PHILADELPHIA– Matt Miazga and Cameron Carter-Vickers have the most familiarity of any players in the current U.S. Men’s National Team camp. And an argument can be made they are two of the most in-sync players in the entire talent pool at the moment.
After working their way up through the U.S. youth system, Miazga and Carter-Vickers are at the forefront of the youth movement installed by interim manager Dave Sarachan.
The pair started the March friendly against Paraguay, and they should be in the running to start Monday’s match versus Bolivia at Talen Energy Stadium.
“I’ve said the past few camps as well, we’ve played a while together now since the U-20 World Cup, Olympic qualifying and now we played our first senior national team against Paraguay.” Miazga said. “We have good chemistry. We get along on and off the pitch and hopefully now we can continue to establish ourselves and make an impact with the senior team.”
“We played a lot together in the youth stages with the U-20s and U-23s. It’s another good opportunity for us to hopefully get on the pitch together and build off what we’ve been doing,” Carter-Vickers said.
The young American centerbacks aren’t far from each other when they’re with their parent clubs in England, as Miazga is at Chelsea and Carter-Vickers at Tottenham.
“We talk every now and then,” Carter-Vickers said. “When he first signed for Chelsea, we went out a few times. Now it’s a bit more difficult because he’s in Holland, but we definitely keep in touch.”
Both players earned minutes out on loan in the recently concluded European season.
Miazga once again thrived at Vitesse in the Eredivisie, while Carter-Vickers played with Sheffield United and Ipswich Town.
“I feel good, I feel fit. I feel sharp, I feel ready so now I’m trying to bring in my form here and make an impact here,” Miazga said. “I’ve enjoyed my time at Vitesse. I had a good successful season there, two consecutive seasons with the cup win and qualifying for Europa League so I’m happy with my growth there as a player and a person and I want to translate it now to the national team.”
“I really enjoyed last season,” Carter-Vickers said. “I think changing middle through the season exposed me to different coaches and a different kind of football. It definitely helped me as a player.”
While there’s almost a guarantee the two will feature for the USMNT Monday and against the Republic of Ireland and France, Miazga and Carter-Vickers still face unknowns when it comes to their respective club situations.
“When I go back to Tottenham next season, I’m going to try and impress the manager and as many people as I can and I know Matt thinks very similar to me,” Carter-Vickers said.
“I’m sure I’ll be in touch with them over the next few weeks, but I have to report to Cobham regardless in the beginning of July,” Miazga said.
Whether they’re playing to impress their first-team club sides, or catch more eyes to earn a move elsewhere over the next two weeks can be debated, but the two hold a similar goal when it comes to the betterment of the USMNT.
With a young squad in place, and Miazga and Carter-Vickers expected to be the anchors in defense for quite some time, it’s now about establishing the core for the next four years.
“I can only control what I can control and that’s every time I get a call-up, every time I step on the pitch,” Miazga said. “I have to perform well and give it my best. Everything else will take care of itself, but of course you want to be a part of the future and the next generation of USMNT players and that’s a goal of mine.”