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Projecting the USMNT roster for the March friendlies


Gregg Berhalter’s second U.S. Men’s National Team roster is due out on Tuesday as a pair of friendliers against Chile and Ecuador are quickly approaching.

January Camp was a good chance for new U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Gregg Berhalter to settle into his duties while getting a good look at the MLS based players available to him. However, with European based players like Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, and Timothy Weah unavailable, it was far from a first choice squad. This march international break will open up that European market and give the new boss a chance to see everyone available to him for the foreseeable future.

With that in mind, Berhalter should pull heavily from this European pool of players as he looks to figure out the best 23 players available to him for this summer’s Gold Cup.

Here’s a look at the roster Gregg Berhalter should call in for these two games:


Zack Steffen, Ethan Horvath, Jonathan Klinsmann

Zack Steffen is the starter between the sticks for the foreseeable future, so there’s no reason not to call him into the squad, especially with the relative lack of depth at the position. Young European based keepers Horvath and Klinsmann deserve a look, however, and Berhalter would be right to call them in.


Matt Miazga, Cameron Carter-Vickers, John Brooks, DeAndre Yedlin, Antonee Robinson, Shaq Moore, Erik Palmer-Brown

Most of the best defenders in the player pool are over in Europe right now and you can bet Berhalter will want a good look at each an every one of them. Regular stalwarts like John Brooks, Matt Miazga, and DeAndre Yedlin will certainly be there.

Berhalter will also want to examine the youth available to him. Antonee Robinson, Shaq Moore, and Erik Palmer-Brown have all gotten looks with the National Team before, but Berhalter has never coached them. Now is the best time for him to get a solid look.


Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, Tyler Adams, Julian Green, Michael Bradley, Wil Trapp, Darlington Nagbe, Romain Gall, Paul Arriola

Midfield is the one area of the team that will require support from MLS. Once Berhalter gets past the future core of the team in Pulisic, McKennie, and Adams, he will need to call in some help. That’s where the experience of Michael Bradley comes in, as well as the leadership abilities of Will Trapp and the proven skill of Darlington Nagbe and Paul Arriola.

Rounding out the unit should be Romain Gall, who has stood out in the midfield at Malmo in Sweden.


Josh Sargent, Timothy Weah, Bobby Wood, Andrija Novakovich

Berhalter has to be excited about the forwards he has available. Sargent is making massive strides with Werder Bremen. He just signed a long term extension and is going to be the main man up front for the USMNT in the long term. Berhalter is probably itching to get a look at Weah. He’s scored twice in eight appearances (two starts) on his loan at Celtic. Wood will bring along experience to help guide the very young forward pool along.


  1. They should consider bringing Robinson off the bench as a wing mid or maybe even a wing forward. The one thing he can do is get down a line and whack a dangerous cross in.

  2. Frei Gonzalez Horvath Melia [do we really need to see Steffen every time?]
    Long Parker Zimmerman Brooks Lima Cannon Robinson Moore Payne Laursen
    McKennie Adams Green Lletget Saief Amon Holmes Sabbi Tillman E. Alvarez Gall Sabanadzovic
    Weah Sargent Wood Siebatcheu Pulisic

    Personally I’d play 2 separate teams for the 2 games, since we are short on time, call up an unusually high amount of players to do so, and try and play catch up on talent eval and system immersion before GC. Or you can run out last year’s consensus 23 and you don’t learn anything new, make the same mistakes we have been making, and basically choose your GC team now from not giving anyone else a chance.

  3. ————Sargent————-

    Tell me I’m wrong

    • I could see that reflexively getting done since we are drifting towards being a pecking order snob type team — but that back five gets taken to the woodshed. Not a one can actually defend and their 6 cover is the Jogger.

      • Would you move Adams to the #6, Put McKennie in front of him, sit Weah behind Sargent, and then put in Gall on the left wing?


    • If you had to do something within Berhalter’s system and a fairly conventional pool, but wanted to actually be competitive doing so, it would probably look like:

      Pulisic Sargent Weah
      Green McKennie
      Cannon Long Parker Lima

      That’s several good, athletic attackers, punctuated by Sargent who is clinical, Adams who will actually hustle for cleanup, but who can also pass from the 6 spot, a topline keeper, and then defenders who get defending and can man mark, as opposed to people chosen for what club they play at on the hope that next game this whole defending thing clicks.

