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Pulisic, Reyna, Musah headline USMNT roster for March friendlies

Christian Pulisic, Gio Reyna and Yunus Musah are among the names headlining the 26-player squad called in for the U.S. Men’s National Team’s March friendlies against Jamaica and Northern Ireland.

Gregg Berhalter has called in a larger-than-normal group in part because several of the team’s players will be unable to travel to Northern Ireland due to COVID restrictions.

The USMNT will take on Jamaica on March 25 in Wiener Neustadt, Austria, three days before traveling to Belfast to take on Northern Ireland on March 28.

Missing from the group is Juventus midfielder Weston McKennie, who has been dealing with a variety of injury issues and has been allowed to stay in Italy to recover.

Among the players included are Yunus Musah, who earlier this week committed his international future to the United States, and Bryan Reynolds, who recently made his Serie A debut with AS Roma.

Also in the squad is Daryl Dike, who has enjoyed an outstanding run of form on loan with English League Championship side Barnsley, and Luca De La Torre, who has emerged as a regular starter for Dutch side Heracles.

The team’s Bundesliga-based players will not travel with the team to take on Northern Ireland due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions involved with such travel. The same applies for Reggie Cannon and Tim Weah.

Here is the full squad called in for the March friendlies (*- denotes players who will only take part in the friendly against Jamaica):

GOALKEEPERS (3): Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge/BEL; 4/0), Chituru Odunze (Leicester City/ENG; 0/0), Zack Steffen (Manchester City/ENG; 19/0)

DEFENDERS (10): John Brooks* (Wolfsburg/GER; 39/3), Reggie Cannon* (Boavista/POR; 13/0), Sergiño Dest (Barcelona/ESP; 5/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 19/3), Matt Miazga (Anderlecht/BEL; 20/1), Erik Palmer-Brown (Austria Wien/AUT; 2/0), Tim Ream (Fulham/ENG; 41/1), Bryan Reynolds (Roma/ITA; 0/0), Chris Richards* (Hoffenheim/GER; 1/0), Antonee Robinson (Fulham/ENG; 8/0)

MIDFIELDERS (7): Brenden Aaronson (Red Bull Salzburg/AUT; 2/1), Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids; 25/2) Tyler Adams* (RB Leipzig/GER; 12/1), Luca de la Torre (Heracles/NED; 1/0), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 18/4), Yunus Musah (Valencia/ESP; 2/0), Owen Otasowie (Wolverhampton Wanderers/ENG; 1/0)

FORWARDS: (6): Daryl Dike (Barnsley/ENG; 1/0), Nicholas Gioacchini (Caen/FRA; 2/2), Christian Pulisic (Chelsea/ENG; 34/14), Gio Reyna* (Borussia Dortmund/GER; 2/1), Josh Sargent* (Werder Bremen/GER; 12/5), Tim Weah* (Lille/FRA; 10/1)

Comments

  1. Though Jamaica is #47 and Northern Ireland is but two spots higher at #45 per FIFA, I suspect the USMNT will cut up Jamaica something awful; Jamaica rarely travels well and tends to look particularly shambolic in Europe. I’m a little more interested to see how Northern Ireland fares. If the Yanks again run roughshod over a European opponent on European soil, it’s probably time to start buying into the hype with this group because that is entirely different territory for us.

    I guess we’ll see.

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  2. The players from Germany will be available for only 2, probably light training sessions and the 2nd game. It would be almost pointless to call in any who would not start.

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  3. This will likely be the first time we see Reyna and Pulisic on the field together. It will be the first time we’ve seen Josh and Christian together in 1 1/2 years. It’s been two years since we’ve seen Tyler and Christian together. It might be the first time we see a Richards and Brooks pairing. Let’s celebrate that instead of crying that we don’t get Siebatcheu and Green for the last 15 mins of Jamaica. This will be as close to first choice 11 as we’ve had this entire cycle when kickoff in Austria occurs.

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    • Speaking of first choice xi,what would your first choice be and anyone else’s out there’s be

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      • I suspect there will be two starting rosters to contemplate. One against N. Ireland without the German players and one against Jamaica with them. This will be a case of does anyone other that Pulisic, Dest, Musah and Stefan start in both games?

