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The US is in the midst of a trio of friendlies, the last of which will be played against France tomorrow at 2. We're going full future mode so while tomorrow's game probabl won't be close, It'll be nice to see what our future stars can do against a star studded line up preparing to make a World Cup run.

 

Here's highlights from the first two games.

 

 

 

Edited by DrunkOffPunch
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Julian Green scores in the 44’ to put us up 1-0! First shot of the game really. France has been dominating but after a sloppy first 10 minutes we’ve really started to settle in.

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Dortmund played Liverpool in a friendly on American soil this past week. Pulisic scored twice after being subbed in in the second half. Rumors Liverpool is interested in acquiring him. Dortmund has set his price at 81.5 million USD.

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5 minutes ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

Dortmund played Liverpool in a friendly on American soil this past week. Pulisic scored twice after being subbed in in the second half. Rumors Liverpool is interested in acquiring him. Dortmund has set his price at 81.5 million USD.

Would love to see him get even more reps at that level.

 

Still concerned about what we have outside of him but CP is clearly the key cog for Team USA for the next 2-3 world cups.

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8 minutes ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

Pulisic becomes the most expensive American transfer in history at $73 million with his transfer to Chelsea. 

I sure hope we can build off him. Tons of young talent on the team but with the new hire who knows what this teams identity will be. 

 

Crazy to think he is still only 20 years old. Will be 22 in the next world cup(if we make it) and 26 when the world cup is in Canada/USA/Mexico.

 

 

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13 minutes ago, Minnesota_husker said:

I sure hope we can build off him. Tons of young talent on the team but with the new hire who knows what this teams identity will be. 

 

Crazy to think he is still only 20 years old. Will be 22 in the next world cup(if we make it) and 26 when the world cup is in Canada/USA/Mexico.

 

 

Ya know I wouldn’t be surprised if by 2022 Weston McKennie is our best player. He’s having a great season at Schalke and has played multiple positions.

 

Some kind of older news but...

 

-Josh Sargeant was called up to Werder Bremen’s first team and scored a couple goals.

-Haji Wright was called up to Schalke’s first team and scored a goal off an assist from McKennie

-Disappointed in the Berhalter hire. 

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3 minutes ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

Ya know I wouldn’t be surprised if by 2022 Weston McKennie is our best player. He’s having a great season at Schalke and has played multiple positions.

 

Some kind of older news but...

 

-Josh Sargeant was called up to Werder Bremen’s first team and scored a couple goals.

-Haji Wright was called up to Schalke’s first team and scored a goal off an assist from McKennie

-Disappointed in the Berhalter hire. 

I have never been so disconnected from USMNT news as I have been since we didnt make the World cup.

 

I am trying to get excited again but the Berhalter hire seemed weird at best. They did this year long search when they could have just hired him right away. No idea why you go through this horse and pony show to hire a local coach.

 

I dont know a ton about Weston but I will read up on him.

 

I know there is a TON of young talent. I do like the idea of a few of these guys playing together. Nick Taitague also plays for Schalke and while he hasnt played a ton, I think there is some hope there. 

 

We should learn more with the Gold cup happening this year. I hope they just go super young and work through the pain of that. I dont mind a few vets like Bradley making the team but would prefer to move past the Jozy Altidores. 

 

Also need to figure out who our goalie will be. 

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8 minutes ago, Minnesota_husker said:

 

We should learn more with the Gold cup happening this year. I hope they just go super young and work through the pain of that. I dont mind a few vets like Bradley making the team but would prefer to move past the Jozy Altidores. 

 

Also need to figure out who our goalie will be. 

Please no older guys especially Bradley. His legs are gone and we have plenty of experienced guys at centerfield. Zack Steffen will be the goal keeper IMO. Had already played some in Europe before his move to Columbus and is transferring to Man City. 

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The US u20 team beat France 3-2 to advance to the quarter finals of the u20 World Cup. This is the second u20 World Cup in a row where we’ve reached the quarters. We play Ecuador Saturday at 10:30. Assuming on FS1.

 

Edit- This is actually the third consecutive time we’ve reached the quarters.

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Lost 2-1. Didn’t see some of the second half. Came out slow but it didn’t hurt us. From what I saw the game was pretty evenly matched. Missed a couple opportunities but so did Ecuador. Weah has a real flair when passing.

