Former Zips DeAndre Yedlin, Perry Kitchen and Wil Trapp were all selected to the U.S. men's national team 23-man squad that will take on Chile and Panama in the coming weeks.
Yedlin, who joined the squad after being released from his duties in North London with his new club Tottenham Hotspur, is an especially exciting inclusion as the pacy full-back and will bring some understanding to a relatively inexperienced back line.
Although Kitchen left for Major League Soccer before he and Yedlin could meet up at Akron, the D.C. United defender/midfielder could learn a few things from Yedlin. Kitchen's versatility is what makes him such a dynamic MLS player, as D.C. United have used him at full back, center back and in the midfield since drafting him in 2011.
While they are no doubt different players, Kitchen could learn from Yedlin's ability to track back--which is helped significantly by to his impressive pace--and how to fit in with an internationally experienced back line.
Where Kitchen will fit in Klinsmann's back line is yet to be determined as rumors surfaced earlier this month that Klinsmann is trying to adopt a 3-5-2 formation, which further complicates matters.
That could be potentially good news for Trapp, whose central midfield role is heavily utilized in that 3-5-2 formation. Whether Klinsmann asks him to sit back and play as a deep-lying playmaker or an attacking mid, Trapp will definitely see some time in the middle.
Even if Klinsmann opts for his usual 4-2-3-1, Trapp should get some time on the pitch with only seven other mids being selected and Michael Bradley, Mix Diskerud and Brek Shea the only senior members in front of him.
The game against Chile, which is Jan. 28 in Rancagua, Chile at 6 p.m. ET, will be a very interesting fixture to start the new year for the USMNT. The Chileans, who were knocked out of the 2014 World Cup by host nation Brazil on penalties, had a solid showing at the World Cup finals. They finished second in a group that consisted of 2010-winners Spain, the Dutch--who eventually finished third and surprise-side Australia.
They also possess great talents in Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal, who will be challenging for Kitchen and Yedlin to contain.
Panama, whose game is Feb. 8 at StubHub Center in Carson, Calif., is potentially the easier of the two fixtures. The Panamanians are ranked 55th in the FIFA World Rankings and should be the opponent where younger, more-inexperienced players--such as Kitchen and Trapp--should see more playing time.
Kitchen and Trapp have received a golden opportunity to show Klinsmann what skills they possess and give him a reason to call them up again.