United States men’s national team coach Gregg Berhalter announced his 25-man roster ahead of a 202o January camp in Doha, Qatar and Feb. 1 friendly against Costa Rica. The group is comprised of mostly young Major League Soccer players, plus the return of a veteran goalkeeper.
D.C. United goalkeeper Bill Hamid returns to the national team roster for the first time since 2018. He joins fellow goalkeepers Sean Johnson of New York City FC, San Jose Earthquakes JT Marcinkowski and the New England Revolution’s Matt Turner.
Hamid last played for the U.S. June 2, 2018 in a 2-1 friendly loss to Ireland. Shortly after that, Hamid returned to MLS on loan from Danish club FC Midtjylland. He set a D.C. United record of five consecutive clean sheets and was nominated for 2019 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year before the club acquired him permanently and signed him to a three-year contract Dec. 9.
Since the January camp dates falling outside of an international window for national team competitions, 22 of the 25 players on the roster compete in MLS, which is not in season.
“At the start of an exciting year, this is a great opportunity to continue our process and build on the foundation established in the last 12 months,” Berhalter said. “At the same, there are a number of players getting their first exposure to the senior national team who will be provided the platform to make a positive impression. We appreciate all the support and cooperation from MLS and the clubs that released their players and gave us a chance to get a head start on the challenges ahead.”
FC Dallas leads the list of MLS teams represented with four players on the roster, including forward Jesus Ferreira, who obtained US citizenship Dec. 16 after a breakout season for Dallas with eight goals and six assists across 33 regular season games.
Ferreira is among 13 uncapped players on the roster. LA Galaxy defender Julian Araujo is another hoping to make his first appearance for the U.S. The 18-year-old spoke openly last summer about weighing his options as a dual national to the United States and Mexico.
The young roster has an average age of 23 years, 83 days, and includes D.C. United academy product Bryang Kayo, 17. The midfielder signed his first professional contract earlier this year with USL Championship team Orange County SC, but is listed as unattached in the U.S. Soccer announcement. Kayo spent time at the joint under-23 and senior men’s national team camp in May 2019.
Noticeable absences from the MLS pool include Atlanta United goalkeeper Brad Guzan, defender Miles Robinson and Brooks Lennon. Atlanta refused to release players to national team duties due to their upcoming Concacaf Champions League tournament participation, according to Doug Roberson of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
— Doug Roberson (@DougRobersonAJC) December 30, 2019
The two players included that are playing with clubs internationally are Wolfsburg under-19 forward Ulysses Llanez and midfielder Christian Cappis of Danish SuperLiga side Hobro.
Fourteen players are age-eligible for participation in the 2020 Concacaf Olympic Qualifying Championship in March.
USA DETAILED ROSTER BY POSITION (Club; Caps/Goals):
GOALKEEPERS (4): Bill Hamid (D.C. United; 6/0), Sean Johnson (New York City FC; 8/0), JT Marcinkowski (San Jose Earthquakes; 0/0), Matt Turner (New England Revolution; 0/0)
DEFENDERS (8): Julian Araujo (LA Galaxy; 0/0), Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas; 10/0), Chase Gasper (Minnesota United FC; 0/0), Justen Glad (Real Salt Lake; 0/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 16/3), Mark McKenzie (Philadelphia Union; 0/0), Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids; 0/0), Walker Zimmerman (LAFC; 11/2)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Brenden Aaronson (Philadelphia Union; 0/0), Christian Cappis (Hobro/DEN; 0/0), Bryang Kayo (Unattached; 0/0), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 13/2), Paxton Pomykal (FC Dallas; 1/0), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders FC; 19/0), Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes; 6/0)
FORWARDS (6): Paul Arriola (D.C. United; 32/5), Jesus Ferreira (FC Dallas; 0/0), Jonathan Lewis (Colorado Rapids; 5/0), Ulysses Llanez (Wolfsburg/GER; 0/0), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders FC; 39/10), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew SC; 55/12)