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USMNT Updates: McKennie sent home, Yueill called in as replacement, Dest ruled out for Honduras

The team policy violation that led to Weston McKennie being suspended for the U.S. men’s national team’s World Cup qualifier against Canada on Sunday will now cost him two qualifiers, after the Juventus midfielder was sent back to Italy on Monday.

McKennie will miss Wednesday’s qualifier at Honduras, with USMNT coach Gregg Berhalter sending the midfielder home and replacing him with Jackson Yueill.

“Weston will return to Italy and will be unavailable for the match against Honduras due to a violation of team policy,” USMNT head coach Gregg Berhalter said in a team-issued statement. “There are high expectations for those who are a part of the U.S. Men’s National Team, and in order to be successful it’s important that everyone in the group is accountable.”

U.S. Soccer also announced that Sergiño Dest will miss the match with an ankle injury suffered in the 44th minute of Sunday’s draw with Canada. Dest may have been a long shot to start against Honduras even if healthy given he started the first two September qualifiers, but he now joins Gio Reyna (hamstring injury), McKennie and Zack Steffen (COVID-19) among the players ruled out for Wednesday’s trip to Honduras.

The Yueill inclusion comes as a surprise after his lackluster performances in the summer, but with Kellyn Acosta expected to be needed in a more advanced midfield role, and potentially at right back, Yueill will step in to provide cover behind Tyler Adams in the defensive midfield role.

The USMNT has called in no other roster replacements, which is a surprise, particularly in the attack, where the team was already missing Tim Weah, who was on the initial pre-camp roster and never replaced after being injured with Lille, and will now be without Reyna.

The USMNT is sitting on two points from its first two matches of the Octagonal Round of Concacaf World Cup qualifying, and will take on a Honduras side that also has two points from its first two matches, though Honduras began the Octagonal with road matches against Canada and El Salvador, making Wednesday the Octagonal home opener for the Catrachos.


What do you think of this development? Think it was the right call to send McKennie home? Shocked that Berhalter called in no attacking replacements? Think the USMNT can rebound and pull off the win in Honduras?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. Should have called in Jesus Ferreira. We have a glut of ball winners and defensive midfielders but not a lot of creative MFs. Lleget is the other but its easy for teams to stop him since he’s a known commodity.

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  2. FYI: https://www.espn.com/soccer/united-states-usa/story/4470334/mckennie-dismissed-by-usmnt-for-two-covid-protocol-violationsincluding-bringing-unauthorized-individual-into-bubble-sources
    .
    So he gets busted with Juventus and is in the doghouse with his club, and drops down the MF depth chart. Makes the trip for WCQ and gets busted again for the same infraction. He is just selfish and immature, and doesn’t deserve another callup anytime soon. This isn’t on the coach or USSF – McKennie is fully accountable.
    .
    I’d scratch McKennie off any future WCQ roster for the foreseeable future, and I am guessing maybe until 2022. It is time to move on. Juventus sets high standards, and McKennie has now watched his club stock and US stock plummet. I think Juventus will play him just to try to increase his transfer value and dump him in January to the highest bidder, if the price is acceptable. In any event, he has lost control of his future soccer ambitions.
    .
    My radical thought on a replacement: Sergino Dest. Since we are seeing an emergence of quality wingbacks that can be called in for future WCQ, maybe there is an opening for Dest to slot further upfield. Food for thought for October.

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  3. “ in order to be successful it’s important that everyone in the group is accountable.”

    * * *

    Does this count for the coach as well?

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  4. i get there is a covid spread angle — hence the way the suspension is being worded — but beers and chicks in his room (reading between the lines), sorry, i’ve been on U18 select teams who at week long tournaments could party one night and play 7 pm the next day just fine. the premise is he did it without other teammates since he’s the only one being punished. i get covid makes it different but did USSF bother to ask if the girls were vaccinated? there’a abstract risk and then there’s concretely sorting out if you have a problem.

    on the Juve “party,” 2 other teammates plus some girls were involved and unless we’re going puritanical with this, the real issue is again the covid angle and not the fact that (shock shock shock) athletes might be partying, drinking, and having women around.

    now, if you thought mckennie was an alcoholic and/or it was affecting game performance, separate issue, but then you might do well to deliver him to rehab as opposed to just send your problem back to juve.

    landon is criticizing him but he also was a workaholic who would go on offseason loans and take every cap and burned out before the 2014 tournament such he had to take a sabbatical. guy with his technicality and fitness should have played til he was 40. these might be opposite ends of a spectrum where i want the kid to end up in the middle someplace. i mean, at one extreme here, have either of these teams factored in female companionship into their little bubbles? ever?

