Curb Your Enthusiasm: US Youth National Teams, Prospect Hype, and Youth Development Thread [U-17 WORLD CUP UPDATES]

Jimy Hendrix

Member
SoSH Member
Jun 15, 2002
3,389
If he were in a Euro league this would have the classic feel of “we give him a pay raise and in return we can now get a bigger fee when we sell him”, but the MLS of it all does make me worry for his ability to get out.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
If he were in a Euro league this would have the classic feel of “we give him a pay raise and in return we can now get a bigger fee when we sell him”, but the MLS of it all does make me worry for his ability to get out.
Based on everything that FC Dallas is doing in terms of youth, I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt here, but your concerns are 100% valid.

I think what also influences my view is that Pomykal has a really close relationship with FC Dallas in a variety of ways and I have a hard time seeing them standing in his way when the time is right. For now, his salary is bumped from $100k to $650k, which isn't bad.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Nice result for the U23s yesterday in a friendly game against El Salvador.

View: https://twitter.com/USYNT/status/1184272627772166144



The Olympics are the only real chance the USMNT program has at exciting fans in the next few years. The U20 and U17 World Cups can be fun and can inspire hope, but they are too niche and the players are too far away from making a senior team impact to have an especially broad reach. Morale is so low and apathy levels are so high. Fingers crossed that we qualify; our U23 depth is so, so much better than in the 2016 cycle. If we can assemble all the big guns for the Olympics itself, we'll have a damn good team.

View: https://twitter.com/FutureUsmnt/status/1184474441323077633
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
The U17 World Cup starts today.

The US has a tough group with Senegal, Netherlands (UEFA champs), and Japan (AFC champs). The American team kicks off tomorrow at 4pm ET against Senegal, which on paper should be a very key game towards securing advancement to the knockout phase.

Since John Hackworth departed for the Louisville City job, the USSF pulled in a surprisingly high-profile manager in former FC Basel manager Raphaël Wicky. Wicky had a brief stint at Chivas USA at the end of his career, married an American, and was looking for work in the US. It has been speculated that he will move up the USSF ladder after the WC, either to the U20 team or as Youth Technical Director, or both.

The U17 World Cup teams are made up of players born in 2002 or later. At this age, one year of physical and tactical development makes a huge difference, so in practice the squad is made up of '02s with a few '03s sprinkled in. In qualifying, the team looked solid enough and perhaps even a bit more promising than Mexico despite losing to El Tri in the final. I'm not sure if the 2002s will quite stack up to the 2000s from last cycle. But because the 2000s are looking like one of the strongest single birth years in a very long time (Sargent, Weah, Dest, Richards, Ledezma, Aaronson, Ferreira, Mendez, Gloster, Soto, Sands, Durkin), that's not necessarily a disaster. The true YNT obsessives — the people who track down streams of DA games — are claiming that the '03s are looking really strong. It'll be harder to know for sure until the 2023 U-20 cycle when the '03s are at the forefront.

I wrote about the roster in this post.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
U17 lineup vs. Senegal:

Reyna (c) — Pepi — Yow
Busio
Saldana — Leyva
Armour — Hernandez-Foster — Gray — Scally
Las​
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Goal USA! Gianluca Busio scores on a header off a Joe Scally cross in the third minute.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Ugh, US gives up an equalizer late in 1st half stoppage time after a long ball.

US dominated the early part of the game, but has lost control of possession mostly as the game progressed. They need to be sharper in the defensive transition. Pepi hasn't had a chance to get involved much up top.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
2-1 Senegal, after a quick break following a US corner. Overall hasn't been a great performance so far — too many casual, sloppy passes. The Leyva-Saldana double pivot has been too soft (stop me if you've heard this before about a US central midfield).
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
3-1 now. No bueno. Nobody tracking multiple late runners in the box.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Tayvon Gray gets a DOGSO red on another Senegal breakaway, and they proceed to score a golazo on the free kick, 4-1 now. A dispiriting loss for sure. The naysayers about the general quality of the '02s look prescient right now. If so, hopefully it's just a one-year blip.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
4-1 final. Doesn't seem very likely the team will be able to get out of the group, with two arguably tougher games coming up.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
U17 lineup tonight:

Pepi
Jasson — Busio — Doebbelaere
Leyva — Saldana
Bello — Hernandez-Foster — Carrera — Scally
Odunze

Changes:
Carrera in for the suspended Gray
Bello in for Armour
Doebbelaere in for Yow
Odunze in for Las
Jasson in for Reyna


Japan put the UEFA champions Netherlands to the sword 4-1, so this could be ugly.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Nope. US with 0-0 draw.
U17s. You just never know.

