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Pulisic, Adams, Balogun headline USMNT preliminary Nations League roster


The Concacaf Nations League semifinals are one month away, and we now have a clearer picture of what that the U.S. men’s national team roster could look like.

The preliminary rosters for the CNL Final Four squads were revealed on Friday and the USMNT roster features many of the top players in the pool, including Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, Yunus Musah, and Gio Reyna.

Recent USMNT commit Folarin Balogun has also been included in the preliminary roster after having his one-time international switch approved by FIFA earlier this week.

USMNT interim head coach Anthony Hudson will still have plenty of key decisions to make in order to trim the final roster down to 23 players. Several of the past USMNT call-ups including Tim Ream, Cameron Carter-Vickers, and Malik Tillman have not been included due to respective injuries at club level.

The USMNT faces rivals Mexico in the Nations League semifinals on June 15 in Las Vegas, with the winner facing the winner of the Canada-Panama semifinal on June 18 in the final.

The Americans clinched their semifinal spot in March after defeating both Grenada and El Salvador in group stage action. Several players excelled during the March window including Ricardo Pepi, Auston Trusty, and Alex Zendejas.

Here is the 60-man preliminary USMNT roster for the Concacaf Nations League:

Preliminary USMNT Nations League roster

GOALKEEPERS: Drake Callender, Ethan Horvath, Sean Johnson, Zack Steffen, Matt Turner

DEFENDERS: John Brooks, Reggie Cannon, Sergino Dest, Marlon Fossey, Julian Gressel, DeJuan Jones, Aaron Long, Mark McKenzie, Matt Miazga, Shaq Moore, Jalen Neal, Erik Palmer-Brown, Bryan Reynolds, Chris Richards, Antonee Robinson, Miles Robinson, Joe Scally, John Tolkin, Auston Trusty, DeAndre Yedlin, Walker Zimmerman

MIDFIELDERS: Brenden Aaronson, Kellyn Acosta, Tyler Adams, Gianluca Busio, Johnny Cardoso, Luca De La Torre, Richie Ledezma, Weston McKennie, Djordje Mihailovic, Aidan Morris, Yunus Musah, Paxton Pomykal, Cristian Roldan, James Sands, Alan Sonora, Tanner Tessmann, Timothy Tillman, Jackson Yueill

FORWARDS: Paul Arriola, Folarin Balogun, Taylor Booth, Tyler Boyd, Jesus Ferreira, Matthew Hoppe, Jordan Morris, Ricardo Pepi, Christian Pulisic, Gio Reyna, Josh Sargent, Jordan Pefok, Brandon Vazquez, Tim Weah, Haji Wright, Alex Zendejas.

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. Looks like A. Morris may decline callups to either USA or Canada this summer. Not decided on his international future.

    • B. Aaronson continues to ride the pine. M.Robinson has been benched in Atlanta. Got some concerns going into this NL window.

      • why do i care how our solid NT players are getting along with their club? if we have any fitness or form issues we probably get a week or two to whip them into shape before the tournament. we know what we have on them. their club issues are their club’s problem. atlanta barely has a positive GD.

        quit borrowing other teams’ issues. last year people were taking seriously how chelsea felt about pulisic. by now maybe people are figuring out chelsea is a mess and maybe not an authority on such things.

  2. We will never elite Nation Team with continue capping: Long, Cannon, Yueill, Moore (top three worst players in World Cup), Roldan, Jesus, and Arriola

    • But if the next players in line are also not elite just changing names doesn’t matter. Green, Holmes, Soto, Lennon, Busio, Parks, and Sabbi don’t make us elite either.

      • green’s goals against belgium and france suggest you’re wrong there. that specific one is more of a “fit” issue. arena wasn’t a dual german fan and klinsi/GB both basically quietly play 3 destroyers in MF. you will now recite club stats. who cares when you have scored on elite NT. how does the french philosophy joke go? “we know it works in practice, but how about in the abstract?”

      • 5 years ago and 9 years ago you don’t think a player changes over time. If Green is elite he wouldn’t be in 2Bundesliga and wouldn’t have been benched when Furth moved to the Bundesliga. Sorry he doesn’t make us elite. Gyasi Zardes scored on Netherlands in 2015 so obviously he’s better than Reyna who couldn’t score on them in the WC. Is Wright elite because he scored on the Dutch in Qatar, he also scored on semifinalist Morocco so he’s our clear #1 right?