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    • Are team rules to be enforced or not? If you don’t enforce them, then there is no point in having them. Any manager or teacher (I’ve been both) won’t be able to control those underneath him or her if rules aren’t enforced. If rules aren’t enforced at the best you have a dysfunctional organization that is unproductive. At worst you have chaos.

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      • I don’t think anyone is saying no consequences whatsoever. But missing 2 crucial games, sending him home? If it was something like his girlfriend visited his hotel room- then fine him, make him miss a start… but two games is more like- I’m your daddy trying to teach some life lesson to the kids. At the cost to our chances at WC.

      • Let me give you some of my experience. I had an employee who was a good worker, but often was in trouble. We caught him in an offense that justified termination. I let the decision up to his direct supervisor who worked with him every day. She decided to give him another chance. Did he reform? No, he ended up getting fired in the future. If you have a bad apple, it should be removed before it spoils the whole bunch. I had an instructor in management who put it simply–if you have a boat with 10 people rowing hard in the same direction and one who is rowing in the other direction, what’s the solution? You remove the one who is rowing the wrong way. Period.

    • The bottom line is we don’t know so it’s pointless to say if it was deserved or not. There are all sorts of rumors out there with varying degrees.

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  5. There we go. The whining is back, we even have the Fredy Adu post, making fun of how bad he is !!!! YES !

    Total troll post? Maybe.

    but come on, this is 100% on the people posting. Having expectations that are too high. This team and the pool behind it, has about 4 good, not great forwards and ZERO people that can create for them. ZERO. Why dont you look up the assist numbers for the US attackers. Zero is a number that could be used again, because it is dang close.

    OK for sure coming across as a troll post. But I am not wrong.

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    • i expect us to park the bus except the problem is not the middle of the bus (save brooks), it’s holding down the wings, and i don’t know if he has anyone in camp who can competently hold down a wing. amuses me he’s trying his gold cup concept twice for road games but with horrorshow nations league defending. he really misread honduras, where elis easily could have tied that at the end, and they had a few good chances they just missed.

      i do agree what you are pointing at is a problem — that and he has put some miles on the players he will run out there — but i see it as a “trinidad” type contingency problem. if his 0-0 dream doesn’t happen he needs an attacking response. like arena at trinidad he simply doesn’t have enough danger left in the roster. particularly at forward i think the risks of inexperience are exaggerated. if a forward makes a mistake that costs a goal a further chain of mistakes has to follow.

      just amazed we have not called in more reinforcements.

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      • zIt is clear that opposing coaches basically have the same approach. Pack it in on defense and use speedy wingers to counter attack on offense. And it has worked too often against us. Costa Rica did it to beat us at home during the last cycle, Honduras has used it, El Salvador used it, and now Canada. There are ways to counteract this, why don’t our coaches set up game plans and teach approaches to counter that?

    • they pose different risk levels. if he went clubbing he’s radioactive in a bubble. if he met a chick or two at his room — particularly ones he knows — then ok, have they been vaccinated, have they been tested lately. americans wouldn’t understand the “contact tracing” aspect of this because we just let the virus overwhelm us and then basically wait til people get sick to quarantine them. but this is not just abstract masks and shots, it’s person to person. who did he meet, what is their status. to me punting him gets more justified if he went out, is harsh and fake if he brought some limited company end that could be asked after. the girl(s) might have their shot. the girl(s) might have a job with regular tests. the girl(s) could maybe go take a rapid test.

      i also think i might buy this was less of a morality thing if it was expressed more as a bubble problem than a punishment. USSF and weston both talked about it like a sin instead of a bubble quarantine issue. in which case i think if he tests negative a single game fits the sin. i’d respect it more if it was phrased as we have to punt him because he’s radioactive for bubble purposes. “we have to punt him to ensure the team is healthy to play honduras.” this 1+1 stuff reads like morality. it’s punishment. if it was really about bubble protocol he would have been gone for good before canada.

      and that to me is where the “Juve” party and moral judgment comes in.

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      • Guys, yes and no on the covid thing. Did you see what happened in Brazil with Argentina? The health authorities literally threatened to arrest the entire Argentina team and then the game was suspended.

        I have no problem sending someone home if he didn’t follow the rules. Single known girl, or clubbing event. If it’s a girl, you go ask the coach and lay it out for him (why you think it should work). This isn’t HS. These are adults.

        They made a COVID protocol and it is for everyone’s safety. Last thing you want is a forfeit (SEE E.G. Argentina).

  6. I recall Mckinnie said he didn’t want to play for the US National team anymore. Maybe this is his way of following up on that stand.