To advance, they'll need to beat the Netherlands in the final game. Godspeed. Still, the Dutch haven't done well against the same opponents — 1-4 vs. Japan and 1-3 vs. Senegal today. I noticed one of their CBs was sent off late — a kid named Melayro Bogarde. Yes, he's related to the Chelsea legend.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
It's the final group stage game and the US need a win. They're up against Netherlands, the UEFA U17 champions, but for some reason the Dutch have sucked even more than we have against the same two opponents. Four of the six third place finishers advance to the Round of 16 and for this US team the math is simple: a win will put the through, a draw will not.

Chituru Odunze, who is listed at 6'8"(!!), retains the starting spot after a solid performance against Japan. Damian Las, the starter for most of the cycle, made some decent saves against Senegal but also significantly erred in not coming off his line to clear a Senegalese ball over the top, leading to one of the goals.

Gray returns from suspension at CB.

Reyna (c)
Jasson Dobbelaere
Busio
Saldana — Leyva
Bello — Hernandez-Foster — Gray — Scally
Odunze​

Pepi is apparently injured, so Reyna starts up top. I'm a little surprised that Wicky made this move instead of starting Alfonso Ocampo-Chavez. I also note that Bryang Kayo still hasn't made it into the CM, which is maybe a bit surprising given how physically soft our midfield trio is. Perhaps he's been poor in training?
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Finished 4-0. Ignominious tournament from the U17s. I think the talent isn't the best with the '02s, but the team didn't feel well-coached either. It will be interesting to see what happens with Wicky, considering all the rumors prior to the tournament that he was slated to move up to the U20s and/or Youth Technical Director once the U17 WC was over. If that comes to pass, it will have the distinct whiff of a "USSF Failing Upward" special.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
The roster for a friendly tournament this window with games against Brazil and then Argentina or Chile.



This seems to be the core group of "realistically available for qualifying" players. I think it's pretty solid, all things considered. There aren't epic prospects at every position, but there are solid pros at nearly position. The one exception is GK, where no one has much more experience than on-loan in USL or in the German regional leagues.

Other players young enough for the U23s: Pulisic, Dest, McKennie, Cannon, Sargent, Yueill, (USMNT) plus Adams, Weah, Pomykal, M. Robinson (injured)

GK Matt Freese (Philadelphia Union)
GK J.T. Marcinkowski (SJ Earthquakes)
GK Brady Scott (Köln)

RB Kyle Duncan (NYRB)
RB Aaron Herrera (RSL)
CB Cameron Carter-Vickers (Stoke City)
CB Justen Glad (RSL)
CB Mark McKenzie (Philadelphia Union)
CB Chris Richards (Bayern Munich)
LB Antonee Robinson (Wigan Athletic)
LB Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids)

CM Brenden Aaronson (Philadelphia Union)
CM Christian Cappis (Hobro IK)
CM Hassani Dotson (Minnesota United)
CM Richard Ledezma (PSV Eindhoven)
CM Alex Mendez (Ajax)
CM Djordje Mihailovic (Chicago Fire)
CM James Sands (NYCFC)

WG Brooks Lennon (RSL)
WG Jonathan Lewis (Colorado Rapids)
WG Emmanuel Sabbi (Hobro IK)
WG Sebastian Saucedo (RSL)

FW Jeremy Ebobisse (Portland Timbers)
FW Mason Toye (Minnesota United)
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
'02 CB/DM/RB Tayvon Gray signs with NYCFC.


Selling Scally on to Gladbach will be a nice advertising point to players in the future. They need a USL team, though.

Gray was on the recent, crappy U17 team. I think he stands a reasonable chance of being a solid pro, though I don't see huge upside with him.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Owen Otasowie '01, an English-Nigerian-American CB/DM, made the bench for Wolves in the Europa League today, the first such time he has appeared in a first team squad. He's played with US youth teams in the past, but not in any official competitions. Thus far the next U-20 squad appears to be weak at CB so there's a real opportunity for him to step into the spotlight for the YNTs if he's good.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Owen Otasowie '01, an English-Nigerian-American CB/DM, made the bench for Wolves in the Europa League today, the first such time he has appeared in a first team squad. He's played with US youth teams in the past, but not in any official competitions. Thus far the next U-20 squad appears to be weak at CB so there's a real opportunity for him to step into the spotlight for the YNTs if he's good.
Otasowie made his first team debut against Besiktas today, coming off the bench.
 

