The most important matches the United States national team will play this summer are going to be in the CONCACAF Gold Cup. If they win it, the United States will clinch a spot in the 2017 Confederations Cup, the pre-World Cup tournament that features the hosts, the defending World Cup champions and the six reigning champions of the various confederations. That's the tournament where the United States famously upset Spain and nearly won it against Brazil in 2009.
In other words, this year's Gold Cup roster is expected to feature as close to a first-choice side as we'll see in any USMNT matches in the near future. And it's starting to look like Sounders Academy product and Stanford sophomore Jordan Morris could be on it. But don't take my word for it, here's what MLSsoccer.com's Matt Doyle had to say:
You're all nodding and saying, "Yeah, Jordan Morris." But I'm not with that. I think Morris is on the verge of being an "every camp" type of call-up for Klinsmann, and there is no question that he was the outstanding contributor to the U-23s in Toulon. This is scintillating:
Remember how I talked about Klinsmann valuing speed? Well there you go. That first touch is great, and then he rides eternal through the gates of Valhalla, shiny and chrome.
That we're even having this conversation right now is kinda nuts. Let's remember, Morris has never played a professional match. It was just a few years ago that he hadn't even played at the highest level of youth soccer, instead choosing to play for his high school team until his senior year when he joined the Sounders Academy. Morris has been a good, but not necessarily great college player, racking up four goals and six assists last year.
But he's also been able to hold his own whenever Klinsmann has given him the chance, most notably scoring against Mexico in that friendly a couple months ago.
Whether or not Sounders fans view this is a positive development is entirely up to the individual. Morris has said repeatedly that he plans to sign his first professional contract with the Sounders and that he's going to explore options after the fall college season. As of yet, he's gotten no serious European interest anyway. A standout tournament could obviously change that, but it could also serve to convince him to join the Sounders earlier too.