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Global Jun 02, 2017

USMNT set for World Cup Qualifying tune-up vs Venezuela

CHICAGO (Via U.S. Soccer) – The U.S. Men’s National Team will kick off its busy summer schedule with a World Cup Qualifying warm-up against Venezuela on Saturday, June 3 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah. Coverage of USA-Venezuela begins at 8 p.m. MT on FS1, UniMas and Univision Deportes Network.

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION (Club; Caps/Goals):
Brad Guzan (Atlanta United FC; 53/0), Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge/BEL; 1/0), Tim Howard (Colorado Rapids; 113/0), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake; 22/0)

DEFENDERS (10): DaMarcus Beasley (Houston Dynamo; 124/17),Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City; 39/1), John Brooks (VfL Wolfsburg/GER; 30/3), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City/ENG; 50/4), Omar Gonzalez (Pachuca/MEX; 37/1), Matt Hedges (FC Dallas; 1/0), Tim Ream (Fulham/ENG; 23/1), Jorge Villafaña (Santos Laguna/MEX; 4/0), DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United/ENG; 43/0), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City; 46/5)

MIDFIELDERS (8): Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas; 5/0),Paul Arriola (Club Tijuana/MEX; 4/2),Alejandro Bedoya (Philadelphia Union; 59/2), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC/CAN; 130/16), Fabian Johnson (Borussia Mönchengladbach/GER; 54/2), Dax McCarty (Chicago Fire; 6/0), Darlington Nagbe (Portland Timbers; 14/1), Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund/GER; 13/4)

FORWARDS (4): Jozy Altidore (Toronto FC/CAN; 102/37), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC; 132/56), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders FC; 14/2), Bobby Wood (Hamburg/GER; 29/8)

Saturday’s match serves as the MNT’s warmup for two important World Cup Qualifying matches against Trinidad & Tobago, Presented by Liberty Mutual Insurance on June 8 in Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colo., and away to Mexico on June 11 at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City.

While Saturday’s game is only a friendly, a much higher-stakes match will take place between the nations just two hours after the final whistle. Halfway around the world, the USA and Venezuela will meet each other in the Quarterfinals of the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Jeonju, Korea Republic. With a win, the USA can make its first Semifinal appearance at the tournament since 1989, while Venezuela has already achieved its best finish in the competition, thanks to their 1-0 win against Japan in the Round of 16. Eighteen of 21 players on the U-20 roster are products of Development Academy clubs, while eleven players on the current MNT roster have represented the USA at the FIFA U-20 World Cup, including Kellyn Acosta and Paul Arriola, who were part of the most recent group that ran to the 2015 Quarterfinals in New Zealand.

In the midst of his third camp back in charge of the U.S. Men’s National Team, Bruce Arena had a nearly full complement of players to choose for the MNT’s three-match stretch in June. The U.S. manager set the tone for the group on the first night, praising the team’s performance to begin turning things around during World Cup Qualifying in March, while putting on emphasis on the overall groupcontinuing to build itself into a team .

After a four-goal output during the USA’s March World Cup Qualifying matches against Honduras and Panama, veteran forward Clint Dempsey sits just one goal behind Landon Donovan for the U.S. MNT’s scoring record. Donovan amassed 57 goals in 156 international matches from 2000-2014, while Dempsey has tallied 56 goals in 132 caps since making his debut in 2004. On the cusp of writing his name further into U.S. Soccer lore, Dempsey is adamant that his main focus is on helping the MNT qualify for an eighth-straight FIFA World Cup next summer in Russia. Dempsey’s goal-scoring prowess sits among elite company, as he holds the third-highest total amongst active internationals around the world, behind only Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Bruce Arena’s side began righting the ship in World Cup Qualifying by picking up four points during the pair of March games, but the results didn’t come without some hardship. The U.S. roster for that camp was decimated by injury as MNT regulars Fabian Johnson, Jordan Morris Bobby Wood and DeAndre Yedlin were all unavailable, while Brad Guzan missed the camp due to the birth of his second child. Two months later, all five players are back in camp, looking to help the U.S. have a successful start to the summer.

A number of U.S. players are coming off strong campaigns in Europe and Mexico. In Germany, Christian Pulisic played his first full season with the Borussia Dortmund first team and became just the second American to win the DFB-Pokal as BVB defeated Eintracht Frankfurt 2-1 in the Final days before arriving in camp . In his first Bundesliga season, Bobby Wood racked up nine goals across allcompetitions to help Hamburg stay in the topflight on the final day of the season . On the contract front, Fabian Johnson signed an extension that will keep him at Borussia Mönchengladbach through 2020 , while John Brooks just completed a high-profile transfer from Hertha Berlin to Wolfsburg.

In England, DeAndre Yedlin helped Newcastle United not only gain promotion back to the Premier League, but also to win the English League Championship crown on the final day of the season . Tim Ream and Fulham came close to joining Newcastle in the EPL, going on an amazing run at the end of the season to push the Cottagers into the promotion playoffs where they fell to Reading over two legs in the Semifinal.

In Mexico, Omar Gonzalez became the first U.S. player to win the trifecta of M.L.S. Cup, Liga MX and the CONCACAF Champions League when the towering center back aided Pachuca in lifting the regional club crown back in April . Meanwhile, Paul Arriola also was key in pushing Club Tijuana to a top-of-the-table finish during the Liga MX Clausura.