    • I think Gregg’s is
      Pulisic-Sargent-Reyna
      Wes-Tyler-Musah
      Dest-Brooks-Richards-Cannon
      I’m never not sure if he’s set on Robinson vs Cannon, or if he’s ? on Richards but given Richards availability I think he starts Thursday.

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  4. The abundance of riches in the pool is insane. For any long time USMNT fan this is the best out pool has ever been. I’m trying not to get too excited about this cycle and next in 26, but we’re a under the radar sleeper right now. Could shock the world knocking off some elite nations.

    Not sure how we could fit it in right now with Nations League the qualifiers later this year but what this young group really needs is to get bled against a few elite nations so that when the bright lights are on then in a match that matters they’re not so in awe of the moment. They also need to get that feeling that they can hang with the top elite nations. I think some of that comes from so many of our guys playing and starting on Champions League squads but getting that game experience in the NT shirt is different.

    I think we’re gonna make some noise at this WC and fingers crossed 26 could be it. All the stars are aligning.

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      • Thx Johnny.

        Looking forward to this year and next obviously. Still have my doubts on GB but giving him the benefit of the doubt right now. The Musah find and get wins him a ton of points in my eyes. He held onto Dest when Netherlands was courting him too. Gotta give credit we’re it due on those two circumstances.

        Tactically I liked what I saw in the last European set of friendlies, looking for more of that forward play with linking, spacing, finding outlets, passing and possessing well like I saw in those friendlies.

        Our pool talent has pushed us past the days where a NT coach could fill the roster with a third of his selections from MLS. We have legit 4-5 outfield players getting serious minutes in either UCL or or Europa L so we’re past those days I hopeful. So I think that beef a lot of us had is mute now unless those worts start to grow back but I think that era is in the past.

        We’re at the point now deciding between the putting the Barca RB on the left and start a Portuguese starting RB or keep the Barca RB on the right and use the EPL LB. just shows it’s not just our starters but the bench that’s getting deeper to. I think we’re below where Belgium was two cycles ago but approaching that level and possible upside over next two cycles.

  5. One it’s easy for us in the US to feel Covid isn’t a big deal, heck we don’t even have the most daily cases anymore and we’ve fully vaccinated 12% of the population and positivity is down. Europe is surging in many places now, per capita rates in many of the countries are coming from are higher than in US. We are bringing players from 10 different countries, to bring a player who will only play sub minutes in one game is a risk we don’t need to take when coaches have access to film of every match they play. Clubs will have a month and a half left after this window we don’t want guys missing 2-3 weeks of the 6 week season.
    —————————————
    There’s a longer game plan in play. No Ream, Lletget, and Acosta aren’t needed for leadership for this friendly. But will we need leadership for GC roster of mostly B and C squad players? Maybe. I could see Lletget being an overage player for the Olympics as well. If Ream plays I’ll be disappointed .
    ——————————
    We could have called anyone but being the big stick and forcing clubs hands isn’t necessarily the best strategy. Do a club a solid today and they’re more likely to call you up when they’re thinking of making a move for a player. Good will from the NT to clubs doesn’t hurt.

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  6. Still struggling to understand Berhaulter and his player selections. There are many called into camp that have shown multiple times that they are not up to international competition…I don’t care how positive a locker-room guy they are, if they aren’t capable of actually contributing in games they should not be in camp. Simple alternative I’d have preferred are:
    CCV > Ream
    M. Robinson > Long – Atlanta would have been required to release Robinson
    Durkin or Booth > Acosta
    De la Fuente > Lletget/De La Torre…need wide attacker options

    Best thing I can say about this roster is that it didn’t include Arriola.

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    • I would say the Ream vs CCV is the biggest ? mark all I can think is Bournemouth’s schedule is packed and they are making a promotion push. Yes Dike is in similar position but has had some rotation whereas CCV has been playing every minute. Ream is also the only left footed CB after Brooks although EPB often plays LCB as a right footed player.
      ———————————
      ATL could have turned down call up do to Covid. Plus it just further causes rift with Atlanta. I’m not sure gassing them fire is helpful.
      ———————————
      Booth has abductor injury. Durkin he’s been playing regularly that’s all I know
      ———————————
      Aaronson has been playing wide, we haven’t seen DeLaTorre in sometime especially as he’s transitioned to an 8. De La Fuente didn’t look very good last time around either. I could see this as a criticism depending on how the team is set for Northern Ireland.

