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Landon Donovan Left Off World Cup Team – Right Call?

Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

Landon Donovan has been left off the U.S.’s 23-man World Cup roster.  The contributors of NoTicketSports.com discuss:

Joe Bianchino: Klinsmann!  That tricky German, going way outside the box and leaving the nation’s top World Cup scorer off the roster.  I don’t get it. We’re talking about a quality midfielder and the savvy, presence over the last decaade.  Donovan is USMNT, or at least has been for the last ten years.  We’re leaving that guy off?

Jeffrey Simpson Day: You’re absolutely right. Klinsmann should have included Donovan and left Wondolowski off instead.

Joe Bianchino: Now wait a second. No one’s saying that.

Mark Graydon: Are you kidding me? That decision is mental.  Landy-cakes – as I like to call him – is a potential match winner and one of the very few the U.S. has.

I doubt it’s any coincidence that the U.S. is in a group with the Germans, Klinsmann is German, and this is the decision he makes.  Conspiracy! Inside Job!

Joe Bianchino: I’m glad someone else said it.  I didn’t want to impugn the honor of Klinsmann – and we all know it’s not the actual reason Donovan will be left home – but it’s hard to see any other explanation.

Lest we forget Ian Darke’s call from last World Cup’s victory of Algeria sending us into the second round: “And Dempsey is denied again, but Donovan has scored.” Donovan.  That’s what he does for this team, and he’s the one they leave off.  I don’t get it.

Can anyone find a legitimate soccer reason for this?

Mark Graydon: Honestly, I think the sabbatical Donovan took last year pissed Klinsmann off, and it’s become an ego thing for him.  He’s trying to stamp his authority right now.

But he’s made his bed now.  Whenever the U.S. gets knocked out, everyone will say, “If Landon was there…”

…Unless they win.

Joe Bianchino: Which, of course, they won’t.

If it really is ego, and I agree that it is, the U.S. should look at Klinsmann as coach. The program has come a long way under him, but he’d be letting some petty nonsense get in the way of the World Cup roster with regard to, I think we’d all agree, a player they need. And he would have disgraced one of the best players in U.S. history in what should have been an international send off.

Inexcusable trash decision.

For more of this discussion, head to NoTicketSports.com.

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