tmracht

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Aug 19, 2009
448
Hypeeeeeeeeeee he is still really young even though he featured so heavily at the U20 WC.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Hypeeeeeeeeeee he is still really young even though he featured so heavily at the U20 WC.
I don't know what to think about Konrad. He looks good in highlight vids and is progressing well at Barcelona — IMO on the sort of track where he becomes a Barcelona B regular then moves to a respectable club somewhere. On the other hand, I was unimpressed with him at the U20 WC. He didn't seem to be able to beat guys 1v1 on a consistent basis. That's a big concern for a young winger, and although he was playing up a cycle, he's a kid with facial hair, which indicates that he doesn't have a ton of additional physical development in his future.
 

tmracht

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Aug 19, 2009
448
Definitely valid points that he may have maxed out physically, even then, who knows what he becomes. The fact he could be in the U20s again in 2021 is exciting especially if he gets a few chances against Segunda level players before then. People like Weah had chances against SPL level talent. Even if he's stalls at Barca B and eventually heads to a mid-low table or tier 2 team, that's good depth for the NT.

These wide spots always seem to ebb and flow for the USMNT. Just a couple injuries leaves us rather thin at the wide spots even a serviceable winger would be useful from the national team perspective. Heck Roldan and Arriola have figured significantly in 2019. Yes I would love more Timothy Weah like projection on our wings. But I'll be irrationally hype about anyone that shows a glimmer of ability on the wings. :D
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
11,481
I don't know what to think about Konrad. He looks good in highlight vids and is progressing well at Barcelona — IMO on the sort of track where he becomes a Barcelona B regular then moves to a respectable club somewhere. On the other hand, I was unimpressed with him at the U20 WC. He didn't seem to be able to beat guys 1v1 on a consistent basis. That's a big concern for a young winger, and although he was playing up a cycle, he's a kid with facial hair, which indicates that he doesn't have a ton of additional physical development in his future.
I'm a big fan of your analysis usually, but come the heck on with the bolded pseudoscience.

As for Barca, has anyone really made the first team from the B team in recent years? Carles Perez this year, and I guess Carles Aleña. Rafinha a few years ago. Munir El-Haddadi and Sandro each got a year or so on the big squad before being moved. Denis Suarez if you count him (signed a 4-year deal as a 19yo, played a year for Barca B, then a year for Sevilla, got bought by Villarreal, then was bought back - not exactly your standard La Masia track). But compared to the golden era of La Masia - Puyol, Iniesta, Xavi, Pique, Messi, Busquets, Marc Bartra, Sergi Roberto, Pedro, even Martin Montoya and Jordi Masip - they haven't really produced anybody that they've decided to keep long-term in a while.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
I'm a big fan of your analysis usually, but come the heck on with the bolded pseudoscience.

As for Barca, has anyone really made the first team from the B team in recent years? Carles Perez this year, and I guess Carles Aleña. Rafinha a few years ago. Munir El-Haddadi and Sandro each got a year or so on the big squad before being moved. Denis Suarez if you count him (signed a 4-year deal as a 19yo, played a year for Barca B, then a year for Sevilla, got bought by Villarreal, then was bought back - not exactly your standard La Masia track). But compared to the golden era of La Masia - Puyol, Iniesta, Xavi, Pique, Messi, Busquets, Marc Bartra, Sergi Roberto, Pedro, even Martin Montoya and Jordi Masip - they haven't really produced anybody that they've decided to keep long-term in a while.
Evaluating teenage players is hard for a variety of reasons. One big reason is that they are all in different phases of their physical development even when they are the same age. After observing many cycles of youth national teams, I've concluded that it's totally reasonable to be wary of early physical developers.
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
11,481
Evaluating teenage players is hard for a variety of reasons. One big reason is that they are all in different phases of their physical development even when they are the same age. After observing many cycles of youth national teams, I've concluded that it's totally reasonable to be wary of early physical developers.
Sure, for actual youth, I buy that. Puberty comes at different times and can make a big difference in how someone looks against their field of competition.