      • i don’t buy players magically get better or worse because they go in or out of fashion. you folks play a little game like this where brooks magically gets better when dropped for years but green magically gets worse. call them and see reality.

        i think it’s silly to be more concerned with a club game or two or whether they scored 4 on grenada than how they handled the very elite teams we are trying to catch. you wanna beat france or argentina maybe start keeping and playing players who prove they can handle those level teams. the contrary game played by some like you is tout people like jedi who repeatedly look ok against weak teams but get torched by brazil, england, holland. my select coach long ago told me he wasn’t sure if an idea was working until we played our rival for state. so what if it works on minnows. so what about how many they scored for gronigen. how many on mexico? how many on france?

      • JR: btw the false pretense is green sucks. green had double digit goals a few years back in league and this year is fine production at 6G 3A. and if people are getting snotty about B.2 we just called his recently transferred teammate tillman.

        worst part to me is green can play 9 or 10 and hudson seems sometimes to be trialing true 10s with 2 DMs behind them in a triangle. we can debate green’s fit to an empty bucket. green pretty clearly fits a 10 role. is he the best? meh. is he better than sonora or LDLT? i think so. and at some point people need to acknowledge it’s relative and not is he god. i mean when you diss me for proposing someone who scored on france and belgium, what have “they” done.

      • JR,

        Given the competition, having an elite NL team is a waste.

        “if the next players in line are also not elite just changing names doesn’t matter.”

        That does not mean that you stay with “”Long, Cannon, Yueill, Moore (top three worst players in World Cup), Roldan, Jesus, and Arriola”.

        We know what we will get from them. If you want more then you will have to replace them with players who you have reason to expect will perform better.

        And as much as that may pain you, you will probably have to base it it on what your chosen player is doing at his club.

        For example, they are calling in Balogun, who has never scored for the USMNT, based on his performance for his club.

        Before Qatar, Tim Ream, same thing with him.
        His previous history with the USMNT was exceptionally mediocre. I would never have called him back based on his USMNT performance.
        His exceptional form at Fulham made him impossible to ignore and in the World Cup he had the 4 best games he has ever played for the USMNT. He’s the best example of good timing ever.

        If you are going to insist that USMNT performance matters above all else including fitness and form, then make Hudson call in Clint , Landon, Claudio Reyna, Dolo , Los Boca, Celo Balboa, Mike Sorber and Kasey Keller.

    • i would assume they are likely cuts but the fact we list end-career scrubs rather than some kid with upside says we’re risk averse and confusing quantitative experience with quality experience. you want to find people who can actually help next time and the tough ones don’t fall in your lap like balogun.

  3. I know it’s a provisional roster. I can’t get over 9 RBs. The guy who is auditioning for the U23 Olympic job, chose 9 players to fill the most easiest position on the soccer field to fill. Out of 60 players, that’s 15 percent of the roster. To give it more context, there’s 8 left footed players in total, all positions. If Callender or Flo are lefties, (I don’t know if they are), then that’s one percent more than the 9 players at one position. Another point of view, if you had a to separate the roster into A, B, C, squads. Each squad gets 23 players, with 2 at each position. You would have 6 RBs, with 3 left over for a D, & half an E squad. Why the redundancy?

    • 1. It isn’t an attempt at 3 full rosters
      2. Some of those RBs can play other positions like LB and LB is weak with Vines injured and Bello continuing in a funk
      3. After the top 5 at any position it’s who could be an emergency replacement if someone gets hurt in training so those tend not to be untested players.

      • 1)- 1st sentence I typed was a prerequisite to the obvious statement to your 1st paragraph. Since you missed it. “I know it’s a provisional roster!”
        2)- Right footed players playing LB suck at playing LB. No country with a top 5 league does this. Common practice is CBs, midfielders, and wingers can play RB, because it’s the easiest position to fill. What other country brought 4 RBs to the WC?
        3)- Again, don’t insult my intelligence. Of course there will be enough players to sub for injury replacements. It’s 60 players, not an exact 23. 5 RBs could be injured, and there is more than enough.
        4)- You and Imperative started this Alphabet squad naming last cycle, without defining how many in the squad. Both of you were dismissive of the US players every time I brought up players vs Bolivia in ‘18. “They played against Bolivia’s D team.” No commenters (on SBI) before that match had labeled any country squad by letters. It was 1st team, 2nd team, 3rd team etc. I kept it at 23, and I keep track of my own players. It’s not complicated.
        In today’s game, you haven’t noticed that 30 percent of field players (RW, LCB, LB) in club & international play on lefties? The Spaniards started this formula btw.

      • It’s, I don’t disagree with you on left footed players fit better on the left, but if we don’t have left footers we don’t have them. John Nelson been a solid left footed LB but he hasn’t shown in MLS that he’s ready for NL. Marco Farfan the same. Will Sands was decent as a LWB for The Crew but he’s injured. There aren’t a lot of left footed LB in the US. So since Dest, Scally, Jones can all play LB at a better level than the left footed guys you get 9 RBs and 2 LBs. We don’t play with wide MFs so left or right footed is not as important as it might be in other formations. It’s also pretty common to play right footers on the left wing so they can cut in on their right foot like Pulisic, JMorris, and Reyna like to do.

