Donovan, Kljestan Lead USMNT WCQ Roster; Rogers and Bornstein Dropped

U.S. Coach Bob Bradley has named a 22-player squad for the next two World Cup qualifiers against El Salvador March 28 and Trinidad & Tobago April 1, U.S. Soccer announced today.

That’s two more players than was in the squad last month for the World Cup qualifying opener against Mexico.

Dropped were Columbus Crew midfielder Robbie Rogers of Rolling Hills Estates, Chivas USA defender Jonathan Bornstein of Los Alamitos, Houston Dynamo midfielder Ricardo Clark and forward Charlie Davies, who plays in Sweden with Hammarby.

Added were Reading goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann, who last played for the U.S. in 2007; West Ham United defender Jonathan Spector and Watford defender Jay DeMerit, who both return from injury; and midfielders Pablo Mastroeni (Colorado Rapids) Freddie Adu (Monaco) and Maurice Edu (Glasgow Rangers).

Fulham’s Clint Dempsey is listed as a forward rather than a midfielder this time around.

Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard is ineligible because of a yellow card accumulation for the El Salvador game, so former Chivas USA goalkeeper Brad Guzan is likely to get the start.

The U.S. is tied for for first in the six-team final round of qualifying after the decisive 2-0 victory over Mexico last month.

“These next two matches are very important in our efforts to qualify for the 2010 FIFA World Cup,” said U.S. head coach Bob Bradley, who is 8-1-0 overall in qualifying action. “The games against El Salvador and Trinidad & Tobago represent a big opportunity to solidify our place in the group. We had a fantastic team effort against Mexico, and if we put in the same type of performance we are confident of being able to get results.”

The full squad with club, caps and goals in parentheses:

goalkeepers – Brad Guzan (Aston Villa 11/0), Tim Howard (Everton 36/0), Marcus Hahnemann (Reading 6/0)

defenders – Carlos Bocanegra (Rennes 63/10), Danny Califf (FC Midtjylland 22/1), Jay DeMerit (Watford 9/0), Frankie Hejduk (Columbus Crew 82/6), Oguchi Onyewu (Standard de Liege 39/5), Heath Pearce (Hansa Rostock 22/0), Jonathan Spector (West Ham United 12/0)

midfielders – Freddy Adu (AS Monaco 12/1), DaMarcus Beasley (Glasgow Rangers: 83/17), Michael Bradley (Borussia Mnchengladbach 26/5), Maurice Edu (Glasgow Rangers 10/0), Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA 14/3), Pablo Mastroeni (Colorado Rapids 62/0), Jos Francisco Torres (Pachuca 2/0)

forwards – Jozy Altidore (Xerez C.D 7/2), Brian Ching (Houston Dynamo 34/9), Clint Dempsey (Fulham FC 47/13), Landon Donovan (Galaxy: 106/37), Eddie Johnson (Cardiff City 37/12).

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About Nick Green

South Bay-based Los Angeles News Group columnist and blogger Nick Green writes about soccer at the 100 Percent Soccer blog at www.insidesocal.com/soccer and craft beer at the Beer Goggles blog at www.insidesocal.com/beer. Cheers!