USMNT: Hold My Beer

Cellar-Door

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Their non-Euro guys barely missed out on a draw in the Azteca, and then their Euro-based guys, including Antonio, got wrecked at home by Panama.
Who are you guys referring to as Euro guys? Just Antonio? Because Grant was again a key starter against Mexico, him being out was a huge issue against the USMNT.

Antonio has played like 70 m,inutes with limited practice, he's still a major force, his first game going poorly isn't going to change that.
 

67YAZ

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In just about every possible way.

Young players are high variance.
The necessity of squad rotation in three-game windows leads to high variance
Berhalter's tendency towards tinkering, bullheaded stubbornness, and general galaxy-braining situations adds even more high variance.
Our own rotating cast of injured players add variance.
The differences between our opponents (significant differences in quality, home/road, rested, not-rested, or rotated, etc) add to the perception of even higher variance.

It's hard to disentangle it all in a way that even feels objective. What is a trend, what is a fluke, what is just noise? The variables are many and the sample size is small.
Naturally, this is well stated and well reasoned. But might I remind everyone that this squad just put zero shots on frame against Panama. They only had 5 attempts total. WCQs on the road are always going to hard fought, tight contests that can turn on a little bit of luck. But the US didn’t even put themselves in a position to get a lucky break.

I don’t know what the normal post-window review process is for Berhalter and his staff, but this is a time where Stewart needs to check in and help the management team to plan better tactics and player rotations. Maybe they aren’t getting the right scouting and analytics. Maybe they aren’t using that information optimally. Maybe some of the basic premises are a bit off or the game management is poor. Whatever it is, they need to get things sorted so that this team can be more consistent and at least put themselves in more competitive positions each match.

Gregg has built an awesome culture, but if needs more tactical and strategic intelligence. And if they can’t make internal improvements to generate it, adding another coach should be a priority.
 

Titans Bastard

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Who are you guys referring to as Euro guys? Just Antonio? Because Grant was again a key starter against Mexico, him being out was a huge issue against the USMNT.

Antonio has played like 70 m,inutes with limited practice, he's still a major force, his first game going poorly isn't going to change that.
Bobby DeCordova-Reid, Kemar Roofe, Daniel Johnson, Wesley Harding, Ethan Pinnock, Ravel Morrison were the other Euro guys who came in for Panama.
 

Titans Bastard

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Naturally, this is well stated and well reasoned. But might I remind everyone that this squad just put zero shots on frame against Panama. They only had 5 attempts total. WCQs on the road are always going to hard fought, tight contests that can turn on a little bit of luck. But the US didn’t even put themselves in a position to get a lucky break.

I don’t know what the normal post-window review process is for Berhalter and his staff, but this is a time where Stewart needs to check in and help the management team to plan better tactics and player rotations. Maybe they aren’t getting the right scouting and analytics. Maybe they aren’t using that information optimally. Maybe some of the basic premises are a bit off or the game management is poor. Whatever it is, they need to get things sorted so that this team can be more consistent and at least put themselves in more competitive positions each match.
No, I agree with all this. I've been very patient with Berhalter because I know we have a young squad and despite the talent and the club resumés, it takes longer for things to come together with youth and inexperience. But you can only use that as an excuse for so long, and only for so many things.

It feels like Berhalter is still groping in the dark. It feels like he had big ideas that he thought he could implement, but he's realized that he lacks the time and/or personnel to do it, and he's tinkering and almost micromanaging himself.

The midfield balance feels like the biggest problem. Acosta is incredibly hot and cold. I think he's still the best we've got for an Adams backup, but we need to retire the idea of him playing as an 8, where's been a non-factor. Lletget was unfairly criticized by the fanbase, but lately he's lived down to the criticism. So who can we add to the mix of 8s along with McKennie and Musah? Busio and LDLT seem the next guys up, but they still have much to prove. Williamson blew his ACL. I'd kill for an alternate-timeline where Pomykal isn't fragile right now. It almost makes you want to think about a 3-4-3 (note: not the weird first-half-against-Honduras version) or a 4-2-3-1.


Gregg has built an awesome culture, but if needs more tactical and strategic intelligence. And if they can’t make internal improvements to generate it, adding another coach should be a priority.
Well, the buck stops with Earnie. Or maybe Cindy. Or maybe Will. Classic USSF!
 

