playing regularly for his club team. As much as I like his game, that’s a big knock against him. And, not just not starting. Not playing.

      Everyone else you name hasn’t been called in anytime recent. So, if you want someone who can step in, play, and understand the system and schemes, I happen to be of the opinion that qualifying games after you’ve punched your ticket are a GREAT opportunity to introduce new and/or fringe players and see how they react. JK disagrees (and, I get it – there’s something to be said for “respecting the process”). With that disagreement, it’s tougher and tougher to bring in someone new. That’s why I listed that among the attributes Orozco has that make him a good option for this call in.

    • bear06 - Oct 9, 2013 at 1:30 AM

      You’re an idiot for calling Orozco the Klinsy “Bornstein”. Orozco is a much better player than Bornstink who doesn’t even make the bench for Tigres. Also you’re making up BS saying he’s one of the least important inconsistent players in Puebla, he’s actually played well since he became a starter for Puebla

      Boca: He’s old and way over his prime.

      Parkhurst: Can’t even make the bench for Augsburg

      Ream: He’s worse defensively than Orozco

      Whitbread: He can’t stay healthy for longer than a month.

  6. Flapjack Morty - Oct 8, 2013 at 5:56 PM

    I’m American, so I know what I’m talking about when I say that Britney Spears’ early stuff is a lot better than the new material.

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