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SBI Question of the Day: Which uncapped dual-national will help USMNT most?

Photo by Kevin Jairaj/USA Today Sports

For years, the U.S. Men’s National Team has been built around dual-nationals. Players like Fabian Johnson, John Brooks and Jermaine Jones have been key members of the USMNT for some time.

Now, another talented crop of dual-nationals is getting closer to making their own switches.

Goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez, midfield Kenny Saeif and forward Dom Dwyer served as headliners on this summer’s Gold Cup roster. Gonzalez is reportedly close to finalizing a one-time switch to the USMNT after previously representing Mexico as a youth international. Isareli-American Kenny Saeif has turned down overtures from Israel while forging a career in Belgium while Dwyer, born in England, has long been a star for Sporting KC.

They’re not the only three players on the 40-man preliminary roster with options, though. ¬†Cristian Roldan, a centerpiece of the Seattle Sounders midfield, is eligible for both El Salvador and Guatemala. Tommy McNamara, also on the roster, ¬†received attention from Ireland due to his performances with New York City FC.

Outside of the Gold Cup roster, there are still some American finalizing their own switches. Stefan Frei moved a step closer after being named a citizen on Tuesday while fellow January camp call-up Kekuta Manneh remains one for the future.

With that in mind, which dual-national would add the most to the USMNT? What do you expect from each of the guys mentioned above?

Vote in the poll below and state your reasoning in the comment section.

[polldaddy poll=9768499]


  1. For me, Saief has the most upside. He is already playing at a higher level than most MLSers. AND he plays at a position of need, a left sided player with an excellent defensive bite to his already aggressive attacking game.

  2. Frankly none are going to step in and replace anyone or instantly upgrade the team all that much. All are decent players, but at best they are depth options and/or future prospects. If this GC wasn’t played so late in the summer I don’t think we’d see half of these players even on the 40 man preliminary roster as Williams, Hyndman, Gooch, CCV, & Green would all have been prime targets for a closer look by Bruce.

    However if I had to rank them I’d go with the followin:

    Saief could be a decent back-up to Nagbe on the left wing.
    Gonzalez would be a nice addition. But I don’t think he’s any better than Horvath or Steffen.
    Manneh could provide depth at LM, but needs to get back on tract on the club level.
    Dwyer at best would be 4th tier striker. Again depth, but not a starter, and not a prospect.
    Roldan has the most competition so likely would only see time in January Camps. But with Lletget & Hyndman unavailable he has a chance to make a run/impression. But there are a number of young talented options coming up who’ll likely keep him on the fringes within 2 years.
    Frei & McNamara don’t add anything and are at a stage where we’ve already got multiple players in the pool that are their equal.

  3. None of the above.

    I don’t see any of these players coming in and making any meaningful impact any time soon.

  4. Manneh. Loaded with potential, but destined to disappoint due to inconsistency. However, he could be a deadly guy to bring in against tired legs late in games. He puts the fear of God in defenders with his speed.

    • In January they said he still had some FIFA paperwork to process not sure if that has been finalized yet. He only recently started seeing time after his trade to Columbus hasn’t had a great season as he has adjusted to his new club.

  5. I don’t think any of these players really help short term, most would add depth but the starters and first subs are probably easy set going into Russia unless somebody steps up big. If saeif can play the 10 role and could slide CP outside then I would say him, but I’m hoping Hyndman comes along and proves he can give the team some flexibility in that role. When CP moves from the middle they lose their attack and having someone else that can provide that passing and attacking mentality would be awesome.

    • I believe Saief plays out wide for his club, not sure how much he plays inside. Whoscored doesn’t track positioning of players in the Jupiler League, but in his 8 Champions League appearances he only once played centrally and that was in the qualifying rounds in a 4-3-2-1 as part of the two below the striker. I checked a few Jupiler games on Soccerway and he played as a wing in all of them, but I only check 4 or 5.

      • Key word there is ‘prospect’. Horvath is not guaranteed to fulfill his potential. Sean Johnson and Bill Hamid haven’t lived up to their potential and behind them Gonzalez/Horvath seem the best prospects.
        I’ll play the numbers game and say Gonzalez to increase our odds of keeping quality goalkeeping tradition alive.
        Haven’t ever seen Saeif play (not sure anyone here actually has). Dwyer could be our 3rd/4th striker option, but I think thats his ceiling.

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