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Just some thoughts overall on this Gold Cup.

 

-Pulisic by far our best player. This team ran through him.

-Zardes shouldn’t suit up for the MNT anymore. He adds nothing from an attacking standpoint. Should’ve brought Sargent.

-No depth. Pretty clear Berhalter trusted no one off the bench. Losing Adams and Holmes hurt. Also the subs he brought in against Mex made no sense. Couldnt hold possession so we take out our best  #9 at hold up play and bring in Zardes who has a horrible first touch. Sub Roldan in for Morris when our best attacking winger was Boyd. Yes Boyd played bad against Curaçao, but Morris and Roldan we’re invisible vs Jamaica. Lastly a LB for a LB when you’re down a goal late? Cmon.

-Tbh I don’t really understand Berhalters philosophy. We’re playing 3 in the back on the attack so when an opposing team pushes their front line up to press we don’t have the numbers to out pass it and and end up turning it over. Seems like when we play from the back there’s nobody in the middle to support Bradley.  Also don’t understand why Pulisic is up with Altidore on defense. Are we a possession team or a counter attacking team?

-Time to start building for the 2022 WC. If things work out we’re going to be a talented but young team. I don’t know yet if Berhalter is the guy for the job.

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Going to do a breakdown of our prospective 2022 WC team. If I miss someone let me know but this will be based mostly on opinion and if some of our younger guys can develop. It's hard to keep up with transfers and rising/falling players so some of the info may be wrong. Starting with goalies.

 

Goalkeepers:

Starters

1. Zack Steffen 24 Manchester City(CL)- On loan at Fortuna Dusseldorf

2. Ethan Horvath 24 Club Brugge(CL)

 

Backups

1. Bill Hamid 28 FC Midtyjlland(EL)- On loan at DC United

2. Tyler Miller 26 LAFC

3. Jesse Gonzalez 24 FC Dallas

4. Sean Johnson 30 NYCFC

 

Thoughts

Pretty much a 2 man race between Steffen and Horvath. Earlier last season Horvath lost his starting spot but won it back. Going to be interesting what happens with Steffen on his second trip back to Europe. Needs to lock down a starting spot. No real Tim Howard level of GK in this group but Steffen has the athleticism to break out in Europe.

 

(CL) Denotes Champions League 

(EL) Denotes Europa League

 

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Right Backs:

Starters

1. Deandre Yedlin 25 Newcastle United

 

Backups

1. Reggie Cannon 21 FC Dallas

2. Nick Lima 24 San Jose Earthquakes

3. Sergino Dest 18 Ajax(CL)

 

Thoughts

Yedlin is far away the best RB right now but has been battling injuries. Cannon played really well in the Gold Cup after only making it in after Tyler Adams got injured. He's young, quick, and a played some pretty good defense so I could see a possible transfer to Europe coming but he'll have to land in a spot that will offer first team minutes. Dest played really well at the U-20 WC IMO. He's a dual national with the Netherlands so we're going to have to call him up soon to lock him up. He's my hopeful to take over/sub in for Yedlin if he continues to develop.

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Center Backs:

Starters

1. John Brooks 26 Wolfsburg(EL)

2. Matt Miazga 23 Chelsea(CL)

 

Backups

1. Cameron Carter-Vickers 21 Tottenham Hotspur(CL)

2. Aaron Long 26 NYRB

3. Walker Zimmerman 26 LAFC

4. Chris Richards 19 Bayern Munich(CL)

 

Thoughts

Like Yedlin, Brooks is by far our best CB but also has the injury bug. Miazga and CCV both figure to be loaned out again. Long played really well in the Gold Cup. Outside of Miazga's performance against Mexico I'd say he was the best CB although Miazga only played the last 2 games. Richards plays on Bayern II which recently got promoted into the 3rd tier of the Bundesliga but I would prefer he gets loaned out to a better club. Way too good for that level of play but probably not good enough to get solid playing time with the first team. Richards is probably our best prospect at CB since Brooks.

 

Edit- Should also add Richards was one of if not the best players on our U-20 WC team. Our other CB (Keita) really struggled.

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2 hours ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

Just some thoughts overall on this Gold Cup.

 

-Pulisic by far our best player. This team ran through him.

-Zardes shouldn’t suit up for the MNT anymore. He adds nothing from an attacking standpoint. Should’ve brought Sargent.