OCST

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I don't think that's true. Grant has been one of their most important players, and played a key role against Honduras. Also... they haven't had Antonio at all, which is pretty massive considering he's probably the best pure scorer in the Premier League right now, he brings something to them that none of their other strikers do.
FTFY
 

Mr. Wednesday

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Naturally, this is well stated and well reasoned. But might I remind everyone that this squad just put zero shots on frame against Panama. They only had 5 attempts total. WCQs on the road are always going to hard fought, tight contests that can turn on a little bit of luck. But the US didn’t even put themselves in a position to get a lucky break.
I thought the starting lineup for Panama made a lot of sense, but basically nobody played well. I'm not sure how much of that you can blame on tactics/instruction vs a collective bad day (and maybe Panama playing over their heads with a bit of desperation). It left Berhalter in a hole with more people who needed to come out than he had subs to replace them. I felt at the time I watched that it was a big mistake to leave Acosta in the game, but if you do sub him out (preferably for Busio) then who stays in the game? Maybe you roll the dice on running a fresh Moore the full 90?

I think Berhalter was absolutely right to plan the window around the two home games. The killer in the failure in 2017 was as much the home loss to the Ticos as it was the road loss to T&T.
 

Cellar-Door

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Bobby DeCordova-Reid, Kemar Roofe, Daniel Johnson, Wesley Harding, Ethan Pinnock, Ravel Morrison were the other Euro guys who came in for Panama.
And 2 of those guys played vs. Honduras in the "non-euros big win"(and Roofe scored). That was my point, it wasn't that the Euro guys were bad, and non-Euros good, it was that vs, USMNT they didn't have the options, and Grant who is one of their most important guys was out, so they had to play a very different type of game (and go away from the 4-4-2 they played in their best matches). The USMNT should beat Jamaica at full strength, but 2-0 over a team missing several of their best talents isn't something I see as a particularly great result... it's fine, but also a bit of good luck.
 

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I’m no fan of Berhalter but in the end, I remind myself that was a 6 point break without Reyna, Pulisic or (much less so for me) Brooks. Rotation depth was hurt a bit without those three and guys like Busio and Hoppe looked good in limited roles (which we hope Berhalter noticed). I can’t help but wonder what they could do to lure back Darlington Nagbe. His depth and experience would be very helpful to Qualifying.
 
If you believe that 2026 is likely to be the year that the USA has a real chance to do some World Cup damage, and that 2022 is a bit too soon for this crop of players...which of these choices would you go for:

a) USA qualifies for Qatar 2022, finishes third in its group or maybe gets knocked out in the Round of 16, and Berhalter remains in charge through 2026; or
b) USA fails to qualify for Qatar 2022, Berhalter is sacked, and an excellent manager is hired in his place (presumably possible given that we don't have to qualify and the talent pool is known to be good)

I *think* I choose a), because I can't face the thought of another World Cup happening without the USA - even if we are talking about Qatar in December, instead of a proper tournament in a proper soccer country. (And of course, the USA could always surprise us and do better than getting knocked out in the Round of 16.) But with every point we drop in qualifying, I'll be trying to console myself with the potential silver lining of option b).
 

Jimy Hendrix

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No contest to me, you have to make the ‘22 World Cup. It’s needed for the program, these players need the experience, and I friggin’ just want to see it.

For one thing, even if US Soccer were to fire Berhalter, I don’t have a ton of confidence in them getting out of their own way and hiring the best available manager. I think the chances of Berhalter figuring things out enough to at least be totally fine over this cycle might be better than the chances of his successor being a more inspired hire than “next somewhat above average MLS manager in line”.
 

Cellar-Door

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I'm not a Berhalter fan at all, but... making the WC is important, and as Hendrix notes... the problems with USSF go well beyond the manager, and make it unlikely a top manager would be hired.
For me to consider it, I'd need the option B to be:
We miss the WC, there is a USSF leadership change and the new outsiders bring in top talent for the DoF and Manager slots and back them to make extensive overhauls.
 

Titans Bastard

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There is no accelerationist argument that can be used to justify missing the 2022 WC. It's a huge amount of lost revenue that can't be reinvested in various programs, and it's a huge lost opportunity to grow the fanbase. Major events are at the origin stories of many people's fandom of soccer in general and the USMNT in particular. Missing two WCs in a row would be devastating.

I am of the viewpoint that it's almost always wise to change managers for a new cycle. There are exceptions, like Jogi Löw's long tenure with Germany, but in the large number of cases things tend to get stale, and managers struggle to evolve their tactics and player selection in conjunction with how the player pool is evolving. In the 2026, it's an especially acute concern for the USMNT because very few players will naturally age out of the pool, while more and more young players will emerge, so the tendency toward veteran bias could be strong.

