The USMNT roster has been released for the next set of qualifiers. Schedule is:
10/7 v. Jamaica, 745 PM - Q2 Stadium, Austin TX (ESPN2)
10/10 @ Panama, 600 PM - Estadio Rommel Fernández Gutiérrez, Panama City (Probably Paramount +?)
10/13 v. Costa Rica, 700 PM - Lower.com Field, Columbus OH (ESPN2)
Here is the initial squad:
Here's the detailed personnel for our October business trip. Oct. 7 vs. 🇯🇲 in AustinOct. 10 at 🇵🇦 in Panama CityOct. 13 vs. 🇨🇷 in ColumbusMore on the WCQ Roster » https://t.co/MT2BaBBOx6 pic.twitter.com/2W2IZ1PE7S— U.S. Soccer MNT (@USMNT) September 29, 2021
Pulisic and Reyna are both currently out with injuries picked up during the last window. Berhalter did not rule out calling them in later in the window if they are ready, but I wouldn't count on it as their clubs would probably prefer them to just stay.
Also note that players from the UK (A. Robinson, Ream, Steffen, Pulisic if called later) are not allowed to travel to Panama (because it is a UK red list country) without completing a quarantine upon returning to the UK. So, I would not expect any of those players to appear in the second match.
Really happy to see Musah, Hoppe, and Richards on this squad. It just goes to show that the first window is always very difficult due to transfer stuff. With a lack of true wingers (again...) I expect to see a lot of Hoppe, Weah, and Aaronson. Arriola and Roldan will also get their fair share of playing time, so just warning you all in advance. It's fine, they are fine players.
New players can be called in at any time, and if any of our players get injured this weekend for their club, I would expect additional call-ups. We have plenty of depth at CB with Zimmerman, Miazga, and Sands all acclimated with the team not currently on this squad, so we should be good there. Just hope for no more winger injuries. We're pretty thin there right now.
Jamaica got off to a pretty poor start in the first window with just 1 point from 3 games. They will be motivated to come out strong and their coach is probably on the hot seat. I think Gregg should come out with a strong lineup to start.
Panama surprised by landing 5 points in the last window including draws with Mexico and Costa Rica and a 3-0 win over Jamaica. They are not traditionally a strong team, but this could be a tougher than expected match away in Panama City.
Costa Rica started out with just two points after a narrow loss at home v. Mexico and settling for draws against Panama and Jamaica. They have been a strong team in recent cycles, but I think most of their best players are aging and their next generation isn't at the same level. We'll see how they do in the first two matches this window, but from the looks of it we should be able to beat them at home.
The current table in the Ocho is :
1. Mexico - 7 pts
2. Canada - 5 pts
3. USA - 5 pts
4. Panama - 5 pts
5. Costa Rica - 2 pts
6. Honduras- 2 pts
7. El Salvador - 2 pts
8. Jamaica - 1 pt
This is probably one of the "easier" windows the USMNT will have this cycle. Two home matches against decent, but not great opponents and an away match against what is usually not a really difficult team. That said, the overall quality of Concacaf has clearly risen in recent years. My preferred starting 11 to open against Jamaica:
Dest - M .Robinson - Richards - A. Robinson
Weah - Pepi - Aaronson
Edited lineup Musah -> Lletget because Musah is coming back from injury and I think it's pretty unlikely he will start match 1