Error message

  • Notice: Undefined index: nid in views_handler_field_term_node_tid->pre_render() (line 98 of /var/www/html/docroot/sites/all/modules/views/modules/taxonomy/
  • Notice: Undefined index: nid in views_handler_field_term_node_tid->pre_render() (line 98 of /var/www/html/docroot/sites/all/modules/views/modules/taxonomy/


Who's on the plane to Qatar? Our final 26-man USMNT squad prediction

Monday, Nov. 7, marks exactly two weeks until the USMNT opens World Cup play against Wales at Al Rayyan Stadium. The event is almost upon us, and it all becomes very real Wednesday when manager Gregg Berhalter reveals his final 26-man roster at 5 p.m. ET on ESPN2 and ESPN+.

There are still plenty of question marks to discuss in our final USA World Cup roster prediction. Berhalter just wrapped up a nine-man fitness camp for MLS-based players, and he'll spend the next 24 hours gathering all the latest intel on European-based guys who are suffering with lingering injuries.  

It's always a risk bringing a banged up player to the tournament, especially when you're bound to lose a healthy player or two to injury in the first couple games, so Berhalter will need to think about which players can most readily and effectively compliment the system he's been implementing over the last four years.

There will also be changes to personnel based on the opponents. It'll be fascinating to see how the U.S. lines up against Wales (16th vs. 18th in the FIFA Rankings), but a more defensive-minded approach will be needed against England before switching into attack mode against Iran.  

USA World Cup Roster Prediction  

USA World Cup roster prediction

Goalkeepers (3) 

On the plane: Zack Steffen, Matt Turner, Sean Johnson

Left behind: Gaga Slonina, Ethan Horvath

With Steffen (knee) and Turner (groin) both carrying minor injuries, the emergency keeper role takes on some importance. That eliminates 18-year-old phenom Slonina while Johnson has the advantage over Horvath.   

Center backs (4) 

On the plane: Walker Zimmerman, Cameron Carter-Vickers, Aaron Long, Tim Ream 

Left behind: Chris Richards, Mark McKenzie, Erik Palmer-Brown, John Brooks 

Ream hasn't played for the U.S. since Sep. 3, 2021, but the 35-year-old has anchored Fulham's place in the top half of the PL table. He gets the nod on form because Richards hasn't played for Crystal Palace since August with a lingering hamstring injury.     

Full backs (4) 

On the plane: DeAndre Yedlin, Sergiño Dest, Jedi Robinson, Reggie Cannon

Left behind: Joe Scally, Shaq Moore, Sam Vines, George Bello 

It's a World Cup too soon for 19-year-old Gladbach right back Scally. The 24-year-old Cannon has won Berhalter's trust with six caps this year (four starts).  

Midfielders (6) 

On the plane: Kellyn Acosta, Weston McKennie, Tyler Adams, Yunus Musah, Luca de la Torre, Malik Tillman  

Left behind: Cristian Roldan, Djordje Mihailovic, Gianluca Busio, Johnny Cardoso, James Sands 

The health of De la Torre is the biggest question mark. The 24-year-old registered only 50 minutes in LaLiga with Celta Vigo before suffering a hamstring injury. Who's most likely to replace him? Probably Roldan, who was the only midfielder in the recent MLS camp.     

Wingers (6) 

On the plane: Paul Arriola, Jordan Morris, Christian Pulisic, Tim Weah, Brenden Aaronson, Gio Reyna

Left behind: Konrad de la Fuente, Nicholas Gioacchini, Tyler Boyd, Cade Cowell

No surprises here.    

Strikers (3) 

On the plane: Jesús Ferreira, Josh Sargent, Ricardo Pepi  

Left behind: Jordan Pefok, Haji Wright, Matthew Hoppe 

Ferreira didn't end his MLS season on a high (ghosting in two playoff games), but he's 100 percent included. Sargent has a promising return of eight goals and two assists in 18 appearances with Norwich in the Championship, and Pepi is producing with Groningen in the Eredivisie with five goals and two assists in eight games.

Pefok never looked a likely inclusion after missing out on the September friendlies, and he's now gone six Bundesliga games without a goal while Union Berlin has fallen from surprise leaders to third-place. Berhalter won't mind.   

Videos you might like