Countdown to Qatar: United States | News | Official site

We cross the Atlantic for the next of our country-by-country World Cup previews watching the squads with Chelsea players, with the United States returning in 2022 after missing the last tournament four years ago. ..

The United States enter the 2022 FIFA World Cup as something of a wild card, after their initial momentum under manager Gregg Berhalter has stalled slightly in recent months, but there are still high hopes for the young new generation. of American players.

Berhalter took charge after the United States failed to qualify for the last World Cup and set about restoring confidence with impressive style at the regional level. Their triumphs in the 2020 CONCACAF Nations League and the following year’s Gold Cup, both with victories over fierce rivals Mexico in the final, gave the team and its fans a boost of confidence.

A rocky start to World Cup qualifying threatened to halt that momentum, but good form at home has brought cautious optimism back into 2022, with hopes of a strong showing in Qatar ahead of hosting the next tournament in the United States. alongside its neighbours, Canada and Mexico.

Which Chelsea players are going?

Christian Pulisic remains a talisman for the much-loved ‘golden generation’ as they prepare for their first World Cup with the US national team, having become a senior figure and amassing 21 goals in 52 caps before this tournament, despite not am still only 24 years old.

The Chelsea winger played an important role in USA’s resurgence under Berhalter, captaining the side to the Nations League victory two years ago, as well as scoring the decisive goal from the penalty spot in the 3-2 overtime win over Mexico. In the final.

He also scored his first international hat-trick wearing the armband in the 5-1 home win over Panama, which effectively booked their place in Qatar for the next World Cup.

Who else is on the American team?

Berhalter has built a team around a talented generation of young players, who have emerged at European clubs in recent years and know each other well after rising through the American youth ranks together, as evidenced by the second-youngest FIFA Cup squad. country world.

It has also resulted in a strong overseas presence – 17 of the selected players compete on this side of the Atlantic at club level – while DeAndre Yedlin is the only member of the squad with Cup experience of the world, as the sole survivor of their 2014 campaign.

Guardians: Ethan Horvath (Luton Town, on loan from Nottingham Forest), Sean Johnson (New York), Matt Turner (Arsenal)

Defenders: Cameron Carter-Vickers (Celtic), Sergino Dest (AC Milan, loan from Barcelona), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls), Shaquell Moore (Nashville), Tim Ream (Fulham), Antonee Robinson (Fulham), Joe Scally (Borussia Monchengladbach), DeAndre Yedlin (Inter Miami), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville)

Midfielders: Brenden Aaronson (Leeds United), Kellyn Acosta (Los Angeles), Tyler Adams (Leeds United), Luca de la Torre (Celta Vigo), Weston McKennie (Juventus), Yunus Musah (Valencia), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders)

Forwards: Jesus Ferreira (Dallas), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders), Christian Pulisic (Chelsea), Giovanni Reyna (Borussia Dortmund), Josh Sargent (Norwich City), Tim Weah (Lille), Haji Wright (Antalyaspor)

Which teams are in the USA group?

Group B has the highest average FIFA ranking of any group at this World Cup. The United States will face Wales for the first time in competition, but have a remarkable history with their other opponents. As well as some familiar faces for Pulisic in the England squad, it’s a game against a team the United States have done well against in the past, producing a shock victory in the 1950 World Cup and securing a 1-1 draw to top their group. in 2010.

However, many eyes will already be on the Americans’ potentially decisive final group game against Iran, a repeat of one of the most iconic matches in World Cup history. The two teams met in France in 1998 amid heightened political tensions between the two countries, but the players shared a message of peace before kick-off by exchanging white roses and posing together for photos. pre-game team.

When are the USA matches?

USA v Wales, Al Rayyan, November 21, 7 p.m.

England v USA, Al Khor, 25 November, 7pm

Iran v USA, Doha, November 29, 7pm

How did the United States qualify?

Pulisic impressed in qualifying, with his five goals making him the second top scorer in CONCACAF competition and earning a spot in the best XI. However, for the United States, it was not the smooth trip to Qatar they were hoping for.

They opened their campaign with back-to-back draws, including a disappointing scoreless opener against El Salvador, but recovered well winning all of their remaining home games, including a crucial victory against Mexico.

A 5-1 thrashing of Panama in USA’s penultimate game left them only to avoid defeat by six or more goals in their last game against Costa Rica, the 2-0 loss being enough to finish ahead of their opponents in the last automatic match. qualifying place on goal difference.

What is the history of the World Cup in the United States?

USA’s best run at the World Cup is still in its infancy, being officially credited by FIFA with a third-place finish at the very first tournament in 1930, when they topped a group including Paraguay and Belgium to reach the semi-finals, although the bronze medal destination was hotly contested by the other Yugoslav semi-finalists for many years.

However, they only qualified for the World Cup twice in the next 60 years and won just one game of the tournament before hosting it at home in 1994, when they reached the knockout stages. finals for the first time since 1934.

The Americans have been a regular feature of World Cups in the modern era, however, with their failure to qualify last seen in 2018, their first absence since 1986. The high point of that run came in 2002, when victories over Portugal and Mexico took them away. to the quarter-finals before a narrow 1-0 defeat against Germany. Their last appearance, in 2014, saw them reach the knockout stages of back-to-back World Cups for the first time since the 1930s.

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