Top Stories

Pulisic, Reyna, Dest headline preliminary USMNT roster for Nations League


The Concacaf Nations League semifinals in June have long been expected to feature a full-strength U.S. Men’s National Team, and now we have a more clear picture of what that team could look like.

The preliminary rosters for the Concacaf Nations League were revealed on Monday and the USMNT roster features all the top players in the pool, including Christian Pulisic, Gio Reyna, Weston McKennie, Sergino Dest and Zack Steffen.

USMNT coach Gregg Berhalter will have a lot of work to do as he chooses a final 23-player group from this roster. The competition at striker, centerback and central midfield will be particularly tough.

The USMNT faces Honduras in the Nations League semifinals on June 3rd in Denver, with the winner facing the winner of the Mexico-Costa Rica semifinal on June 6 in the final.

The Americans are gearing up for a busy rest of 2021, and will next play on May 30 against Switzerland in a tune-up match ahead of the Concacaf Nations League.

Here is the 40-man preliminary USMNT roster for the Concacaf Nations League:

Preliminary USMNT Nations League roster

GOALKEEPERS: Ethan Horvath, Sean Johnson, David Ochoa, Zack Steffen, Matt Turner

DEFENDERS: John Brooks, Reggie Cannon, Sergino Dest, Aaron Long, Mark McKenzie, Matt Miazga, Tim Ream, Bryan Reynolds, Chris Richards, Antonee Robinson, Miles Robinson, Sam Vines, DeAndre Yedlin, Walker Zimmerman

MIDFIELDERS: Brenden Aaronson, Tyler Adams, Luca De La Torre, Sebastian Lletget, Weston McKennie, Yunus Musah, Owen Otasowie, Kellyn Acosta, Gio Reyna, Cristian Roldan, Jackson Yueill

FORWARDS: Paul Arriola, Tyler Boyd, Konrad De La Fuente, Daryl Dike, Nicholas Gioacchini, Christian Pulisic, Josh Sargent, Jordan Siebatcheu, Tim Weah, Gyasi Zardes

What do you think of the roster? Who are you happy to see included? Who are you disappointed to see miss the cut?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. I think the way to look at this roster and ask who does not belong and wii not be in the final 23. So which 17 will be dropped and not replaced? GK one will go.
    Defense: Ream, Richard’s, A Robinson, Vines,Zimmerman who is a good stay at home defender but who needs to get forward better.
    Midfield: Acosta, Otawasie and Roldan.
    Forwards: Boyd and Zardes.

    That’s only 10 even adding in a couple injuries, at least 5 more will not even make the bench. Talk of replacing any of the 17 with your favorite is pretty pointless.

      GOALKEEPERS: Sean Johnson, Zack Steffen, Matt Turner DEFENDERS: John Brooks, Reggie Cannon, Sergino Dest, Aaron Long, Matt Miazga, Tim Ream, Antonee Robinson, Miles Robinson, Sam Vines, DeAndre Yedlin, Walker Zimmerman MIDFIELDERS: Brenden Aaronson, Tyler Adams, Sebastian Lletget, Weston McKennie, Yunus Musah, Kellyn Acosta, Gio Reyna, Jackson Yueill FORWARDS: Paul Arriola, Tyler Boyd, Daryl Dike, Nicholas Gioacchini, Christian Pulisic, Josh Sargent, Gyasi Zardes
      GOALKEEPERS: Ethan Horvath, David Ochoa, Matt Turner DEFENDERS: Reggie Cannon, Sergino Dest, Aaron Long, Mark McKenzie, Bryan Reynolds, Chris Richards, Miles Robinson, Sam Vines, Walker Zimmerman MIDFIELDERS: Brenden Aaronson, Tyler Adams, Sebastian Lletget, Weston McKennie, Yunus Musah, Gio Reyna, Jackson Yueill FORWARDS: Paul Arriola, Konrad De La Fuente, Daryl Dike, Christian Pulisic, Josh Sargent, Jordan Siebatcheu, Tim Weah, Gyasi Zardes