-No depth. Pretty clear Berhalter trusted no one off the bench. Losing Adams and Holmes hurt. Also the subs he brought in against Mex made no sense. Couldnt hold possession so we take out our best  #9 at hold up play and bring in Zardes who has a horrible first touch. Sub Roldan in for Morris when our best attacking winger was Boyd. Yes Boyd played bad against Curaçao, but Morris and Roldan we’re invisible vs Jamaica. Lastly a LB for a LB when you’re down a goal late? Cmon.

-Tbh I don’t really understand Berhalters philosophy. We’re playing 3 in the back on the attack so when an opposing team pushes their front line up to press we don’t have the numbers to out pass it and and end up turning it over. Seems like when we play from the back there’s nobody in the middle to support Bradley.  Also don’t understand why Pulisic is up with Altidore on defense. Are we a possession team or a counter attacking team?

-Time to start building for the 2022 WC. If things work out we’re going to be a talented but young team. I don’t know yet if Berhalter is the guy for the job.

The announcers said Altidore may not have been ready to play all 90 plus minutes so Zardes came in. Something about conditioning for him. In my opinion, we should have given Zardes the start and subbed Altidore in if that was the case. Zardes usually plays well but looked lost tonight. Also, there were too many missed opportunities tonight, it seemed like Mexico was giving the game away but we just couldn't take the lead. Remember that this is a young team and many players played against Mexico for the first time tonight. Michael Bradley always gets hated on but in the second half, he was atrocious giving the ball right back to Mexico.

 

The official tonight was strange. He would call tick tack calls on the US but not on Mexico. Even when there was an obvious foul. Also, he should have pulled out some yellows on both sides tonight. But he is not the reason we lost at all it just seemed off. What are your thoughts? 

 

I saw some good things from Berhalter tonight. Mostly in the first half but we need to let him develop the young guys. We do not need a new coach for a while as Greg is doing just fine. No idea why Zardes didn't show up but that was a bad sub. However, that sub needed to happen for Altidore. I also think Jordan Morris wasn't helping us get possession so that is why Roldan came in the game. The last sub was surprising for me as well but we got a lot of chances at the end and the beginning of the game. From 40-65 it seemed like Mexico had possession forever, and that needs to change. Disappointed in the loss but proud of our guys to fight till the end. Gold cup 2021 comes before the WC so that is next on the agenda for the US.

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Question from a soccer novice.  I don't follow soccer at all other than I want our teams to do well in the WC and I will watch them there.  Loved watching the women.


If I remember correctly, the men didn't qualify for the WC in 2018 and there was a lot of people upset at the coaching and in particularly who the coach allowed on the team and played.  I remember a lot of people upset that certain player/players weren't played.

 

Has that been improved?  Is the issue taken care of, or is there still a lot of drama around the management of the program?

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17 minutes ago, BigRedBuster said:

Question from a soccer novice.  I don't follow soccer at all other than I want our teams to do well in the WC and I will watch them there.  Loved watching the women.


If I remember correctly, the men didn't qualify for the WC in 2018 and there was a lot of people upset at the coaching and in particularly who the coach allowed on the team and played.  I remember a lot of people upset that certain player/players weren't played.

 

Has that been improved?  Is the issue taken care of, or is there still a lot of drama around the management of the program?

It's unclear if it's fixed, but the team did much better in reaching the final of the Gold Cup. So the team is better than it was in 2018.

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14 minutes ago, RedDenver said:

It's unclear if it's fixed, but the team did much better in reaching the final of the Gold Cup. So the team is better than it was in 2018.

Thanks,

 

I know the women have been good for a long time.  But, it will be interesting to see if the success the women are having lifts the mens program.  Will they rise to the pressure of trying to live up to the women's example?  Or, will they still struggle?

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2 hours ago, RedDenver said:

It's unclear if it's fixed, but the team did much better in reaching the final of the Gold Cup. So the team is better than it was in 2018.

The Gold Cup is a pretty bad tournament. The US and Mexico are the only teams that can compete at an international level but they rarely have their best XI in the tournament. To consider the Gold Cup a success you have to win it if you’re the US/Mexico.

 

2 hours ago, BigRedBuster said:

Thanks,

 

I know the women have been good for a long time.  But, it will be interesting to see if the success the women are having lifts the mens program.  Will they rise to the pressure of trying to live up to the women's example?  Or, will they still struggle?

