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Josh Sargent in, Timothy Tillman out of USMNT’s Copa America roster

Josh Sargent did not feature in either of the U.S. men’s national team’s pre-Copa America friendlies but will be part of Gregg Berhalter’s roster for the upcoming tournament.

Sargent was included in Berhalter’s 26-player roster, which was due to CONMEBOL no later than June 15. The American forward missed both friendlies, a 5-1 loss to Colombia and 1-1 draw with Brazil, due to a foot injury which occurred during his final weeks of Norwich City’s league season.

Should Sargent feature in the group stage, it will be his first USMNT appearance since the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The odd player out from the friendly roster was LAFC midfielder Timothy Tillman. Tillman made his USMNT debut last January in a 1-0 friendly loss to Slovenia but did not feature against Colombia or Brazil.

Many of the expected USMNT stars remain in the roster including Christian Pulisic, Yunus Musah, Weston McKennie, and Antonee Robinson. Pulisic recently scored the tying goal against Brazil and logged 135 minutes over two matches.

Tim Weah, who scored the lone goal against Colombia, also remains in Berhalter’s final roster.

Joe Scally, Tim Ream, and Matt Turner were among the standout performers in Wednesday’s draw with Brazil. It was the first-ever draw between the two countries in the 20th all-time meeting.

The USMNT opens training camp on June 16 and will open group stage play on June 23 against Bolivia at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Panama and Uruguay will also join the USMNT in Group C of the competition.

Comments

  1. Sargent is a smart player, can lead the changes defenses too

    the 2nd half vs. Brazil, the scheme adjustments from GB, very nice to see…4 5 1 block in our half worked very well against them, forcing them to do what the US tries to do on purpose, which is service from the flanks, lol

    I do not believe any other team we will face at the Copa America will play us the way Brazil did, but it’s good to show all of this so team’s have to prepare, even if we don;t use it. I think we will tho…press and counter press depending one triggers, contain throughout the middle 3rd and if broken down into our half, 4 5 1 with a premium on hold up play

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  2. ‘Joshua, would you like to play a game’. I have a feeling Sargent is going to go off in this copa America. The man just hasn’t got a proper run, in the seven years since his first cap and first goal, which ominously for his next opponent, was against Bolivia.

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    • my deal is he also scored on cuba a lot, then nothing at the world cup., “so what” in the bigger picture of winning the big ones. you correctly assess he’s scored on bolivia before and whoever GB plays that game will then “look good on paper.” it then starts escalating, panama, uruguay, likely 2-3 out of CR brazil colombia. the repeated US mistake of late is making a big deal out of performance on weak opponents. the idea is land on the people who could change the colombia or brazil results if it comes to that.

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      • Whatever you say. I’m saying he hasn’t had a proper run with the full national team, and this team wants and needs his best performance, and of course for him to stay healthy.

      • he has 23 caps and played 159′ in 3 world cup games. that is some guys’ careers. at what point do i get may payoff?

        and i get you’re like, give him a chance. 2 dozen caps is a lot of chances. at a point this is tilting over into perseveration, someone has some paper idea on what’s gonna happen that just doesn’t.

        my deal is with wright pepi balogun and even vazquez for heading, i don’t need him, at least as a CF. we need backup GK, backs, mids, wing backups. striker is the one place i think is well stocked with people who will score when called. thus i don’t see the value in further “risk” on a disappearing player. or moving others to wing to suit his candidacy for being an underwhelming striker at the NT level.

        he has some crossing chops and technical ability, he can’t crack the lineup and perform, he should be the one moving around seeing if he fits another peg-hole.

      • Imp, I’m not sure what preservation means, but I know what perseverance means, and I’ll take my word over your word.

      • if perseverate is too hard a word, how about “stubborn.” dude hasn’t had a NT assist in like 3 years, or a NT goal in like 5 years, despite being handed a key role at CF at the world cup. to underline how long it’s been and how many players have rotated through, soto had a brace against panama and then basically disappeared, between when sargent had his last goal and now.

        striker is a production position, period. wright went to the same tournament and had a goal on holland, the toughest opponent. pepi had been screwed over. balogun was not yet in the fold. vazquez’s first cap was the following january camp.

        the position evolved. we should evolve with it — and not regress backwards. what’s next, we bring back zardes?

        sorry, we need wing and mid help. try him there.