      • You chose 27, who is your 23 for the final should we make it?
        Here’s what I think it will be if everyone is healthy
        GK: Steffen, Horvath, Johnson (3rd keeper isn’t playing anyway)
        Def: Cannon, Dest, ARobinson, Richards, Brooks, Long, Miazga, Yedlin
        Mid: Musah, Adams, McKennie, Lleget, Yueill, Acosta
        For: Sargent, Pulisic, Reyna, Weah, Aaronson, Siebatcheu

  2. the coach works on a geological time scale. we are past jozy and bradley but maybe by 2023 he will figure out whether boyd zardes roldan johnson ream yedlin miazga brooks are as good as we can do. glacial. 2018-19 (followed by how 20-21 looked) wasn’t sufficient to flush most of them as well? it is steadily progressing the right direction but sooooooo slooooooooow. just watch the games back, gregg.

  3. F i want zardes gone or pushed wide but since he’s scored some that’s going to be a process of time. boyd feels like roldan-style stubbornness and stuck in 2019. he was an interesting prospect playing in an interesting league. he came in, had one good game against a bad guyana team, and then largely disappeared. we then brought in a jillion productive kids in 20-21. another one where he’s stuck in time and should be paying heed to game performance. i mean, you’d turned him into a sub by the end of GC on into NL.

  4. i am glad MF evolved past bradley but that is thanking the coach for something that should have happened when the cycle started. yawn. few too many delatorre/ acosta/ roldan/ yueill head scratchers but hopefully most of them get cut. acosta in particular didn’t have a good last friendly pair. refer back to my comment that with this guys the game performances don’t seem to matter enough. ditto otasowie. not that i remember him playing bad — i just don’t remember a thing. compared to say holmes or green who do something noticeable when they play. even johnny could at least be relied on to clatter people if necessary. which is underrated in the snob era.

    • Did you watch De la Torre play in March or are you basing this on his U20 performance years ago? You’re the only person I’ve seen criticize him, that’s including multiple podcasts, websites, and fan forums. Below you were complaining about Reyna and Aaronson playing wide (where they play for their clubs) because we don’t have passers in the midfield which is exactly what Luca brings. Talk about geological time scale your rating on Luca based on 2017 when he played a different position.

      • a goal and 2 assists in league play in fast break holland is a joke. his first two caps were beige. his third cap you’re pretending that square ball across on jamaica goal 4 was to the second runner that shot it and not shanked behind the first one — who i think was the real target. your argument is spin, really. he is not julian green or duane holmes’ level impact. he is not reyna or even aaronson’s level. i can think of a further list of better players. yes, if we cut or move 20 AMs a tepid player might earn a cap. is that really the idea?

  5. keeper sean johnson is a rote pushbutton pick who’s never earned the second spot, just followed the line of succession from being a lousy U23. i like the other keeper picks but that one’s goofy and he does it over and over.

  6. the backs he is going to wish this evolved in the same way as bradley and jozy off to pasture. ream yedlin miazga brooks he could not have been watching the games and come up with that. DM and striker finally dawned on him but he’s not up to speed in back.

  7. the general thrust of this is like NL will be a first choice event and that they will have most of the first choice players for both the swiss game and at least the first two games in the US in NL. that was my original sense where this was heading prior to mckennie’s social media post suggesting he would be one and done. i personally would rest the first choice most of the summer (or at least limit their games) but this is better than using them for gold cup.

    • i am a soto fan as well but this coach gets ideas in his head regardless how the games go. this is why we are throwing a party for him omitting bradley and jozy which should be obvious and have happened in 2019. if you went by games then soto has more game production than nico or dike. but this coach makes decisions before a ball rolls.

      i’m also a ferreira fan, he combines well with others, productive, omitted as well. probably U23 fallout. i think holding U23 against productive senior players is absurd. the question is do you help us score surrounded by seniors, not how do you look with saucedo and such.

