Jurgen Klinsmann and the United States have announced their starting lineup for their final CONCACAF World Cup qualifier of 2013.
USA LINEUP (4-2-3-1)
Brad Guzan; Edgar Castillo, Michael Orozco Fiscal, Clarence Goodson, Brad Evans; Sacha Kljestan, Kyle Beckerman; Graham Zusi, Mix Diskerud, Alejandro Bedoya; Jozy Altidore [C]
Penedo; Rodríguez, Baloy [C], R. Torres, L. Henríquez; Gómez, A. Henríquez, Sánchez, Quintero; Blas, G. Torres
The only things I find odd about this line up is Orozco at CB instead of Geoff Cameron and the alignment of Zusi and Bedoya on the flanks. While the flankers can and will probably switch at some point during the game for whatever reason, I'm not sure getting giving Orozco a start at CB over Cameron is a good idea at this point. Cameron should be getting more time at center back given the fact that he doesn't get playing time there at Stoke City and could likely be asked to cover not only that spot by defensive mid as well.
As I thought in my preview, Kljestan and Beckerman will man the holding spots in front of Mix Diskerud. I think this is the best midfield for the USMNT to fit Klinsmann's preferred 4-2-3-1 formation and help Altidore on the attack. I also think that Kljestan will spend a good amount of time in front of Beckerman supporting the attack in the center midfield and giving Beckerman the more defensive minded role.
It's high stakes for Panama in this one, and they've caught a break with the USA starting an almost entirely backup midfield in this one. They need nothing less than a win and a Mexico loss to keep their World Cup dreams alive by making the CONCACAF playoff spot vs. New Zealand.
Comment below on your reactions to the USA lineup and follow along with the USMNT in Panama.