But we're talking about an 18-year-old. Concluding that he is a finished physical product at age 18 - when we see players in, say, the NBA adding 10-15 lbs of muscle per year well into their 20s, and exhibit enormous physical transformation throughout college in many different sports, seems a little hasty. Drawing those conclusions because he can grow facial hair seems like the height of overreaction, even given that it's in the face of a (legitimately frustrating) paucity of information. We could start with the various ethnic-group differences in facial hair prominence at different ages, or list as many individual counterexamples as you like, but it's probably as simple as asking, "How many other kids in this age range just choose to shave?" Like, c'mon man. I don't know a tenth what you do about the youth scene everywhere, but that's not even just a correlation/causation fallacy, that's like a bunch of different reasoning fallacies all in one.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Sure, for actual youth, I buy that. Puberty comes at different times and can make a big difference in how someone looks against their field of competition.

But we're talking about an 18-year-old. Concluding that he is a finished physical product at age 18 - when we see players in, say, the NBA adding 10-15 lbs of muscle per year well into their 20s, and exhibit enormous physical transformation throughout college in many different sports, seems a little hasty. Drawing those conclusions because he can grow facial hair seems like the height of overreaction, even given that it's in the face of a (legitimately frustrating) paucity of information. We could start with the various ethnic-group differences in facial hair prominence at different ages, or list as many individual counterexamples as you like, but it's probably as simple as asking, "How many other kids in this age range just choose to shave?" Like, c'mon man. I don't know a tenth what you do about the youth scene everywhere, but that's not even just a correlation/causation fallacy, that's like a bunch of different reasoning fallacies all in one.
I look forward to being wrong when he gains his Pulisic-type burst of quickness in his late teens.

In any case, I have never been making any hard and fast conclusions. All we can do at the youth level is read the tea leaves and formulate probabilities based on our scant input of data.
 

Kliq

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 31, 2013
11,484
I'm a big fan of your analysis usually, but come the heck on with the bolded pseudoscience.

As for Barca, has anyone really made the first team from the B team in recent years? Carles Perez this year, and I guess Carles Aleña. Rafinha a few years ago. Munir El-Haddadi and Sandro each got a year or so on the big squad before being moved. Denis Suarez if you count him (signed a 4-year deal as a 19yo, played a year for Barca B, then a year for Sevilla, got bought by Villarreal, then was bought back - not exactly your standard La Masia track). But compared to the golden era of La Masia - Puyol, Iniesta, Xavi, Pique, Messi, Busquets, Marc Bartra, Sergi Roberto, Pedro, even Martin Montoya and Jordi Masip - they haven't really produced anybody that they've decided to keep long-term in a while.
Ansu Fati, would be a recent La Masia/Barca B prospect who is now a first team player.
 

67YAZ

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 1, 2000
2,217
Saw this and got a warm spark of hope. Let’s make 2020 the year the senior USMNT rolls out a McKennie, Adams, & Pomykal midfield.

 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
The USSF has announced that they've hired Anthony Hudson to be the new U20 manager. Yes, that Anthony Hudson.

View: https://twitter.com/pkedit/status/1214982509529718784



CONCACAF qualifying for the 2021 U20 World Cup will be held this summer. That's early in the cycle compared to past CONCACAF U20 championships. Prep time has been further compressed due to the total disorganization related to staffing the US youth national teams. This is only the second camp, so there's really not much time to put together a squad.

One positive to the timing of the qualifiers is that a June-July tournament means that it could be easier to secure releases for Euro-based players.

The roster:

GK David Ochoa '01 (Real Salt Lake)
GK Chituru Odunze '02 (Leicester City U-18)
GK John Pulskamp '01 (Sporting Kansas City II)
GK Patrick Schulte '01 (Saint Louis University)

RB Kevin Bonilla '01 (FC Dallas U-19)
RB Nathan Harriel '01 (Philadelphia Union U-19)
RB Ian Hoffmann '01 (Karlsruhe U-19)
CB Jacob Akanyirige '01 (San Jose Earthquakes)
CB Nico Benalcazar '01 (Wake Forest)
CB Blake Malone '01 (UNC)
CB Kurowskybob Pierre '02 (Real Salt Lake U-19)
CB Leonardo Sepulveda '01 (Salamanca B)
LB Andre Reynolds '01 (Chicago Fire)
LB Stuart Ritchie '01 (Hannover U-19)

CM Cole Bassett '01 (Colorado Rapids)
CM Leon Flach '01 (St. Pauli U-19)
CM Aidan Morris '01 (Columbus Crew)

AM Gianluca Busio '02 (Sporting Kansas City)
AM Cameron Harper '01 (Celtic Reserves)
AM Matko Miljevic '01 (Argentinos Juniors)
AM Marcelo Palomino '01 (Houston Dynamo)
AM Thomas Roberts '01 (FC Dallas)
AM Dante Sealy '03 (FC Dallas)
AM Marlon Vargas '01 (Tacoma Defiance)


USSF lists five forwards, but all are wingers or central attacking mids. No real 9s in this camp for some reason.

