Green, Brooks, Zelalem, Kiesewetter headline U.S. U23s for Brazil friendlies
After scoring World Cup goals in Brazil in the summer of 2014, John Brooks and Julian Green are headed back as members of the U.S. Under-23 men's national team.
Brooks and Green are among 19 making the trip this week for a pair of friendlies against Brazil, as the U-23s prepare for March's two-game playoff against Colombia that will determine which nation secures a final berth at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio.
The two German-Americans are joined by the likes of Gedion Zelalem, Jerome Kiesewetter and Cameron Carter-Vickers and six others who were part of the CONCACAF U-23 Olympic qualifying campaign that wound up with a third-place finish.
The U.S. will play Brazil on Nov. 11 in Recife and then again on Nov. 15 in Belem.
"These matches against Brazil are a huge opportunity for us," U.S. U-23 manager Andi Herzog said in a statement. "On one hand you have a strong challenging South American opponent in Brazil, with a playing style that's similar to that of Colombia, and on the other we'll get to experience playing in Brazil, which is where we hope to be next summer for the Olympics."
Here is the U.S. roster in full:
GOALKEEPERS: Cody Cropper (MK Dons), Charlie Horton (Leeds United), Jon Kempin (Sporting Kansas City)
DEFENDERS: John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham), Eric Miller (Montreal Impact), Shane O’Neill (Royal Mouscron), Boyd Okwuonu (Real Salt Lake), Dave Romney (LA Galaxy), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy)
MIDFIELDERS: Fatai Alashe (San Jose Earthquakes), Julian Green (Bayern Munich), Alejandro Guido (Club Tijuana), Matt Polster (Chicago Fire), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids), Gedion Zelalem (Rangers)
FORWARDS: Jerome Kiesewetter (VfB Stuttgart), Khiry Shelton (New York City FC), Maki Tall (FC Sion)