The U.S. has met Venezuela on four occasions, beginning with a wild 3-3 draw during the 1993 Copa America in Ecuador. The MNT is 3-0-1 all-time against La Vinotinto.

USA-Venezuela All-Time Results


U.S. Result

U . S . Goal Scorers


June 22, 1993 3-3 D Henderson, Lalas, Kinnear Quito, Ecuador
March 29, 2003 2-0 W Kirovski, Donovan Seattle, Wash.
May 26, 2006 2-0 W Ching, Dempsey Cleveland, Ohio
Jan. 21, 2012 1-0 W R. Clark Glendale, Ariz.


  • The U.S. Men’s National Team holds a 3-0-1 all-time advantage against Venezuela and is a perfect 3-0-0 against La Vinotinto on U.S. soil.
  • Head coach Bruce Arena went 2-0-0 in two matches against Venezuela during his first tenure in charge of the MNT from 1998-2006.


  • Six players on the U.S. roster have previously played against Venezuela: DaMarcus Beasley, Michael Bradley, Geoff Cameron, Clint Dempsey, Tim Howard and Graham Zusi.
  • Dempsey tallied his fifth international goal in the MNT’s 2-0 win against Venezuela on May 26, 2006.
  • Bradley made his international debut in the late stages of that match, while Zusi also earned his first U.S. cap in a 1-0 friendly win against the South American side on Jan. 21, 2012.
  • A total of 11 players on the roster have made 10 or more FIFA World Cup Qualifying appearances: Dempsey (38), Jozy Altidore (36), Howard (35), Beasley and Bradley (33 each), Cameron (20), Zusi (17), Fabian Johnson (15), Omar Gonzalez (14), Brad Guzan (13) and Matt Besler (11).
  • Fifteen players appeared in at least one of the March World Cup Qualifying matches: Kellyn Acosta, Altidore, Paul Arriola, Alejandro Bedoya, Bradley, John Brooks, Cameron, Dempsey, Gonzalez, Howard, Darlington Nagbe, Christian Pulisic, Tim Ream, Jorge Villafaña and Zusi.
  • Already the USA’s all-time leader in World Cup Qualifying goals with 18, Dempsey is on the cusp of moving into first in two other areas during this camp. With 56 career goals for the MNT, the veteran forward sits just one back of Landon Donovan for the all-time lead, and is only two games behind Donovan for first on the USA’s all-time World Cup Qualifying caps list (40).
  • Having helped Newcastle United to the EFL Championship title and promotion back to the English Premier League, DeAndre Yedlin returns to MNT camp for the first time since November 2016.
  • The case is the same for striker Bobby Wood , who tallied nine goals across all competitions for Hamburg , helping the club avoid relegation from the Bundesliga on the final day of the season.
  • Gonzalez comes into camp on the heels of winning the 2016-17 CONCACAF Champions League title with Pachuca in April. With the regional crown, Gonzalez became the first U.S. player to win the trifecta of the CONCACAF Champions League, Liga MX and M.L.S. Cup .
  • Christian Pulisic arrived in camp after playing in Saturday’s DFB-Pokal Final. With Dortmund’s 2-1 victory, Pulisic, who drew a foul to set up the winning PK , became just the second U.S. international to win the historic German competition after Thomas Dooley did it with Kaiserslautern in 1990.

GOALKEEPERS (2): Alain Baroja (Sud América, Uruguay), José Contreras (Deportivo Táchira)

DEFENDERS (7): Pablo Camacho (Deportivo Táchira), José Luis Marrufo (Mineros de Guayana), Yordan Osorio (Tondela/POR), Rubert Quijada (Caracas F.C.), Jefre Vargas (Arouca/POR), José Manuel Velázquez (Arouca/POR), Mikel Villanueva (Málaga/ESP)

MIDFIELDERS (7): Francisco Flores (Mineros de Guayana), Francisco La Mantía (Deportivo La Guaira), Darwin Machís (CD Leganés/ESP), Júnior Moreno (Zulia F.C.), Jhon Murillo (Tondela/POR), Aristóteles Romero (Mineros de Guayana), Jefferson Savarino (Real Salt Lake/USA)

FORWARDS (4): Salomón Rondón (West Bromwich Albion/ENG), Andrés Ponce (Lugano/SUI), Edder Farías (Caracas F.C.), Christian Santos (Deportivo Alavés/ESP)


  • Head coach Rafael Dudamel will be absent from the match as he coaches the Venezuela U-20s against the USA in the Quarterfinals of the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup on Sunday.
  • The Venezuela senior side will be led by assistant coach Marcos Mathias.
  • Ten players on Venezuela’s 20-player roster are domestic-based. Four play in Portugal, three in Spain and one each in England, Switzerland and the United States.
  • The roster is led by West Bromwich Albion forward Salomón Rondon, who is Venezuela’s third all-time leading goal scorer. He sits just four goals behind Juan Arango for La Vinotinto’s scoring lead.
  • The Venezuela roster also features Real Salt Lake forward Jefferson Savarino. The 20-year-old is currently on loan to RSL from Venezuelan club Zulia and will hope to make his first senior team appearance in his club’s home stadium on Saturday night.
  • Savarino is also club teammates with MNT goalkeeper Nick Rimando.

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