Friday, January 09, 2015

Two Called Up to US Camp for Sporting KC

Sporting Kansas City will be represented by two players in this January's US national team camp, but it isn't the two you'd expect. The first is expected, Sporting's captain, Matt Besler returns to the national team. He'll be considered one of the veterans in the team of defenders that Jurgen Klinsmann has called into camp, as only three of the defenders, Besler, Brad Evans, and Jermaine Jones have caps for the senior national team. And with Jones being a converted midfielder, Besler, with 23 caps, is the most experienced pure defender on the roster. So plenty will be expected of the Sporting captain in this camp.

The other call up from Sporting KC wasn't Graham Zusi as most would have expected, he's resting his foot from the injury he had at the end of the 2014 season ahead of Sporting preseason starting. Instead the second Sporting player called up is the team's homegrown goalkeeper, Jon Kempin.  Klinsmann had said that he'd use this camp as a way to call up Olympic elligible players to have them in a camp ahead of their Olympic qualifying which will occur next year ahead of the Olympics in Rio. Kempin is one of four goalkeepers called up, led by World Cup veteran, Nick Rimando. Also called up was Chicago Fire goalkeeper Sean Johnson, and recent Generation Adidas signing, Alex Bono. Both Kempin and Bono are likely to be fighting for a place on the Olympic roster for 2016 with Southampton goalkeeper, Cody Cropper, who has received senior national team call ups when the team has played in Europe. With Rimando and Johnson both in camp, a cap for Kempin with the senior national team at this point would appear unlikely, but this will be good experience for Kempin heading into 2015 and a chance for him to impress.

The camp will start next Monday, January 12th and will run through February 8th with the teams playing a game in Chile on January 28th and against Panama at the Stub Hub Center on February 8th. The two players will miss the start of Sporting's preseason.

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