US Soccer has announced their 28-man roster for the upcoming trio of World Cup qualifiers, with the international players reporting to Gregg Berhalter and his staff in Columbus following their weekend club games.
With only six games remaining in the current cycle, the Americans face three critical games, two of them on home soil, which could could put them on the cusp of securing one of the three automatic spots for the final tournament in Qatar allotted to the CONCACAF region.
This will certainly be the most frigid of the five qualifying window, as the Americans have a visit to Canada’s Tim Horton’s Field in Hamilton sandwiched between a pair of northern home games in Columbus, Ohio and St. Paul, Minnesota, where they will host El Salvador and Honduras.
Berhalter’s team consists of 15 European-based players who will join the 13 holdovers from the recently completed January camp, which was used to prepare out-of-season MLS players for these upcoming games.
Several players will be aiming to make their debuts in qualifying play, including Reggie Cannon, Sean Johnson, Brooks Lennon and Gabriel Slonina.
Several players return after missing one or more the previous qualifying games, including Jordan Morris, Weston McKennie, Sergiño Dest and Miles Robinson.
While the major components of the midfield and attack that earned a win against Mexico and draw at Jamaica in the last window are available and in camp, there will be some questions about the personnel. In particular, Timothy Weah only returned to action for Lille earlier this week after more than a six-week absence, which could see changes in the front line to include Jordan Morris.
Currently, the Stars and Stripes are in second place on 15 points, however only two points separate first-place Canada, who are on 16, from third- and fourth-place Mexico and Panama, meaning that the placement amongst the top-four could completely change after each game.
The Americans will first host El Salvador in Lower.com Field in Columbus on Thursday, January 27, next traveling to Hamilton to face the Canadians three days later, before finally returning stateside for a home game against Honduras in St. Paul’s Allianz Field.
DETAILED ROSTED BY POSITION (CLUB; CAPS/GOALS):
GOALKEEPERS (4): Sean Johnson (New York City FC; 9/0), Gabriel Slonina (Chicago Fire; 0/0), Zack Steffen (Manchester City/ENG; 26/0), Matt Turner (New England Revolution; 13/0)
DEFENDERS (9): Reggie Cannon (Boavista/POR; 22/1), Sergiño Dest (Barcelona/ESP; 15/2), Brooks Lennon (Atlanta United; 1/0), Mark McKenzie (Genk/BEL; 8/0), Chris Richards (Hoffenheim/GER; 6/0), Antonee Robinson (Fulham/ENG; 19/1), Miles Robinson (Atlanta United; 15/3), DeAndre Yedlin (Galatasaray/TUR; 71/0), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC; 23/2)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Kellyn Acosta (LAFC; 45/2), Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig/GER; 22/1), Luca de la Torre (Heracles/NED; 4/0), Sebastian Lletget (New England Revolution; 33/8), Weston McKennie (Juventus/ITA; 28/8), Yunus Musah (Valencia/ESP; 11/0), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders; 30/0)
FORWARDS (8): Brenden Aaronson (Red Bull Salzburg/AUT; 15/5), Paul Arriola (D.C. United; 42/8), Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas; 5/2), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders; 40/10), Ricardo Pepi (Augsburg/GER; 7/3), Christian Pulisic (Chelsea/ENG; 42/17), Tim Weah (Lille/FRA; 18/2), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew; 66/14)