No. The reason the women are good and the men are bad is that no other countries were really invested in the women’s game at any level. Jill Ellis the US coach was born in England but didn’t play competitive soccer until she moved to the US as a kid. Youth programs, hs sports, and college sports are what has elevated the women’s program to what it is. As the sport grows on the women’s side the advantages the US has had will shrink. We’ll probably still be really good, just not as dominant as we have been.

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10 hours ago, HuskermanMike said:

The announcers said Altidore may not have been ready to play all 90 plus minutes so Zardes came in. Something about conditioning for him. In my opinion, we should have given Zardes the start and subbed Altidore in if that was the case. Zardes usually plays well but looked lost tonight. Also, there were too many missed opportunities tonight, it seemed like Mexico was giving the game away but we just couldn't take the lead. Remember that this is a young team and many players played against Mexico for the first time tonight. Michael Bradley always gets hated on but in the second half, he was atrocious giving the ball right back to Mexico.

 

The official tonight was strange. He would call tick tack calls on the US but not on Mexico. Even when there was an obvious foul. Also, he should have pulled out some yellows on both sides tonight. But he is not the reason we lost at all it just seemed off. What are your thoughts? 

 

I saw some good things from Berhalter tonight. Mostly in the first half but we need to let him develop the young guys. We do not need a new coach for a while as Greg is doing just fine. No idea why Zardes didn't show up but that was a bad sub. However, that sub needed to happen for Altidore. I also think Jordan Morris wasn't helping us get possession so that is why Roldan came in the game. The last sub was surprising for me as well but we got a lot of chances at the end and the beginning of the game. From 40-65 it seemed like Mexico had possession forever, and that needs to change. Disappointed in the loss but proud of our guys to fight till the end. Gold cup 2021 comes before the WC so that is next on the agenda for the US.

That’s a lot to respond to so I’ll take it piece by piece.

 

IIRC Altidore came into camp off an injury. Berhalter barely played him until he started against Jamaica in the semis so he could get through the entire tournament. If wasn’t fit after 3 weeks to play a full 90 then the question becomes why keep him on the squad. The Gold Cup isn’t a big deal like the Euros or Copa America so why not bring in Sargent who is the future #9 especially when he passed up the u-20 WC. 

 

Zardes is a pretty sub par international #9 with a bad first touch. If we can’t hold possession and play in their box he disappears.

 

We really weren’t that young. The only guy I’d argue was inexperienced at this level was Reggie Cannon. The problem for us is that if we want to improve our future teams become a lot younger.

 

Personally didn’t have a problem with the reffing. He probably could’ve handed out yellows a bit earlier to try to control the match better but I thought he did an excellent job controlling the match considering how heated it was early on. 

 

What exactly did you see from Greg that impressed? The inability to stay composed and break a high press, the lack of play through the midfield, and the only attack coming through the wings or Pulisic cutting through the D has been a consistent concern through this GC. We just finally hit a team that had actual pros that were properly conditioned and not dead legged by the 70’. Also the senior team doesn’t really develop players they aren’t in camp long enough together to make a big impact. That’s what clubs are for. I’m not calling for him to be fired but it was a pretty questionable hire from the beginning and this GC didn’t really sway me.

 

The problem with the Roldan sub was that we weren’t really getting the ball up to the wingers in the first place. Would’ve preferred Boyd as he’s the best attacking winger we had on the bench. The end of the game we had more chances because Mexico became more defensive and compact to try to keep us from scoring. That’s pretty normal in most games.

 

Well CONCACAF Nations League starts this fall but Idk if that’s a tournament worthy of our best XI or not so we’ll have to see. Also WC qualifying starts in 2020 and I would imagine well either have our best XI for that or real close. Either way after failing to make the 2018 WC it is paramount we start building towards that now.

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1 hour ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

The Gold Cup is a pretty bad tournament. The US and Mexico are the only teams that can compete at an international level but they rarely have their best XI in the tournament. To consider the Gold Cup a success you have to win it if you’re the US/Mexico.

 

No. The reason the women are good and the men are bad is that no other countries were really invested in the women’s game at any level. Jill Ellis the US coach was born in England but didn’t play competitive soccer until she moved to the US as a kid. Youth programs, hs sports, and college sports are what has elevated the women’s program to what it is. As the sport grows on the women’s side the advantages the US has had will shrink. We’ll probably still be really good, just not as dominant as we have been.