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  7. Wow, I hadn’t looked at soccer news for 12 hours and all Hell has broken loose in the meantime. I called for McKennie to be sent home, so I support that move. The issue is more than the specific indiscretion. What it is about is team play and team unity. What has been maybe the biggest problem in the first two games, especially vs. El Salvador? It’s lack of team play and individual selfishness and McKennie’s behavior would seem to an ultimate example of that when he violates a team rule right before 2 crucial games. How can you get much more selfish than that? It’s the behavior of a spoiled prima donna who thinks the world revolves around him. He needs a serious attitude adjustment. As for Yueill, well what can one say except that Berhalter has been making serious mistakes in player selection for some time. After Weah was ruled out I called for him to bring in another player. Remember before these games when everyone was expecting that he would bring a total of 30 players? Unless he was told by USSF or Ernie Stewart that he couldn’t bring in any more players, this failure by Berhalter is very serious.
    So, he ends up bringing in 26 and then we have a suspension and several injuries and all of a sudden our supposed depth isn’t there for the crucial 3rd game. While the situation is serious, I hesitate to call for his removal at this stage of qualifying. Who is available and capable enough to come in and make a difference? Some have argued with mne about Klinsmann’s replacement. The fact is, and you can look it up, the US didn’t really do any better after Arena took over. Losing at home to Costa Rica was crucial back then. I think similarly here that maybe they should start a search for a possible replacement if everything blows up, but in the meantime give Berhalter at least the next 3 games after Honduras to right the ship.

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    • “I think similarly here that maybe they should start a search for a possible replacement if everything blows up, but in the meantime give Berhalter at least the next 3 games after Honduras to right the ship.”

      When Pulisic tells the media “we need new ideas”, things are already blowing up. Coming from him that is practically a declaration of war.

      Waiting as long as you suggest would make things really, really hard on any potential replacement manager.

      IF replacing the manager is a possibility at all it should be done either before or right after the Honduras game.

      If this manager has lost it then why endanger the 9 points that that next three game set represents? That is foolhardy.

      Let’s say they tie Honduras. Now they have 3 points from 3 games.

      Now every one is in revolt, the internet is blown up and the pressure is on. If the manager stays and USMNT ties the next three games then they will have 6 points from 6 games.

      So they wait that long and then fire this guy and bring in Jason Kreis ( cheapest possible alternative) or whoever.

      That means the replacement will have 8 games (24 points ) to get out of jail.

      24 points is supposed to be the magic number.

      With 6 points in hand, they will need 18 points from those 8 games to get to 24.

      It will be 4 homes games and 4 away games.

      Win all home games = 12 points
      Tie all away games = 4 points

      16 points.

      They will HAVE to win at least one away game, draw the other three and win all 4 home games.

      Three of those four away games are at Canada, Costa Rica and Mexico.

      So you are asking a lot of the replacement if you DO NOT bring them in right after Honduras and give them a chance to build up a point cushion

      The games are coming in 3 game sets now not 2 like in the Hex.

      After Honduras the two 3 games sets finish up by January 27.

      Then there is one game on Jan 30, Canada (A), one game on February 2, Honduras (H).

      And they finish up with a three game set in March 24, Mexico (A), March 27 Panama (H), March 30, Costa Rica (A)

      The idea behind a fast start was that the three hardest games will be Canada, Mexico and Costa Rica away and you didn’t want to have to count on having to beat or even tie them in order to qualify.

      Whatever the fate of this manager, go or stay, it would be best to decide it by the end of the Honduras game if not sooner.

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      • What I have said is to start a search and wait until the next 3 games to make a decision. BTW, I never supported the hiring of Berhalter in the first place. I would have put him as a 4th or 5th choice. I have never said that I thought he was a bad coach, just not a real good coach and not nearly the best one available. I’m not invested one way or another in Berhalter, my opinion is based on what I think is best for the team and our qualification.

    • This team needs a manager that understands how to manage and deploy top tier talent. Understanding Concacaf or the American soccer landscape is irrelevant at this point. To that end I would dream for Conte. Valverde would be good. I would be good with Wegner.

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    • Gary… Et. Al., You guys slay me with the coaching changes stuff. You were wrong with Klinsmann (Arena didn’t do better) and you are wrong now. Let the man work. It isn’t the coach’s fault the players played crappy or missed a shot.

