Ya see, when Fabian Johnson gets moved to the back line, it does not just affect Fabian Johnson. One of the by-products of my moving him to left back for this edition of the USMNT clipboard is that Zusi gains a starting role. Would it be a good or bad by-product at World Cup? I do not actually know. Could be either or even both.
What I do know is he takes the top spot here because the man can serve a cross, which would not only bring scoring chances, but a balance to the attack. Zusi could send two bad crosses in a row and it will still have an effect on how the rest of the opposition plays and moves, potentially giving a certain now-left wing choice an extra yard here or there. Sometimes, even bad things are actually good things.
A good thing is that we would still have a perfectly suitable back-up in Bedoya, and one that could also box-raid behind the striker if needed. And despite all that thought process zippity-do, the questions will probably be about how Green got over here.
Truthfully, I would normally refrain from even naming him on this clipboard. Yeah. I know he's a wunderkind. He also has yet to play a senior international and it will be April in a World Cup year before he does. If you ask me next Thursday, I may have a different answer for him. For now, he is sight unseen at this level and should not be expected to play a key cog role in Brazil by any stretch of the fevered imagination. Sorry, but it's true.
And yet, here we are with a wingback crisis and perhaps two wingers sliding back to help. Naturally, that takes from the wing areas, opening holes for someone to fire through a la Beasley in 2002. I will freely admit young legs with no fear can do a little sumpin-sumpin at a World Cup and it's a great story when it happens. It's just not the kind of thing you want to rely on as habit.
- Greg Seltzer