      • As for the A,B,C vs 1,2,3. There was a thing back maybe it was ‘18 when IV thought FIFA was actually grading the level of players being fielded and that players who got caps when teams didn’t field their best wouldn’t count. But by FIFA regulations an A match just meant any NT match not a youth match.
        Why I tend to use A, B, C instead of First team, second team, etc… is I think of the second team as the guys who would normally get called up but rarely start. De La Torre, Scally, Aaronson Steffen those guys. In my opinion those guys are different from Arriola, Sands, or Gressell who when everyone is available probably aren’t getting called or at best not playing. Then you have young guys that might get Jan call ups to prep for a youth tournament like Neal and Cowell this year but wouldn’t necessarily get a full callup at the NT level. I suppose it’s maybe regional or your background as to what you use. When I talked about 8th CF and 10th CB below i literally thought how those players have been rated by Hudson and Berhalter in the past compared to the others on the roster if that was confusing to past statements.

    • i don’t buy RB can’t play LB except dest. i played both sides in college, defended both, had assists from both. i think that concern is often voiced by people who think of defenders as potential attackers and want them on their good foot. i’d be more concerned can they defend their slot first. eg dest cannot defend LB. QED. vs. robinson can defend his position if told to stay back, and might even be able to mirror across, if the primary concern wasn’t attacking.

      the further irony is we don’t actually get that much productivity from wide, for all the risk. i don’t think we have luke shaw out wide. robinson hits a lot of crosses. few result in anything. dest has nothing this season and 3 league assists the year before that. personally i’d favor the actual wings instead and have someone back there to defend. and i think some of the less heralded wides (moore, cannon, scally) are within range of the offense of the ones people talk about all the time.

      personally i’d like to see dest tried as an attacking player as barca sometimes has. all upside eliminate the defending risk. i think we know who the leading attackers are. i don’t think we know who to throw in a game 80′ in down a goal or trying to win late.

    • you have the redundancy in general because i believe the rule is that you have to pick your subsequent tournament roster as well as any injury replacements, from this list. this is now the “universe” we’re working from.

      i kind of disagree with the premise on L vs. R. they may be planning on double sided players. but to be fair to you i have felt like GB’s rosters sometimes either double booked players at positions or didn’t have adequate numbers at others. we have sometimes had depth issues at spots like LF. pulisic gets hurt, aaronson is double booked as a CAM and can’t play both. ok who plays LF. that’s not real depth. real depth there is a planned answer and it’s not also supposed to be a mid sub. and i get stuff happens at events but when you can see it coming from the roster announcement that’s failure to plan.

      people don’t like my theories but personally i’d like to see a smaller handful of regulars and more prospect options in the list. a list like this results in mostly a continuity final roster. a continuity roster does about the same things. we are doing ok but not great. i had hoped for more experiments like we’re trying to change the bigger picture outcomes. i had hoped for older players or ones who performed bad to be pastured. but the mentality i heard from hudson before was we’re playing to win, nothing but, and this is a safe roster of experienced capped players. i don’t really believe safe is best when we may have to beat canada and mexico but dating back to klinsi’s second stint this has become very “safe” and regular ensemble. to me it’s why we plateau right about here is the foot comes off the gas once it’s a knockout team.

  4. My distaste for this part of the cycle has never been higher. Gomer Pyle still loves the USMNT and his SBI pals. That is all.

  5. Based off of this I’ll have a go at a possible 23 man roster for NL:

    GK: Steffen, Horvath, Turner

    D: Dest, Fossey, A.Rob, Scally, M. Rob, Brooks, Trusty, Z-Man

    M: Adams(if healthy), McKennie, Musah, De La Torre, A. Morris, B. Aaronson,

    F: Pulisic, Reyna, Weah, Pepi, Balogun, Zendejas

  6. No Mallik Tillman?
    I guess he is still recovering from injury. I can’t phantom he is not good enough for this list.

  7. Pretty much the the Nations league and Gold cup preliminary roster. Maybe add Paxton Aaronson, Cade Cowell, Caleb Wiley, Kevin Paredes, and Brian Gutierrez to the Gold Cup preliminary roster

    • I don’t think you reward MLS clubs who voluntarily released players for U20 WC giving up their players for May by taking them again for a month mid-June to mid-July.

      • Agree and they should punish them those that didn’t release them. Like neal and gutierrez.

