GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 21: Jose Velasquez #4 of Venezuela clears the ball away from Teal Bunbury #9 of USA during the friendly match at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 21, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona. USA defeated Venezuela 1-0. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
As expected, Teal Bunbury was the lone Sporting KC player selected for the upcoming qualifiers for the 2012 London Olympics. While Bunbury hasn't been at his peak form lately, he still is a first choice striker for Caleb Porter and as Sporting and American fans, let's hope he regains some during this short tournament. In the meantime, expect a heavy dose of CJ Sapong up top for Sporting KC and maybe some appearances by Soony Saad and Dom Dwyer.
The roster is extremely similar to the team that beat Mexico's U-23's 2-0 last month. The only additions are Brek Shea, who was in camp with the U-23's until injuries called him up to the senior team and Terrance Boyd, who was also with the senior squad.
Training for the U-23's begins today, so expect Bunbury to be out for the next three games (New England, FC Dallas, at Chivas) and to return to the squad before their April 7th home match against the LA Galaxy.
Full roster, comments, and highlights of the aforementioned Mexico match after the jump.
Caleb Porter Names 19 Players to U-23 Training Camp Roster - U.S. Soccer
Roster By Position: Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Bill Hamid (D.C. United; Annandale, Va.), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire; Lilburn, Ga.) DEFENDERS (6): Josh Gatt (Molde; Plymouth, Mich.), Perry Kitchen (D.C. United; Indianapolis, Ind.), Ike Opara (San Jose Earthquakes; Durham, N.C.), Kofi Sarkodie (Houston Dynamo; Huber Heights, Ohio), Zarek Valentin (Montreal Impact; Lancaster, Pa.), Jorge Villafaña (Chivas USA; Anaheim, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Freddy Adu (Philadelphia Union; Potomac, Md.), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana; Chula Vista, Calif.), Mix Diskerud (Gent; Oslo, Norway), Jared Jeffrey (Mainz; Richardson, Texas), Amobi Okugo (Philadelphia Union; Sacramento, Calif.), Michael Stephens (LA Galaxy; Naperville, Ill.)
FORWARDS (5): Juan Agudelo (New York Red Bulls; Barnegat, N.J.), Terrence Boyd (Borussia Dortmund; Berlin, Germany), Teal Bunbury (Sporting Kansas City; Prior Lake, Minn.), Joe Gyau (Hoffenheim; Silver Spring, Md.), Brek Shea (FC Dallas; Bryan, Texas)
There has been much consternation about the overage players the United States should bring to the Olympics. Of course, first they need to qualify for the Olympics and the decision to add overage players should be discussed then. However, if the team plays as they did against Mexico for the entirety of this tournament, I would suggest just sending a u-23 squad. The only good suggestion was sending Carlos Bocanegra as a veteran and sort of as a testimonial to his career with the national team. However, you could say that Freddy Adu and Brek Shea bring a great deal of veteran leadership to the squad, since Freddy has been at this national team play for almost six years now.
This is an attack heavy squad, with players like Josh Gatt being listed as a defender. The defenders have potential, but we know much more about what we have in attack. If Bunbury is ineffective, Agudelo was wonderful in the Mexico match (not so much against FC Dallas) and while Boyd didn't show much in the Italy match; the considerable step down in competition should suit him well. The midfield's attack is superb, but that may put some stress on our defense.
The only one left out I can note is Gale Agbossoumonde, but his career his fallen apart after signing with an agency who have time and time again undercut his development. He might be with the Carolina Railhawks, who knows anymore. Every defender on this list, and apparently one midfielder (Gatt) have passed him by in the depth chart.
The semi-finals and finals are at Livestrong Sporting Park, so get your tickets here.