      That being said, he only brought 26 players. Everyone is right this was awful. But having done that, you can’t bring re-inforcements from EU and certain folks you want to call in MUST stay at their clubs right now (next window, I expect to see Cannon and Musah and perhaps Busio by way of example of people who need to stay put). Yueill is shit, he should have brought sands. Fine, another mistake. He didn’t sub guys in early enough vs. Canada. Fine, another mistake. But he also didn’t have 3 of the top 4 offensive talents on the team. Again, maybe you change tactics… let’s call that a mistake too then. He’ll learn. He isn’t stupid.

      I think you have to give the man the benefit of the doubt a little. They played better against Canada. Let’s see what happens in Honduras. If they come out flat, or disjointed, then we can have this chat again. But until then, changing coaches over a couple of ties is crap. Italy just tied Bulgaria and Switzerland (BULGARIA!!!), I’ll grant you Mancini just won Eurocup, so has more rope… but they literally still looked hungover from July on the field in those games. He has made mistakes, let him learn.

      Now, what the hell is Donovan doing talking? Why are people telling Landon about what happened? Keep that shit in the team. He was suspended and sent home. That in and of itself is bad. Don’t pile on and air the laundry. Is Donovan even a part of US soccer anymore? Jeez.

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      • I’ve done my best to be patient and allow for growth but… wow… we are quickly nearing a critical point and I hope to ^%$# the team and yes- it’s leader GB wakes up quickly- like Wednesday. Like 3 its wakes up and stays awake going forward. No one is going anywhere soon- we’ll not be being bailed out by a savior manager. In spite of surface success this summer… I’d say winning in spite of- there’ve been some glaring warning signs with disjointed play- a lack of creativity and scant goals in the run of play. What’s more- pedestrian painful pattern of horrible call-ups and more alarming- zero signs of learning from past mistakes. We’ve had rosters that are unbalanced, missing pieces and poorly assembled- mismatched to what GB says he wants to do. He needlessly brought in 26 players and a roster lacking in midfielders and only one true creator in Reyna- and was immediately caught out by injuries. Unfortunately… this isn’t something new- it is more of the same. Last go around we had a roster completely devoid of wingers and one of the few was injured game 1. The team is a reflection of the manager- immature, naive, slow of thought- lacking creativity with an alarming inability to adapt.

    • My critics here, I think, are engaging in unrealistic thinking. At the least you need someone who knows the US player pool and has international experience. Being familiar with CONCACAF is a definite plus. And the coach must be available. I see a couple of names mentioned, but the fact is there aren’t that many who fit the criteria and are available. Personally I think the coach who best meets the criteria is Bob Bradley. But would he even want the job? If he wants the job, could he get out of his club contract. Then, if you can resolve those problems you have to work out a new contract and have agreement on the terms. Then the new coach may want to bring in some new assistants and then prepare plans for the next round of qualifiers. I don’t know if you could even get all that done before the next 3 games.
      A poster says that I was wrong about Klinsmann. In the last cycle, Klinsmann coached for 2 games out of 10, Arena 8 out of 10. Compared to the prior cycle Arena did worse versus Costa Rica at home and Panama away. He did better at Honduras away. That’s a net loss of 2 points. We didn’t play T&T in 2013. But we lost under Arena at T&T away and under Klinsmann to Mexico at home, so they were a wash although you can argue that Mexico at home is tougher than T&T away. I stand by my contention that Arena didn’t improve the outcome in 2017.

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    • Absolutly not, if we lose or draw in Honduras then he should be sent to stand beside his brother. End of Berhalter story. Our USMNT is worth more than their egos.

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  8. I don’t know exactly what Weston did re the rule breaking. I don’t really care.

    But I can tell you he just did the team a great favor.

    He gave the manager and the others a great strawman.

    Now the fans and media have someone to blame for everything wrong.

    The team has 12 games ( 36 points ) to set things right.

    BUT does the Manager have 12 games?

    Drop points to Honduras and whoever is Queso Grande will have a big decision to make:

    Has this guy earned the benefit of the doubt or do we bring in the “other” JK (Kreis, late of Olympic qualifying). Can Pep or Klopp be pried loose from their contracts?

    They can’t wait long because you want to give a replacement time to turn this sinking oil tanker around. And the games are coming thick and fast now, three game sets, not two game sets like in the Hex.

    If they are going to make a change it almost has to be right after the Honduras game if not before it.

    Has he “lost the locker room?

    Never mind big Wes, when CP, very publicly, says they need “new ideas” and the manager brings in the great Jackson Yueill how is that going to go over with the troops??

    If you are the manager you don’t want to lose the “face” of the team.

    If you are Frank Vogel you don’t want to hear LeBron say, ” we need new ideas”.