  8. Why 60 listed? That’s pretty much the entire pool… I know it gets trimmed later but don’t really see the point of 60. Our best 14/15 are slightly better than Mex imo but I still think it will be a tight game. Whether or not Adams is ready will be a big factor.

    • All players for international competitions have to be cleared (make sure they’re eligible). Federations have to supply these lists so Concacaf has time to make sure everyone is legal. Usually they are kept private but I think Concacaf uses it to drum up interest.

    • i think it’s intended to serve 2 purposes. 1, it makes better teams from bigger countries with larger pools begin to confine their potential choices. this rules out calling the hot streaky kid from MLS or some U20 we just liked. if you are a smaller country you don’t want the US to be able to do open ended shift changes like we used to after group rounds. or to call some recently identified prospect. or some dual national who just called yesterday. you probably only have 20 guys you even like in your pool. so give me a chance and cut down the US potential universe to 50-60 guys. so shift changes went away and now it has to be off a provo list for the roster or even an injury replacement. you can’t get as cute or use all your depth.

      i also think — kind of like they are saying but not exactly — that the provo roster is secondarily designed to push nationality disputes out into the open weeks ahead. they have about 3 weeks to fight over any zendejases or baloguns who have complicated backgrounds. i don’t think it’s so much to review paperwork — as i don’t think we submit that until the event — as it is to make controversial choices be laid on the table in advance. the two i mentioned are more or less resolved but maybe sometimes someone else isn’t. you go ahead and beef that he was born in mexico or played on your U20 team and didn’t switch, or whatever. by the time it’s a week out and the rosters are turned in and teams showing up, they might be playing a friendly or otherwise fairly busy, and it’s harder to decide any fights before games start. all you can do then is come back in later and fine teams or forfeit the results. you kind of want these games to stick as they are played on the field so it’s smarter to sort it out beforehand. you can’t use him, he’s still mexican. he doesn’t play, no forfeit afterward. no medals to take back.

      • also bears noting that on someone like balogun, if they have to show their passport, he’s gonna be able to show a passport copy to meet some admin requirement. that only gets you so far on the complicated ones where he probably also has an english passport and a nigerian one he could show at their events. and has played for england youth. that is not as simple as can you show the passport matching the team you are showing up with.

        hence you have a provo list to announce it and start any detailed fights people want to have. assuming there are none you seal the deal showing up with the passport when the rosters get filed and teams show up.

      • The dual national point you make is pretty interesting as Aiden Morris and Luca Koleosho has also been included in Canada’s preliminary roster.

      • JCC: it does frame the conflict up front.

        tangential to your point but when people support the complacency and continuity, one potential cost is losing dual nationals. if you keep calling the same people, other teams can start poaching the ones you don’t experiment and call. we have called a couple people who literally switched who we are rewarding. balogun is a good get.
        but we aren’t being all that aggressive to use this to cap tie more debatable ones. the subtle thing is tillman is 24 and balogun 21 and i think this regime prefers an older player with stats to throw around. if you wait that long every other NT in the world has also caught on and the ones with their own claim will make their pitch and say we’re not that interested. (and we kind of aren’t. not even faking it…..previous regimes were better at locking down a nguyen or the like just in case……they may never play again, but they’re ours……)

      • Zendajas and Balogun are “not more or less resolved” they are permanently cap tied to the United States. Zendajas played in Nations League in March. Balogun filed his “one time switch”. In friendlies the federation are responsible for making sure they are using eligible players, for tournaments that is on the regional governing body. Most are fairly straightforward and guys who have already been cleared for other events are done fairly easily. By checking everyone’s paperwork thru prelim rosters then if a guy gets hurt and has to be added late they are already been judged eligible. Players born in the USA are fairly easy, but in some developing world countries where record keeping is not as good it make take some research ensure this is right Joe Smith. Realistically is holding a nation to 60 players 3 weeks from the tourney really “confining”?

      • JR: it is confining relative to some team like honduras or TnT. you suggest it’s not confining to us and yet we can still debate a dozen or more not on the list. aren’t you the one who defends GB by the sheer amount he called?

        you’re missing my point on paperwork. it’s generally like playing HS or college. the dude shows up with the passport. he’s legal. they don’t research him. you run him out. that part is kind of on an honor system. the team is expected to have researched any complications. if you get cute and he’s ineligible, then the research gets done and they may come back later and forfeit it and take back medals and trophies. the entries and forms are easy if you’re organized. that’s what the GM is for.

        i’ve done international competitions in my new sport and this is all they asked. national sports body registration and passport. they aren’t independently researching dozens of entrants ahead of time testing what nation they represent. they are evaluating protests after the fact if some nation complains. same thing probably FIFA with transfers. superficially they probably just accept transfer paperwork turned in. if it’s on time and in order it gets stamped. if it’s late, ooops, sorry. only gets debated if someone beefs.