The USSF has a poor track record of moving on from managers at the right time. Every time a manager has gotten a second cycle, it's worked out very poorly for them. Arena's 2006 cycle ended poorly. Bradley and Klinsmann did not make it through their second cycles. Hopefully the USSF has learned from this, and will move on from Berhalter no matter what happens. If the USMNT makes a Cinderella run to the QF and Berhalter is living large, I'd still be calling for a new manager.

Since Berhalter's hire, the USSF has replaced its extremely long-time CEO and true power broker (Dan Flynn) as well as its president (Cordeiro) with new blood. Are they going to make choices in the hiring process that are less clubby in the past? I certainly can't say, but we also don't know for sure that it'll be the same-old, same-old because Wilson and Cone do not have a track record yet.
 

teddykgb

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No, I agree with all this. I've been very patient with Berhalter because I know we have a young squad and despite the talent and the club resumés, it takes longer for things to come together with youth and inexperience. But you can only use that as an excuse for so long, and only for so many things.

It feels like Berhalter is still groping in the dark. It feels like he had big ideas that he thought he could implement, but he's realized that he lacks the time and/or personnel to do it, and he's tinkering and almost micromanaging himself.

The midfield balance feels like the biggest problem. Acosta is incredibly hot and cold. I think he's still the best we've got for an Adams backup, but we need to retire the idea of him playing as an 8, where's been a non-factor. Lletget was unfairly criticized by the fanbase, but lately he's lived down to the criticism. So who can we add to the mix of 8s along with McKennie and Musah? Busio and LDLT seem the next guys up, but they still have much to prove. Williamson blew his ACL. I'd kill for an alternate-timeline where Pomykal isn't fragile right now. It almost makes you want to think about a 3-4-3 (note: not the weird first-half-against-Honduras version) or a 4-2-3-1.




Well, the buck stops with Earnie. Or maybe Cindy. Or maybe Will. Classic USSF!
of course any tactical analysis depends on the formation of your opponent but I just don’t see the 4231 working because while it in theory gets all the heralded attackers on the pitch it requires McKennie and Adams to be very disciplined and also tends to leave the fullbacks in more defensive areas. In essence the 4231 puts all the pressure on Pulisic, Reyna, et Al to provide width and quality and I think we become too easy to defend. Adams and McKennie are very good players by US standards but I think a lot of their value is tied up in their athleticism and engine room qualities and I don’t think they can handle a 2 v 3 in midfield defensively nor can they take the ball under pressure and get the ball to an attackers feet as well as we would like.

I think Berhalter needs a third Cm to build attacks and keep the match from becoming an end to end track meet where Adams does his best to try to cover sideline to sideline but runs himself ragged while doing so. I also think that strangely for once we have fullbacks who can overlap and cross and it’s important to build a platform that gets them into advanced areas. Maybe in a World Cup we might playsome matches where we expect to need to play entirely in the counter and a very safe 4231 will need to be adopted but for Concacaf qualifying I think we need to continue to focus on having high possession and generating overlaps while leveraging the legs in midfield to cover for he fullbacks who are taking chances. Like a discount Liverpool in a way
 

Titans Bastard

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of course any tactical analysis depends on the formation of your opponent but I just don’t see the 4231 working because while it in theory gets all the heralded attackers on the pitch it requires McKennie and Adams to be very disciplined and also tends to leave the fullbacks in more defensive areas. In essence the 4231 puts all the pressure on Pulisic, Reyna, et Al to provide width and quality and I think we become too easy to defend. Adams and McKennie are very good players by US standards but I think a lot of their value is tied up in their athleticism and engine room qualities and I don’t think they can handle a 2 v 3 in midfield defensively nor can they take the ball under pressure and get the ball to an attackers feet as well as we would like.

I think Berhalter needs a third Cm to build attacks and keep the match from becoming an end to end track meet where Adams does his best to try to cover sideline to sideline but runs himself ragged while doing so. I also think that strangely for once we have fullbacks who can overlap and cross and it’s important to build a platform that gets them into advanced areas. Maybe in a World Cup we might playsome matches where we expect to need to play entirely in the counter and a very safe 4231 will need to be adopted but for Concacaf qualifying I think we need to continue to focus on having high possession and generating overlaps while leveraging the legs in midfield to cover for he fullbacks who are taking chances. Like a discount Liverpool in a way
I don't disagree with any of it. It's what I kind of meant when I said "almost" want to look at a 4-2-3-1 or 3-4-3.