  4. I wouldn’t expect an all European roster like is listed above. To use the defenders as an example: I think you have likely starters in Brooks and Yedlin, but after that the rest of our best defenders are probably from MLS. I would expect the best of the defenders from January camp to be the next few names on this roster. We all hope the Pulisic, Adams, McKennie trio to be the heart of our midfield going forward, but again after that I think our best players come from MLS. And it looks wide open at the forward positions.

  5. This list looks like it came from somebody who doesn’t even follow the player pool. For example, Antonee Robinson is still injured. Who’s writing for this site now? Smh.

      • Well, he’s not totally wrong because Antonee did just come back from injury to start his first game, where by all accounts he didn’t look good at all. I don’t think Greg needs to bring in anyone who isn’t totally match fit, this I’d find it hard to see Robinson called in for this camp. One player who won’t be there is EPB, who will be with the U-23 team in Spain according the NEC Breda website. CCV is another player who may be with that team as well, so I’m expecting to see one of either Aaron Long or Zimmerman, maybe both. Shaq Moore, if we’re honest, belongs nowhere near this team right now and neither does Julian Green.

  6. For the most part the projected call-ups are fairly spot on. I could see a few changes/additions though…
    Keeper: I’d drop Klinsmann and bring in Guzan or Johnson. I would have said Hamid before he opened his big mouth.
    Defense: I’d drop Moore and insert Lima. I’d also add Johnson (if possible) or another LB.
    I wouldn’t bring in any of the MLS CB’s for this camp.
    Midfield: Like many I don’t see the point of Bradley & Trapp. One or the other should be dropped. I’d drop Gall for Homes, and possibly Nagbe for Lletget. Would also think about including Saief to camp. Let the best options in camp make the game roster.
    Striker: No real changes, but maybe add Morris now that he’s healthy enough to play. Let the 5 fight it out to make the game day roster.

    I see no reason to limit the call-ups to 23. We need to get look at a number of players before the May/June deadline for the Gold Cup. We need to assess who’s in the pool and who are the depth options. That can only be done by taking a close look at what each player brings and having them fight it out in camps.

    • Shaq Moore deserves no more shots with the national team until and unless he’s playing for something higher than a crap team’s reserves in a crap league.

  7. No MB, please. His leadership led us to a loss at T&T and a failure to qualify for the Wolrd Cup. In what universe would you want this loser marshaling our midfield and teaching our youngsters? Also, Haji Wright instead of Bobby Wood. Wood isn’t playing and isn’t scoring. So, bring in a youngster who has played–albeit sparingly–and has scored–albeit only once in league play.

  8. Morris didn’t get into the January camp because he was in injury recovery. We need to take a look at him, given his past, to see how and if he fits in now that he’s healthy. I’m not sure about some of the Euro guys for the Gold Cup because they haven’t been getting a lot of minutes for their club. Weah does well, but he only gets sub minutes. Palmer Brown has just begun starting after sitting on the bench for quite a while. Sargent, after a good start, hasn’t seen much time on the pitch since. This is one of the problems with the late start for Berhalter. At this point he should have gotten the players for the Gold Cup pretty well established, but this will be his first camp with the Euro players when he should be looking at a blended lineup. Anyway, I’d replace some of the Euro players who aren’t playing much with some of the local guys who have shown well. Zardes, for example, scored a brace over the weekend and I like Lletget for the midfield. Also, no mention here of any guy from Liga MX. Alvarado is playing pretty regularly now, so I would bring him in. And, as mentioned last week, I’d bring in the kid Alvarez from the Galaxy just so he can get the experience and know our interest.

  9. No Sabbi? No Holmes? Does anyone know if we’ve gone after Jeremy Toljan again any time recently? No? Oh well, I guess.

    • Toljan has been in fine form for Celtic and he’s linked up well with Weah when they’ve been on the pitch together. I really hope we’re courting him aggressively.

    • It’s my understanding he was a pretty solid not interested. There is little reason for a dual national to switch this far from the WC. A strong loan and he’s back starting for BvB and he’d be a shoe in for German call up. Toljan isn’t a likely switch until 2021 if he knows he has no German chance.

    • There is little to no chance of ever having Toljan. His father, who Toljan had little to no relationship with, is deceased. As far as I understand it, some documents needed from
      his father to claim/ prove his eligibility for dual nationality were not completed or found by his father. I’ve heard due to that it’s almost impossible To obtain his dual nationality.