      • IV you might be right that’s just up to the association. I thought I’ve read something before that regional federations had approve players for their competitions but I couldn’t find it in the FIFA regulations. I still don’t know how Mexico thought they could play Zendajas without checking he’d filed his switch. I’m glad they messed up though I guess.

      • historically there was some fudge factor in nationality in that only an “A” match was seen as cap tying. so we’d act like any game cap tied but then later on might say some other team’s appearance as really a B team game or something. ok so he’s not tied. i think mexico was essentially arguing his appearance was a B game but FIFA has cracked down and change the rules a little. i think that’s led to an emphasis on the actual switch as opposed to just showing up with another team.

        my broader point is FIFA and concacaf aren’t fighting all this up front. up front the player gets put on a list and maybe his documents get turned in at some email address or desk in the tournament hotel. maybe someone doublechecks did the 23 man have a passport. but they aren’t second guessing “zendejas” off the paper. that’s up to mexico and US to file a protest and spell out their beef.

        the exceptions to me are i think if there is some obvious infraction like zendejas or you figure out some guy who played U20 is really 23 years later. but otherwise i think it often has to do with does the player suddenly want to reverse — buyer’s remorse — or does the team care enough to fight. mexico and us wanted to fight over zendejas — i think because this is a strategy to deny us players. maybe someone else we just let it go. aiden morris is 21, 2 caps, and played U20. can he even leave? but not sure if we’d go to the mat on that one.

      • i also think some of it is, be real, how many players who can dress USA would ever switch? this is part of the reason i clown on GB losing people is we shouldn’t lose very many nationality fights, especially with us on the upswing to big things. i am sure a ton of players would be content to get capped once and never be heard from again. this is also why i think the ethical handwringing about cap-tying players with divided loyalties is weak sauce. you are getting a USA cap. how many players honestly are kvetching they made a “mistake” doing that? i think we have acted lately like it’s some big choice. i think few players seriously believe that. or at least should. US v mexico or US v canada shouldn’t even be a fight. 5-10 years ago before berhalter this wouldn’t even be a debate. but people weren’t making excuses.

  9. the irony of “safe” is including players like hoppe or neal who have suuuuuuuuuuuuucked just because they have nominal “experience.” that’s roughly when i start complaining the games don’t matter enough in how this gets selected or earned. used to be that would mean neal “needed seasoning” or wasn’t seen as worthy of the level. i feel like this approach puts way too much emphasis on supposed coaching genius/analytics. like they are going to stick with them because they thought of them in the first place and they can’t possibly be wrong. it should be more about who shows up and plays well. that requires the coaching humility of accepting you made some mistakes.

    i have previously said my piece on ream, yedlin, johnson, and others. this is the evaluation part of the cycle for use in 26. a guy you can’t use in 26 is no point. we don’t have to qualify where one can weigh the value of milking an O-30 for part of the cycle. you will not have them end of this cycle. find their replacement. this is a waste.

    the rest of the roster is very “safe” with very little tillman bro or ledezma novelty. to me based on 3rd in quali and ok at qatar i’d be churning a little more. or did somehow nothing go wrong last year or even the several friendlies either side of that. (we haven’t won a lot lately or am i the only one noticing?)

    we’ll see who is ultimately picked.

    • You’re complaining about the 8th forward? And the 10th CB? I mean could you put down Soto as the 8th striker sure but is 1g in 9 matches in Austria better than 1g 2a in 7 in Scotland. Neither will be in the NL barring 6 guys going down to injury. As for Neal, could Glad do a better job, I think so at this point but again 4 weeks out are 5 or 6 of those guys going down. No, so neither will see the field. It’s odd in that Neal was brought to January to prep for U20s but then wasn’t released. I guess we’ll see when the GC prelim is released but I can’t see Hoppe making either roster and Neal as a backup for GC at best. Berhalter have so many guys camps and with U20 team in Argentina and unavailable there just aren’t a lot of guys out there that have shown anything in the past that would suggest they could do anything. I hope we’ll see more experimentation for GC, but for the 1 or 2 match NL it’s not needed.

