Turns out Bruce Arena has noticed Justin Morrow after all.
The Toronto FC left-back’s continued absence from United States men’s national team selections has been mystifying to many at BMO Field, but he will be in contention for a place in the CONCACAF Gold Cup this summer.
Morrow’s spot is not guaranteed, but he has made the 40-man shortlist submitted to CONCACAF from which Arena will select his final 23-man squad closer to the start of the tournament. With Jorge Villafana the established starter at left-back, Morrow is likely in a straight fight with Atlanta United’s Greg Garza to make the squad - though there is a chance Arena picks neither if he decides the versatile Eric Lichaj and left-footed centre-back Matt Besler provide enough cover.
As expected, Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley are also on the list. You can find it in full at this link.
Morrow would be a major loss for Toronto in July as it now looks likely that Raheem Edwards will also be at the Gold Cup with Canada. That would leave Ashtone Morgan and Chris Mavinga as the Reds’ options at left-back for road games at Orlando City and New York City and a home match against the Colorado Rapids, assuming the USA reach the knockout stage.
Morrow’s last - and only - appearance for the USA’s senior team came back in January 2013 against Canada while he was playing for the San Jose Earthquakes.
Canada’s 40-man list has not yet been made public, but it is safe to assume it will include Jonathan Osorio, Raheem Edwards, Tosaint Ricketts, Jordan Hamilton and Jay Chapman. The first three of those players have been called up to Octavio Zambrano’s squad to face Curacao in Montreal on June 13.
Armando Cooper will also miss time with his club as an almost-certain member of the Panama squad.