  10. Keepers
    Zack Steffen, Bill Hamid, Ethan Horvath,

    Matt Miazga, Cameron Carter-Vickers, John Brooks, DeAndre Yedlin, Antonee Robinson, Shaq Moore, Erik Palmer-Brown

    Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, Tyler Adams, Julian Green, Christian Roldan, Wil Trapp, Darlington Nagbe, Romain Gall, Paul Arriola

    Josh Sargent, Timothy Weah, Jeremy Ebobisse, Andrija Novakovich

    Worthy Mentions:
    Graham Zusi (32), Jordan Morris (24), Gyasi Zardes (27), Russell Canouse (23), Miguel Ibarra (28), Walker Zimmerman (25), James Sands (18)

  11. Duane Holmes has been playing consistently well in the top half of the Championship and would be fully deserving of a call up, especially given our limited midfield options. If Frank Lampard rates him, he’s worth a look.

  12. Yeah I have no idea why you would call up klinsmann when you could bring in guzan, hamid or sean Johnson in there

    For me long and lima have to be in this camp based on there performances in January

    For me I’d also bring in FJ as long as he’s committed, robinson is just coming back from a long layoff and was awful at the weekend, if he can slot in at LB that at least kicks the can down the road at the position

    I think the 11 I want for Ecuador is:
    F. Johnson–Brooks–Miazaga—Yedlin

    • Guzan is trash. I am a big LD fan. I will always hold a grudge for klinnsman Jr for that idiotic tweet. We need to focus on youth working them in the squad and he is youth.

      • The tweet was inflamatory and immature, BUT keep in mind he was still a MINOR when he did it. I have more contempt for LD as an ADULT “rooting” for El Tri than I do for what JK the Younger did as a minor. SMH

  13. I completely understand getting a look at Euro based player GB hasnt had in camp, but i think you have to take the best from January for comparisons sake. Swap EPB and Shaq Moore for Lima and Long/zimmerman. Swap bradley/trapp and Nagbe for Lletget and maybe Lewis. Swap Novakovich for one of Morris/Zardes or Altidore (if healthy). Swap Kinsman for Hamid (unless his comments have made him toxic). You have to start mixing pools and camls to find the best mix. Had we started this 18 months ago GB could have called in enrirely US or EU based camps, but not now.

  14. Please No Philosopher Joggers called in. We do not need his leadership which entailed captaining a divided locker room that alienated dual nationals and Euro based players. I don’t mind the MLS winter camp call up where he can mentor a bunch of MLS newbies, but now is time to learn more about a different group of players who will make up most of our core guys going forward.

    • I understand and expect that MB will get called in, it’s inevitable for the foreseeable future. But I don’t understand calling in MB’s Mini Me, Will Trapp. Pick one if you must, but not both…

  15. At mid you are going to leave out the last MOTM, Lletget? No Saief, Amon, or Lewis? No continental central mid experiments? You have to mix it up some at minimum because the results last year sucked with most of these same people. Some of the younger guys should stick but if a good portion of this call is people from last cycle like Arriola, Bradley, Nagbe, and Trapp, that’s trouble, that’s we’re still in denial why we didn’t make it.

  16. Forward you have 3/4 right but Novakovich is not getting the 4th slot. That again feels stuck in time last year someplace. It would be someone domestic like Jozy, Morris, Ramirez, or perhaps an experiment from Europe. But if we just run out the same people as last year this is just a totem pole pecking order from last year and not a performance competition.

  17. The defenders look like the whole last year didn’t happen. This was the consensus set and then it banged into reality. Where’s Long? Cannon? Lima? Zimmerman? Parker? Even if you dubiously have affection for Miazga or Brooks or the like, the idea none of the new guys even squeeze in at the edges just doesn’t reflect what I have watched.

  18. I don’t understand dropping down to Klinsmann for 3rd keeper when barely anyone but Steffen even plays and you might want to verify rather than assume who the 2 and 3 keepers should be. And while I could see Horvath competing for 2nd his form has been so uneven it shouldn’t be just handed to him. You do this with JK as clipboard carrier behind him — not even bringing in a competitive 3rd keeper — and you basically give Horvath the backup job for the summer for having one decent night and a fair amount of nightmares. And then we’re committed to a player who has had some howlers and just about out of friendlies before GC or LoN to trial and compare any competition. I’d leave out Steffen, call Frei and some other 2nd or 3rd keeper candidates, and actually hash it out in camp and the games. Or you can assume your conclusions like this would do.


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