Too many tie games have seen Union relinquish top spot in MLS East to rivals New York City over the course of May.
A total of three tie games, and a defeat to Orlando City amidst a lone victory to Portland Timbers last week has left Union just a point adrift as MLS heads into the scheduled early summer break.
MLS gives way to USMNT action as the U.S. play a total of four games across June in their preparations for this winter’s World Cup in Qatar. The first three matches take place on home soil.
USMNT’s first match up against Morocco was played last night in Cincinnati, with the Americans winning 3-0.
They will then meet Uruguay on June 5 in Kansas City, with a final friendly game against Grenada on June 11.
Friendly games like this provide head coach Gregg Berhalter with the perfect sounding board to call up a number of players to the squad to try out for international football’s biggest challenge.
Their final match sees the US match up against El Salvador in a competitive game in the Concacaf Nations League. The Nations League is a fairly new concept that could see the USMNT claim some silverware.
With the US as current champions in only the tournament’s second iteration many sportsbooks are offering favorable odds. For those not familiar with how online betting works a Sports Betting 101 guide for beginners is the perfect starter pack ahead of the World Cup.
US coach Gregg Berhalter has picked a strong roster with many familiar faces. It’s currently a fairly even split between US nationals playing overseas in Europe and those who represent MLS clubs.
Zack Steffen is one former Union graduate who would have been included in Berhalter’s squad but has unfortunately pulled out due to personal reasons. The former Union goalkeeper has cited family commitments for his omission from this current roster.
A PA native, Steffen is currently understudy at Manchester City having moved through the ranks at Union before making the switch to Columbus Crew and then onto England in 2019.
Steffen will most likely be Berhalter’s first choice for the World Cup, having helped guide the US to the Concacaf Nations League and making steady appearances in recent years.
On the flip side of such fortunes is another former Philadelphia Union graduate. Attacking midfielder Brenden Aaronson has recently been making the headlines due to his high profile move to Premier League side Leeds United.
Aaronson has been consistently lauded as one of the top talents to come out of the US in recent years and has impressed in the Austrian Bundesliga. He will be looking to add to his current goals tally for the USMNT and is likely to make at least one starting appearance.
Other MLS players that have been called up for service include Aaron Long from New York Red bulls, DeAndre Yedin from Inter Miami, as well as Kellyn Acosta from Los Angeles. Jesus Ferreira of FC Dallas and Jordan Morris of Seattle Sounders will appear in the attacking lines alongside Aaronson.