Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
The U.S. has an enormously large pool of players capable of playing in the wide midfield positions, so competition here will be fierce.
Graham Zusi, after his performances with the USMNT over the past few months, is at or near the top of the pack.
As Jurgen Klinsmann showed in the June games, Fabian Johnson can be used as a left midfielder, instead of a left-back, with great effectiveness. The re-emergence of Landon Donovan on the team, even though he primarily played as a forward in the Gold Cup, also adds to wide midfield depth.
Clint Dempsey, who has been used almost exclusively as a forward by Klinsmann, proved in the Bob Bradley era and with his club play at Fulham and Tottenham that he can also play wide with great effectiveness.
Furthermore, both Herculez Gomez and Eddie Johnson, while traditional forwards, have played wide with the U.S. over the past few months.
Joe Corona and Alejandro Bedoya both put in strong cases for themselves in the United States' Gold Cup championship run. While he might not be a good choice over 90 minutes, Brek Shea proved he can be a blunt-force instrument off the bench when a goal is needed.
Jose Torres was used on the left side for the U.S. through much of the Gold Cup to varying success, and Klinsmann has also showed a preference toward Brad Davis many times over the past year.
Long shots for the team include Josh Gatt, who is recovering from ACL surgery, and Joe Gyau, who was called up for the team’s friendly last November against Russia.
Final selections: Graham Zusi, Joe Corona, Brek Shea