Top 20 American Soccer Players
USA's Top 20 Soccer Players
2012 was a very successful year for the USA Women's soccer team, with several American male players impressing too. I take a look at the top 20 current USA players, with Olympic gold for the Women's team their are several female inclusions as well as the big names from the Men's team, and a few less recognizable faces. Take a look. By Stowe Gregory @stowegregory
20 - Oguchi Onyewu
With 66 International caps to his name, Onyewu is a fine central defender who is still playing in one of Europe's top leagues, La Liga, with Champions League boys, Malaga. Onyewu has also had spells at Newcastle United and AC Milan, whilst representing the US at the last 2 World Cups.
19 - Amy Rodriguez
Amy Rodriguez is just 25, yet has played 102 games for the US Women's team. Her versatility in forward positions makes her a World class threat going forward. She has 2 Olympic gold medals to her name and has the 2nd highest goal scoring record from coming off the bench for the WNT, with 9.
18 - Shannon Boxx
Boxx, 35, has been the US's defensive midfielder for nearly a decade now. With 180 caps to her name, in 2005 she came 3rd in the FIFA World Player of the Year. Boxx is still a key part of the US side, and this summer won gold at the London Olympics.
17- Jozy Altidore
Still only 23, Alitdore could be a key part of the future National team. Still in Europe with Dutch team, AZ Alkmaar, Alitdore has 50 International caps under his belt already. The powerful striker was part of the US squad that reached the knockout stages of the 2010 World Cup.
16 - De Marcus Beasley
Beasley currently plays for Mexican side, Puebla - having spent time with several sides including; Manchester City, PSV and Rangers. At 30, he is still a dangerous winger but struggles to get consistent games with the National team.
15 - Brad Guzan
After an average period during his early career, Guzan has now established himself as Premier League side Aston Villa's first choice keeper, ahead of the previously irreplaceable Shay Given. However, with Tim Howard around, his National Team chances have been limited to just 20. But still a fine keeper.
14- Steve Cherundolo
Having spent his entire career with German Bundesliga side, Hanover 96, Steve Cherundolo is still an impressive right back, playing at a very high level. At 33 with 87 National Team caps, and now captaining his club side, Cherundolo manages to get an respectable 14th in this list.
13 - Maurice Edu
Maurice Edu is a efficient central midfielder and spent the last 4 years in Scotland before Rangers went bust. Now "playing" inEngland withStoke City, his appearances have been limited, but he is still an important part of the US national team, with 11 games alone this year.
12 - Heather O'Reilly
O'Reilly a.k.a HAO - has played 179 for the USA. She has been a part of every major tournament for her country since the 2004 Olympics and made the crucial assist for Alex Morgan's Olympic semi-final winner vs Canada. An impressive winger/midfielder for the US Women's team to have at their disposable.
11 - Brad Friedel
Tottenham Hotspur's keeper, Brad Friedel probably would've finished higher up on this list a season or too ago. At 41, Friedel is the current holder of the the most consecutive appearances in the Premier League record - with 310. Friedel has played at 3 World Cups for the USA but after 82 caps, he retired from International duty in 2005. Yet Friedel has kept his career going for a remarkable length of time; with only his side's new French singing, Hugo Llorris keeping him out of the team. Friedel is a Premier League legend.
10 - Christie Rampone
Rampone is the 2nd most capped Female American Soccer play of all time. With 276 caps, and counting, Rampone has captained her nation to 2 Olympic gold medals, and a 2nd place in the 2011 World Cup. At 37, she is still a solid defender in the US side.
9 - Jermaine Jones
Despite being born in Germany, and playing for them at younger levels, Jermaine Jones is able to play for the USA due to his American father. He has played for German side Schalke 04 since 2007, and has become an impressive member of their midfield, playing in his more defensive role. He has now played 24 times for the USA since 2010, whilst regularly playing in one of Europe's top leagues - German Bundesliga.
8 - Hope Solo
A 2 time Olympic gold medalist, Solo has made the Number 1 Jersey her own. At 31, she is one of the World best female goal keepers, having won Goalkeeper of the year in 2009, and 3 World Cup individual awards. She is one of the faces of US Soccer, and an essential part of the successful side.
7 - Michael Bradley
The son of former USA Coach, Bob Bradley, he is a central midfielder playing his game in one of Europe's top leagues - Italy's Serie A, for Roma. Bradley had a slight dip in his career during a loan spell to Aston Villa, where he struggled to impress, but he has now reignited it in Italy. With 72 USA Caps, he easily gets in the top 10.
6 - Carlos Bocanegra
The captain of the USA. At 33, the central defender has played 109 games for the USA including trips to the two most recent World Cups. He has been captain for the past 5 years, and is currently on loan in Spain's La Liga with Racing Santander. Still an defiant talent to have in the USA side.
5 - Tim Howard
At 33, Tim Howard is the USA's first choice keeper. With 84 international caps, he spent 4 years with Manchester United, including 1 FA Cup and 1 League Cup win. Now at Everton he has been a part of the team which managerDavid Moyes has season in, season out impressed with. His side are currently 4th in the Premier League and Howard even managed to score last season from a goal kick.
4 - Alex Morgan
Morgan is the shining bright new talent for the USA WNT at just 23. Having joined Seattle Sounders this season Morgan is becoming a lethal and exciting forward. Despite early career injuries, her progress for National team has been flawless. With 38 goals in 58 games - already closing in on the 44 top 10 mark. Morgan scored the crucial and memorable winning goal vs Canada at Old Trafford in the 2012 Olympics Semi final- a last minute extra time header. It was a huge part to play in the USA retaining their Gold medal status. Other than her gold medal in London, Morgan is a 2011 World Cup runner up the US Soccer player of the year 2012. She's the new face of American soccer - and a pretty one.
3 - Abby Wambach
The 2nd highest all time Female USA goal scorer with 152, Wambach is only 6 off the all time record - and she's still playing. She has competed at 3 World Cups and 3 Olympic games, including 2 golds and a World Cup runners up medal. She's still going at an impressive goal scoring rate despite being 32, with 3 goals at the London 2012 games. Wambach took up player coaching last season but no longer plays for a club. But her focus on the US National team won't be ending any time soon (by the looks of it), one can expect the only real goals left are a World Cup win and to beat Mia Hamm's goal scoring record of 158.
2 - Clint Dempsey
Having moved to the UK in 2007, Dempsey has taken the status as the best overseas USA soccer player. During his 5 year spell with London Premier League club, Fulham, Dempsey won the club's player of the season award twice, and became the first American to score a hat-trick in the Premier League in 2012. Dempsey also finished 4th in the Premier League's 2011-12 Player of the season award. The energetic and dangerous attacking midfielder has now moved across London to Tottenham Hotspur where he is beginning the new chapter of his career at the age of 29.
1 - Landon Donovan
Probably the most famous American Soccer player of all time. With spells at Bayern Munich and Everton, he has now played nearly 200 games for the LA Galaxy with 3 MLS Cup wins. He has also won 2 more at former club San Jose Earthquakes. At 30 he has played 144 times for the USA - the second most. Donovan is the USA's all time top goal scorer with 49. He has a vast trophy and accolade cabinet including a place in the 2002 'Team of the World Cup' and multiple MLS recognitions. Donovan has earned the respect of the majority of US Soccer fans, with his loyalty to the nation and the MLS. Captain for both club and country, his professional attitude and consistency over the years is what really puts him top of this list. USA soccer legend.