A day after a deadly riot at the Capitol by a pro-Trump crowd last week, players from the American soccer team met in Bradenton, Florida and considered what they could do to set a positive example of a shake up the country.
“I think, of course, we all know how terrible these events were and we all understand that there is a lot of need for change in this country,” said Jordan Morris, one of the veterans in the camp, while telling a message. Conference Monday. “The biggest thing for us, and I’ve talked to people a bit, is hopefully being a national team as a positive representation of what change can be and how we can move forward. And I think that even in these difficult times we hope to be a team – hopefully in a positive light. ‘
Coach Gregg Berhalter said he has not spoken to players about the events in Washington.
“Then we just noticed. There is a lot of room for improvement as a country and here we can all be better examples. We can all be better citizens, ”said Berhalter. “We’ll see it. It has nothing to do with what we know America is. This is not who we are as a country. And it’s disappointing to see. ”
The team of young American players is preparing for a possible exhibition against Serbia on January 31, although the game is not yet over.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the start of World Cup qualifiers has been delayed by a year until the Americans are expected to open in September 2021 in Trinidad and Tobago, where they will lose their seven-series live World Cup in October 2017.
A full pool of players is likely to be available for some shows in March, likely in Europe, and for the CONCACAF Nations League semi-final against Honduras in June, followed by the final or third place against Mexico or Costa Rica. It will be followed by the CONCACAF Gold Cup from July 2nd, probably with a younger list.
Berhalter has seen two notable performances by Americans in Europe this month.
Matthew Hoppe, a 19-year-old striker who has never played at national team level, became the first American to score a hat trick in the Bundesliga in Germany. Hoppe scored three goals in his fifth league game, as a result of which Schalke won 4-0 against Hoffenheim on Saturday and thus celebrated their first league win in almost a year.
Hoppe, born in Yorba Linda, California, played at a Barcelona-affiliated development academy in Arizona. Hoppe was on schedule for the U20 team before the pandemic last year.
“What I liked a lot were the transition moments, the moments when he won the ball,” said Berhalter. ‘The space behind the defense, he could take advantage of this really smart move. And when he could score goals, he ended it with wisdom. ”
Zack Steffen, a 25-year-old man who has become the national team’s leading goalkeeper, made his Premier League debut in Manchester City’s 3-1 win over Chelsea and US midfielder Christian Pulisic on January 3.
Steffen has 19 international appearances. He loaned out from Fortuna Düsseldorf last season and was previously limited to four league cup games and one in the Champions League this season.
“I’m very proud of him and how he adapts and how he fits in with what they do. “He looked really confident on the ball and generally made the saves he needed to make,” said Berhalter. ‘He really took the next step in terms of maturity, calm. The Bundesliga helped him develop. And now he’s in a place where he even takes another step, and you can see that in his game, very calm, very collected, and he’s still a young goalkeeper. ”
The 26-year-old Morris has spent five seasons with the Seattle Sounders and has scored ten goals in 39 international appearances. Recovering from a torn right-wing ACL that he largely missed in 2018, he is hoping for a transfer to Europe, although it is not clear if a move will take place.
‘There are definitely some talks going on with Seattle. If the right offer and the right team came, I would definitely be interested, ”he said. “If things don’t work out and I end up in Seattle, I’ll be happy there.”
REMARKS: New York Red Bulls D Kyle Duncan has been accepted into the U23 team’s training camp. He replaces an unknown player who tested positive and quarantined upon arrival at the camp. Duncan made his senior team debut against El Salvador last month.