Thursday, April 27, 2006
Mere days away from finding out the World Cup squad Bruce Arena will take to Germany, YA submits our final list of 23.

The only change sees Ben Olsen, obviously buoyed by his strike against Jamaica and ties to the coach, grabs the final seat away from Kerry Zavagnin by the slimmest of margins.

The staff has left only Olsen and Taylor Twellman up for discussion in the final days - the only two names not to make our initial list back in August.

Twellman had four players nipping at his heels, but held off the competition despite a slow MLS start.

Without any further adieu, we present our call for the team list, complete with our alternates.

Kasey Keller - GK, Seattle Sounders (USA)
Lock (n) 1. A device operated by a key, combination, or keycard and used, as on a door, for holding, closing, or securing. 2. Kasey Keller. (AA)
Landon Donovan - M/F, León (Mexico)
With none of Bake's other potential partners stepping up, Donovan may have to be a forward after all. (AG) Something to prove in Germany? Answer, hee - ale - ya. Both to Germans and Americans. (MF)
DaMarcus Beasley - M/F, Puebla (Mexico)
Not his finest couple of months but hopefully that leaves him with something to prove in Germany. (NT) He draws fouls better than anybody in the US player pool. (AA)
Brian McBride - F, Chicago Fire (USA)
A season long fixture for Fulham, he's ready to rumble. (JM) We just don't run the same without him busting hump up front. (GS)
Oguchi Onyewu - D, Charlton Athletic (England)
Let's hope oversized objects aren't held up in customs. (SOC) The defensive enforcer needed to put a question into the mind of opposing strikers. (JM)
Eddie Lewis - M, Los Angeles Galaxy (USA)
Can he match up defensively against Poborsky? (BMH) He'll do something good while he's in Germany. (NT)
Bobby Convey - M, San Jose Earthquakes (USA)
How can you keep him off the field given the year he's had? (RF) Wouldn't surprise me if, against Ghana, his ability to hold the ball and get others involved in the attack didn't cause some damage. (ER)
Claudio Reyna - M, New York Red Bulls (USA)
Has not looked great since his return from injury, but he is Captain America. (AG) Calm, cool and irreplaceable. Hopefully, we won't have to. (MF)
Marcus Hahnemann - GK, Everton (England)
At least he knows what it takes to win something important. (ER) Solid cover on the field and a motivator off it. (SOC)
Tim Howard - GK, Everton (England)
Please, for the love of all that is holy, put in a transfer request. (AA) Still the future, despite the frustrating lack of any present. (JM)
Steve Cherundolo - D, Hannover 96 (Germany)
His ability going forward helps out our weakness at right mid. (BMH) The guy is smooth and confident playing in Deutschland. (MA)
Clint Dempsey - M/F, Fulham (England)
Deuce raps about what he sees... what rhymes with "Tomáš Rosický"? (AA) Texas tough and the most reliable right side option in the midfield. (JM)
Pablo Mastroeni - M, Colorado Rapids (USA)
It's nice to have a player on your squad that you know won't take any crap from the Tottis of the world. (AA) Cool as a cucumber in Korea. (SOC)
Eddie Johnson - F, Aris (Greece) on loan from Fulham (England)
So when does EJ's form return? Can it be soon? (GS) Umm, could you at least look interested when playing in MLS? (RF)
Frankie Hejduk - D, Los Angeles Galaxy (USA)
Death, taxes and Heydude. (MF) Frankie will be good off the bench. (MA)
Cory Gibbs - D, Chicago Fire (USA)
A healthy Gibbs makes me sleep easier at night. (BMH) Look for him to be the organizer anytime Pope isn't in the lineup. (GS)
Carlos Bocanegra - D, Rangers (Scotland) on loan from Racing Santander (Spain)
Health could be a concern, but he's still going. (RF) It sure would be nice to see him get some action for Fulham before the Premiership season winds up. (NT)

Josh Wolff - F, Sporting Kansas City (USA)
Won't need to return to the US after the WC, he's staying in Europe. (CW) He goes, probably due to his creativity in combining with other attacking players and his movement without the ball. (ER)
Eddie Pope - D, Real Salt Lake (USA)
Born to lead by example. (MF) His good showing in early '06 internationals put him on the squad. (JM)
John O'Brien - D/M, ()
Hopefully, the rust will come off quickly with playing time. (NT) I told you he was coming back! It wouldn't be the same without him. (GS)
Gregg Berhalter - D, Los Angeles Galaxy (USA)
There is a reason he's the Cottbus captain, folks. (CW) Something tells me we'll be glad he's around at some point. (GS)

Taylor Twellman - F, New England Revolution (USA)
Though he has been quiet lately, could be valuable in a scrappy substitute role. (MF) Any chance you could score a couple of MLS goals real quick? (GS)

Ben Olsen - M, DC United (USA)
Another good feisty option to bring on late in games. He's Bruce's boy, and can cover at right mid, so he's in. Face stiff competition from Zavagnin and Noonan, though. (AA)

Conor Casey - Keeps getting minutes, has the skills and size. (MF)

Chris Albright - Best option on the right after Cherundolo in my opinion. (CW) His versatility could land him a spot if someone gets injured at a variety of positions. (GS)

Heath Pearce - Without any natural left backs, he could get the nod if a defender goes down. (AG)

Pat Noonan - He sure has "something"… but where the hell should we play him? (AA) Slow, but tricky. If there's a midfield or forward injury should be the first called. (BMH)

Chris Rolfe - Just a few months too late. 2010 is going to be fun for this kid. (RF)

Brian Ching - Furious start to MLS season doesn't translate to international goals. (BMH)


Jimmy Conrad - As much as I love him, there are better, more experienced options in the center. (AA)

Steve Ralston - Recent groin injury may have come at just the wrong time. (JM)

note: Alex Abnos, Aaron Gidding, Mark Flannery, Rich Fidler, Bri-Mathias Hodge, Eric Rosenberg, Michael Adubato, Chad Winger, James McCarthy, Greg Seltzer, Neal Thurman and Sean O'Conor compiled this feature

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