The veteran U.S. winger is sitting on 97 caps and was recalled for World Cup qualifiers against Costa Rica and Mexico with a chance to inch closer to exclusive company.The road to 100 caps has been a long and winding one for DaMarcus Beasley, but the veteran U.S. winger may just reach that milestone after all.
Sitting on 97 all-time appearances with the U.S. men's national team, the 30-year-old Beasley was recalled for upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Costa Rica and Mexico. Appearances in both games would put him at one cap shy of becoming the 13th member of the country's 100-cap club, and even though he has been in and out of the national team over the last few years while he has combated injury and club changes, he remains on the cusp of history.
His current form at Liga MX side Puebla has helped his case, as has his versatility to be able to play in defense or in attack in addition to the dearth of capable wingers in the U.S. player pool. Beasley has scored two league goals this Clausura campaign and a crucial Copa MX goal this past week all while being a regular at Puebla, showing that he has plenty in his tank after a lengthy career.
"Beas overall has played a good first part of his season right now," U.S. manager Jurgen Klinsmann said on a conference call following the release of the U.S. roster for the upcoming matches. "Beas is just a wonderful player, because he can solve you different things on the field in different positions if needed."
Beasley is aiming to take part in his fourth World Cup, with his international career stemming back to 2001. With the current U.S. roster lacking overall qualifying experience, Beasley and his 26 World Cup qualifying appearances -- tied for fifth-most all-time -- brings intangibles to the table in addition to being able to fill in on the left flank or at left back.
"His personality is always a giving personality to the group, to our team, and so we always followed him over the last 18 months, especially [U.S. assistant coach] Martin Vasquez," Klinsmann said. "He went down to Puebla for the Under-20 championship, he met with the people at Puebla, he watched a training session of Beasley, talked to them, talked to the coach so we knew exactly where he was at right now. And therefore we’re happy to have him back again in the group."
Even if Beasley doesn't appear in either game with the U.S. in the coming days, the chances of hitting the 100 mark this year seem favorable. With the Gold Cup providing a chance for more in the U.S. player pool to see action this summer, Beasley should have ample opportunity to take the field wearing the U.S. crest for the 100th time, regardless of whether it happens during qualification.