Real Salt Lake's Rimando among U.S. players headed to Italy
Real Salt Lake goalkeeper Nick Rimando is among the 21 players selected by Jurgen Klinsmann to join the U.S. Men's National Team for the match against four-time World Cup champion Italy on Feb. 29 in Genoa.
Kickoff for the teams' first meeting on Italian soil since 2002 is set for 12:45 p.m. (MT). The match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, ESPN3 and Galavision.
Thirteen players return from the group that defeated Slovenia 3-2 in Ljubljana, including all three goalscorers Edson Buddle, Clint Dempsey and Jozy Altidore.
"We're looking forward to having all the European-based players back in the roster and picking up where we left off with them from the Slovenia game," said Klinsmann, who is on a three-match winning streak dating back to the 3-2 victory on Nov. 15, 2011, against Slovenia. "I'm excited about getting everybody together and challenging a world-class team like former World Cup winner Italy on their home soil. I think we have put a very competitive roster together. This roster was co-developed with the U-23 team because we wanted them to have a great preparation game before they go into Olympic qualifying in March. Our roster is highly competitive and ready to give them a real fight."
The U.S. has collected three consecutive victories, including a pair of shutout wins against Venezuela and Panama to open the 2012 campaign. In addition to providing a series of activities designed to develop individual player pathways, Klinsmann has given 41 players at least one cap through his nine games as head coach.