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- DOB October 2, 1990
- Age 24
- Place of birth Oslo, Norway
- POSITION Midfielder
- HEIGHT 6'0"
- WEIGHT 150
- U.S. CAPS 25
- CLUB Rosenborg
- TWITTER @mixdiskerud (243K followers)
- Current ASN 100 Rank 16
- Previous ASN 100 Rank 20
- Youth Experience U-20, U-23
Diskerud suited up for the U.S. U-20 team against Northern Ireland in 2008, but also played for Norway's youth sides that year. The Rosenborg BK player might never have returned to the Stars and Stripes were it not for a fortuitous encounter with the American team. "[Then U-20 coach Thomas Rongen and I] met at the Chivas Tournament in Mexico. The U.S. team wanted to play Stabæk’s juniors for a friendly after we exited the tourney. Rongen spotted me, came over, and asked for my nationality as I was about to take a corner kick for Stabæk against the USA. It was the weirdest corner preparation I have had. We didn't score on that corner. Maybe he did," he told Goal.com.
Diskerud quickly rose through the American system, earning a start in the 2009 U-20 World Cup and his first full national team cap in South Africa on November 17, 2010. (Also getting his first senior team appearance that day: Juan Agudelo.) Diskerud also started on the U-23 team that failed to qualify for the 2012 World Cup, showing off creativity and a growing understanding with the midfielders and forwards on that team.Where the player ends up on the U.S. depth chart still remains to be settled as well. Diskerud has long been heralded as a future standout for the Yanks—and has impressed in his limited action with the full team—and his stock has gradually risen since an impressive 2013 Gold Cup and continuing call-ups with the top team after that tournament. He was among the 23 that made the World Cup roster in Brazil but never took off his warm-ups despite the Americans obvious need for more service, in theory a Diskerud strength.
After years of U.S. teams longing for more of a creative spark from its central midfielders, it is not without irony that the biggest knock on Diskerud is that he doesn’t play enough defense – or play it well enough – to be left on the field for long stretches against better teams.
But with Jurgen Klinsmann clamoring for the U.S. to be more proactive and possession-oriented in attack during the 2018 World Cup cycle, Diskerud would seem an ideal fit behind the forwards, provided he continues to develop. He’ll probably need to leave the safety of his Norwegian league cocoon for tougher games at the club level, but if he does, U.S. fans will find more to like about Diskerud besides his smile and personality. – BROOKE TUNSTALL
Noteworthy ReadsNorwegian-American Chooses Sides (ESPN.com)
Give & Go: US U-20 Mikkel "Mix" Diskerud (Goal.com)
Mikkel Diskerud Gets Shot at U.S. Natioanal Team (ESPN.com)