Swingers key to the 23 

May, 26, 2010

NOTE: This post was most recently updated at 2:47 p.m. following the national team's media availability session.

When looking at Bob Bradley's final 23-man roster, it's important to keep two buzz words in mind: "versatility," and "cover."

Bradley used the first term Tuesday night, talking about the value of players who can play multiple positions. And U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati talked about the second, discussing the importance of having backup plans in case any of the several Yanks coming off injuries aren't at full strength when matches begin June 12.

Those two words explain a lot about Bradley's roster choices and will factor into his game-time decisions in South Africa. "Versatility is important as you put together a 23-man roster," Bradley said Tuesday. It wasn't the first time he's pointed that out, and likely won't be the last.

Let's take a look at four critical examples in the wake of Tuesday night's 4-2 loss to the Czech Republic and Wednesday's subsequent roster announcement:

Luke Cyphers is a former senior writer for ESPN The Magazine.
Doug McIntyre is a staff writer for ESPN The Magazine. He has covered American and international soccer since 2002.