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  9. Comment section goin’ crazy! PN said what I was going to post, Sands & Acosta is on the roster. You don’t need Yueill. I think, GB really wants to get Jackson to Europe. (Only reason I can come up with). Certain number of caps for the senior team, helps earn a work permit in some countries. I’ve been critical of his play since 1st group stage match vs CR, back in March. He does what Lleget is guilty of now. Killing the offensive break. Hopefully, we only see Yueill play RB for 5 minute cameo. No Acosta @ RB. …then again Kyle Duncan would be a good sub at RB for Yedlin. I understand it would be absolutely difficult to get someone from Europe to San Pedro Sula on time. Chris Mueller can play one of the midfield spots and both wingers spots. Jesus Ferreira can do the same. Or GB can beg the best US midfielder in the MLS- Darlington Nagbe, who has experience in WCQ, age for maturity & leadership and dribbling ability to maintain possession. GB calling up players, just to not use them is becoming a bad routine. I think, if he called in Cowell or Clark, he wouldn’t use them, either. I can feel my anxiety level skyrocket, already. Wu-sah!!

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    • I think Yueill was pulled in because he can travel to CA on short notice, and to send a message that no one should place self above team.
      .
      After this round ends Wednesday, it is probably open audition for a replacement for October. It won’t be Yueill. I am placing Musah, if healthy, at the top, and maybe Busio since I cannot think of a better replacement ready right now.
      .
      It appears Juventus is at the end of their rope and is planning to sell, which means McKennie no longer controls his upward career path. I would think teams will wait until late In the transfer window and make a lowball offer. Time will tell to see if he can pull himself out of the mess he himself created.

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      • Agreed with your 1st paragraph. In response to the 2nd, I’m hoping to see a midfield of Adams, & Durkin, with Sands as the emergency 6. Durkin can make a 35-40 yard diagonal pass with his right foot. He can also make a least a 20 yard pass with his left. Sub Chris in the last 15-20 minutes of every match, let Adams push into the box, if we our down. The 8s – Green, LDT, a healthy Musah, and Duane Holmes. I’ve seen all these players turn and carry/dribble the ball more than 10 yards, in multiple matches. Threw balls not so much, but getting the ball to your forwards & wingers is part of the responsibility of an 8. If Musah isn’t fit, then Acosta is fine as backup 8, or 6. Busio isn’t strong enough yet, as a midfielder to go against CONCACAF hacking. Think – BA v ES in qualifying. CP v El Tri ‘19 GC Final. I don’t want to see our best young talent, getting injured, then having to back to their clubs. If Busio, Caden Clark are called in, I’d like to see them playing winger. Wingers are free to find the space under GB. Think, BA vs Canada. As for McKennie, he got his neck grab by Guardado, and didn’t do anything about it. Outside of soccer, you don’t let someone physically disrespect you and do nothing about it. It’ll happen again. That moment let me know, he wasn’t mature, that was 2 years ago. None of this with McKennie is surprising to me.

  10. A lot of whining about McKennie being over punished because we need him. He looked lackluster, disinterested and tired during the El Salvador match. I was screaming at the TV to get him out of the game and find anyone who looked like they wanted to be on the field after watching him pass the ball repeatedly to players wearing royal blue. If he’s going to give us another performance like that, then how valuable is he? He was talking big before the El Salvador game. He’s supposed to be a leader. I don’t mind big talkers, but they have to do one thing if they talk big– back it up. So, now we find out he broke rules and has become a distraction at the least. Cry me a river of tears. I remember one guy who broke team rules in DC after a WC game effectively ending his promising career arc because of a terrible accident. It may not have been his fault, but if the poor guy was in bed, he may have been among the all-time US scorers. So, yeah, breaking rules hurts the team sometimes too.

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  11. Wow- the HR department has even taken over our Soccer team. Pulisic might be looking over at a real country like Croatia a little differently now.

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  12. I notice few comments about the fact that McKennie took a dump on his teammates heads by selfishly breaking protocol? McKennie acting like a 5 year old leads to comment after comment about Greggs mistakes? Sheesh people, where the F are your values? Seriously.

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    • Look at the article specifically on Wes being suspended it’s universally being upset with Weston. Without really knowing what happened people are asking why two games because we’re on 2 pts. If we’d one both games nobody would have a problem.

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    • So Bruce S are you saying that Weston is now responsible for the USMNT having 2 points from 2 games and generally looking clueless?

      He played vs El Salvador. 1 point
      He did not play vs. Canada. 1 point

      How is this all Weston’s fault?

