BRIAN SCIARETTA - Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Aron Johannssson is indeed very open to playing for the US national team and recent events have made that more likely.
The talented 22-year old forward currently at AZ Alkmaar in Holland and has played for Iceland his entire youth career. Recently, however, the US has stepped up its pursuit of the forward who was born in Mobile, Alabama while his Icelandic parents were studying at the University of South Alabama.
Johannsson's agent, Magnus Agnar Magnusson confirmed to YA that Johannsson was not passed over by Iceland's coach Lars Lagerback but rather it was Johannsson who informed Lagerback that he was not ready to make a decision on which national team to represent.
"Aron isn't ready to play for Iceland as he still wishes to keep his options open," Magnusson told YA on Wednesday morning.
According to the Icelandic Website MBL.IS, Lagerback discusses the matter.
"Aron wants to wait making a decision on Iceland or USA," Lagerback said in a translation provided to YA from Magnusson. "You can't force anyone to play with the national team and you have to be 100% committed. I don't know Aron well but I've spoken to him a couple of times on the phone and he seems a sensible guy. I've tried to point out obvious qualities playing for Iceland but he's not ready to make a decision."
"I would understand his decision if he decides to play for USA. He knows that. If I was him and looked at the qualities of both teams then there is alot of competition in USA team. I don't know if I would have chosen him but I told Aron that he was in the picture. There has no contact been between the Icelandic FA and the USA FA as far as I know"
US national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has said recently that he would hope Johannsson would join the US team soon but for him to appear even in a friendly, Johannsson would need to file a binding one-time switch with FIFA.
Johannsson's agent later issued a statement on his facebook page indicating that the striker would like to attend a camp with the US team before making a final decision on which national team to represent.