With the U.S. through the group stage following their 1-0 victory over Costa Rica, Jurgen Klinsmann made four changes to the U.S. roster heading into the knockout rounds.
He added Matt Besler, Omar Gonzalez, Alan Gordon and Eddie Johnson while dropping Oguchi Onyewu, Herculez Gomez, Corey Ashe and Jack McInerney (Gonzalez will only join the team if they advance to the semifinals).
With Matt Besler widely expected to be given the start at center-back, all eyes are focused on who Klinsmann will partner with him.
Clarence Goodson gives the U.S. strength in the air and was surprisingly solid against Costa Rica after several shaky games with the full squad over the past year. He also appears to be Klinsmann’s third-choice center-back after Besler and Gonzalez.
Orozco, after not featuring much for the full squad over the past year, has made a strong case for himself thus far in the Gold Cup. While often used at the club level, and for the U.S., at outside back, Orozco has been used in the middle and done well. He is certainly much more mobile than Goodson and Orozco has proved his own strength in the air, particularly on U.S. set pieces.
With the U.S.’s quality at center-back still a big question mark, it will be a big opportunity for whomever Klinsmann chooses.