  3. the game results plus this make my points for me. we’re gonna let 1-1 on a weaker team rehabilitate the same basic lineup got brained 5-1 a few days earlier. we then run our show such that the starters who get 1 point from 2 games get the vast majority of the minutes, no plan B for when this progresses and we need to beat good teams, and the cut comes from between 2 guys who see 0 minutes in the games to make their case. i understand people have their club form theories — and he did score his first on bolivia — but his last assist was ’21 and his last NT goal predates the pandemic in ’19 against cuba in the first NL group, which feels almost like another century.

    i do think he’d be an interesting wing experiment — he has good touch and can hit an accurate cross for a change. but i expect we plan on using him as 9 and shoving wright outside — the one striker getting big goals lately.

    but to be clear, a lot of my beef here is just process. we should know better than sticking to the colombia unit. guys making a tournament roster should be capable of some prep minutes. and guys duking it out for roster room should be playing to decide it. we called tillman in and all we know is the 1 cap. still. this is run strangely.

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    • “ the game results plus this make my points for me. we’re gonna let 1-1 on a weaker team rehabilitate the same basic lineup” Brazil is “a weaker team” have you lost your mind. Vini Jr, Rodrygo, Raphina 31g 19a for Real Madrid or Barca. Midfield 13g 15a all in EPL. Combined 44g 34a (just league play not counting CL). The bench 27g 26a in EPL or LaLiga plus Endrick 14g for Palmeiras. I asked on another thread what’s the US record vs Brazil? The last time we held Brazil to 1g in a match Cole Campbell wasn’t even born. 19 players on our roster were not even born the last time and only time we beat Brazil.

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      • if you look at conmebol standings right now for 2026 qualifying, it’s arg 1 uru 2 colombia 3……..brazil sits down in 6th, barely a positive GD, more losses than wins. and that’s what i thought i saw, was a far better colombia team than brazil. right now brazil would be the last team in from south america.

        anyone who ever played so much as college soccer would get that a name brand team doesn’t mean the same thing every year. team you beat or tie one season can be 3-0 better than you some other year. to me while that result might be nice, a wise coach has a grip on whether this cycle’s brazil team is just trash, and doesn’t overblow the meaning of it all.

        i mean, in case you haven’t heard, ronaldinho thinks they are playing so bad he’s on strike from watching the games……

        and to be crystal clear, my point is a coach with a brain, who plays 2 games against teams of varying quality, doesn’t use the weaker game of the 2 as the tactical or personnel template. my select coach banged in my head long ago the games that matter for proving up concepts are the toughest ones. but the US these days is about CYA your coaching job and hype your wins. vs. to me brazil needs to be contextualized a little or we can’t beat colombia to go anywhere. whatever the game plan is going to be, it can’t be what we already did……

    • IV

      “i do think he’d be an interesting wing experiment — he has good touch and can hit an accurate cross for a change. but i expect we plan on using him as 9 and shoving wright outside — the one striker getting big goals lately.”

      You don’t follow the USMNT much do you? Josh finally made his big break through in terms of scoring when Norwich finally stopped fucking around with Josh on the wing, shipped Pukki off to Minnesota and made Josh a fulltime #9. Look it up up on your computer if you have one.

      And Wright on the wing? That’s where he’s gotten a lot of his goals from this season. The full time #9 for Coventry, Wright’s team in England, is someone named Ellis Simms.

      Josh as a 9 and Wright on one of the wings makes the most sense based on the season both have had.

      “but to be clear, a lot of my beef here is just process.”

      Unless you have an inside source, you have no idea why Gregg and his guys do things they was they do. Quozzel thinks Gregg pulled a genius move scheduling Columbia and Brazil just before the Copa. I’m not sure Gregg is responsible for the scheduling and as for his thought that the Colombia game finally gave Gregg the teaching moment he needed to make this team gel? Really?

      Gregg needed 5.5 years and nearly 70 games to set this up? I don’t believe that I have my doubts as to how deliberate everything was. However, I don’t care how they got here, but they are here now.
      We will see if this teaching moment actually sticks.
      When Gregg speaks he often doesn’t make sense. over the decades, I have gotten used to the USMNT manager, whoever he is , not making any sense.

      They aren’t really interested in explaining themselves. So, whatever your beef with the process is, you can take comfort in the fact that most likely, you have no idea what the real process is. Thus you are freed.