      • the US has a bad habit of buying its own headlines and sweeping the bad under the rug. this has not been a very effective first choice team since roughly the NL away game against salvador last year. we tied that game. we had the miserable asian friendlies. we had a rough january camp. we had a fairly close salvador home game. we won 1 world cup game against iran. we tied 2. we lost badly to holland. where is this complacency coming from? i know we think we are hot stuff but not really. people are confusing paper talent with results. then fielding the same bunch who got the ok results as though it’s our best chance to repeat.

        at which point, let me remind the fanboys, we will probably have to beat mexico then canada — first choice — to get this. as in the 2 teams who finished ahead of us in quali. this is not going to be as easy as last time. which was not that easy ie a late goal then a win in OT. approaching this as more of the same is complacent and naive. which going full circle to my “buy our own headlines” concern, is a running issue i have with US soccer about now in our progressions. when we get to the knockouts, the rosters and tactics tend to ossify. we quit looking for other ways to win more. it makes some sense except holland ran us off the field 3-0. it makes some sense except canada has made life difficult in serious games and we’re lucky to get results off them. so how about some calculated risks. cuz they show up and we show up same people, same results. not hard to forecast. you want to change that try another angle.

        the aggressive conservatism would be more defensible if this was a team with a world cup trophy or at least a semi team. this was the 3rd best team in concacaf that barely made it out of its group on a midsection goal. it has plenty to prove. and i say that being very pro-talent.

      • Then who would you include as the 8th CF? (Keep in mind he’d be 9th if Dike was healthy) who is this hidden gem being left off that either isn’t playing or not producing for a club in a mediocre league. The U20 CF is Darren Yapi who has 0g in 21 MLS matches. U17 is a guy playing for Liverpool U18s or Soto who has no goals for Houston 2 this season. Some MLS journeymen like Wil Bruin or CJ Sapong? Bobby Wood 9g in 44 matches in 2 1/2 seasons in MLS? 10 total pro goals since he re-tore his knee at Hannover 4 Yrs ago. Ebobisse probably has the best case, averaging a goal every other match since moving to SJ, but by his own admission had a bad attitude his last call up.

    • If the brought in Nguyen purely to cap tie him that was moronic. He wasn’t going to bolt for Vietnam. They’ve never qualified for the WC and rarely even qualify for the Asian Cup. Morris has played for the US at several youth levels, would have been on the 2021 U20 team had it not been cancelled and he not tore his knee. He‘s not switching to Canada. This is Canada just fishing, he’s not going anywhere. This isn’t Araujo or Ochoa always talking about how much they love Mexico and how tough the decision would be if they ever had to make it. Wink wink Mexico!

      • It could be Canada just fishing but Aiden Morris would have a much better chance of cracking the Canadian midfield than the US. He’d have to compete against McKennie, Adams, Musah. Canada needs to replace Hutchinson and Jonathan Osorio is already 30. Morris being 21, makes him an attractive target for Canada and he would most certainly probably start. The chances of him actually playing in the World Cup and not riding the bench would be astronomically in his favour.

  10. It’s interesting that after Timothy Tillman has switched his national representation that there are a set of brothers on the roster.

    If Paxton Aaronson keeps progressing with Eintracht Frankfurt, there could be another set of brothers on a future roster.

    I’m stoked to see how Folarin gels with the team and the potential of having a world-class #9.

    • i have been pro tim tillman for awhile. i think it says something both he and green got buried for last cycle playing on a no-name yoyo team in germany. only reasons i think you see tim (and not green) are we now know his brother and he moved to LA. irony is he used to be the hot one and we let it fizzle. but he is now right under our analytical nose. there are a few guys like green, holmes, and others — to be fair, ledezma — who got forgotten when it was like, “don’t we have some other mids to try?”

      i think they are piling up talent well. i think there now needs to be more focus on “why.” as in “why” x and not y. once they get a coach the scheme needs to work and players need to fit the scheme. the aaronsons in particular it’s like, what exactly are they doing in this scheme. we have a lot of guys like that, good soccer players, but i’m not clear on to what end. i thought brendan was more useful when we were trying to play weah and him behind the backline and square it back. but too often this turns into whack crosses in without a target striker or even particularly gifted crossing wings on either end. so maybe sit down with a pool list and a white board and figure out how they will actually play together.

      • Malik has always been the higher rated of the two and he was the only one of the brothers to play for USYT. Tab thought he had Tim in 2018 but then he didn’t file and Germany played him for U19 for 1 min and hasn’t been called by Germany in 5 yrs since. Tim had 2g in 86 matches the last 5 years as a pro so no he hasn’t been hard done.
        This is second time you’ve floated your Ledezma got forgotten line. He tore his knee and was out for a year and then barely played the following 6 months.

      • “are a few guys like green, holmes, and others — to be fair, ledezma — who got forgotten when it was like, “don’t we have some other mids to try?”

        Bullshit as far as Richie goes. Your relationship with reality is very flexible. Or maybe you forgot that playing for the USMNT w/o your knees is hard.

        He was just starting to finally get a nice run in the PSV first team when he seriously damaged his knee. He’s only now getting back. PSV then signed him to extension and have now loaned him out to NYCFC.

