US men's national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann selected his team for the January training camp, and it is clear he picked it with an eye on the future. Of the 23 players, 20 are currently contracted to an MLS team, with the average age being just 24. 11 players eligible for the U-23 side were also picked, sticking with the customary focus on youth and development in these types of camps.
Here is the full squad:
Defenders (7): Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Matt Miazga (New York Red Bulls), Eric Miller (Montreal Impact), Tim Parker (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Marc Pelosi (San Jose Earthquakes), Matt Polster (Chicago Fire)
Midfielders (8): Fatai Alashe (San Jose Earthquakes), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Mix Diskerud (New York City FC), Jermaine Jones (Unattached), Darlington Nagbe (Portland Timbers), Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution), Tony Tchani (Columbus Crew SC), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew SC)
Forwards (6): Jozy Altidore (Toronto FC), Ethan Finlay (Columbus Crew SC), Jerome Kiesewetter (VfB Stuttgart), Jordan Morris (Unattached), Khiry Shelton (New York City FC), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)
More players are expected to come in the next couple of days, but for now, the roster includes only two goalkeepers and three or four wingers: Gyasi Zardes, Ethan Finlay, Jerome Kiesewetter and Mix Diskerud can and have played in outside midfield.
Bill Hamid, a former MLS Goalkeeper of the Year, has two international caps and will be competing for the third keeper job behind Brad Guzan and Tim Howard (it will turn into the backup goalie job as Howard will fall out of the picture with age). Luis Robles will be Hamid's competition. Robles won 2015 Goalkeeper of the Year with the Red Bulls, and last played with the US in 2009.
Robles's teammate Matt Miazga was picked as a center-back. He was awarded the US Soccer Youth Male Player of the Year award this season and was cap-tied to America during the World Cup qualifiers this past November.
Whitecaps center-back Tim Parker, Montreal defender Eric Miller, Earthquakes' midfielders Marc Pelosi and Fatai Alashe, New York City FC's Khiry Shelton, Columbus Crew midfielders Tony Tchani and Finlay, and Chicago Fire defender Matt Polster and Kiesewetter were called up for the first time. Many of these players will be preparing for the U-23's Olympic qualifying matches in a couple of months.
Very few veterans were selected. Robles, Michael Bradley, Jozy Altidore, Matt Besler and Jermaine Jones are the only experienced players who come to mind. Zardes was a constant figure in 2015, but didn't appear before that.
The US will play friendlies against Iceland and Canada in Los Angeles on Jan. 31 and Feb. 5.