      • Ferreira is injured, ankle I believe. As for Soto yes he scored two late goals against Panama but he hardly troubled a keeper at the U23 tournament. So you have to weigh which is really his true normal at this point. He hasn’t dressed for Norwich U23s since returning from Olympic qualifying so there might be an injury as well that isn’t reported because he’s on a youth team. It would be odd that Norwich would just stop playing him after starting him 3 matches in Feb. before he left for Mexico.

  8. The fact that people are “concerned” with a few MLS guys being on this preliminary roster is interesting. At the end of the day the MLSers outside of Long, Lleget and maybe Acosta are end of the bench options, so I dont see the beed to be up in arms about it. MLSers have and will always be apart of the USMNT and frankly it has and never will concern me, just as long as our Euro contingent is getting the bulk of the minutes in prime time games

    • I and many other fans have no issue with MLSers in the Preliminary Squad, we have issues with recycling of MLSers who have proven that they are incapable of playing the game at the required skill level. Players like Roldan, Arriola, Zardes, and Acosta have proven time and again that they are not good enough.
      If we’re going to name inferior players we’re going to get inferior results. I’m tired of people giving Berhaulter a pass on his player choices. He’s done this way too often.

      • They are inferior to the top players on the team but are solid bench options, and again operative word being “bench options” who provide cover, so if the team is not getting it done it will be because our top players didn’t and that my friend has nothing to do with the manager in my opinion. If you look at the last set of friendlies the only player that has been called in that you seem to think would spoil any good done by the full group is Acosta, and he’s actually resurrected his career by most pundits, and is again a bench option when everyone is healthy. We need to stop with the excuses ahead of what will be a big summer going into the fall WCQ’s, if this team doesn’t get it done it won’t because of MLS that’s for sure!

      • Arriola, Zardes and Roldan will be on the Gold Cup squad, and I’d be willing to put money on that LOL

    • this is a snob obsession born of thinking europe is just superior. several euro based were from MLS academies or are transfers from MLS. waste of time abstract p*ssing match. watch each guy play and make up your mind dude by dude. back in the day pope was better than any of the euro based backs, and long also is — and could probably go to europe tomorrow.

      • the reason why long isn’t already in europe is because red bull won’t let him go…shame really….they will happily sell on the young guns but they play such hard ball with the older players….esp if an extension was signed….

      • it’s a fair point in terms of precisely why he’s here and not there. but i think that’s a red herring, still gives too much credence to the argument. you’re still saying it matters. i think player vs player is the proper frame and if they play in MLS so what. fwiw the general pattern is when we develop well here then europe comes looking. that requires our system to do their work. it also reflects that when all else fails MLS is the baseline of the NT. if nothing else is working then MLS will have a batch of people we can run out. what people need to focus on is not how many 23 year olds can transfer to europe but developing 18 year olds they want straight from youth ball. i think that’s far more telling of where this is going than whether long plays for NY or West Ham.

        i also don’t think people consider on long that having already tenuously grabbed a starting gig he has to consider if he moves whether he plays. USMNT has a double standard where steffen can sit but not horvath. long has to fear he would get more of the horvath treatment if he made a false career move. so i expect him to be picky and maybe not move until we qualify and he’s fairly secure in a role.

  9. I’m surprised Reyna and Aaronson are put in the midfield group. Is this SBI grouping or is this the way the MNT grouping?

    • has aaronson played LF for us? i thought it was all AM. not sure i’d be campaigning to be pulisic’s career long backup.

      • Aaronson also subbed in for Reyna at RW against NIreland. Winger is probably closer to the role he plays for Salzburg. Technically they play a 4-4-2 Double 6 but they usually have so much more of the possession he’s a playing as a LW not a LM. Given the three match windows of qualifying there should be plenty of minutes backing up on the wing.

      • i think one thing we NEED is central precision as opposed to hustle. but by all means move reyna, aaronson, and anyone who can find feet with a pass, to out wide.