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      • you couldn’t regularly read my comments on here. per usual i have previously suggested what you are pointing out — try sargent wide for his technical service.

        that sounds nice. the concern is he played nada in the prep games, and meanwhile wright was the one shifted wide. you have an interesting theory. my deal is what GB actually did the last 2 games. which is move wright, the one striker scoring in big games, out wide. that’s what he has actually done.

        i think GB has used sargent wide all of once, he started wide and played the lousy first half in the honduras qualifier. we were down 1-0 at half, GB yanks 3 guys including sargent at the break, we then flip around 4-1. he’s then back playing 9 after that.

        i have learned with GB, kind of to take him at how he plays the games. ignore the chatter. ignore what makes sense to me. just watch what he does because he tends to repeat himself. i do think he has wing promise but to me GB has telegraphed who’s getting played where.

      • IV

        “i have learned with GB, kind of to take him at how he plays the games. ignore the chatter. ignore what makes sense to me. just watch what he does because he tends to repeat himself. i do think he has wing promise but to me GB has telegraphed who’s getting played where.”

        Like that matters?
        You have no idea what GB plans to do or why he does it, not that it matters. Gregg’s options are very limited.

        I’m pretty sure our opponents have a good idea of what to expect. What they don’t know , like all the rest of us is whether or not the USMNT will actually “show up”.
        They did vs Brazil and they did not vs Colombia.

        The USMNT is a pretty straight forward, vanilla team. The moves you talk about ultimately amount to not much. Wright coming in on the wing in the Colombia game ultimately did not amount to much.

        The only change of a player’s role that he been of any long term consequence recently is BJ and then Gregg finally playing Gio as a #10 or thereabouts.

        If the team has improved it has been because each player has improved individually and because the USMNT itself is operating more successfully as a collective.

      • V: dude, this is very simple. the US has an overabundance of strikers. he is an ok striker with many US caps and modest production. you’re like, but he now produces for his club team in the second division. so what. vazquez has double digits in MX, balogun had around 20 in france a couple years back, pepi can rack them up. is he better than that? no.

        so, common sense is, he needs to present himself as something else. when i started college i told my coach every place i’d played since select started U10. and so in addition to my usual wingback duties i occasionally played some DM and wing mid. you may think it’s a misuse of his abilities and not his best position, but the alternative is being the 5th best CF for a team that might take 3 guys to the world cup. if i want the world cup, i’m telling that coach i can play other things too.

        to be fair, this coach is a doofus and i’d not be surprised if he figures out a way to rank sargent over pepi or balogun — good sense aside.

        no, one of the flaws with the fanboys on here is they get so used to watching these players in specific contexts with particular teams they lose sight of the overall toolkit and what the NT needs — or could use — from that same player.

  4. That is from Berhalter’s tactics. The number 9 doesn’t see much of the ball, especially in front of the net. The opposing teams all seem to choose to clog up the middle and the US attacks down the flanks. The 9 vacates the box and the scoring is performed by the wingers. Sargent is best suited for this among the three, although Pepi looked decent to me against Brazil. Overall, Pepi is worse at ball handling and combination play than Sargent, however.

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    • I understand that’s why, but it’s wasting a valuable resource. All four of those guys have shown that they can be effective goal scorers and for Gregg’s plan to be we just want to use our striker to take space is ridiculous. We had a supposedly rigorous interview process and we had the guy whose offensive strategy revolved around not trying to play the ball to the CF in front of goal. Maybe we’ve overthought somethings here folks.

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    • good stuff Matt, and accurate. altho interestingly vs. Brazil, so depending on the D or lack of it, we found lots of space through the middle. I like Sargent in GB’s schemes, he fits the ask. What level can he/will he deliver it at?

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  5. Sargent can be replaced up until 24 hrs before the Bolivia match.
    ————————————
    For me the question isn’t who the striker is but how can the team get them involved. It hasn’t seemed to matter Pepi, Balo, Haji (when playing as CF) all have struggled to find the ball anywhere near goal.

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    • Sargent’s the guy with the skillset Gregg truly wants…if he’s healthy. The guy I was watching with Norwich this year really could do it all, and Canaries fans were claiming with straight faces he was the best player in the Championship. From the way he continuously scored – and how many different ways – he scored, plus his workrate, strength, movement, and ability in the air, it was hard to argue. He’s a difference-maker now at club level and he can most probably make a difference for us too, IMHO. So I understand wanting to bring him.

      I still worry about not letting him use the summer to heal up.

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      • McBride this morning on Morning Footy (shout out to Ives, editorial producer on the show) suggested using Gio as like a false 9 and not use any striker against Boliva.

