Graham Jonathan Zusi (//; born August 18, 1986) is an American professional soccer player who currently plays as a midfielder or defender for Major League Soccer club Sporting Kansas City. From 2012 to 2017, Zusi represented the United States national team, earning 55 caps and scoring 5 goals.
Zusi with the United States in 2013
|Full name||Graham Jonathan Zusi|
|Date of birth||August 18, 1986|
|Place of birth||Longwood, Florida, United States|
|Height||1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)|
|Sporting Kansas City|
|2005||Central Florida Kraze||10||(1)|
|2009–||Sporting Kansas City||310||(29)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of September 5, 2021|
Early life and collegeEdit
Zusi played college soccer for the Maryland Terrapins of the University of Maryland, College Park. During his college career with the Terrapins, Zusi played in 89 games, recording 28 goals and 20 assists, and helped Maryland win the National Championship in 2005 and 2008, scoring the game-winning goal in the 2008 National Semi-Final and Championship Games. He graduated with a degree in criminology.
Sporting Kansas CityEdit
Zusi was drafted in the second round (23rd overall) of the 2009 MLS SuperDraft by the Kansas City Wizards. He made his professional debut on March 21, 2009, in Kansas City's first game of the 2009 MLS season against Toronto FC.
Zusi enjoyed a breakout season in 2011 helping the renamed Sporting Kansas City franchise to an Eastern Conference championship and earning a call-up to the U.S. national team. His efforts were rewarded by Sporting with a new four-year contract announced on February 16, 2012. In the 2012 season he led the league in assists with 15.
Zusi returned to Sporting Kansas City and became a converted right-back, earning MLS All Star selections in 2016, 2017, and 2018, while helping guide Sporting Kansas City to the 2017 U.S. Open Cup Title.
On January 21, 2012, Zusi made his debut for the United States in a 1–0 win over Venezuela in a friendly match. He scored his first international goal on January 25, 2012, in the ninth minute against Panama in a 1–0 victory. Zusi was named to the national team's Hexagonal roster for the February 6, 2013 match against Honduras; he entered the game as a second-half substitute.
On October 15, 2013, Zusi scored a stoppage-time equalizer against Panama in a World Cup qualifier. Though the United States had already qualified, Zusi's goal meant that Mexico would advance to the next round at Panama's expense. As a result, a group of Mexico fans later presented Zusi with a framed photo and plaque with the words San Zusi ("Saint Zusi").
On June 16, 2014, in the United States' first game in the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Zusi provided the assist from a corner kick for John Brooks' game-winning goal in the 2–1 victory against Ghana. On June 22, 2014, in the United States' second game in the World Cup, Zusi provided the assist for Clint Dempsey's goal in the 2–2 draw against Portugal.
On March 29, 2016, going two years without scoring for the United States, Zusi scored the fourth goal against Guatemala in the their campaign to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Later that year, Zusi scored a late goal for the United States to put them up 4–0 against Costa Rica during the Copa América Centenario. His goal ensured that the 4–0 win over Costa Rica was the largest against Costa Rica in history for the national team.
Following Klinnsman's dismissal, Zusi was not called up to the national team under Arena and his successors, Dave Strachan and Gregg Berhalter.
|Club||Season||MLS||Playoffs||Open Cup||Champions League||Other||Total|
|Kansas City Wizards||2009||13||0||—||2||0||—||—||15||0|
|Sporting Kansas City||2011||32||5||3||0||4||0||—||—||39||5|
- Scores and results list United States' goal tally first, score column indicates score after each Zusi goal.
|1||January 25, 2012||Estadio Rommel Fernández, Panama City, Panama||Panama||1–0||1–0||Friendly|
|2||October 11, 2013||Sporting Park, Kansas City, United States||Jamaica||1–0||2–0||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|3||October 15, 2013||Estadio Rommel Fernández, Panama City, Panama||Panama||2–2||3–2|
|4||March 29, 2016||MAPFRE Stadium, Columbus, United States||Guatemala||3–0||4–0||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|5||June 7, 2016||Soldier Field, Chicago, United States||Costa Rica||4–0||4–0||Copa América Centenario|
Sporting Kansas City
- MLS Cup: 2013
- U.S. Open Cup: 2012, 2015, 2017
- Eastern Conference (regular season): 2011, 2012
- Eastern Conference (playoffs): 2013
- Western Conference (regular season): 2018, 2020
- 2013 Gold Cup official roster. Archived January 10, 2015, at the Wayback Machine
- "FIFA Tournaments - Players & Coaches - Graham Zusi". FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. Retrieved March 21, 2020.
- Tenorio, Paul (June 4, 2014). "Graham Zusi's journey to World Cup began in Central Florida". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved April 22, 2021.
- Nancy Hass (April 16, 2013). "Hey Zeus! Graham Zusi & the pressure of replacing US Soccer's best-ever player | OVERLAP Magazine". MLSsoccer.com. Retrieved May 4, 2014.
- "2005 Central Florida Kraze stats". Uslsoccer.com. Archived from the original on October 11, 2012. Retrieved June 24, 2014.
-  Archived March 25, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
- Palmer, Tod. "Sporting signs Zusi to extension". KansasCity.com. Retrieved August 10, 2012.
- Bailey, Graeme. "West Ham United have taken American international Graham Zusi on trial". Sky Sports. Retrieved May 10, 2013.
- Edwards, Andy. ""Saint" Graham Zusi presented with gifts from fans, radio station for sending Mexico to World Cup playoff". MLSSoccer.com. Retrieved October 17, 2013.
- McDowell, Sam (June 22, 2014). "'We could taste the second round,' Sporting KC's Matt Besler says of America's World Cup draw with Portugal". The Kansas City Star. Retrieved April 22, 2021.
- "US back on track in qualifying with 4-0 win over Guatemala". USA Today. March 29, 2016. Retrieved April 22, 2021.
- "US bounces back with 4-0 victory over Costa Rica". USA Today. June 7, 2016. Retrieved April 22, 2021.
- "Graham Zusi". Sporting Kansas City. Retrieved May 31, 2020.
- "Graham Zusi » Club matches". World Football. Retrieved May 2, 2018.
- Andrew Wiebe (December 20, 2011). "Zusi named MLS Breakout Player of the Year | Sporting Kansas City". Sportingkc.com. Retrieved May 4, 2014.
- "2019 MLS All-Star Roster". Major League Soccer. Retrieved July 14, 2019.
- "Sporting KC announces 2012 team awards | Sporting Kansas City". Sportingkc.com. October 24, 2012. Retrieved May 4, 2014.
- "Sporting KC announces 2013 team awards | Sporting Kansas City". Sportingkc.com. October 19, 2013. Retrieved May 4, 2014.
- "TSG reveals Gold Cup Best XI". goldcup.org.