      • and for good reason…the time for introducing and giving looks to “fringe” players has passed “for now”, we have important matches coming up quick and fast and missing almost a year and a half of playing together has already hindered the collective cohesion of the team so we need to focus on the players we have been using in the last several friendlies. There will be a time to look at some more players before WCQ

      • I’ll admit that I posted the comment just to see the reactions because I myself have been upset by the scapegoating of Bradley. It’s not like we had better midfielder options up to this point and he basically did his job as a defensive midfielder (he was never destined to be a #10).

      • Yes, it just pretty much pisses me off when people jump on Bradley, Jozy, Ream, etc. It is hardly their fault that the players 4-8 years younger were simply not as good at the time (well I guess Ream is still just barely holding on). That situation has changed as they and others have slowed with age and the kids over 8 years younger are now simply better. I would be not be surprised if some them were on the Gold Cup roster since it is likely to include a host of very young players.

  10. Once you take off the bottom 12 of these 40, you are definitely looking at our best squad. Really excited to see how our A team looks against Mexico in a big match. Now, please please no injuries…

  11. Well, I would add CCV and Green for sure. I would delete Roldan and Ream. I wasn’t all that impressed with Gioachini, but it’s not a terrible choice.My big hope is that we finally have a full and healthy squad.

    • I have never been impressed with CCV, every time I saw him play he showed physical defending, but not much skill and he tended to make rash challenges. Green, I haven’t seen play in ages, he is doing well in 2nd Bundesliga, but we have had others who did that and failed to really produce at the international level. Playing time and success in the lower divisions hardly guarantees success at the international level. Barring a pretty luck goal scored off his shin in the WC, I can’t recall much except a few dribbles until he lost the ball with the USMNT.
      Ariola got a gift from GB early this year by being called up and playing, but he did perform well for the Nats, but will it be routine or just a one-off? Hoppe has hardly showed he is a consitent scorer and he isn’t even starting for Shalke at the end of the season. The game I most recently saw him play for Shalke, he was pretty much Blah, but then it might be hard to look good for that team.

      Also, people complaining that certain players “don’t get a look” really have no idea how much GB and the coaching staff have seen those players play for their club teams. What, I guess, the complaint is really that after doing their research, some people clearly believe they are better than the US coaching staff at evaluating a player and what he might contribute to the team. There will always be tough decisions to make and that is a good thing.

      • look at the GAA diference between long/CCV vs brooks/miazga, the coach has it backwards. CCV does clatter people but that is the primary job description, and he associates with some of the better upsets this cycle. or we can start the ones who lose to mexico and canada for the off-topic reasons the coach likes them. i don’t care if you supposedly can pass if you can’t mark. and the reality is long outscores the supposed slick backs.

      • So you’re not impressed with CCV, but is Tim Ream better? As far as judging players on a national team that gets players from not only a lot of different teams, but a lot of different leagues, the best way to judge one player’s worth vs. another’s, would seem to be see them go head to head in practice. CCV hasn’t been brought in for a long time, but Ream is clearly over the hill and CCV has been a consistent starter in the Championship for several years now. Likewise, you can make a case against Green, but can you really say that both Roldan and Arriola are better? Especially since Arriola seems injury prone lately and Roldan has shown his inadequacy against good CONCACAF teams.

    • Is GAA really a telling statistic for an individual defender? I mean a defender could do everything right all match but a teammate loses his mark on a set piece or turns it over in a bad spot and that player has a bad GAA. A player might make several gaffes but a teammate covers or the keeper makes a great save they have a good GAA. I’ve seen CCV several times this season and like his improvement, but you aren’t going to bring in someone who has never been in this playing system for a semi and final. Especially when his biggest weakness is a top skill required in that system that’s putting him in a position to fail. Or you change your whole system that benefits the style of 3/4 of your team for a Championship level CB. I hope he’s brought in for GC when he has a month to adjust to playing for Berhalter but he makes no sense for this competition.

      • dude, are you seriously suggesting i should ignore how many goals the team allows when certain defenders play? like ream, miazga, and brooks speak for most of the 2+ goal bad nights we’ve had this cycle. name a 3-0 or 4-0 or 4-2 or 2-1 loss and they played. are you serious? ignore that because in theory they can pass but in reality long has more offense?