Another downside to a 4-2-3-1, in addition to what you've said, is that both Reyna and Pulisic like to cut inside from the wing, which would be more of a problem when they are needed to provide width — an especially unnecessary tradeoff when we have two FBs who can really bomb forward.
 

Dummy Hoy

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Plenty of 4231 formations use the FB as width with the wingers coming inside and the 2 CDM (or usually one of them) providing support for the CB.

But even given that I don't know that's right for this team.
 

rguilmar

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To me, I truly believe Gregg wants to play the way he preaches- possession, verticality, balance, all those other words he packages up so nicely. I've given him a lot of rope in the past (which I am clearly out of) because I appreciated what he said about how he wants the USMNT to play. I just don't think it's in his nature to have the team truly play that way though. Part of playing that way, and being effective doing so, is to let the players have some free will to just play their game and to also accept that it involves taking on some risks to reap the rewards. Gregg wants to have things in the control of his white board and he just comes off as very risk averse. It's just not in him to let go.

I also think believes in his system so much that he can just plug players in. I think a lot of people see the difference between Musah at an 8 and Lletget there, but I am not sure Gregg thinks that there is much of a difference when they are plugged into his system. I am not saying Gregg is inflexible over time as I do think he has changed things, but I do think he is pretty stubborn about his system.

Right now, honestly, I'm not as worried about formations (though that can inform tactics quite a bit) as I am about getting the best players on the field in and asking them to play to their strengths. I am hopeful that this window allowed Gregg to learn quite a bit about which players to play. Even though Arriola was supposed to start (imagine no Weah in this one???) I hope the staff remembers who performed well with their backs against the wall. As has been mentioned, it's impossible to draw to much out of just one result, but at the very least it was a performance along the lines of what Gregg has been promising over the years.
 

rguilmar

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I'm guessing that the roster will be released tomorrow for the next round of qualifiers. Only two games this time, so I do expect Gregg to call in maybe 23-24 players this time. It was cool watching the UCL yesterday and seeing the US so widely represented. I imagine the big question will be "Is Pulisic on the roster?" To me, I would bring him with the understanding that he will be used as a super sub. I'm not sure if I would have brought him if the US didn't play Mexico though.

I'm getting very curious for when Jonathon Gomez gets called into a camp. I'd prefer he come to a full camp with our European based players, so this will be the last chance before he heads off to San Sebastian in January to join La Liga leaders Real Socieded. Once he gets to that foodie mecca, he won't want to leave! He's stated that he wants to see a USMNT camp before making his decision. Players like Weston McKennie and Sergino Dest apparently have played a big role behind the scenes in creating the team culture, and I think it would be best if JoGo were in with these guys.

Other questions:
Who is the 3rd keeper? Guessing Johnson.
Which CBs does Gregg bring?
Which MLS guys are in camp besides Pepi, Miles, and Acosta?
Does Sam Vines get a call? He's back and playing, and Bello hasn't really impressed yet.
Does Busio or De La Torre (or both) get the call?
Who is the other striker(s) besides Pepi?
Joe F*cking Scally please?!?!
 

rguilmar

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No Brooks either. Did I miss an injury? I thought Cannon had a knock this weekend and was subbed off, but guess it wasn’t serious. Still very surprised to see him due to his lack of playing time.

Who is the backup 9? Weah? Lletget? Ferriera?
 

Jimy Hendrix

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No Brooks either. Did I miss an injury? I thought Cannon had a knock this weekend and was subbed off, but guess it wasn’t serious. Still very surprised to see him due to his lack of playing time.

Who is the backup 9? Weah? Lletget?
I assume Ferreira is the backup 9, he has only really played at a falsey 9 for the USMNT when he's gotten in there. It's going in pretty thin there, although I suppose if something goes wrong Dike is a phone call away from a short flight from Orlando to Jamaica.

Brooks has been pretty bad for the USMNT recently, which I think is why he's not here for this window.

Lletget over De La Torre is a head-scratcher for me, but not that surprising. Berhalter trusts Lletget and doesn't really trust De La Torre, despite Lletget's collapse in USMNT form this calendar year which has been worse than Brooks's. LDLT doesn't really get a change to play his way on the roster, while Lletget gets endless chances to play himself off the roster, which he is doing but keeps getting selected anyhow.

