After a long wait, the United States Men’s National Team roster was announced on Sunday. Find out who, from this new USMNT squad, to watch for and who needs to impress.
On Friday, the United States Men’s National Team will host Brazil in their first of two friendlies to come over the next 10 days. The following Tuesday, Mexico await the USMNT in what is always a tense and entertaining matchup.
The roster chosen for the two friendly matches took a while to officially announce but what resulted was an interesting selection to analyze.
Here’s the complete 24-player roster.
Alex Bono (Toronto FC); Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge); Zack Steffen (Columbus Crew)
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John Brooks (Wolfsburg); Cameron Carter-Vickers (Swansea City); Eric Lichaj (Hull City); Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls); Matt Miazga (Nantes); Shaq Moore (Reus Deporitu); Tim Parker (New York Red Bulls); Antonee Robinson (Wigan Athletic); DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United)
Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids); Tyler Adams (New York Red Bulls); Paul Arriola (DC United); Julian Green (Greuther Furth); Sebastian Lleget (LA Galaxy); Weston McKennie (Schalke); Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders); Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew); Tim Weah (Paris Saint-Germain)
Andrija Novakovich (Fortuna Sittard); Bobby Wood (Hannover 96); Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew)
Three players who we haven’t seen for some time are John Brooks, Kellyn Acosta, and Sebastian Lleget. Head coach Dave Sarachan brings these the trio into the mix after spending time away from the national team.
Brooks scored in his first match for Wolfsburg and has made it back into the starting XI for the Bundesliga club. The way he is playing is perhaps a sign that he may be one of the top defensive options for the USMNT for the next World Cup qualifying run.
For Acosta, his time at FC Dallas has come to an end and he is enjoying life with his new club the Colorado Rapids. Although is not going to be on a playoff team this season, Acosta as made an instant impact for the Rapids since arriving and has shown he still has what it takes to earn USMNT rosters.
Lleget has seen a resurgence this season for the LA Galaxy. After a season-ending injury in 2017. Lleget has slowly but effectively begun to display he deserves a look from the USMNT coaching staff.
Young roster trend continues
To no one’s surprise, the Sarachan has gone with a relatively young roster again as the average age is 23. The trend of young selections has been the main theme since the U.S. failed to qualify for the World Cup.
Usual suspects like Adams, Weah, Yedlin, and Steffen are back on the roster and will give another glimpse of what is ahead for U.S. Soccer.
There is one new face making the team sheet and that is New York Red Bulls defender Aaron Long. The 25-year-old has had a stellar campaign for the MLS club and has done well on the backline with fellow call-up Tim Parker.
As American starlet Christian Pulisic will not be a part of the friendlies, this will provide an intriguing storyline to see how the USMNT plays without their star. This, of course, will not be the first time this group of players has been without their playmaker, the friendlies against Ireland and France back in June did not feature Pulisic.
Players like McKennie and Weah will have to step up a bit in the midfield to help fill the absence. Additionally, this could give others like Adams and Acosta a chance to display their talents to European scouts. They should have some extra incentive to perform.