        With luck he’ll be back and in the mix for 2026.

      • whatever dudes. ledezma didn’t have a hurt knee for 3 YEARS. only had assists to soto when they called him up. you missing the part where the tune changes when someone else coaches? and will again when the next guy does.

      • IV,
        “whatever dudes. ledezma didn’t have a hurt knee for 3 YEARS. ”

        You don’t much about bad timing do you? As far as the USMNT is concerned, he might as well have missed three years.

        I thought you did not like lazy coaches who picked players just by looking at their stats somewhere? Kettle Pot Black.

        It wasn’t Gregg or Hudson who forgot about Richie it was you.

        Richie was called up by Gregg for his only cap vs Panama in November of 2020. At that point he was looking good and finally breaking into PSV’s first team and getting games.

        In December of 2020 Richie blew out his cruciate ligament. You may not know this but that’s a pretty serious injury. He missed a year and was back on PSV’s bench in December of 2021, enough time to make Qatar right?

        But wait there’s more.

        Richie was just beginning to challenge for a fulltime spot with the PSV first team when he got hurt so he had a lot of ground to make up. Leading up to Qatar selection in October of 2022, Richie only got garbage time in 7 first team games. It’s safe to say his knee might have been 100% cured but in some players it takes a bit before their confidence it back to what it was before the injury. Surely you saw this in college?

        You say Gregg forgot him but it is more likely that by selection time, Gregg saw Richie hadn’t gotten back yet to where he was when Gregg called him up. That’s probably why Richie did not make the Qatar team.

        “you missing the part where the tune changes when someone else coaches? and will again when the next guy does.”

        PSV has signed Richie to an extension until 2025 and loaned him out to NYCFC until December 2023 so potentially next season we could see Richie and Ricardo at PSV. It will be pretty hard for Gregg to keep an eye on Pepi and ignore Richie if he is playing well.

        Maybe both make the 2026 team.

      • V: this is very simple. you’re playing the “in or out of fashion” game. GB likes his streaky players. hence the stars have to align. you have to be healthy and on a streak. most US coaches did not operate this way. they have general ideas on talent and a wish list to see. they work their way down the wish list.

        i do not buy that a guy who had 2 assists his first cap magically lost the ability to play soccer for 3 years. i do not buy we had to wait for his club situation to improve. i do not buy his knee explains all 3 years.

        i am sure GB wants to hide behind knees and form and whatnot. i think him and green being left off after how they looked in 2018 and 2020 is silly. when a guy scores on france or has 2 assists in 10′ on panama i could care less how much their dutch team plays them or what their german B.1 stats are. and when i am seeing roldan or arriola instead that is just nonsense. doesn’t explain 3 years. doesn’t explain their big picture decisions.

        let’s be honest, as with vazquez, he didn’t rate him, and maybe he’s about to get shown up. wouldn’t be the first time a GB omit came back to haunt him, including guys like richards and weah he sandbagged who later bailed him out.

      • “V: this is very simple. you’re playing the “in or out of fashion” game. GB likes his streaky players. hence the stars have to align. you have to be healthy and on a streak. most US coaches did not operate this way. they have general ideas on talent and a wish list to see. they work their way down the wish list.

        i do not buy that a guy who had 2 assists his first cap magically lost the ability to play soccer for 3 years. i do not buy we had to wait for his club situation to improve. i do not buy his knee explains all 3 years.”

        You don’t , huh?
        Next you are going to hold our breath and turn blue. Don’t forget to click your heels and keep saying, “there’s no place like home, there’s no place like home.”

        “i am sure GB wants to hide behind knees and form and whatnot. i think him and green being left off after how they looked in 2018 and 2020 is silly. when a guy scores on france or has 2 assists in 10′ on panama i could care less how much their dutch team plays them or what their german B.1 stats are. and when i am seeing roldan or arriola instead that is just nonsense. doesn’t explain 3 years. doesn’t explain their big picture decisions.”

        Typical USMNT fanboy. Evaluating a player’s worth on one game or less.

        “let’s be honest, as with vazquez, he didn’t rate him, and maybe he’s about to get shown up.”

        You wouldn’t know honesty if it crawled up and bit you on the ass.

        ” wouldn’t be the first time a GB omit came back to haunt him, including guys like richards and weah he sandbagged who later bailed him out.”
        More of the same bullshit.

        I happen to be a huge Richie fan and I’m pretty sure I would not have taken him to Qatar either. And if I had he would have been the 25th – 26th guy on the roster. Obviously, every single person on the roster should be able to play and contribute should something happen. It looks to me like Gregg brought Aaron Long and Roldan along for non playing reasons. I don’t agree with that necessarily but I also don’t think it’s worth the effort to get into it.

