Sat, Jul 19, 2008 - Page 19 News List

McBride comes out of retirement to lead US soccer challenge

AFP, INDIANAPOLIS , INDIANA

Brian McBride will come out of international retirement to lead the USA’s Olympic soccer challenge as the veteran striker was named in Peter Nowak’s 18-man squad on Thursday.

McBride, 36, is out of a contract after leaving English Premiership club Fulham over the summer.

He was expected to return to Major League Soccer but, after his plan of signing with his hometown Chicago Fire hit a snag, he will instead spend next month in Beijing.

McBride, who scored 30 goals in 95 appearances for the US, announced his retirement from international soccer after the 2006 World Cup.

He said his return for Olympic duty came about after some innocent joking around with West Ham defender Jonathan Spector and US Under-23 coach Lubos Kubik during the Premier League season.

“Jonathan, as a joke, goes, ‘Lubos, you know that Brian wants to play in the Olympics,’” McBride told USSoccer.com.

“Lubos says, ‘That’d be great’. After a few more jokes I told him, you know, ‘Don’t joke around. I’d seriously consider it if you’re serious,’” he said.

Kubik got the message back to Nowak and McBride is now Beijing-bound.

He will head a squad that also features new Villarreal signing Jozy Altidore, Benfica teenager Freddy Adu and Heerenveen’s free-scoring midfielder Michael Bradley as well as a string of MLS stars.

Aston Villa-bound goalkeeper Brad Guzan is included along with the likes of Robbie Rogers of Columbus Crew, New England’s Michael Parkhurst and Toronto’s Maurice Edu.

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