USMNT names MLS-heavy squad for Dec. camp

Leagues

U.S. men’s national team manager Gregg Berhalter has named a 26-man, MLS-heavy roster to a training camp ahead of a Dec. 18 friendly against Bosnia & Herzegovina.

Players will begin reporting to camp in Carson, Calif. on Dec. 5. The camp is being held ahead of a trio of World Cup qualifiers starting in late January, and is intended to keep MLS players fit now that the offseason has begun for most of them.

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The match against Bosnia falls outside of a FIFA international fixture date, leaving players who are still in-season largely unavailable.

“It’s been a great year for the group and our objective is to finish the year with a strong performance against Bosnia & Herzegovina,” Berhalter said. “As we look towards 2022, this camp gives us the opportunity to see some new faces and allows our core domestic players to maintain their fitness levels.”

The group is highlighted by MLS Defender of the Year Walker Zimmerman of Nashville SC, and MLS Goalkeeper of the Year Matt Turner of the New England Revolution.

The roster also contains 12 uncapped players. Of the 26 players called in, five play outside of MLS, including two who played last season in the USL Championship in Louisville City defender Jonathan Gomez and defender Kobi Henry of recently crowned title-winners Orange County SC.

Gomez is the latest dual national to be involved in a tug-of-war between the U.S. and Mexico, having already represented both countries at youth level. He recently secured a transfer to La Liga side Real Sociedad, and will join them officially from Jan. 1. The other non-MLS players are Roma defender Bryan Reynolds, Internacional midfielder Johnny Cardoso and Bayern Munich II forward Taylor Booth.

There is also a recall for New York Red Bulls defender Aaron Long, who missed most of the 2021 MLS season due to a torn Achilles tendon.

GOALKEEPERS (3): John Pulskamp (Sporting Kansas City; 0/0), Gabriel Slonina (Chicago Fire; 0/0), Matt Turner (New England Revolution; 12/0)

DEFENDERS (11): George Bello (Atlanta United; 5/0), Justin Che (FC Dallas; 0/0), Jonathan Gomez (Louisville City; 0/0), Kobi Henry (Orange County SC; 0/0), Henry Kessler (New England Revolution; 1/0), Brooks Lennon (Atlanta United; 0/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 21/3), Kevin Paredes (D.C. United; 0/0), Bryan Reynolds (Roma/ITA; 1/0), Auston Trusty (Colorado Rapids; 0/0), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC; 22/2)

MIDFIELDERS (5): Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids; 44/2), Cole Bassett (Colorado Rapids; 0/0), Johnny Cardoso (Internacional/BRA; 2/0), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders; 29/0), Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes; 15/0)

FORWARDS (7): Taylor Booth (Bayern Munich II/GER; 0/0), Caden Clark (New York Red Bulls; 0/0), Cade Cowell (San Jose Earthquakes; 0/0), Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas; 4/2), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders; 39/10), Ricardo Pepi (FC Dallas; 6/3), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew; 65/14)

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