Matt Besler is returning to the United States men’s national team for its 2015 season openers.
And for the first time, he’s bringing Sporting Kansas City homegrown goalkeeper Jon Kempin with him.
Besler and Kempin were selected Friday for the U.S. national team’s annual January camp, which will take place Jan. 12-Feb. 8 in Carson, Calif. The same roster will be used for the team’s first two international friendlies of the 2015 season — a date in Chile on Jan. 28 and a home match against Panama on Feb. 8 at the StubHub Center in Carson.
“This is another big year ahead of us in 2015,” Besler said in a news release. “The January camp is always a good way to set the tone for the upcoming campaign and establish a positive rhythm within the national team environment.”
Besler made his United States national team debut on Jan. 29, 2013, playing all 90 minutes in a scoreless draw against Canada. Over the ensuing two years, he has became a steady presence for the Americans, with last summer’s World Cup stint highlighting his national team representation.
Kempin, on the other hand, is joining the national team for the first time in his career. The 21-year-old keeper made his MLS debut last season, becoming the youngest keeper to see the field in Sporting KC history. He later appeared in the 2014 Homegrown Game and was named MVP of the contest.
“I am extremely honored to be able to represent my country in my first senior team call up,” Kempin said in the release. “... My dream is to represent the United States in the Olympics and World Cups. I feel like being invited to the January Camp is one step closer to achieving those dreams.”
Sporting KC midfielder Graham Zusi, who joined Besler for the World Cup in Brazil last summer, will not take part in the camp as he continues to nurse a foot injury he suffered at the end of the 2014 regular season. Zusi was on the camp’s preliminary roster before both sides concluded it was best he rest the injury.