 

I understand all that.  But, on the flip side, our mens soccer has not been competitive for most of the history of the WC because even American boys didn't play soccer.  Now, soccer has grown enough that there are millions of boys and girls playing all over the country.  We have MLS that is gaining in popularity.  We have technology now that we can watch much more soccer on TV.  We have parents pushing their boys to play soccer instead of football because of injury concerns.  I know that even in central Nebraska, a kid can play soccer year round if they want to.


Our mens program SHOULD increase in competitiveness because of all of that.  I'm guessing we have some.....but with a long ways to go to be a meaningful contender regularly in the WC.

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1 hour ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

The Gold Cup is a pretty bad tournament. The US and Mexico are the only teams that can compete at an international level but they rarely have their best XI in the tournament. To consider the Gold Cup a success you have to win it if you’re the US/Mexico.

I disagree. In the Gold Cup the USMNT beat the team that eliminated them from the 2018 WC, so getting to the finals is an improvement over where they were regardless of how that stacks up internationally.

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51 minutes ago, RedDenver said:

I disagree. In the Gold Cup the USMNT beat the team that eliminated them from the 2018 WC, so getting to the finals is an improvement over where they were regardless of how that stacks up internationally.

It wasn’t one result that got us kicked. That proves my point in how meaningless the GC is though. In 2017 we won the GC and then got promptly bounced in WCQ. The GC is just a series of home games for the US. In WCQ we have to play away games.

 

When you have players declining their national team invite it illustrates what the players think of the tourney. If we were to be invited to the Copa America Berhalter and our best XI would be there instead of the GC.

 

Edit- Also no Confederations Cup for the GC winner further devalues the GC.

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41 minutes ago, BigRedBuster said:

So, is the Gold Cup the start of the qualifying process for the 2022 WC?

No. The final round of WCQ is about half done when the GC starts.

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6 minutes ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

No. The final round of WCQ is about half done when the GC starts.

The WC qualifying for the 2022 half way through the final round and it's only July of 2019?

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10 minutes ago, BigRedBuster said:

The WC qualifying for the 2022 half way through the final round and it's only July of 2019?

The GC is every 2 years. Essentially the year after and before the WC. WCQ starts 2 years before the WC. So every 4 years the GC happens during WCQ in the 5th and final round. I think the qualifying was supposed to change in the 2022 WC team expansion but since that fell through I believe it’s the same format as the 2018 WCQ.

 

Heres the wiki page for 2018 WCQ if you want something that explains it better than me.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/2018_FIFA_World_Cup_qualification_(CONCACAF)

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7 minutes ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

The GC is every 2 years. Essentially the year after and before the WC. WCQ starts 2 years before the WC. So every 4 years the GC happens during WCQ in the 5th and final round. I think the qualifying was supposed to change in the 2022 WC team expansion but since that fell through I believe it’s the same format as the 2018 WCQ.

 

Heres the wiki page for 2018 WCQ if you want something that explains it better than me.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/2018_FIFA_World_Cup_qualification_(CONCACAF)

 

Oh...so you're saying the GC in 2021 will be half way through the final round of qualifying.  

 

I'm just confused on the qualifying because I read somewhere yesterday that the qualifying for 2022 has started.  I can't imagine how you can start qualifying for something that isn't going to take place for another 3 years.  

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5 hours ago, BigRedBuster said:

 

Oh...so you're saying the GC in 2021 will be half way through the final round of qualifying.  

 

I'm just confused on the qualifying because I read somewhere yesterday that the qualifying for 2022 has started.  I can't imagine how you can start qualifying for something that isn't going to take place for another 3 years.  

They probably meant preparation starts now. If our younger guys develop to their full potential then we'll be really young in 2022. No starters 30+ years of age type of young. We need to make sure those guys are getting quality minutes in good leagues otherwise we're SOL. There's a 'lost generation' essentially between the Donovan/Dempsey age group to the Pulisic/McKennie age group.

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Left Backs:

Starters

?

