USMNT analysis

Berhalter names 27 players for USMNT pre Copa Training camp

USMNT head coach Gregg Berhalter has announced his roster for the upcoming USMNT camp in June that will run into the start of final Copa America preparations. ASN's Brian Sciaretta breaks it down with his thoughts and analysis. 
BY Brian Sciaretta Posted
May 20, 2024
1:00 PM

ON MONDAY, UNITED STATES national team head coach Gregg Berhalter announced a 27-player roster for an upcoming training camp prior to the start of the Copa America. This team will compete in two friendlies, Colombia on June 8 in Landover, Md., and Brazil in Orlando on June 12.

This roster is not the final Copa America roster. That roster will be announced after the Brazil friendly and is due on June 15. Last week, the size of the Copa America roster was expanded from 23 to 26 players.Players will report to DC between May 28 and June 2 depending on the need for a break after the season. 

Here is the roster along with some thoughts.

USMNT Training roster



GOALKEEPERS (3): Ethan Horvath (Cardiff City/WAL; 9/0), Sean Johnson (Toronto FC/CAN; 13/0), Matt Turner (Nottingham Forest/ENG; 39/0)

DEFENDERS (9): Cameron Carter-Vickers (Celtic/SCO; 16/0), Kristoffer Lund (Palermo/ITA; 3/0), Mark McKenzie (Genk/BEL; 13/0), Shaq Moore (Nashville SC; 18/1), Tim Ream (Fulham/ENG; 56/1), Chris Richards (Crystal Palace/ENG; 16/1), Antonee Robinson (Fulham/ENG; 41/4), Miles Robinson (FC Cincinnati; 29/3), Joe Scally (Borussia Mönchengladbach/GER; 9/0)

MIDFIELDERS (8): Tyler Adams (Bournemouth/ENG; 38/2), Johnny Cardoso (Real Betis/ESP; 11/0), Luca de la Torre (Celta Vigo/ESP; 20/0), Weston McKennie (Juventus/ITA; 51/11), Yunus Musah (AC Milan; ITA; 35/0), Gio Reyna (Nottingham Forest/ENG; 26/8), Malik Tillman (PSV Eindhoven/NED; 10/0), Timmy Tillman (LAFC; 1/0)

FORWARDS (7): Brenden Aaronson (Union Berlin/GER; 40/8), Folarin Balogun (Monaco/FRA; 10/3), Ricardo Pepi (PSV Eindhoven/NED; 23/10), Christian Pulisic (AC Milan/ITA; 66/28), Josh Sargent (Norwich City/ENG; 23/5), Tim Weah (Juventus/ITA; 37/5), Haji Wright (Coventry City/ENG; 9/4)


Form watch


For Berhalter, the form and minutes of several players should be on his mind as it swings wildly. Some players are not in a good run right now, some are in very good form.


Concerning form


Tim Ream: The USMNT stalwart has lost his place in Fulham’s starting lineup in the second half of the season. He was given a rare start over the weekend with nothing on the line. At some point, Father Time defeats everyone. Ream has been aging extremely well, but it’s now a concern.

Yunus Musah: Has played sporadically for AC Milan the past few months, but his final ball and defensive awareness haven’t been particularly strong.

Tyler Adams: The USMNT defensive midfielder and often captain has had to make three injury comebacks this season. He was solid in March, but quickly was shelved again. He didn’t play in Bounremouth’s season finale over the weekend.

Gio Reyna: He just completed a disappointing loan to Nottingham Forest and it was his third straight season he didn’t top 650 minutes. He continues to play well for the USMNT, but at some point his lack of a rhythm is a concern.

Folarin Balogun: His first season at Monaco started off well and he finished with seven goals. But his form in the second half of the season wasn’t great. He only scored twice since the end of November.

Josh Sargent: His numbers since December for Norwich were outstanding. But his ongoing ankle injury was bothering him at the end of the season.