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      • Yes, I am saying that Weston McKennie bears some good sized chunk of responsibility by fooking with the team right before a big game. Yes, that’s exactly what I am saying

      • He played vs El Salvador. 1 point. Weston played poorly
        He did not play vs. Canada. 1 point. He fooked with the team RIGHT before the game. Yes it is partly his fault.
        How is this all Weston’s fault? Of course it isn’t ALL his fault. But he played a BIG role

  13. when you bring in yeuill after he got benched from the B team this is all about following orders. like after gold cup this is completely indefensible on soccer performance. he was swiss cheese with no attacking upside. even berhalter was like, go sit over there out of my eye line. sorry but at the point of trying to rehabilitate yeuill i would (a) off my weston high horse or (b) moving sands up or (c) calling busio, doston, johnny, or someone else fresh. when someone sucks as bad as yeuill did experience no longer even matters. this is clownish. his behavior this week reminds me of bradley “cracking” at gold cup 2011. i hope against hope for a result in honduras but this is like a bad mix of dictatorial control freak meets poor soccer analyst. i told people this should be first place qualifying talent but with this coach it would be an adventure somehow.

    i think it is dangerous to give a coach with this short of a resume the power he got, and i am curious if he realizes how fast this can turn on bradley or klinsi or arena.

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    • part of the reason roldan got on is he used 3/4 of his attacking subs. the only one left was pepi. in short, he ran out of options. but is there anyone else we can send home who already got punished?

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  14. Ok so McKennie (an 8) is replaced by Yueill (a 6) in what has nearly become a Must Winn game. So Berhaulter’s solution to an internal rule is to bench one of our best players for not 1 but 2 key WCQ games…no problem.
    The replacement player called up is Yueill…a player who has been abused repeatedly by the opponent we’re about to face off against….

    Things are worse than they were when JK was fired. It’s time Ernie start looking for a replacement.

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  15. hahaha berhalter is too funny. i told a friend before canada that even one game reminded me when i got suspended an extra game by the college AD for a dissent red as a frosh. so art now imitates life. you don’t think one game is enough?

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  16. Read somewhere that Freddy Adu is still trying to play soccer. Berhalter should have called him in for his vast experience.

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  17. GB blew it by not calling in Green from the beginning and not replacing Weah immediately. Does GB survive a loss in Honduras? He’s made some perplexing decisions and hasn’t managed the games well.

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  18. Lot of good points about Berhalter’s shortcomings as a coach, but I think the biggest problem is how many people are comfortable referring to him as Gregg.

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      • I wouldn’t be adverse to Green, but having watched him a lot over the last two years, and watching his first Bliga games this year….he fits the…we aren’t doing well so I want this guy (!!!!!!) just because!!!!! One thing that is clear is that when the game gets quicker and his opponents get physical Julian disappears. Now put that into a Nats, Central American environment and I don’t see him being some big solution other than…he is not here, and he is now on a B2 team masquerading as a Bliga team this year before they go right down. Hell….Furth sold their best player from last year and never replaced him. They were a clear surprise for getting the play off and actually winning it, and their GM and board seem to agree. They ain’t even trying to stay up. I also believe Julian was rated something like the 9th best attacking midfielder in B2 last year. None of this is to disparage Julian, or defend GB, but history says he ain’t a difference maker. Def isn’t a game changer. In hindsight he should have gone to the Gold Cup.

  19. In the meantime, a loss or tie will be the best that the US does in Honduras and Gregg will seriously find himself in the Jurgen Klinsman situation. Alotta talking but not much to show. Jackson Yueill? Ya lost Weah, Dest and now Mckinnie and that’s the first name you come up with?

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  20. Omg what is this guy with Jackson Yueill????? Bruh I’m done!! Does he have autism or something??? I don’t get it. There’s so many people to call from MLS and he keeps going back to Yueill. Were losing to Honduras unless we hold off another 0-0 draw

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  21. Roster construction a mess…..par for the course in Greg era. Williamson injury brutal. We get Yuell who will wither in Hondo over a guy who would have been perfect for it. My oh my. I don’t like criticizing coaches too quickly. As soneone who has lead, and leads large groups, with high stakes, I know how difficult a job it is.
    Greg however doesn’t endear trust. Same errors over and over…not good.
    Has the traits of an academic who can solve it all from the classroom, but can’t deal with the reality of the world, or is overwhelmed by/doesn’t understand it.

    Not good.

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  22. Not a fan of Berhalter, or the USSF, but… maybe the team is behind this?

    Even a “minor” violation of protocol could seriously impact individual careers and team performance for 10-14 days into the near future. Given that players are prohibited from playing with even a non-symptomatic case of the COVIDs, a violation of COVID protocol could jeopardize any single player’s (or multiple players’) chances of competing in subsequent qualifiers.