We are gonna see some weird subs this window also, relatively little depth on the bench so we run out of subs that make sense about halfway into the 5
 

Kliq

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We are thin at striker, surprised to see no Pefok, who has continued to score at Young Boys.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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We are thin at striker, surprised to see no Pefok, who has continued to score at Young Boys.
I think Berhalter's just not interested in target strikers. It makes sense in the way that he's never adjusted how the team plays when they're in and they've been pretty ineffective as a result, but also he's possibly too dogmatic about not adjusting to use their strengths when they're in there.

I'm interested in Ferreira though, he was good against minnows for the USMNT when he was doing badly in MLS< so it's intriguing to see what he can do when he's in good form. Plus his best combination guy at club level is also on the team, so there's some built-in chemistry there.
 

Titans Bastard

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I'm glad to see Ferreira, who I think could be a creative spark off the bench, but he doesn't play as a true forward for Dallas these days. This roster needs another real forward in case Pepi gets hurt.

Berhalter said that Busio is "pushing for a starting spot". I'm not sure how true that is, but it seems obvious that he's the top contender to take Lletget's spot as the third option for the two 8 positions (behind Musah and McKennie).

Reading between the lines, it feels like Brooks' seniority, reputation, and accomplishments make transitioning him from lock-starter to something less than lock-starter a delicate dance.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Berhalter said that Busio is "pushing for a starting spot". I'm not sure how true that is, but it seems obvious that he's the top contender to take Lletget's spot as the third option for the two 8 positions (behind Musah and McKennie).
Unless we're getting into Silly Gregg (finally, Busio as a distributing 6 so I can move Adams back to his hybrid RB role!), I would assume he's discussing Musah's spot and I could see it situationally.

They're both guys with different ways to help unlock a defense (Musah's good dribbling, Busio's increasingly good passing), and I could see the latter being valued more than the former against some setups. I like Musah against both of these teams in the upcoming window as his strengths in defense and transition outweigh potential Busio lockpicking passes and setpieces to me, but I could see starting Busio against a classic CONCACAF bunker and bringing Musah in to impose himself later as the game gets more open.
 

rguilmar

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I'm interested in Ferreira though, he was good against minnows for the USMNT when he was doing badly in MLS< so it's intriguing to see what he can do when he's in good form. Plus his best combination guy at club level is also on the team, so there's some built-in chemistry there.
Guessing that Ferreira is the backup to Pepi, so I’m not sure if the chemistry with Pepi is a factor unless Gregg is planning to do something drastic. Gregg being Gregg though…

I do think Ferreira has earned a look. Just not excited about it as the only backup striker.

Reading between the lines, it feels like Brooks' seniority, reputation, and accomplishments make transitioning him from lock-starter to something less than lock-starter a delicate dance.
I mean, he’s 28 years old. His performances going back even to the Switzerland friendly haven’t been great, and his club form had dipped too. But he played well recently for Wolfsburg. I feel like not calling him in, especially against Mexico, is a bit much, especially with plenty of others who have also played poorly for the US and still got the call. McKenzie hasn’t looked better for the USMNT, and his club form was so bad he’s been basically benched at a much lesser club, and he doesn’t near have the seniority, reputation, or accomplishments of Brooks.

Unless we're getting into Silly Gregg (finally, Busio as a distributing 6 so I can move Adams back to his hybrid RB role!), I would assume he's discussing Musah's spot and I could see it situationally.
Don’t give him any ideas.

Another concern for me is with Adams and McKennie who I think are both one yellow away from a suspension. It’s not crazy to think both could get a yellow against Mexico and miss the Jamaica game. Acosta and Lletget on the field together again would give most of us Panama flashbacks.
 

Titans Bastard

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I mean, he’s 28 years old. His performances going back even to the Switzerland friendly haven’t been great, and his club form had dipped too. But he played well recently for Wolfsburg. I feel like not calling him in, especially against Mexico, is a bit much, especially with plenty of others who have also played poorly for the US and still got the call. McKenzie hasn’t looked better for the USMNT, and his club form was so bad he’s been basically benched at a much lesser club, and he doesn’t near have the seniority, reputation, or accomplishments of Brooks.
I guess what I'm suggesting is that I wonder if there is some sort of interpersonal conflict between Brooks and Berhalter resulting from Brooks' (temporarily) slipping behind Robinson/Richards that is in the process of being smoothed over. I'm reading too much into it, but the Brooks statement gave off those vibes to me.
 

67YAZ

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From Berhalter’s presser:

Pulisic won’t start vs Mexico, but Steffen will.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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I think I'd prefer the better shot-stopper...
I agree, but I can also see Turner being dicey against the Mexican high-press and can see potential upside as well if Steffen can more easily get our midfield running at their midfield (or wingers at fullbacks). We shall see I suppose.
 