    • I’m saying it would be more valuable to look at their individual roles in goals or mistakes that lead to misses. Your basing individual play off a team stat. When you are using a limited number of matches that further complicates the value of that stat. I think Berhalter’s staff’s method of watching matches and evaluating each player based on their individual play is probably more valid. But maybe your glancing at transfermkt and doing some 4th grade math computations is better.

      • come off it dude. i think the stats capture the overall reality they contribute to. but when i routinely, anecdotally say “well, don’t you remember when they scored on x,” y’all blow that off too. so it’s all spin on your part. the numbers aren’t good enough, the anecdotes aren’t good enough. you just “know.”

        fwiw i can find you plenty of tape on yedlin miazga ream brooks etc. your implication that i am unfairly giving them “collective responsibility” for goals they didn’t cause is trash. the team gives up goals and often enough it’s their fault. eg brooks vs england and colombia. eg miazga vs panama and ireland. eg ream vs canada. you want to pretend the stats don’t match their defense? I CAN LIST MORE.

    • I’m not saying stats aren’t valuable I’m saying there are better stats that tell you more than GAA. Aerial duels, tackles, pressures, interceptions. Those would give you an overall picture. I’m sure there are even deeper analytics about defensive xG how many goal scoring opportunities to did you concede. Those can be hard for the average fan to find but the NT has people who deal just with those kind of stats.

    • He had a good run a few years ago and then his form dipped. I will hold off on judgement until I see him in some games that matter, Both then and now (in the last friendlies), everyone seems to default to him taking free kicks near the penalty area.

      • He did show promise early in his career and then faded. Keep an eye on him? Sure. He hasn’t remotely earned playing games that matter and we have multiple better options. You need to at least show promise in a friendly. He was completely out of his class against Wales. It’s kind of baffling. It’s not like he’s exactly tearing up MLS either.

    • i thought he looked bad against northern ireland. i don’t think the coach pays attention to how games go. i think he scouts his favorites and assumes he has it sorted right before a ball rolls. hence it takes years of lousy games to excrete bradley and jozy.

  12. No talentless has-beens on the roster?…..talent, physical attributes and abilities present in the midfield and up top? A real breath of fresh air…..we are selecting quality players playing and contributing for Barcelona, Chelsea, Juventus, Wolves, Valcencia, Dortmund etc.
    Wow, we have come a long way…..

    • Are you asking the question…because there at least 2 “Talentless Has Been on this roster” (Tim Ream & Zardes)…and a handful of just “Talentless” players (Roldan, Acosta, Arriola). I get this is a preliminary roster of 40 guys, and that many are named as emergency type replacements in the event of injury to our top choices…but if any of these guys make the cut to the actual camp I’ll be very disappointed.
      Ream has played less than 10 games all season (including cup games).
      Zardes, while a top scorer in MLS & hard working, can’t hold a candle to the other CFs.
      Roldan, Arriola, & Acosta have all shown they can only compete against the weaker teams of CONCACAF. Their flaws get exposed every time they face even a mid-level opponent.

      • My friend Bizzy is referring to Altidore and Bradley (maybe Omar as well). I’d agree all are past their ability to help the NT but they aren’t talentless they just can’t play at that level anymore.
        Lost: beginning of your comment Zardes is a talentless has been. Middle of your comment Zardes is leading scorer in MLS and a hard worker. I’m not sure Gyasi makes this roster but do you want Dike for 35 minutes over 4 matches in NL and friendlies or 300 minutes in the GC? This roster is supposed to be as close to the top 11 as possible but your likely to see some vets that can see out a game if needed but don’t need a ton of minutes. Spots 17-22 are likely to be guys with experience but maybe not the most talent.

