STANFORD, California (AP) — United States coach Jurgen Klinsmann says his team has some serious catching up to do a month before its World Cup opener.
Klinsmann was eager to get started on a scorching Wednesday afternoon at Stanford Stadium as the Americans began a two-week training camp leading up to a May 27 friendly against Azerbaijan at San Francisco's Candlestick Park.
While all 30 Americans have yet to arrive in the Bay Area, Klinsmann will have the task of cutting the squad to 23 by June 2.
"The reason we take 30 is we're not sure yet," Klinsmann said before his team took the field. "There will be intense training sessions ahead of them in order to show what they have, in every position not only as a center forward, the entire team."
Defender Geoff Cameron and goalkeepers Tim Howard and Brad Guzan are scheduled to arrive Sunday, as Klinsmann gave them a few extra days coming from their Premier League clubs in England.
Clarence Goodson, a defender with the nearby San Jose Earthquakes, led the U.S. team through the Stanford Stadium tunnel and onto the field for Day 1.
Left back DaMarcus Beasley is trying for his fourth World Cup.
"I still get butterflies," he said. "I haven't been with the team for a while. To see all the guys' faces, it's good to be back with the team and obviously it's very important. We have a lot of work to do, and a lot of work to be done in these three weeks before the team goes to Brazil."
Klinsmann said defender Omar Gonzalez, the Los Angeles Galaxy defender who is nursing a left knee injury from a May 3 game against Colorado, should be close to full strength later in the week.
Midfielder Maurice Edu wasn't medically cleared for Wednesday's workout because of concussion symptoms, but can train without body contact.
Klinsmann knows he needs to evaluate everybody in short order — and a versatile, deep defense will be one of those areas even if the group is lacking in World Cup minutes.
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