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Beckermankyle_rsl
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Kyle Beckerman's Goal vs. Portland – Anatomy of a Goal

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1-on-1 with Kyle Beckerman

Kyle Beckerman

  • DOB April 23, 1982
  • Age 31
  • Place of birth Crofton, Maryland
  • POSITION Midfielder
  • HEIGHT 5'10"
  • WEIGHT 165
  • U.S. CAPS 35
  • CLUB Real Salt Lake
  • TWITTER @kylebeckerman (33.2K followers)
  • Current ASN 100 Rank 17
  • Previous ASN 100 Rank 17
  • Youth Experience U-17
  • ASN QUESTIONNAIRE Read now

Kyle Beckerman is a U.S. soccer lifer, joining the inaugural Bradenton class that also included Landon Donovan, Oguchi Onyewu, and DaMarcus Beasley. He's a long-haired leader, a free spirit off the field and a pit bull on it. Beckerman will never be the best passer or most creative midfielder, but his heart, hustle, and desire gave him a second national team life under Jurgen Klinsmann.

The midfielder essentially willed himself to become a better player. He hacked out a role for himself with the Colorado Rapids between 2002 and 2007 before being dealt to Real Salt Lake for Mehdi Ballouchy. He earned his first full national team appearance in 2007, playing against Denmark in January and earning two more caps at the 2007 Copa America. While he flourished at RSL, he played a small role for the Stars and Stripes during Bob Bradley's tenure, providing experience and leadership on the B squad and occasionally providing depth with the A side.

Beckerman's fortunes turned when Jurgen Klinsmann took the helm of the national team. The former German star appreciates what Beckerman brings, deploying him as a holding midfielder. Beckerman played well during an October 2011 loss to Ecuador. "It was a dream that died and all of a sudden it is back," he told Fox Soccer of his return to the national team fold.

Beckerman has continued to appear in full camps, although his playing time is diminishing. Pundits say he's too slow, too unskilled, too etc., and that the continued development of the Bradley-Jones-Edu trio (not to mention Torres and the other creative midfielders pushing for time) will push him out, but Beckerman will play a role on the national team going forward. That statement is a credit to his class.—NOAH DAVIS

Klinsmann on Beckerman:


"We discovered a player in Kyle Beckerman that is just doing a fantastic job for this team.... We don’t want to have him out of the team." (October 2011)

"Every coach has his own view of things and I have known Kyle since he has been playing in MLS and I have always followed him and always liked his style of play because he is a one thousand percent team player. He has a tremendous talent to read the game in advance, he kind of smells where the ball will go, and he can anticipate and move into that space and when he is there and faces people one-on-one, he is very straightforward in those challenges—he is fair but he is also physical." (October 2011)

"Is he the playmaker? No. That’s why he has a 6 on his back, not a 10. I don’t expect him to go forward and score goals and make the killer pass. This is not Kyle Beckerman. Kyle Beckerman is one that recovers me a ton of balls, backs up my two center backs, does that role, screens around there, and then passes it simply to the next guy." (January 2012)

Noteworthy Reads

Real Salt Lake's Beckerman Inspires Love, Hate (AP)
Beckerman's Foundation Makes Klinsmann's Plan Work (SportingNews.com)
Despite Loss, Klinsmann Begins to Identify His Key Players (MLSSoccer.com)
Kyle Beckerman Isn't Going Anywhere (ESPN.com)
AmericanSoccerNow.