Americans Abroad Wrap: Steve Cherundolo Returning to Full Fitness

John D. Halloran@JohnDHalloranContributor IINovember 17, 2013

Americans Abroad Wrap: Steve Cherundolo Returning to Full Fitness

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    Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

    Most of the major leagues are on break this week for the November international dates, but there was still plenty of action to take in.

    Many Americans playing abroad were in camp for the United States men's national team 0-0 draw against Scotland on Friday and will be with the team as it takes on Austria on Tuesday.

    There's also injury news on Fabian Johnson, Brad Guzan and Steve Cherundolo, as well as news on a new contract situation for Will Packwood.

    Check out all the action in this week's Americans Abroad Wrap.

The English Premier League Boys

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    Tim Howard led the English Premier League contingent of USMNT players against Scotland, captaining the squad on Friday. His brilliant save in the 53rd minute on a Robert Snodgrass free-kick preserved the shutout for the U.S. defense. The save can be seen at the 1:45 mark of the video on this slide.

    Brek Shea also had a noteworthy game, producing the U.S.' best chance of the game with a strong run in the 85th minute. The chance, however, was wasted by Aron Johannsson as he put his shot wide. Shea's run can be seen at the 3:11 mark of the video on this slide.

    Jozy Altidore and Geoff Cameron also played 90 minutes in the draw against Scotland. Cameron, despite almost always playing right-back for his club Stoke City, played the game for the U.S. at center-back.

    Brad Guzan missed the U.S. roster due to injury, but details of the injury have not been forthcoming.

Ze Germans

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    Steve Cherundolo did not make the USMNT squad for the November friendlies, but has had a very positive week in his recovery from multiple knee surgeries. Last week, Cherundolo made Hannover's bench and this week he played 45 minutes in a friendly against Bundesliga 2 side St. Pauli.

    Cherundolo also told ESPN's Stephan Uersfeld this week that he is open to a move to Major League Soccer this summer once his contract with Hannover expires.

    Jermaine Jones played 62 minutes in the U.S.' game against Scotland. John Anthony Brooks did not make it off the bench.

    Fabian Johnson was initially called to join the U.S. squad, but withdrew due to the same ankle injury that has largely kept him out of action since late September. Since September 28, Johnson has only played 45 minutes for club or country.

    Timmy Chandler, who has re-found his form for Nurnberg, was somewhat surprisingly not called in to the USMNT camp.

In the English Championship

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    A mohawked Eric Lichaj made his much-anticipated return to the USMNT this week, playing the final 18 minutes of the U.S.' draw against Scotland.

    This week, it was also announced that Will Packwood's loan to League Two side Bristol Rovers will be extended into January. Packwood has been out of action for Birmingham since suffering a horrific leg break nearly a year ago and is using the loan to Rovers to get some much-needed playing time while on the road to recovery.

Elsewhere in Europe

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    Aron Johannsson was on the end of two of the U.S.' best chances against Scotland on Friday night, but failed to put either in the net in the 0-0 draw.

    Michael Bradley completed 69 of his 77 pass attempts while playing 90 minutes of the U.S.' game. Alejandro Bedoya started and played 81 minutes, but was also second on the team in lost possessions during the match. 

    Sacha Kljestan was given the start as the U.S.' attacking midfielder, but had a rather unconvincing performance in his 62 minutes of playing time. Mix Diskerud and Terrence Boyd came on as substitutes, Diskerud in the 62nd minute, Boyd in the 90th minute.

South of the Border

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    The Tijuana contingent of American players Herculez Gomez, Paul Arriola, Edgar Castillo, Joe Corona and Greg Garza will have a new coach in the Clausura as it was announced late last week that manager Jorge Almiron will not be back. That is probably good news for Joe Corona, who after a strong summer with the USMNT, only made five starts for the Xolos in the Apertura.

    DaMarcus Beasley played 90 minutes for the U.S. against Scotland on Friday, while Michael Orozco didn't make it off the bench.

    Edgar Castillo was not selected for the U.S. squad due to injury.

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