Confirming a rumor from earlier today, D.C. United center back Steve Birnbaum has been named to the starting lineup for the United States in their crucial World Cup qualifier versus Guatemala tonight. The 25 year old Birnbaum has earned 3 previous caps, but this will be his first competitive outing for the USMNT.
Previously, Birnbaum had appeared in friendlies against Chile, Canada, and Iceland. That last game, a 3-2 win in which Birnbaum assisted the equalizer and scored a 90th minute game-winner, may have been the performance that let him push his way from being on the fringes of the USMNT to getting a start in a game the US has to win to maintain realistic hopes of a spot in the Hexagonal round of qualifying.
Here is the complete USMNT starting lineup for tonight's game: