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Chris Kamrani
Chris Kamrani covers Real Salt Lake for the Tribune.

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RSL’s Nick Rimando called in for USMNT friendly in Czech Republic

Nick Rimando’s 2014 tour with the United States men’s national team did not end in Brazil.

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Real Salt Lake’s 35-year-old goalkeeper was the lone Major League Soccer representative called into coach Jurgen Klinsmann’s 22-man roster for the upcoming USMNT friendly against the Czech Republic in Prague on Wednesday, Sept. 3. Aston Villa’s Brad Guzan and Southhampton’s Cody Cropper were Klinsmann’s other two goalkeepers called in for the friendly next Wednesday.

Rimando is yet to lose a match with the national team, posting a 10-0-1 record as a starter. He was part of the U.S. squad that made it out of the "Group of Death" and into the Round of 16 in Brazil.

The announcement of the 22-man roster and Rimando’s inclusion comes a week after three-time World Cup veteran and incumbent Tim Howard announced he’d be taking a year-long break from national-team duty and would not be considered for selection to the U.S. roster until September 2015.

"This gives us a huge opportunity to see Brad Guzan and Nick Rimando going forward and fighting for the No. 1 spot," said Klinsmann in a release on Aug. 21. "Always when somebody steps aside for a moment, it gives an opportunity for the next ones in line."

The friendly in Prague is the first match as part of the 2018 FIFA World Cup cycle. Of the 22 players called into the camp, 15 are 24 or younger. Youth is being served as 11 players with 10 caps or less are included as well as six players aiming to make their national-team debuts against the Czechs.

Rimando is part of 10 World Cup veterans from this summer’s World Cup in Brazil, along with Guzan, Fabian Johnson, Alejandro Bedoya, John Brooks, Julian Green, Geoff Cameron, Timmy Chandler, Mix Diskerud and Jozy Altidore.

The trip overseas will not hinder Rimando’s availability for a massive home match against FC Dallas on Saturday, Sept. 6. Per an RSL team spokesman, Rimando will be available for selection. Earlier this week, Ecuador called in 22-year-old forward Joao Plata for two U.S.-based friendlies against Bolivia (Sept. 5 in Miami) and Brazil (Sept. 9 in New Jersey). Homegrown Player Carlos Salcedo will join the Mexican U-21’s for the third time this year. Both Plata and Salcedo will miss RSL’s match against FC Dallas on Sept. 6.

-Chris Kamrani

Twitter: @chriskamrani



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