67YAZ

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I agree, but I can also see Turner being dicey against the Mexican high-press and can see potential upside as well if Steffen can more easily get our midfield running at their midfield (or wingers at fullbacks). We shall see I suppose.
I'd rather lump balls long, fight for 2nd balls, and focus on counter-pressing when you lose those. I don't trust this squad to play out from the back against Mexico no matter who is in goal.
 

rguilmar

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In a vacuum, starting Steffen makes sense to me because I think Gregg sees him as the best fit for what he wants to the team to do on the field. That being said, Turner has been in great form (though some have said it’s dipped a bit recently) and this team, specifically the defense, is not going to be able to play that way anyways. No Brooks or Dest, and I’m guessing Zimmerman will get the nod tonight. Personally I’d prefer Richards starts because, despite his age, he has more playing experience against quality players the likes of Raul Jimenez and Chucky Lozano (and man that front 3 with Tecatito has me nervous), and I say this as a Zim fan.

I’m guessing Gregg sees a massive advantage in the MMA midfield. Aside from Edson Alvarez, the USMNT should have some mismatches in their favor, more due to age than quality. Maybe Gregg is thinking he has to keep the MF as involved as possible and starting Steffen is the way to do it? Just launching the ball up to Pepi, Aaronson, and Arriola (sigh, I’m assuming he starts) doesn’t seem to be an ideal use of their skill sets.
 

ThePrideofShiner

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What are people's expectations for tonight? I feel like the US media is way too confident going into this game.

I'd be happy with a tie, overjoyed with a win and not surprised with a loss.
 

DJnVa

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I'd take a draw, but I want to see if we take the game to them or sit back and just try to smash and grab.
 

tmracht

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With the injuries to Dest and Pulisic and Reyna, man I'd be happy with a point, I know people think we will boss Alvarez, Guardado and Herrera, with the MMA group, but I really worry that we'll struggle to beat the press without Dest, Reyna and Pulisic to expose the holes.

Please just no double yellow cards to McKennie and Adams, I don't want to need an Acosta Lletget pairing in a near must win game game on the road against Antonio and Bailey et. al.
 

Dan Murfman

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The football game on ESPN 2 is going way over tonight and it says ESPN + for streaming. If that’s the case I’ll be watching on Univision.
 

Dduncan6er

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I don’t follow nearly enough international teams to know…but does this version of the USMNT seem incredibly injury prone? Pulisic always seems to have some sort of nagging injury, Adams has been healthy recently but has missed a lot of time in the past, Dest seems to be banged up a lot, and that’s probably 3 of the top 5 players on the team. I don’t think they’ve had a game with their full starting lineup since the 1st game of qualifiers.

I haven’t dug in and looked at any data so it’s just an observation and I’m not the most educated when it comes to international soccer. Is this just unlucky or do other teams run into the same issues as often as the USMNT?

Edit: totally forgot about Reyna as well, another top player.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Jul 2, 2006
19,891
Philadelphia
I don’t follow nearly enough international teams to know…but does this version of the USMNT seem incredibly injury prone? Pulisic always seems to have some sort of nagging injury, Adams has been healthy recently but has missed a lot of time in the past, Dest seems to be banged up a lot, and that’s probably 3 of the top 5 players on the team. I don’t think they’ve had a game with their full starting lineup since the 1st game of qualifiers.

I haven’t dug in and looked at any data so it’s just an observation and I’m not the most educated when it comes to international soccer. Is this just unlucky or do other teams run into the same issues as often as the USMNT?

Edit: totally forgot about Reyna as well, another top player.
Pulisic and Adams have both been very injury prone in general but it seems like bad luck with the other guys. This is Reyna’s first major injury and Dest has been a pretty healthy player as well until now.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
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Dec 15, 2002
12,873
Rumored lineup:

Aaronson, Pepi, Weah
McKennie, Musah
Adams
Antonee, Miles, Zimm, Scally
Steffen
 

tmracht

Member
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Aug 19, 2009
2,603
Scally over Yedlin would've been my ideal (non-Pulisic) lineup, but I never expected it. I think I get it, dude can handle Bayern, but Mexico at home is just too much, right?
Come on a rainy night in Cincy is nothing like a rainy night in Munich.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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Jun 15, 2002
4,253
Just happy we avoided the biggest banana peel of Arriola over Weah. I can deal with the rest of it overall.