      • JR-

        That’s an incredibly intriguing idea. You know Bolivia’s going to park the bus and you’re going to have to wriggle through somehow, and Gio’s best attribute is he’s the most slithery player on the squad.

        Then that allows you to play Musah, McKennie, and Cardoso behind him, and those are three you absolutely want on the field too. McKennie tends to rampage against lesser squads when he feels he’s not rooted in place and can go find the game, freelance a bit, take chances and go pick and choose his spaces, and Cardoso is just so good in distribution and would add that vital cover for our CB’s on the occasions when Bolivia does break out. Which would allow McKennie to do exactly that, and when Weston’s got the freedom to roam around it really does seem like he’s everywhere at times. I do not think many people really realize what an incredible athlete the guy is; when he’s allowed to flex it really comes out.

        Gregg will probably go more traditionally, but I personally like the idea of having as many guys as possible on the field who are slick with the ball at their feet.

      • Q: Gregg was famous for bringing 2 CFs because a third one would never play. He finally realized in NL maybe I should bring three in case we want to go 2 forwards to chase the game. Now that he’s brought 4 CFs I don’t see him not putting any of them on the field to start.

      • if i am about to play a parked bus why on earth do i remove foot from gas, consolidate 9 and 10 into one player, put a technical soft guy who falls over drop of a hat in as my target, pull off my strikers, and narrow my offense to trying to wall-ball through a bunker? do you want me to pull the strikers and instead have in DMs like musah? to stop a team with 4 goals in 6 qualifying games, who allows 14?

        as someone whose team got bunkered a lot, you want some variety at hand. is it going to be crossing does it today? or maybe some 10 feeds to feet? long shots/ricochets? no, you actually would do roughly what we did to jamaica late. stick all the offense on and park their end. a true 9, wings, maybe a couple AM, maybe even a forward as a mid for sheer volume.

        that then acts as, well, offense as defense. they will be too busy taking balls from the net or trying to stop chances to score much.

        and last thing you do is put on the scoreless disappearing sargent as a 9 against a team parking the bus. do you already forget the world cup? i don’t need him dragging out wide if they are parked back. i need him sitting in the middle with friends.

        personally i find it amusing we do this crap, guy might go from unused and swaddled in bubble wrap to starting the opener. but then GB is one to return to the scenes of his crimes.

      • Q: it pains me to say but I kind of agree with IV on this one. I don’t think Bolivia will come out far enough for Gio to play Timo or Puli in behind and I’m not super confident on Wes or Yunus feeding Gio in between their bunker. However, I can see why McBride wants anything besides Gio’s regista role.

      • IV, JR-

        Oh, I agree. I’d probably do the traditional thing and go with a traditional 9 – in this case, probably Pepi, though I’d be tempted to use Haji Wright because while he’s not a great target man he is physically dominant and can bash and bully in the box, and if he can face the goal he’s deadly…and how much of a target man would we really need against Bolivia anyhow?

        The idea of playing essentially positionless offense is still intriguing. We saw Germany win the 2014 World Cup doing that and they broke down a ton of low blocks with no traditional #9 on the field.

        I dunno if you crack that out in a tournament and give it a go without field-testing it first, though. If we haven’t seen it before, we probably won’t see it now.

      • I think Aronson has recently shown the ability to be effective in tight situations. He might be as effective or more than Gio since Aronson has so much energy. I’m sure no one will agree with me on this, but I think it is worth a try, especially when you don’t want to play Gio the whole game.

      • Gary Page,

        “I think Aronson has recently shown the ability to be effective in tight situations.”

        Did he score vs Brazil? No. Missed?
        That’s not effective.

      • Q: much as i like defensive soccer, i wouldn’t mind positionless passing. it’s one reason i wanted ferreira — and even at a point sargent — is i thought maybe we were serious. but what i see is a team that tends to stand in its slots and turn backwards to the ball. then a lot of the time cross it in. not the 9 pulling out and everybody’s rotating and making runs in all different directions. i wish.

        for a team that farts around then crosses what you need is a vazquez type. the other way we score is like weah the other day, play them in behind. that’s pepi and balogun.

        part of it, to me, is the central engine is sloppy. do we have good enough technical central guys to put in with a tiki taka 9 and wall ball it here and there? and that brazil game was a rare one we seemed interested in cutting it inside.

    • Gio as the 9, where has that been floated before? hmmmm

      I like it although with Gio busting on the D side of the ball the way he has been, I wouldn’t move him out of there

      Reply

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