Hearts midfielder Perry Kitchen faces club versus country dilemma



Hearts midfielder Perry Kitchen admits he could be facing a club versus country dilemma after being named in the provisional USA squad for this summer’s Copa America.

The 24-year-old has been included in head coach Jurgen Klinsmann’s initial 40-man roster for the tournament, which is being played in his homeland.

Klinsmann will gather his players on May 16 – the day after Hearts wrap up their Premiership campaign at home to St Johnstone, for a pre-tournament training camp, while his final 23-man squad has to be submitted by May 20.

(Pic: heartsfc.co.uk)
(Pic: heartsfc.co.uk)

And should Perry, who joined Hearts in March after five years with DC United in the MLS, make the final cut, the defensive midfielder would face the prospect of not having a break this summer.

America play Group A matches against Colombia, Costa Rica and Paraguay on June, 3, 7 and 11 respectively, while the final takes place on June 26 – four days before Hearts are in Europa League action.

Kitchen admits he would hope to try and reach a compromise with head coach Robbie Neilson should Germany legend Klinsmann take him to the tournament.

Kitchen said: “I think I would benefit from a full pre-season, sure. But if the full (USA) team comes calling I’m not going to say I want to stay in pre-season.

“If it happens, I’ll talk to Robbie and the coaches. I think there would be a bit of an overlap with the European games. But one game at a time.”