Brad Guzan to start over Tim Howard for U.S., Jurgen Klinsmann says
Tim Howard will return to international duty in September, but Brad Guzan will retain his spot as the United States' No. 1 goalkeeper, coach Jurgen Klinsmann said on Thursday.
Klinsmann confirmed Howard's return after a year-long sabbatical for friendlies next month against Peru and Brazil. The full squad will be named on Aug. 30.
Guzan started in goal for the Americans at the Gold Cup, and Klinsmann said the Aston Villa player will continue to start ahead of Howard.
Klinsman said of Howard: "He knew it was not going to be easy to come back because obviously Brad Guzan established himself as the No. 1 and played a very good tournament, and the whole year he really did a good job.
"Tim has accepted for the time being to be the No. 2, and then down the road there will be a fight for the No. 1 spot like in every position.
"He accepted that, and we are really happy to have him back on board because of who he is and what he has done for us."
Veteran DaMarcus Beasley was also included after his apparent international farewell in the CONCACAF Gold Cup in July, with Klinsmann saying he hopes the left-back keeps playing for the U.S. in the future.
Beasley retired from international play in December but returned to the squad for the Gold Cup knockout stage last month. He was injured in the first training session but played in the loss against Panama in the third-place match.
The 33-year-old made his senior-team debut as an 18-year-old in 2001. He became the only American to participate in four World Cups last summer, starting all four games at left-back for the Americans and helping them reach the knockout stage at Brazil 2014.
"It's a big statement for us because not only is he a guy that's important on the field with all of the qualities that he has, it seems like he's not getting older at all, but he's also extremely important as a chemistry guy within the group," Klinsmann said of Beasley.
"He's always a positive thinker. He looks after young players. He makes sure that the energy level is high, so to have him back in our group for the future is huge for us. Hopefully it will be a long future still with DaMarcus Beasley with the national team."
Everton goalkeeper Howard hasn't played for the American squad in more than a year, since his famous performance in the Americans' 2-1 loss to Belgium in the round of 16 last summer in the 2014 World Cup.
After the tournament, Howard announced that he -- with Klinsmann's blessing -- would take a one-year hiatus from international play to spend more time with his children. Then last month, Howard confirmed that he would make himself available for the upcoming friendlies.
The Americans, who won the 2013 Gold Cup, will face Mexico, the 2015 Gold Cup champions, in a one-game playoff for the lone CONCACAF berth in the 2017 Confederations Cup on Oct. 10. The grudge match will be played at the Rose Bowl, in Pasadena, California.
The U.S. missed a chance to qualify directly for the CONCACAF region's berth after being eliminated in the Gold Cup semifinals last month. The 2017 Confederations Cup will be played in Russia.