The dual-national striker will soon have a decision to make, and the U.S. head coach is optimistic he will choose to represent his country of birthU.S. national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann is optimistic he'll be able to add another option to his striker pool very soon.
AZ striker Aron Johannsson was born in Alabama, but moved to Iceland with his parents when he was three years old. The 22-year-old was in tremendous form last season for Danish club AGF Aarhus, which earned him a move to Jozy Altidore's club.
Though Iceland called up Johannsson for World Cup qualifiers last October, he was unable to participate due to injury. Klinsmann, in a Q&A session on U.S. Soccer's official website, expressed renewed optimism he could have the striker in his camp shortly.
"Another player we have a very close eye on is Aron Johannsson, who’s playing now with Jozy Altidore at Alkmaar and is coming off an injury," Klinsmann said. "He has dual citizenship with Iceland and the United States, and we want to have him with us in the near future."
The fact Klinsmann even mentioned Johannsson in the Q&A session bodes well for the USA's chances of landing the striker, and he could be a candidate for the team's Gold Cup roster.
Klinsmann also explained that although several players with previous U.S. caps missed out on his roster for World Cup qualifiers and friendlies, they will likely be participating in the Gold Cup.
"There are definitely some 50-50 cases for players that we moved toward the Gold Cup where we want to have a very strong roster as well, and we are very excited about that tournament," Klinsmann said.
"A player like Kyle Beckerman could be in this camp, but having him in the Gold Cup is a tremendous value. We have players like Josh Gatt, Mix Diskerud, and Alejandro Bedoya, guys that are doing really well who could be ready for the upcoming camp, but will also be in a full rhythm for the Gold Cup."
Diskerud, like Johannsson, could be permanently cap-tied to the USA with an appearance in the Gold Cup, as his three previous caps have all come in friendlies.