I don't have a feel for this pool yet. It seems quite broad, but I'm not yet sure how deep it is. Quite a few top players aren't here for various reasons. Uly Llanez (winger), Julian Araujo (RB), Bryang Kayo (CM) are in January camp. Owen Otasowie (CB/DM) has been consistently making 18s for Wolves. Indiana Vassilev (AM) just made his first team debut in the FA Cup for Aston Villa. Gio Reyna (AM) is heavily involved in Dortmund's winter camp. Travian Sousa (LB) is doing the same for Hamburg.

Dual national watch: Leon Flach has been in some second-tier camps with German YNTs. Kurowskybob "Bobby" Pierre was just starting at the U17 WC for Haiti a couple of months ago. He'd need to file a one-time switch to play for the US in any real games. Matko Miljevic is an Argentine dual national who has been in camp with Argentina U20 and has played in the Argentine league already.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
The draw for Olympic qualifying in March was made today.

Group A: Mexico, USA, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic
Group B: Honduras, Canada, El Salvador, Haiti


I am okay with this. On paper the US group is tougher, but it means that there's a 0% chance of facing Mexico in the all-important semifinal game.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
That's one heck of a group of death.
FWIW, Honduras' performances at the last two CONCACAF U20s (97 and older and 99 and older respectively, which feed into the current U23s - 97 and older) were stronger than those of Costa Rica.

The Ticos have been top dogs in Central America for a decent stretch, but these things are cyclical. When your population is only 5m, it's hard to sustain the 2014 WC level of performance.
 

tmracht

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Aug 19, 2009
448
Good points I was looking at their results from late in 2018 vs the US u17 forgetting it's 2020 and it's a whole cycle ago at this level.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
The USSF announced Gonzalo Segares as the new U15 manager. He's a former Costa Rican left back who went to VCU and then played for the Fire for a decade. He's been coaching DA soccer in the Chicago area since he retired in 2014, so he easily fits the "Chicago residency" requirement.

It's difficult to evaluate these sorts of hires, but at first glance he seems like a very reasonable choice for the U15 gig.

Now we just need to fill the U16, U17, U18, and U19 roles!

View: https://twitter.com/USYNT/status/1216858059894554624
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Some kids going pro via homegrown contract.


Aidan Morris '01, a defensive midfielder, has signed with Columbus. He's actually from Fort Lauderdale, but spent two years in the Crew academy before going to Akron. TopDrawerSoccer rated him as the top freshman in the country this past year.

Marcelo Palomino '01, an attacking midfielder, signed with Houston. Palomino had been in the wilderness for a year; he left the Dynamo academy with a rumored destination of FC Porto, but a foreign contract never materialized. Now he's finally signed with Houston; perhaps a youth-friendly coach like Tab Ramos helped.

John Tolkin '02, a left back, signed with NYRB. He played a bit with NYRB II in USL last season as an amateur and got some looks with the US U17 team, though he was omitted from the WC team due to a crowded(!) situation at LB.



In general, I feel that the '01 and '02 classes have a lot of solid-looking prospects, but not too many guys who look like total blue-chippers. Having so many solid irons in the fire, though, makes it quite possible that a few will take a big step forward both on the field and in reputation in 2020.

I'm looking for guys in the Pulisic/Adams tier of prospect. I think Gio Reyna '02 is the best bet among these two birth years at the moment; we're getting direct quotes from BVB staff that he had a great winter camp and is close to a debut. Others could get there.
 
Last edited:

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417

InstaFace

MDLzera
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
11,481
I hope he wears #22 so I can just put some duct tape over the ol' jersey...
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
11,481
Well he's the son of the most talented player the US had produced pre-Donovan/Dempsey, right? Let's hope it ends up like going from Bobby Bonds (career journeyman, but at the highest level) to his son. :D

(or the Alou clan, or a dozen other examples we can cherry-pick to support the hype)

I will lap up Taylor Twellman's motivated reasoning all day and beg for more! More seriously though, while Pulisic is clearly more of a winger who can play #10, aren't Reyna and McKennie kinda aimed at the same role?

edit: Speaking of promising bundesliga american midfielders, I thought this puff piece on Tyler Adams was a fun read.
 