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  7. Some of these call ups are very questionable at best. Ream, is ridiculous. They are friendlies, we don’t need veteran leadership.CCV instead. No Siebatcheu is ridiculous. Why not call in Wright and/or Hoppe since they haven’t gotten a look yet? Replace Gioachini with one of these 3.

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  8. we have seen lletget play 100x this fall and his value is known. call someone fresh. i’d have preferred trying holmes or some of the age group kids who weren’t released. it’s not a first choice list anyway so we’re not gelling the A team. i’d have anyone we might rely on this summer feet up in a recliner then.
    people keep saying we need leadership but for a couple practices and a couple games i might prefer natively seeing the players’ work ethic and system fit without any egging them on. you really don’t need more than a regular or two.

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  9. i like the inclusion of EPB Richards Reynolds. i will be curious how much they actually play, though the covid restrictions are going to shuffle up the backline choices game to game. otherwise the roster suggests we would have been content to run out ream miazga some more as though the recent games didn’t happen. does he actually watch the games or does a spreadsheet spit out his choices?

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  10. pulisic should be rested, worse, way the roster is set up we have three 9s, a couple RFs, who is even pulisic’s backup? thing is he is the player who most shows tiredness when he gets overused. and with covid scheduling this year is just going to go on and on and on.

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    • Pulisic has played 223 minutes since Feb. 1 I don’t think rest is an issue. Aaronson is the obvious backup, left wing is where he plays for RBS.

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      • are you suggesting aaronson is our second best LF in all of europe? pfffft. let me clean up the floor from that spit take

    • CP, Weah-LW, Reyna, Nico-RW, that leaves Sargent & Dike as your CF/9s. From what I’ve seen, Gioacchini plays mostly on the right for Caen. …then again club positions & club form are relative. De la Torre has been playing right-side midfield for Heracles as of late, maybe that’s why he was called up?, per your last complaint. There’s MLS call ups. MLS hasn’t started. Otasowie hasn’t been playing lately, neither has the 2 senior GKs. Big O is on Leicester U23s, and is being called in, that’s a positive, I think. We really don’t know who’s GBs preferred left and right midfielders ( two 8s), except one Musah. I’m a Orlando City fan, from socks to headband, but I don’t see Dike fitting into a 4-3-3 system, …Or Sargent for that matter. (That’s why I like to watch the matches and find out!) Especially the way the ‘8-‘12 Spaniards (Villa, Torres, Costa), used it. GB seems to want to mirror THAT team, and not adapt the US roster, into the 4-3-3, in my opinion. At least, it’s not the stupid, Archean, barbaric, 4-4-2! Voice, as of late, I don’t remember reading a single positive post that you info dropped. I know your smart enough to understand that complaining about the same thing over & over is redundant, right?!

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  11. i like the keeper choices but would have left steffen home so we could audition second choice keepers. i assume he is there to bail out his city situation and get him minutes. but he has gotten hurt recently and we really need to know more what our 2nd and 3rd options are. also going to lob the thought grenade in here that “club form” seems to matter only for insurgent players and not for perceived starters. if you are already “in the tent” you can apparently soak up splinters and that’s ok. at minimum points to performance on the NT should be deciding such things and it’s been years since Steffen played like the dominating guy who seized the job.

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  12. delaTorre is pointless. he got an inexplicable cap for being at Fulham before, and was the color beige on the field. sufficiently unregarded he didn’t get U23 looks despite being age eligible. but i guess a goal and 2 assists all season in the goal happy dutch league is somehow “club form” so have at it. we have a ton of MF options to sort through and this was the last pretournament window to do so. waste of time.

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  13. Also, no McKenzie. I know Ives’ argument in favor of Ream (veteran leadership, locker room influence), but I don’t know how you take a guy who has seen virtually no playing time since about October.

