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World cup: Beasley wants more playing time

LONDON — DaMarcus Beasley is hoping for more playing time with his club in Scotland this season, which could help the midfielder's chances of playing a big part for the U.S. team if it qualifies for the 2010 World Cup.

He's also trying to put behind him a costly mistake made during the Confederations Cup.

Beasley was involved in a mix-up that led to a crucial second goal in a 3-0 loss to Brazil on June 18. Beasley apologized for the error, but coach Bob Bradley dropped him for the rest of the tournament.

"It was very disappointing. One mistake and I'm out," Beasley said, after his Glasgow Rangers lost 3-0 in a preseason game against English club Arsenal.

"It just shows that no player is guaranteed a spot. It's the first time ever in my career that it's happened to me in the national team. It was difficult to swallow."

After he lost his place on the team, the U.S. went on to reach the Confederations Cup final and beat Spain along the way. In the championship match against Brazil, the U.S. was leading 2-0 at halftime before falling 3-2.

Beasley, a big part of the U.S. World Cup teams in 2002 and 2006, became a virtual nonentity by the end of his second season with Rangers. He appeared in 11 Scottish Premier League games, plus one each in the Scottish League and FA Cup, and the 27-year-old didn't score a single goal. He got into just three games after Dec. 6.

Bradley recently complained that he sees rusty players arriving at U.S. national team camps because many key Americans have been buried on the benches of their European clubs.

"If you're in form, you're going to play," Beasley said. "It's as simple as that. I think that's how every national team coach wants it to be, wants players to be in form. If I can get a good run of games and be fit and be back to the way I used to play, then I think (Bradley) will be happy with that."

Beasley had been hampered by injuries during his two seasons with Rangers, but feels he is ready to prove he can play regularly. He played the first 45 minutes in Sunday's match and was substituted after halftime.

The Scottish league season begins Aug. 15.

"The main thing is being injury-free," he said. "At the same time I want to play. The (coach) knows that. I'm trying to come into camp fitter and try to stake my claim."

The U.S. hasn't named its team for a crucial World Cup qualifier Aug. 12 against Mexico at Azteca Stadium, but Beasley expects to know this week if he's been included.

U.S. midfielder Maurice Edu, who also plays for Rangers, is progressing well from knee surgery and is set to return in mid-September, Rangers manager Walter Smith said Sunday.

Edu had surgery in June after being injured in the Scottish Premier League title-clincher against Dundee United on May 24.