The media is in a tizzy about the USMNT. This is a good thing.
If you are going mad with two straight day without topflight soccer, entertain yourself with these Game of Thrones-inspired soccer kits.
These are really well done. The mandarin collar on the Martell jerseys is a small touch, but it adds a lot. The Night’s Watch has gotta be the sickest kit. What position would John Snow play? Ravenous attacking mid? My second favorite might be the pink polka-dotted Bolton kit. You still gotta have your sausage to rock pink. My least favorite is probably House Targaryen. It is a fine looking jersey but reminds me too much of a certain team from the south’s red home kit.
Grant Wahl wrote one of those fast-flash-forward articles at Sports Illustarted where he explores the potential 2018 USMNT World Cup roster. The Stars and Stripes would get a little more Seattle with Kelyn Rowe and Jordan Morris joining DeAndre Yedlin and Clint Dempsey:
Goalkeepers (3): Cody Cropper, Brad Guzan, Bill Hamid
Defenders (8): Matt Besler, John Brooks, Geoff Cameron, Greg Garza, Omar Gonzalez, Fabian Johnson, Will Packwood, DeAndre Yedlin
Midfielders (7): Michael Bradley, Joe Corona, Mix Diskerud, Luis Gil, Julian Green, Joe Gyau, Kelyn Rowe
Forwards (5): Juan Agudelo, Jozy Altidore, Clint Dempsey, Aron Jóhannsson, Jordan Morris
…although he will be 35 by then, captain Clint Dempsey could also be on the roster. His style is more conservative physically, which should allow him to continue playing for four more years at the international level. At the very least, the team could use his experience and leadership in what would be his fourth World Cup. If his form dips significantly, though, Klinsmann has shown he isn’t afraid to cut ties with an established star and there’s nothing stopping him from giving Dempsey the Landon Donovan treatment if others in the player pool narrow the gap.
…Another young player with an exciting future is highly touted U-21 forward Jordan Morris, currently playing at Stanford, but who was pictured in training with the senior national team during its pre-World Cup camp in Palo Alto, Calif., this spring.
Wahl brings up an interesting point about roster churn. Klinsmann, if retained as coach as expected, may hold onto more players much like Bruce Arena did between 2002 and 2006. It certainly seems this roster was built with one eye on the future, and some roster stability would be great for sustaining success.