NEW YORK --- Midfielder Jermaine Jones could join the U.S. national team later this year, possibly with defender Edgar Castillo.
The 27-year-old Jones, who has appeared in the European Champions League for Schalke of the Bundesliga, has played three times for Germany's national team in exhibitions. He holds dual citizenship and has petitioned FIFA for a switch of nationality.
"We've had pretty regular communications with Jermaine's representatives and his advisers," U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati said Thursday. "I think that paperwork for that has probably now been submitted to FIFA. And the earliest he would be eligible to move would be the 2nd of August, which would be 60 days after the rule change came into effect."
Jones, the son of a U.S. soldier, agreed in March to a three-year contract extension with Schalke through the 2013-14 season. In June he told the governing body of German soccer he wanted to switch national teams.
"I certainly have had a lot of opportunities to see him play," U.S. coach Bob Bradley said.
Gulati and Bradley spoke four days after the U.S. lost to Brazil 3-2 in the Confederations Cup final, the first FIFA final for a U.S. men's team, and two days before its CONCACAF Gold Cup opener against Grenada in Seattle.
The U.S., seeking its third consecutive title in the regional championship, is ranked 12th in the world heading into the Gold Cup, its highest level since FIFA revised its system in 2006.
GALAXY TEAMMATE BLASTS BECKHAM
NEW YORK --- David Beckham has become a bad teammate on the Los Angeles Galaxy, according to Landon Donovan.
"All that we care about at a minimum is that he committed himself to us," Donovan was quoted as saying in an excerpt of Grant Wahl's The Beckham Experiment, scheduled for publication July 14. "As time has gone on, that has not proven to be the case in many ways -- on the field, off the field."
Beckham joined the Galaxy in July 2007 from Real Madrid and has a $6.5 million average annual income from the team. He was loaned to AC Milan last winter and the 34-year-old midfielder is to rejoin Los Angeles for its July 16 match at the New York Red Bulls.