Luca de la Torre: suffered an injury in March with Celta Vigo which forced him off the Nations League roster. When he returned, playing time and form has been up and down.

Matt Turner: The USMNT No. 1 just hasn’t played for Nottingham Forest and we don’t yet know if he will be sharp heading into this camp or at the Copa America.

Ethan Horvath: He moved to Cardiff City and played but the last two games saw Cardiff concede nine goals.

Ricardo Pepi: The PSV forward had seven goals in the Eredivisie and nine in all competitions, but he played just a total of 653 total minutes. That becomes a little more a concern to have a player spearhead an attack having played such minimal minutes.


Strong form


Christian Pulisic: The good news for the USMNT is that the team’s best player is playing well. The Hershey native had a great season and was likely Milan’s best player.

Haji Wright: He had a full season and put up 16 Championship goals for Coventry. There are also no injury concerns.

Chris Richards: Crystal Palace were world beaters to end the season in the Premier League and Richards was part of the starting XI. He surpassed 2000 minutes this season when it didn’t seem possible last fall.  

Joe Scally: the Long Island fullback had a mixed season but seemed to find another level for Borussia Monchengladbach after it was announced that Sergino Dest had suffered a serious knee injury. Will that translate over to the USMNT?

Antonee Robinson: Had one of the best seasons for a USMNT player in the top leagues in Europe. There are just no concerns for the team at left back when he’s playing.

Malik Tillman: Another player who has struggled for the USMNT but who has been terrific for his club. He helped lead PSV to the title. The team could really use him to be at his best.

Johnny Cardoso: The Brazil-raised Cardoso has been a hit with Real Betis since joining in January. He’s been nominated for the LaLiga young player of the season.


Five centerbacks


One big take away from the roster is that Berhalter selected five central defenders: Mile Robinson, Chris Richards, Cameron Carter-Vickers, Tim Ream, and Mark McKenzie. There are many reasons why this could be the case, but it could suggest that the team might be looking to play three in the back with two wingbacks.

When asked, Berhalter said there were still ongoing ways of figuring out the right back position. He said Joe Scally was replacing 


Surprises and Olympic concerns


Based on how the team had been operating, there are some surprises on this roster but nothing that is earth shattering.

First, the return of Shaq Moore is surprising, but a lot of dominoes fell to get to that point. Tim Weah can play that position also as a backup. DeAndre Yedlin has been sharp since joining Cincinnati, but he’s been injured lately. Bryan Reynolds is a starter for the U.S. Olympic team. With Moore, it is more reflective of the fact the U.S. team just isn’t that deep at right back these days.

Timmy Tillman’s first non-January camp call-up was also a bit of a surprise. But with Reyna and his brother Malik Tillman also potential wingers, there needed to be support in the attacking midfield/wing positions.

It’s fair to point out that again, keeping young players with the Olympic team was a significant conern for Berhalter’s mind. Players like Paxten Aaronson, Diego Luna, Kevin Paredes, Taylor Booth, and Rokas Pukstas are all Olympic eligible.

In terms of surprising omissions, you have to look at players who are not Olympic eligible. Alejandro Zendejas continues to be a starter for Club America but was left off the roster again. Lennard Maloney returned for Heidenheim, but even with his defensive style in the midfield, he might not provide the offense Berhalter is looking for.

Another nugget Berhalter said afterward is that Brandon Vazquez and Walker Zimmerman were in consideration for overage picks. 


The four No. 9s


One series of call-ups that raises questions is the inclusion of Haji Wright, Josh Sargent, Ricardo Pepi, and Folarin Balogun together on one roster. Yes, Wright has been playing more on the wings at Coventry, but he cuts centrally and plays more of a No. 9 with the USMNT. Typically in the past, Berhalter has said he sees Wright as more of a center forward for the USMNT but in the media call after this roster, he said he wants to use Wright to fill the wing position. 

But it will be interesting to see how these four mesh together and if they are all on the roster for the Copa America. 

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