 

Backups

1. Kik Pierie 18 Ajax(CL)

2. Antonee Robinson 21 Everton

3. Chris Gloster 18 Hannover 96

 

Thoughts

Incredibly thin at this postion. I could've thrown a couple older guys in but by the time the WC rolls around I don't think any of them will have the quality or the legs to make much of a difference for us. Berhalter played Ream/Lovitz in this spot but both are more CBs or LBs in a 3 man back line (which is essentially what we had at the GC). Not a fan of losing a fullback in the attack so I'd rather stray from us going that route. Maybe play a RB if no true LBs can develop. Kik is a dual national with the Netherlands who has played his YNT games with them. He probably stays with the Netherlands but there is ample minutes to be had in US for an entire career if he wants it. Robinson played really well in last years friendlies where we rolled out essentially a u-24 squad. Haven't seen him play much besides that and he figures to be loaned out again this season. Gloster was another solid player for the u-20 WC. Probably set to play with Hannover's 2nd team or be loaned out.

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Defensive Midfield:

Starters

1. Tyler Adams 20 RB Leipzig(CL)

 

Backups

1. Alfredo Morales 29 Fortuna Dusseldorf

2. Russell Canouse 24 DC United

3. Jackson Yueill 22 San Jose

4. James Sands 19 NYCFC

5. Chris Durkin 19 DC United

 

Thoughts

Adams is far and away the best player here. Question is will Berhalter play him here or as an inverted RB? He would be a fool IMO to think he knows better than a Champions League side. Going to be honest IDK much about Morales/Canouse/Yueill/Sands. Durkin played poorly at the u-20 WC.

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Central Midfield:

Starters

1. Weston McKennie 20 Schalke

 

Backups

1. Paxton Pomykal 19 FC Dallas

2. Cristian Roldan 24 Seattle Sounders

3. Djordje Mihailovic 20 Chicago Fire

4. Kellyn Acosta 23 Colorado Rapids

5. Alex Mendez 18 SC Freiburg

6. Cole Bassett 17 Colorado Rapids

7. Giovanni Reyna 16 Borussia Dortmund(CL)

 

Thoughts

McKennie again the best player here. He can play a myriad of positions but I like him most as a box-to-box midfielder. Still needs some work though. At times sloppy with the ball and can get caught out of position. Pomykal was one of our best players at the u-20 WC and also is our only true CAM. Starting for FC Dallas but European teams are sniffing around and IMO it would be best for his development if he jumped on the right offer. Needs a way into the starting 11 though as he figures to be a key feature for the MNT going forward. Roldan is ok. Not mad if he makes the squad but he's a good MLS player at best. Mihailovic is a regular player in Chicago. His ceiling is probably that MLS All-Star or EFL Championship starter. Would love to be proven wrong. IMO Acosta squandered his development staying in the MLS over Europe. He has essentially plateaued for the past 2 years and plays on a really bad Colorado side. Mendez played well in the u-20 WC and will more than likely play for Freiburg's 2nd team or be loaned out to a smaller squad. Idk much about Bassett but he needs to jump to Europe if he wants to continue to develop. He'll lose PT and money short term but the long term benefits far outweigh the risk and the MLS isn't going anywhere so he'll always have that available to fall back on. Reyna recently signed with Dortmund. FWIW Pulisic signed with Dortmund when he was 15/16 so hopefully he can be a similarly skilled player.

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Wingers:

Starters

1. Christian Pulisic 20 Chelsea(CL)

 

Backups

1. Timothy Weah 19 Lille(CL)

2. Tyler Boyd 24 Besiktas(EL)

3. Paul Arriola 24 DC United

4. Duane Holmes 24 Derby County

5. Jonathan Amon 20 FC Nordsjaelland

6. Jonathan Lewis 22 Colorado Rapids

7. Konrad De La Fuente 17 Barcelona(CL)

 

Thoughts

Captain America. Wonder boy. Christian Pulisic. Best player in the pool and probably the most technically gifted we've ever had. Doesn't mean he doesn't have his faults; he could do a better job with his final pass at times and finding teammates, but that's really getting picky. Weah recently got transferred to Lille. Played great at the u20s with a lot of technical skill and passing ability. Needs to be more consistent and work on his first touch. Getting 1st team minutes is a must. Boyd recently made a one time switch from the New Zealand NT to the US. Played great in the GC group stage, bad against Curacao, then wasn't seen again so I don't have any info on how he plays against good competition. Holmes made his USMNT debut in the friendlies leading up to the GC. Looked to be a good option as an attacking winger but those friendlies were a a nightmare for us and then got hurt in camp before the GC. Don't know much about Amon other than that he's fast and had a good season with his club. Lewis played poorly in what I saw of him in the friendlies and GC B squad against Panama. Konrad played poorly in the u20s but is only 17 so it's possible the couple years age gap made a big difference. Has been playing with Barca's unders team but hopefully he can get called up to their second squad.

