The USMNT casts a wide net to fill roster for the World Cup this fall in Qatar

With the World Cup opener less than six months away, U.S. coach Gregg Berhalter continues to refine his roster, calling 27 players into training camp for the final series of home matches before the fall tournament in Qatar.

The U.S. will face World Cup qualifiers Morocco and Uruguay in friendlies in Cincinnati on June 1 and in Kansas City four days later. The Americans will open defense of their CONCACAF Nations League title against Grenada on June 10 in Austin before closing the June match window in El Salvador on June 14.

“We aim to maximize these opportunities and continue to progress as a team,” Berhalter said.

And while the team Berhalter chose includes few surprises — 19 of the players selected were also on the final World Cup qualifying roster in March — it also includes three men who have never played for the national team and three others who haven’t appeared in an international match since December 2020.

Bayern Munich midfielder Malik Tillman, a dual national of both Germany and the U.S., is getting his first call-up to the senior national team after requesting a one-time change of association from FIFA. Tillman, 19, a former U.S. youth international, was part of the German youth national team as recently as March.

Forward Haji Wright of Turkish club Antalyaspor, who started his professional career in the Galaxy youth academy, is also looking to make his senior international debut as is teenage defender Joe Scally of Germany’s Borussia Mönchengladbach.

Also called up were Juventus midfielder Weston McKennie and New England goalkeeper Matt Turner, who missed the March qualifiers with injuries. Among those missing are defender Sergiño Dest of Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund forward Gio Reyna and Hoffenheim center back Chris Richards, all of whom are recovering from injuries.

Center back became a position of need for Berhalter earlier this month when Atlanta United’s Miles Robinson, who started 11 of the 14 World Cup qualifiers, ruptured his left Achilles tendon. He is considered doubtful for Qatar. Among the candidates called up to audition as his replacement are Cameron Carter-Vickers of Scottish club Celtic, who last played for the U.S. in 2019, and Erik Palmer-Brown of Troyes in France.

Missing, however, is World Cup veteran John Brooks, who hasn’t played for the U.S. since September. Berhalter has repeatedly said the door is not closed to Brooks’ return, but time certainly seems to be running out for Qatar.

Players are expected to begin gathering in Cincinnati this weekend for the starting of training camp.

The roster:

Goalkeepers: Ethan Horvath (Nottingham Forest), Zack Steffen (Manchester City), Matt Turner (New England Revolution).

Defenders: George Bello (Arminia Bielefeld), Reggie Cannon (Boavista), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Celtic), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls), Erik Palmer-Brown (Troyes), Antonee Robinson (Fulham), Joe Scally (Borussia Mönchengladbach), DeAndre Yedlin (Inter Miami), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC).

Midfielders: Kellyn Acosta (LAFC), Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig), Luca de la Torre (Heracles), Weston McKennie (Juventus), Djordje Mihailovic (CF Montreal), Yunus Musah (Valencia), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders), Malik Tillman (Bayern Munich).

Forwards: Brenden Aaronson (Red Bull Salzburg), Paul Arriola (FC Dallas), Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders), Christian Pulisic (Chelsea), Tim Weah (Lille/FRA), Haji Wright (Antalyaspor).

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