Klinsmann sees Donovan return in future

NEW YORK (AP) — Jurgen Klinsmann envisions Landon Donovan returning to the U.S. national team. He’s just not sure when.

Back with the Los Angeles Galaxy following a four-month sabbatical, Donovan was bypassed for the American roster for three World Cup qualifiers next month.

Klinsmann won’t commit to recalling the 31-year-old midfielder for a pair of qualifiers in September. Donovan might be selected for the CONCACAF Gold Cup in July, when most of the Americans with European clubs will be given time off from the national team.

“We’ll simply take it week by week and month by month,” Klinsmann said during a telephone conference call Friday.

A veteran of three World Cups, Donovan has appeared for the national team 144 times and is the American career scoring leader with 49 goals. Because of injuries, illness and the time off, Donovan has played in just eight of 25 games since Klinsmann replaced Bob Bradley as the U.S. coach in July 2011.

Klinsmann has monitored Donovan’s play with the Galaxy. He has two goals and three assists in six league games since his return on March 30.

Seeking their seventh straight World Cup berth, the Americans have exhibitions against Belgium on May 29 in Cleveland, and Germany on June 2 in Washington, D.C., ahead of three qualifiers: at Jamaica on June 7, against Panama four days later in Seattle and versus Honduras on June 18 in Salt Lake City.

The United States (1-1-1) is third in the six-nation final round of qualifying in North and Central America and the Caribbean with four points, one behind Panama (1-0-2) and trailing Costa Rica (1-1-1) on goal difference. Honduras (1-1-1) is behind the U.S. on goal difference, while Mexico (0-0-3) has three points and Jamaica (0-1-2) two.

The top three nations qualify for next year’s tournament in Brazil, and the No. 4 team faces Oceania champion New Zealand in a home-and-home playoff for another berth.

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