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    • Berhalter’s quote “don’t read too much into guys not on the roster it was likely due to travel restrictions” I haven’t seen a specific mention of McKenzie yet but I would assume it played a part. He hasn’t been playing the last couple weeks so might be a slight injury as well.

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      • are you really suggesting there are no other backs in europe we could call but ream? that everyone was covid-out? i don’t buy it. not that he’s the better talent, the most in form, that everyone else couldn’t travel. this is lazy and based on his country form indefensible. literally anyone we could look at would be more worthwhile. would be playing club. would not have his recent NT track record eg Canada. like i said, do we care how the games go? or is it a pecking order until you retire? dude sucks. find someone else.

    • I’m not super surprised about McKenzie missing out right now. What I don’t care for personally is CCV being left behind for Ream, who, as you mentioned, has barely played at all this season.

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      • I’m assuming rest related, he wouldn’t have travel restrictions. He’s played every minute their last 10 matches and that’s over 6 weeks. They’ve got 9 matches from April 2 and May 8th to finish as well.

  14. I’m still in awe that we can put together this kind of team. Check out the 1990 US world cup club list: Portland Timbers, Baltimore Blast, Bay Blackhawks, Milwaukee Wave, SV Meppen, Fort Lauderdale Strikers, Washington Stars, Tampa Bay Rowdies, Albany Capitals, BSG Energie Cottbus, Wake Forest Demon Deacons, Bay Blackhawks, Albany Capitals, UCLA Bruins, UCSB Gauchos, Miami Sharks, Washington Stars, Győri ETO FC, FC Volendam

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  15. I guess my question would be CCV. He’s been getting good reviews with Bournemouth and I watched him against Swansea he looked good. Championship schedule is pretty rough so perhaps Bournemouth asked for rest.

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  16. A little surprised. Gioacchini has 4 goals in 24 appearances in Ligue 2; Siebatcheu has 8 goals in 19 appearances in the Swiss Super League, and another 3 goals in 9 Europa games. He seems more productive than Gioacchini.

    Also, I would have liked to see Green, maybe instead of Lletget who Berhalter already knows very well. And taking Ream, Reynolds and Acosta instead of Yedlin, CCV and Cardoso is questionable to me.

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    • Cardoso is in Guadalajara with U23s. Green’s club said yesterday that he has been slowly recovering from Covid so might be related to fitness level.

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      • The report was that Green was available for Furth’s game today, maybe not 90 minute ready though. Maybe they want to ease him back slowly.

    • Would also only be available for first match because of German travel restrictions, so if he can’t start is it worth for him to travel for 15-30 mins? If I’m his club that’s a firm no since we’re in a promotion fight.

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    • i’ll indulge green for covid though i think that omission long term is idiotic — he only scored on france and belgium. but siebatcheu is the form player, a dual nationality player, and we pretend like we we’re watching form. reality we have an incumbency bias and favor “in the tent” vs outside even if that’s tautological and begs the question.
      i also don’t get why you float a player to the press you then leave off. did we not ask first? does GB just like to hear himself talk? normally if the press asked about a player you weren’t going to call, you wouldn’t chat him up, you’d say “not this time but we’re watching.”

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      • Again it’s logistics: Sargent, Weah, and Reyna are only available for first match, Siebatcheu is also only available for that match and Pulisic is your best player so he needs to play some. What minutes are left?

    • taking a step back it’s pretty obvious he just picked the two big body 9s he picked recently — Nico and Dike. incumbency favoritism. Siebatcheu wasn’t picked before so not now either. that would be more defensible for Nico than Dike based on how their caps actually went. the correct comparison if i accepted your approach would instead be dike vs jordan. dike being the weaker performer last US game. looked sloppy. but we are big on club form so you can play bad and come back. but jordan is probably even better club form.
      personally i think GB wastes his time proving and reproving what he already knows. it would be more useful to see how jordan compares. we cannot field the NL team in march to gel the team so you might as well talent evaluate. but GB kind of decides who should play off spreadsheets before camp even starts and the games are besides the point.

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      • Dike and Nico can play both games. Siebatcheu only play first game. Sargent, Weah, Reyna only play first game. No PT for Jordan no want risk Covid travel during big sick. Did I make it simple enough for you. It’s not that hard!

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