    Then there’s being isolated from your club a al Pulisic, and missing games or training for 10-14 days thereafter. Also, I’ve heard COVID sucks. Maybe no one on the team wants it.

    Tyler Adams was quoted as saying that, while Wes is an important player, the team approached his violation with a “next man up” mentality. Maybe the team is not exactly clamoring for Wes to return. None of us really knows what happened yet, so we can’t really say that sending him packing is an overreaction.

    Selfish move Wes.

    Reply
    • IMO the problem is less about sending Wes home and more about calling Yueill in as the replacement. Yueill has been smoked by Honduras the last 2 times he’s faced them. Then there’s the fact that Yueill plays the 6 while Wes plays the 8.
      This call-up reeks of desperation on Gregg’s part and is bound to be of little to no value to the team. Another of Gregg’s seriously questionable decisions.

      Reply
  23. On McKennie, good. No one player is bigger than the team. If you can’t make the commitment to sacrifice a couple of days like everyone else on the team, you don’t belong there. After Juventus, he obviously didn’t get the message. Maybe now he will.

    Reply
  24. Berhalter clearly broke coach policy with his crappy in match tactics and late subs.
    Can we send him home and call up a replacement, too?

    Reply
  25. I honestly feel sorry for Yueill. He’s not even been playing well at San Jose and is trying to turn it around. Now Gregg calls him in knowing everyone is going to just destroy him on social media. Hell calling in Bradley would have made more sense. At least then people could say they need a leader.

    Reply
    • Just a reminder – James Sands is also available, and a nice upgrade over Yueill. Yueill is just insurance, and to let McKennie knows his roster spot is not guaranteed.

      Reply
      • dude only has 10 defenders in camp, and no apparent push to play him at all, he can spare sands. i mean we had 5 unplayed sub defenders left from the 23 against canada, but he used almost every attacker of the few he had left.

  26. This isn’t high school sports. He isn’t their dad. He screwed up. Punish him another way. But hurting the rest of the team by not playing is a bad choice. Unless the Team violation put other people at risk of Covid exposure, which seems a possibility, then I don’t agree with Berhalter here.

    Reply
    • Exactly. Pseudo parenting to try and look tough.

      Re: covid exposure. Sorry but that’s irrelevant. They are playing soccer all year without masks, what could be riskier, right? That ship has sailed.

      Reply
      • And what exactly did Landon say aside giving his own opinion in cryptic terms?
        Deal with this crap internally and make your best player – the only one that actually seems like he cares on the field for the USA – redeem himself by helping you win.
        Parenting 101 getting in the way of qualifying for a World Cup is amateur hour. Unless you have the depth to replace a player like Mckennie you’re just making more difficult on yourself. France can afford to “punish” Benzema. We can’t.
        Now if it turns out Mckennie broke laws and committed a felony, sure that’s more serious and then it’s a different story.

      • I did:

        “So, it’s really disappointing. I hope he has apologized profusely. I hope he is able to make the trip on Wednesday for the game, and he needs to make amends. He really does.”

        Hard to make amends on Wednesday if you are in Italy.

  27. It seems obvious the policy violation, which was never made clear to the press and fans, is serious enough to send McKennie home. Given his previous indiscretions at Juventus and now this, it seems McKennie has some troubling maturity problems that he needs to address. I suggest his agent read him the riot act, as I cannot believe management at Juventus is pleased to see a player recently reprimanded for breaking their team rules repeat the same mistake while on international call up.

    I support the coaches making this decision. Bringing him back in would disrupt team chemistry, and their focus on Wednesday’s game. I hear a door opening for players like Musah, Busio and others for October.

    Reply
      • Agree that Musah more likely option than Busio, assuming he is at full health. McKennie is now back in doghouse in Juventus, and deservedly so. His behavior implies to both management teams he cannot be trusted to follow team rules.

    • Likely Musah over Busio – agreed. But with Williamson out, I cannot think of another suitable option for McKennie. He is likely back in the doghouse at Juventus, deservedly so, and has an uphill climb ahead of him.

      Reply
      • Article out today indicates Juve see Wes as unfit for a top club and may be dropping their asking price in January 2022.

  28. If we are talking about accountability, perhaps GB should stand up and take a bit more for being unable to get any meaningful attacking play out a talented roster. Nobody gets less from more.

    Bringing in Yueill and nobody to supplement the attack is baffling. Is he testing how far he can push mediocrity? I love Acosta, but his poor touch passing is not going to help further up the pitch.

    Hard not to be in full blown panic right now.

