There were some surprise inclusions in the US team June 10 2014

There were some surprise inclusions in the US team, like Julian Green and Timmy Chandler, and some well-publicised omissions like your long-time team-mate Landon Donovan. How long does it take before the selected guys begin the work of becoming one team?

It’s a quicker process than you might think. We’re all professionals and we all know the way things go. Some guys make it and some don’t. All the guys in this camp know each other. It’s just something to deal with it. It’s part of being a pro.

You recently earned your 54th win for the US, one better than previous best Kasey Keller. You were his No2 at Germany 2006. How did his mentorship help you become the keeper you are today?

I backed him up for four or five years, and while he gave me good advice, it was the things he didn’t tell me that had the most impact. I observed him in the big moments, during the big games. I watched the way he handled himself in the hotel, with the media, with everyone. I am my own guy, but as a professional I modeled myself on him. In goalkeeping terms, he’s Superman.

Was there one lesson you remember best?

It was his calm. In those biggest moments, the man always stayed cool.

Back to the here-and-now. Facing a group containing Portugal, Germany and Ghana – what many are calling the ‘group of death’ – what does success look like?

Defining success isn’t easy. My brain works like this: anything less then winning the World Cup leaves room to doubt what you did. If you don’t win the whole thing, then it’s hard to say it was a success. But that’s a high bar, so we’ll start by trying to get out of the group.