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SBI USMNT Man of the Match: Sean Johnson

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The U.S. men’s national team held a dynamic Uruguay attacking unit in check during Sunday’s goal-less draw in Kansas City with goalkeeper Sean Johnson shining brightest in his first international appearance in 29 months

Johnson helped the Americans earn a second consecutive clean sheet this month, playing a key role in between the posts. The 32-year-old earned SBI Man of the Match honors after delivering a three-save shutout at Children’s Mercy Park in his first USMNT cap since January 2020.

Johnson earned the nod over Matt Turner and Ethan Horvath on Sunday and helped silence Diego Alonso’s attack, which featured Darwin Nunez, Maxi Gomez, and second-half substitute Edinson Cavani. The NYCFC goalkeeper’s biggest contribution came in the 63rd minute as he dived low to repel Mathias Olivera’s close-range shot off of a dangerous cross from Matias Vecino.

Even as Uruguay pushed late for a winning goal, Johnson stood tall in the final minutes as Gregg Berhalter’s side walked away with a favorable result prior to Friday’s Concacaf Nations League opener.

Johnson wasn’t the only USMNT player to show well on Sunday, with Walker Zimmerman, Tyler Adams, and Yunus Musah garnering Honorable Mention in the Man of the Match discussion.

What did you think of Johnson’s performance? Do you see him challenging for the starting spot at the World Cup? Who else do you think impressed in Sunday’s friendly?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. I was pleasantly surprised at how good Johnson really was. He’s definitely at least close to Turner and probably equal to Horvath and if Johnson’s playing and Horvath isn’t, I’d say Johnson may have effectively bumped himself up to #2. Really good shot-stopper, shockingly good with his feet out of the back. Of the guys who were either new faces or old ones trying to play their way into the picture I’d say Johnson definitely did himself the most favors.

    I think we may all be suspecting Steffen isn’t going to make it to Qatar unless he can get healthy, get a loan move, and his form improves significantly in the next few months. Johnson may have bumped him off the Qatar roster altogether right now.

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    • Q – I think Johnson now has a spot to lose or Steffen has to win it back, which he can’t do if he isn’t playing so yeah, I think Steffen is not going to Qatar

      Reply
  2. Musah was so good at breaking the press with his dribble and passing. Without Musah the US would have struggled to get out of the defensive third. He was even better working around midfield. Changing direction getting the ball into dangerous areas and allowing talented players to get on the ball.
    It is going to be interesting with all these talented midfielders including Reyna, Pulisic, Weah, Aaronson , and McKinnie. Berhalter might be forced to play his best players and move on from starting Ferrera, Pepi, Sargent, and Haji. Playing Weah or Pulisic as striker. Berhalter likes Ferreira for his work rate and ability to play in the midfield essentially what Weah or Pulisic are capable but better players

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