The 2013 Gold Cup kicks off on 7 July for all of the participating nations on American soil with the United States Men's National Team beginning their involvement two days later, on the 9th of July. For Bolton Wanderers fans, this means a host of international fixtures for Stuart Holden ahead of the 2013/14 Championship campaign.
Holden was named to the US Soccer roster for the cup two months ago and a preliminary 35-man squad list was released nearly a month after that. From that list, 12 names will be cut, leaving 23 men at Jurgen Klinsmann's disposal for the competition. Well, 22 men apart from Stu Holden, who, per Klinsmann, is in. Speaking to US Soccer's website at the beginning of May, the United States boss laid out his intentions for the Bolton midfielder:
"We've been in touch with Stuart throughout this whole injury period.
"The last couple of months have given us a lot of positive signals. I spoke to his coach at Bolton, and spoke to his coach at Sheffield Wednesday where he played some very important minutes and games while on loan. He's on his way back.
"That being said, we want to have him back in our picture. We are going to bring him for the May-June camp, and also for the Gold Cup."
Earlier this month, the Americans played five international fixtures: two friendlies and three World Cup Qualifiers. Holden was in the camp before and during those games and was in the matchday squad for each of them, appearing in two of the fixtures. Stu played 10 minutes against Belgium in a losing friendly and then came on as a 90th minute substitute as the Yanks beat Panama in Seattle to secure three important Hex points.
Now, with less than two weeks until the tournament begins, Jurgen Klinsmann is set to announce his full roster. That announcement won't come for a couple of days but the information regarding the pieces surrounding Stu in the competition is starting to leak out in bits and pieces.
According to Grant Wahl of Sports Illustrated, Jurgen Klinsmann will include Landon Donovan in the team for the first time in nearly a year. The last time Donovan played for the national team was in a friendly against Mexico last August. The second-most capped player in US history (behind Cobi Jones and ahead of Jeff Agoos and Marcelo Balboa) took a bit of a breathing period from the sport and spent much of the MLS off-season and first few weeks away from football.
In addition to Donovan, Jose Francisco Torres, of Tigres, will also be in the squad. Our friends over at Stars and Stripes FC reported on his situation after Tigres tweeted out the player's involvement early. "Gringo" Torres has not played for the US since last September and the Gold Cup could provide a way back into the full squad for him, given he provides some good performances over the summer.
Finally, Grant Wahl also announced that Philadelphia Union striker Jack McInerney will be in the team. Jack Mac has not been capped for the senior side yet but has played for the United States at the U17, U20, and U23 levels. The Tennessee-born forward is tied for the top spot in the MLS scoring leader board with Montreal's Marco Di Vaio and Chicago's Mike Magee.