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Report: PSV blocks Ricardo Pepi, Malik Tillman from potential USMNT Olympic involvement

U.S. men’s national team duo Ricardo Pepi and Malik Tillman are both eligible for Olympic involvement this summer, but both will reportedly not be involved.

PSV will not give either player permission to feature in Paris, France this summer, manager Peter Bosz told Dutch outlet ED in an interview. Both Pepi and Tillman were recently part of the USMNT’s senior squad that suffered Copa America elimination on Monday night in Kansas City, Missouri.

They are now expected to have a short summer break before rejoining PSV for the start of preseason camp, according to the report.

The 21-year-old Pepi joined PSV last summer in a permanent deal from German Bundesliga club Augsburg. Pepi mainly served as an option off the bench, scoring nine goals in 40 combined appearances for the Eredivisie winners.

He featured in all three of the USMNT’s Copa America matches, logging 92 combined minutes of action.

Tillman, 22, spent last season on loan in Eindhoven from Bayern Munich, and proceeded to be a key player in the PSV squad. The attacking midfielder scored nine goals and added 15 assists in 39 combined appearances, eventually joining PSV in a permanent deal of his own last month.

Tillman did not feature against Bolivia or Panama, but played one minute in Monday’s 1-0 loss to Uruguay.

Marko Mitrovic’s squad is set to be announced on July 8 by U.S. Soccer ahead of the Olympic group stage.


  1. Another goal from Luna last night. Puts him at 4 goals and 9 assists on the season so far. I’m sorry he has to be on the Olympic team. Most productive in form attacker. If he keeps these numbers up, he could be at 10 goals and 18 assists by the end of the season. I would imagine he would do well in the Eredivisie as his next destination.

  2. So there’s 2 age-eligible Olympic players who play for a club that has a former US National team legend working in the front office. GB calls them in for Copa and also wants them to participate in the Olympics. GB knows clubs aren’t obligated to release players for a non-FIFA tournaments, right? (Huge assumption from me.) I’m not surprised that PSV declined, though I’m legit confused. (Hear me out). GB also knows when the preseason starts for European leagues, right?
    If you called up Pepi & Tillman, why play them so little? If it was planned to have them for the Olympics, why have them for Copa? Again, assuming I know what I’m talking about, GB wanted them for both tournaments? This man’s expectations are ____________.

    • Not much context provided, they’ve been working on those releases for awhile. This might have been March that they asked. Plus, it never hurts to ask. The worst that happens is they say no. Julian Alvarez is starting for Argentina in Copa, is going to Olympics, and is an important piece for Man City, so it can happen.

      • Messi played in the Olympics. Javier Mascherano played in the Olympics, he’s now the U23 Argentina coach, who called in Alvarez. Again, JR, you keep antagonizing me & missing all my points. Every single time. You are so dense, at this point you just can’t help yourself. My post was about GB choosing 1 tournament or the other, not both. These are young guys & not robots. These are players to help win a medal at the Olympics. What you said on my thread has nothing to do with my point. Goodness gracious. You & 2tone seriously need to take a break. IV is in the same boat; but he consistently shows up when the US loses or draw. You 2 like to keep commenting on & on at imperative voices annoying level & don’t realize it.

      • It’s, I’m sorry you feel so offended. Your point seemed to be why would Berhalter call them for both tournaments? I pointed out Scaloni had no problem with Julian Alvarez playing in both tournaments. Apparently Pep had no problem with his young player playing in both tournaments. Fermin Lopez and Alex Baena were called for both Euros and Olympics for Spain so not common but not unheard of either.
        Also as I pointed out Bosz doesn’t say when they turned them down. PSV could have said in March we won’t release them so Gregg included them for Copa.

  3. Curious if both Pepi and Tillman asked PSV if they could go to the Olympics? Both could use the experience playing a big role in a competitive tournament

    • If he couldn’t finish off some sitters against Bolivia and Panama, how was he going
      to do it against Uruguay?

      Was hoping to see Sargent and Wright but it was too late for Wright. Wright should have came in instead of Pepi last night.

  4. Pretty much expected that. Hopefully Pepi will get more minutes and starts this year. Looking forward to Tillman continuing to improve with PSV this season.

    • Yeah once they were on the Copa roster it was pretty much a given. Malik hardly played but he still needs a little break.

    • Steven Goff reporting, Seattle blocked Jordan Morris. Miles Robinson and Tim Tillman also possibilities to join Mihailovic and Zim as the overage players.

      • I’m going ro be bummed if Luna is not on the team. He is having a good season. I wouldn’t expect Mastroeni to block him.

      • 2tone, I hear you, but I don’t think Mitrovic rates him. Diego said he was not asked in in June. You don’t leave him out in June if you want him for July.

      • Yeah that’s not looking good in my opinion. Especially with Mexico sniffing around him.

        And Argentina adds Julian Alvarez to their Olympic team. They seem serious.

        It will be a depressing summer if the Olympic team doesn’t do well either.

      • Argentina including Alvarez is pretty massive move. Argentina likes to win and maintain a winning culture. Man City letting him play is intriguing and his agent green-lighting the possibility is even more interesting. Alvarez is not a tweaner player for his country or club

        Luna omission puzzles me? He can grab the game and push it in the offensive third. Something the US sorely lack at every level.

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