Last edited:

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
Well he's the son of the most talented player the US had produced pre-Donovan/Dempsey, right? Let's hope it ends up like going from Bobby Bonds (career journeyman, but at the highest level) to his son. :D
Gio's mom also got six caps for the USWNT back in '93. Reyna has distinguished soccer bloodlines.

That's another long-term factor for youth development. There are more and more children of ex-pros or even ex-NCAA players who benefit from some degree of family expertise. It takes decades but this filters down through families, youth coaching, and local communities.

Pulisic doesn't have anyone in his family as soccer-successful as Reyna or Egan, but his dad played pro indoor soccer in the 90s and has worked as an assistant coach in USL and his mom played college soccer.

I will lap up Taylor Twellman's motivated reasoning all day and beg for more! More seriously though, while Pulisic is clearly more of a winger who can play #10, aren't Reyna and McKennie kinda aimed at the same role?
I still don't have a clear definition of Reyna's role in my head. He has a lot of technical and physical strengths and could probably be deployed at any attacking position — winger, #10, second striker, even center forward. I'm not sure where he'll end up.

Schalke have used McKennie all over the place and, to a lesser degree, so has the USMNT. But for me, he's a ground-covering box-to-box midfielder. If there's a player coming up that encroaches onto McKennie's turf, it's Paxton Pomykal. Even then, I think you can get both McKennie and Pomykal on the field at the same time without it being awkward.


Sargent
Pulisic ------- Reyna
McKennie -- Pomykal
Adams
backline
GK
If we had everyone healthy and available, I honestly think we'd have at least some chance of competing for Olympic gold. Man, after suffering through half a decade of a soft central midfield, that trio will be absolutely suffocating for other teams. And then you'd have guys like Weah off the bench.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
More academy signings:

Columbus added another '01 midfielder from their academy. This one will have a more familiar name: Sebastian Berhalter.

D.C. United signed '03 winger Kevin Paredes. I've heard some (initial) good things about him.

Columbus doesn't have a USL team so getting their new signings playing time will be tricky.
 

Titans Bastard

has sunil gulati in his sights
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 15, 2002
10,417
US U-20s beat Mexico 2-0 in a friendly a couple of days ago. They are playing Mexico again today.

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 2 0 2
MEX 0 0 0

USA – Cole Bassett 20th minute
USA – Cole Bassett (Cameron Harper) 37

LINEUPS:
USA: 1-David Ochoa (capt.) (22-Chituru Odunze, 46); 2-Ian Hoffmann (16-Nathan Harriel, 73), 14-Jacob Akanyirige, 5-Leonardo Sepulvdea, 3-Leon Flach (4-Nico Benalcazar, 73); 13-Aidan Morris (8-Marcelo Palomino, 62), 6-Cole Bassett, 10-Thomas Roberts (23-Blake Malone, 78); 7-Cameron Harper (18-Jordan Bender, 78), 20-Matko Milijevic (9-Stefan Stojanovic, 62), 11-Gianluca Busio (17-Dante Sealy, 62)

Subs Not Used: 15-Kurowskybob Pierre, 18-Jordan Bender, 19-Marlon Vargas, 23-Blake Malone

Head Coach: Anthony Hudson


Disciplinary Summary:

USA – Leonardo Sepulveda (caution) 19th minute
MEX – Gerson Vazquez (caution) 45
MEX – Amaury Garcia (caution) 60
USA – Cameron Harper (caution) 66
USA – Nathan Harriel (sent off) 74

Statistical Summary: USA / MEX

Shots: 4 / 9
Shots on Goal: 2 / 6
Saves: 6 / 0
Corner Kicks: 3 / 8
Fouls: 15 / 17
Offside: 0 / 0

 

tmracht

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Aug 19, 2009
448
These past few weeks, Lucien Favre has really taken it upon himself to be the conductor of the Gio Reyna Hype Train.

View: https://twitter.com/BlackYellow/status/1219963264957853696
That's pretty high praise of a coach that really doesn't have any ulterior motives to hype Gio. He's hasn't yet given him big minutes but he has been consistently training with the first team. This isn't as if GGG is hyping him or something to pander to the US market.

Hopefully he continues to progress and starts to get some peripheral minutes over the next year, he's proven he can impact at the U19 Bundesliga and the UEFA Youth League levels. Now time to start moving his way into DFB Pokal games or something.