122214_isi_clarksteve_mlsack20140726168_(1) Andrew Katsampes/isiphotos.com
23 For January Camp

Can Steve Clark Break Into The U.S. GK Conversation?

A star in Norway who enjoyed a strong first season in MLS, Michigan native Steve Clark always seems to come up big in key moments. We think Jurgen Klinsmann should take a close look in January.
BY Brian Sciaretta Posted
December 22, 2014
2:49 PM
Editors note: A group of ASN staffers have created a 23-man roster for the January U.S. national team camp. We will be unveiling our proposed squad in the coming weeks and crafting arguments for every name on our list.

BRAD GUZAN IS the United States national team's No. 1 goalkeeper—nobody is disputing that. Beyond the Aston Villa backstop, however, there's a fair amount of uncertainty.

Nick Rimando is 35 years old. Bill Hamid enjoyed a great 2014 campaign with D.C. United but he was very shaky in 2013. Sean Johnson, stuck with a poor Chicago Fire team, has not done enough to move up the depth chart.

Steve Clark, however, has shown that he might be the best of the bunch. Clark, 28, joined the Columbus Crew before the start of the 2014 season after a very strong three years in Norway. (The Michigan native was named the best goalkeeper in Norway in 2012 by top media outlets.) During that season Clark made some of the best stops you will ever see, and his nonstop heroics saved Honefoss from relegation.

When Clark returned to his homeland, he brought his quality with him, showing American fans why he was so revered in Scandinavia. Throughout the 2014 season he proved to be one of the best keepers in Major League Soccer and played an important role in getting Columbus back to the playoffs.

The super-athletic Clark should be considered for January camp simply because he has the ability—beyond most other top-notch goalkeepers—to make a special save that can spell the difference between winning and losing.

Kasey Keller had a knack for making these types of saves. Tim Howard still does. And while we're not equating Clark with these two iconic American goalkeepers, we are saying that Clark has a flair for the spectacular. Klinsmann should take a close look at him next month.

ASN's January roster so far

Tesho Akindele
Lee Nguyen
Robbie Rogers
Matt Besler
Gyasi Zardes

Bill Hamid
Matt Hedges
Luis Gil
Steve Clark

Brian Sciaretta is an American Soccer Now columnist and an ASN 100 panelist. Follow him on Twitter.

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