The Yanks Are Coming Staff
Coming off a victorious Gold Cup, the US Men’s National Team still have work to do to assure a spot in next summer’s World Cup in Russia. But assuming qualifying goes well in September and October, it’s only nine months and change until Bruce Arena names his final 23-man roster for the 2018 World Cup. There’s an entire club season in that time span, so there’s still time for players to make a lasting impression on Bruce Arena and state their case for a spot on the plane to Russia next June.
At TYAC, we have an informed belief that Bruce Arena’s player pool at this point has around 30-35 names on it, with a handful written in sharpie. Certainly, the Gold Cup was one of the final extended US camps where players could make a case directly to the US coaching staff, and as Arena said after the tournament, it “helped the staff learn more about the players and options (we) have.” Arena will have another camp in January to further separate fringe roster contenders from pretenders.
But whatever comes of that camp, history suggests club play will matter most.
Barring injury, it’s likely 13 to 15 of Arena’s roster spots for Russia are locked down. But extended World Cup runs are best built with deep teams that have game-changers, match-up spot starters and “next man up” depth options on their bench. Those are the players Arena will be traveling the globe to see over the next nine months.
Here’s where we at TYAC believe things stand today, as European leagues begin play and MLS rounds the long, hot summer corner towards the playoff home stretch.
Players listed in order of votes received by TYAC staff.
- Christian Pulisic, Borussia Dortmund
- Michael Bradley, Toronto FC
- Fabian Johnson, Borussia Monchengladbach
- Geoff Cameron, Stoke City
- Tim Howard, Colorado Rapids
- John Brooks, VfL Wolfsburg
- Jozy Altidore, Toronto FC
- Clint Dempsey, Seattle Sounders
- Bobby Wood, Hamburg FC
- DeAndre Yedlin, Newcastle United
- Darlington Nagbe, Portland Timbers
- Jorge Villafana, Santos Laguna
- Paul Arriola,
Club TijuanaD.C. United
- Omar Gonzalez, CF Pachuca
- Kellyn Acosta, FC Dallas
- Brad Guzan, Atlanta United
- Jordan Morris, Seattle Sounders
- Matt Besler, Sporting Kansas City
- Alejandro Bedoya, Philadelphia Union
- Graham Zusi, Sporting Kansas City
- Danny Williams, Huddersfield Town FC
- Timothy Chandler, Eintracht Frankfurt
- Bill Hamid, DC United
Last Three Out: Dom Dwyer, Sporting Kansas City; Kelyn Rowe, New England Revolution; Gyasi Zardes, LA Galaxy
Also Receiving Votes: Cameron Carter-Vickers, Tottenham Hotspur, Dax McCarty, Chicago Fire
Also Being Considered: Eric Lichaj, Nottingham Forest FC; Matt Miazga, Chelsea FC (on loan with Vitesse); Matt Hedges, FC Dallas; Juan Agudelo, New England Revolution; Kenny Saief, K.A.A. Gent; Weston McKennie, Schalke FC; DaMarcus Beasley, Houston Dynamo
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