        Gregg has always had his security blanket, mascot picks on every roster he’s ever had for the USMNT.

        As for Green he appears to be in the same boat as JAB, two guys who no matter what they did, were never going to be used by Gregg. I don’t understand Gregg’s reasoning but then I never said he was a great manager did I?

        I happen to rate Julian but your rationale of using his goal vs. Belgium as a rationale to say he’s still in consideration for the USMNT is lazy, delusional and full of shit. Benny Feilhaber scored an incredible golazo vs. Mexico to win the 2007 Gold Cup. Besides his very decent sub performances in the 2010 Word Cup he did bupkus for the USMNT after that and was highly regarded for a long time. That’s a long time to live off of one goal.

        Like I said, typical fanboy basing everything about a player on a performance of one game or less.

  11. If we’re bringing 25:

    F- Pepi, Sargent, Balogun
    RW – Weah, Zendejas
    LW – Pulisic, Booth
    CM’s- McKennie, Musah, de la Torre, (Timothy) Tillman, Tanner Tessman, (Brendan) Aaronson, Reyna (I consider him a pure 10 and won’t list him as a forward)
    LB’s – A. Robinson, J. Scally
    RB’s – Dest, Gressel
    CB’s – Zimmerman, Richards, M. Robinson, A. Trusty
    GK: Turner, Horvath, Steffen

    Other than our right and left backs being Robinson and Dest, and Pulisic staring at LW, you can literally make an argument for any of the other guys to start. In some ways it doesn’t really even matter; I think you’re going to have to play literally everybody substantial minutes. We’re playing a minimum of four games in 17 days, and that’s even before the Gold Cup’s Group Stage.

    Obviously I want to see Balogun…but I also want to get a long look at Tanner Tessmann with the first team. I think he’s a future star at the 6 and I’d love to see if the future is now. The guy is a major talent.

    • One this is just for NL, GC will have its own roster (probably somewhat similar). Two, 4 games before the GC group stage?

      • Yeah, I was counting that NL game…I didn’t realize we were going to pick a roster for Nations League on June 15th…just to turn around and pick another roster a couple days later for the Gold Cup, which starts June 24th against Jamaica. (Which is kind of odd, I think you’re right that it’s going to be pretty much the same roster except for those carrying injuries after Mexico.) Then there’s that TBD match that I presume is going to be against some island nation or another on the 28th, then Nicaragua on July 2. That is not exactly Murderer’s Row but Hudson knows we still need to win those games.

      • (Edit.) Whoops, sorry. See what you meant. I should have said “including the Group Stage.”

        Apologies. Need coffee.

      • Got it thought maybe I was missing some recently added friendlies. I think the starter 11 will be replaced after NL but roughly half the roster will stay in for GC. Hiring a new manager might change that.

    • I think Timothy Tillman could be a good depth piece, but I don’t think he makes the roster for the NL considering he has never played in the set up, the Gold Cup would be more apropos. Tessman would also be a GC candidate for me, he and Busio are Serie B players right now so they need to start playing at a higher level before being considered depth pieces for the “A” team imo

      • Currently in the Serie A promotion playoffs. Tess man should definitely be sniffing around the A squad as depth at 6.

      • Tessmann’s a different animal. I dunno if you saw previous threads on him but I’m definitely of the opinion Tessmann’s got all the attributes we liked out of Michael Bradley – intensity, commitment, physicality, intelligence, size, immense range and a set of iron lungs – except if anything Tessmann’s even bigger and more physical, his touch is superior, and his ability on the ball is substantially better. Bradley was better on the ball than people often gave him credit for but Tessmann is just a snaky dribbler with shocking moves and slickness for somebody so large. I definitely think Tessmann will be playing in the bigs next year.

        As you pointed out, Tessmann’s been in Serie B and he didn’t get on the field much in Serie A last year, and he was MLS before that…so he might not be there quite yet. But I’d really, really like to see if he’s close to being able to help us in the present or if he’s another one like Malik Tillmann who also had talent that jumped off the field at you but who wasn’t quite ready to contribute last cycle.

      • quozzel,

        “As you pointed out, Tessmann’s been in Serie B and he didn’t get on the field much in Serie A last year, and he was MLS before that…so he might not be there quite yet. But I’d really, really like to see if he’s close to being able to help us in the present or if he’s another one like Malik Tillmann who also had talent that jumped off the field at you but who wasn’t quite ready to contribute last cycle.”

        If Tessman is in the “bigs” next season, and doing well then he should be in line for a spot in the Copa America roster. That should give you a much clearer picture about whether he can help the USMNT in 2026 than the Nations League.

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