The U.S. national team will kick-start their 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign with friendlies against Denmark and Switzerland over the next week.
Coach Jurgen Klinsmann’s side will have its first encounter against Denmark, currently battling for the Euro 2016 qualifiers, on March 25. Denmark, after winning the championship in 1992, has played four games in the qualifiers and accumulated seven points in UEFA Group I.
Among the 23 players who have been called for the US camp, on the roster ahead of their contests with the Europeans are Clint Dempsey, Michael Bradley, and Jozy Altidore. Constituting the remainder of the roster are seven players from MLS, four from Liga MX, and one from the NASL; the rest of the 11 are from European clubs.
With Danish players and the Dansk Boldspil-Union (DBU), the country’s football federation, involved in a pay dispute – threatening a player strike – a deal for players to receive large bonuses for their performances and qualifications in major competitions despite a 17-percent pay cut was agreed upon on Saturday.
According to the official website of DBU, Coach Morten Olsen said, “We applaud all and look forward to being able to concentrate on what it is really about – namely to play and talk football, and not conflict and money.
“I am sure that the players feel the same way, and believe that they are very satisfied, and quite like everyone else is looking forward to being able to concentrate 100 percent on playing football again.”
The U.S. and Denmark have faced each other six times in the past, with the Danes having an advantage of 2-1-3 in terms of win-loss records. The last time the two countries met was in 2009 when they played on the same stadium of their upcoming game.
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