    Reply
    • Well said Jeff. My first thoughts are Gregg has Wednesdays game and the next three in October to right the ship. I would hope Earnie has the balls and foresight to have somebody in the wings or will quietly be making some calls. Is that cutthroat? Yes it is and perhaps Gregg should understand it’s of the greatest importance to qualify for a World Cup before hosting one. Imagine missing out on two in a row due to a poor start where coaching is at question. I’m sure Lallas would agree unacceptable! My only question is who could step in to guide team for the two games in Nov if say team is sitting on say 7 points?

      Reply
  29. Geesh this is dumb. He already was punished for a game – point made. It’s about winning games not about this pseudo parenting BS. US soccer continues to out dumb itself.
    So we deprive ourselves of one of our best player, and the only one that plays with a purpose and fire, because of arbitrary self-imposed rules. Nice one.

    Reply
    • You can’t really make that statement without knowing the specifics. Clearly Greg knows his job and the country’s hopes are at stake so what Weston did has to have been serious enough to justify this. According to Landon Donovan, who apparently knows what happened, it’s almost beyond repair with his teammates after what occurred. I think Berhalter deserves the benefit of the doubt here.

      Reply
      • You lost me at “clearly Gregg knows his job”

        But seriously- unless he actually committed a felony or a crime, I don’t see what warrants sending your best player back to his club for a game you need to win. If Napoli or Barcelona suspended Maradona every time he went out and partied in a manner that would make Mckennie look like a Boy Scout ….

        He was already suspended for a home game – point made, move on, and let him redeem himself on the field in a must win game. We don’t have any other player of his caliber to fill his spot. So this seems like some patronizing sissy bs. You don’t need to like your teammates. you need to go out and play and win. Mckennie on the field is always out best most intense player.
        We would have beat Canada if he played I guarantee.

      • I’ll have to support Gregg on this. As a coach being tough and being willing to make an example of one of your best players enforces your credibility. Over the short term it costs you – and I think it did against Canada – but over the long term if the team survives the loss AND WINS it enforces the idea that no player is bigger than the team and it means your authority is to be respected. Without that you’re just inviting still more unacceptable misbehavior.
        If the team can get a result in Honduras without McKennie, Gregg will have survived this.
        If he doesn’t, Gregg probably won’t.
        It’s a gamble. But if the situation warranted it and Gregg did what he needed to do, and he can still get the result – keep in mind 5 points in 5 games was the minimum the USA needed to feel good about this opening – then his roll of the dice worked, and the team will be better for it, because at least they’ll respect his authority.
        And McKennie will have a whole new attitude the next time he’s called up. (Which he will be…eventually.)

    • 100% agree with him being sent home. When I heard this I assumed what it usually is: broke curfew to party or go clubbing or to a certain kind of club, which is terrible enough during qualifying to affect his own performance and the team, but during COVID?? And potentially causing other players to sit out? Now, I don’t know if this was the case but if I had to bet it would be it. What protocols are there besides curfew, sobriety, and rest are there the day before and the day of the game?

      Reply
      • So all year long playing soccer without masks, interacting with random players, refs, fans, without masks. Traveling by plane, etc… Playing in front of what are capacity crowds in stadiums- basically super spreader events each time. There isn’t even a vaccine mandate for players… covid safety in soccer what a joke!!
        But ok he went out partied and broke “protocol”—- the hypocrisy is unbearable man.

    • Dantes, your leaving off a lot from your story. They had no fans all last year, they weren’t interacting with random fans, and players refs and stadium staff were all tested regularly. There was no documented case reported anywhere in the world of a player contracting Covid from an opponent, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen but it was extremely rare. Juventus and the NT travel by charter and so interactions again are with regularly tested individuals which as we’ve seen isn’t fool proof but it’s hardly the world you described. Whatever he did it sounds as if Covid just added another layer too but probably would have been punished in a normal year. He’s not parenting he’s being a boss. Guess what if you break rules at work you get punished.

      Reply
      • Totally agree, JR — if it is what we think it is (going out to club/bar the night before a WCQ match), it would be bad enough in a normal year/time; to do this during COVID and potentially expose the entire team to it is just incredibly selfish and immature. And that this is not the first time he has been slapped on-the-wrist over this issue makes it all the more frustrating. He needs to grow up if he wants to lead on this team; for me, big talk and chest-thumping is only welcome if you actually back it up with a cool head and strong play. Outside of a couple of really nice headers from Mckennie in NL final against Mexico, I’ve only seen the big talk and chest-thumping — oh, and off-the-field distractions. Put in Acosta and in later WCQ windows Musah and leave Mckennie at home until he grows up, IMO.

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