    • Johnnyrazor – on Dike it’s a toss up for me. If he makes the final cut for the NL Squad he’ll be practicing with the “A” team players building chemistry which will be a benefit come WCQ games. Especially since he’s only likely to be Sargent’s back-up.
      The GC strikers are going to be difficult to predict. If Dike is selected for the GC team, I still don’t think Gregg would give him significant minutes. I’d actually expect Gregg to start either Zardes, Siebatcheu, or Ferreria and still use Dike as a last gasp sub.

  13. I would think it is probable that players on the provisional roster that are not part of the final 23 are certainly in contention for the Gold Cup. The NL is only 2 games. GB will use the larger Gold Cup to give Nats experience to fringe players and younger players. Furthermore, the Euro veterans need rest before fall season and WCQ.

  14. Some things to keep in mind, this is a preliminary roster so don’t get all annoyed about someone like Arriola being on there. Although more than 23 are likely to be in camp it isn’t going to be all 40.
    Guys that haven’t been in yet with Gregg were never likely to be invited here. With the tight schedule there isn’t going to be enough time to bring someone new up to speed. 3G has mentioned Hoppe and Green in the past on guys they want to bring in so perhaps GC is in their plans.
    Pretty unlikely anyone does the NL and GC double so if you reserve wanted to see some young player it’s good they aren’t on here. If you want to see Clark and Cowell do you want them for 8 minutes against Honduras or 300 minutes at the GC.

    • it’s not a fashion show. arriola produces and like morris when healthy will be out there until some kids put up actual numbers.

  15. I’m curious, how many national team managers select their entire roster solely based on form? Every major national team has guys regularly called into camps with “body of work” taken into account and not just what form they’re in.

    That said, really only bummed not to see Green and Novakovich, but I’m not too surprised by them either. Hopefully they get a shot at the GC.

    • I think the flowchart is:

      1) does this player have a personal beef with the coach or star player? If he’s a top 5 player in the world, the coach gets canned and player called in. If not, does not get called regardless of form
      2) is this player one of “his guys”- moxie, grit, etc… gets called in unless on crutches
      3) everyone else called in based on form, or what “normal” form they’re expected to be when WC rolls around, if coming off injury or young

  16. I’d rather see J. Green and Hoppe than Zardes and Arriola and other retreads, but can’t argue with 90% of roster.

    I’d love to see everyone’s health hold up and see what a squad with Pulisic, Weah, Reyna, Mckennie, Adams, Dest, Musah on the field at the same time is capable of

    • Hoppe- a guy 90% had never heard of had a really good week. Not much to talk about since. Certainly a guy to keep an eye on, maybe bring in to camp cupcake. Deserving a call up to at the National team for a tournament? I don’t see it. .

  17. There are very few decisions in this I, a nobody fan, would disagree with. That is super cool. I would say almost everyone listed earned this based on their current form and very recent outings. And, as with everyone probably, I hope the non-starting 11 players will get a bigger chance in games later in the summber. Tite

  18. Maybe if Julian Green goes on loan to a championship side, barely plays, and then gets injured for the rest of the year then he’ll get a call-up like Paul Arriola. Absolutely wild he’s been called in and Green hasn’t given Green’s impact this year.

    • Arriola at least you could argue has tons of NT experience so just as a personality in the group could have value. KDF is probably the most curious choice vs. someone more experienced at a higher level like Green. Given that KDF is looking to change clubs maybe this is a chance to help market him.

      • The group has plenty of personality, but to your point I’m sure that’s what the manager has in mind. Berhalter just needs to stop saying that his selections are down to merits a player earns on the pitch through his play; it’s clearly not the case (or, rather, is for some but not others).

      • I don’t see KDF as all that curious. Could be just me.

        He is already better than Ariola RIGHT NOW! Has more upside and has been in really good for. For Barca B in addition to training with the 1st team regularly. I think he even scored a brace this weekend.

        Also curious to me is that Owen keeps getting looks while Julian Green plays regularly, scores and assists and plays a really important role in his team (almost Nagbe like “shuttler”) BUT can not get a look. ALSO OF NOTE he would be one of only 3 players with World Cup experience (including the coach).

Leave a Comment