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Forwards:

Starters

?

 

Backups

1. Jozy Altidore 29 Toronto FC

2. Josh Sargent 19 Werder Bremen

3. Sebastian Soto 18 Hannover 96

4. Andrija Novakovich 22 Reading

5. Haji Wright 21 Schalke

 

Thoughts

Altidore right now is still our best forward. He can physically CBs and hold the ball but his finishing leaves much to be desired. He also has some problems with injuries. Sargent should've been on the GC roster. Young but was able to get some valuable experience last year with 10 Bundesliga matches including 1 start and 2 goals. Look for him to to be a regular on the first team whether off the bench or starting. Soto was great in the u20s especially since Sargent declined them to try and make the GC roster. Hannover got relegated last season so hopefully this means Soto will be able to get some 1st team minutes. Novakovich has been on Reading's senior team since 2015 but been loaned out each year. He's played well on his loan spells so hopefully he's proven to Reading he's ready for a more stable future. Boy when watched Haji Wright playing in the u-17s I really thought he was going to be a star. Then again I was more focused on the goals scored and when you have guys like Pulisic, McKennie, and Adams feeding you the ball you tend to look really good. Either way he was able to crack Schalke's first team last year with 7 Bundesliga appearances and 1 goal. Hopefully he's able to get more first team minutes or is loaned out to a smaller squad in the top flight of European football. Needs to be getting first team minutes wherever he is for his development. at 6'3 he could dominate crosses in the opponents box.

 

 

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Now time for a very optimistic 2022 WC squad that would also work as a 2020 Olympic squad due to age restrictions. Berhalter prefers a 4-3-3 I believe but IMO a 4-1-4-1 would take better advantage of our best available players.

 

                  Sargent

Weah-McKennie-Pomykal-Pulisic

                   Adams

Pierie*---Books---Miazga---Yedlin

            Steffen/Horvath

 

If I'm Berhalter I'm putting everything into trying to get Kik Pierie. We're so thin at that position and you could offer Pierie multiple starts in the WC and possible Olympic games. IDK the Netherlands depth there but you'd have to imagine we'd give a way easier path  to minutes although probably on a worse side that doesn't play in European competitions as well as the fact hes been with the Dutch unders teams and would rather stay there. If he says no slot in Antonee Robinson or a RB. Put in either Cannon or Dest at RB and/or Richards/CCV at one of the CB slots and that's your potential Olympic squad that works within the age restrictions. TBH that would be a very good Olympic squad.

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5 minutes ago, RedDenver said:

Why the face palm?

Suspending money for a WC because of a pay dispute I’m sure he knows nothing about. Listen I have no problem with the women using their success as leverage for more money but throwing mud on the MNT whether intentional or not is wrong. IDK how you would even decide what is equal when the women get salary plus benefits while the men are pay-to-play with no benefits. If you gave the women the exact same deal the men get I’d bet they would decline it because then the USSF wouldn’t pay their NWSL salary as well so they’d have to move to Europe where they get upwards of 10x their NWSL contracts so they get steady pay. The NWSL would then probably dissolve when the USWNT players leave as only 2 of the 9 operate in the black as is.  

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36 minutes ago, DrunkOffPunch said:

Suspending money for a WC because of a pay dispute I’m sure he knows nothing about. Listen I have no problem with the women using their success as leverage for more money but throwing mud on the MNT whether intentional or not is wrong. IDK how you would even decide what is equal when the women get salary plus benefits while the men are pay-to-play with no benefits. If you gave the women the exact same deal the men get I’d bet they would decline it because then the USSF wouldn’t pay their NWSL salary as well so they’d have to move to Europe where they get upwards of 10x their NWSL contracts so they get steady pay. The NWSL would then probably dissolve when the USWNT players leave as only 2 of the 9 operate in the black as is.  

Manchin doesn't mention the MNT at all.

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