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USMNT Nov 15, 2019

USMNT facing Canada tonight in critical Concacaf Nations League match

CHICAGO – Exactly one month to the day following the USMNT‘s disappointing 2-0 defeat to Canada in Toronto, the USA will get a chance at payback when it hosts Les Rouges in a Concacaf Nations League A, Group A rematch on Friday, Nov. 15 at Exploria Stadium in Orlando, Fla. Coverage of USA-Canada begins at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN2, UniMás and TUDN.

Fans can also follow along via U.S. Soccer’s official Facebook, Twitter (@USMNT) and Instagram (@USMNT) accounts.

GOALKEEPERS (3) : 1-Brad Guzan (Atlanta United FC; 62/0), 23-Sean Johnson (New York City FC; 8/0), 22-Matt Turner (New England Revolution; 0/0)

DEFENDERS (9): 5-John Brooks (Wolfsburg/GER; 37/3), 20-Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas; 9/0), 18-Sergiño Dest (Ajax/NED; 2/0), 12-Nick Lima (San Jose Earthquakes; 9/0), 3-Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 14/2), 16-Daniel Lovitz (Montreal Impact/CAN; 12/0), 13-Tim Ream (Fulham/ENG; 38/1), 2-DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United/ENG; 60/0), 4-Walker Zimmerman (LAFC; 11/2)

MIDFIELDERS (6) :17-Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 12/2), 8-Weston McKennie (Schalke/GER; 17/6), 15-Alfredo Morales (Fortuna Düsseldorf/GER; 14/0), 10-Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders FC; 18/0), 14-Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes; 4/0), 6-Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew SC; 20/0)

FORWARDS (5) :7-Paul Arriola (D.C. United; 30/5), 21-Tyler Boyd (Besiktas/TUR; 8/2), 11-Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders FC; 37/7), 19-Josh Sargent (Werder Bremen/GER; 11/3), 9-Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew SC; 54/10)

The USMNT has had a month to think about the 2-0 defeat to Canada in its second match of the Concacaf Nations League group stage. The result was the first blemish on the USA record against Les Rouges in more than 34 years and one the players will have in the back of their minds on Friday.

“It was a tough game and it’s time to respond,” 21-year-old defender Reggie Cannon said of the 2-0 defeat. “This is real. This is football. Things like that happen. These setbacks happen, but it’s how you respond to them that really shape your career and shape this team as a whole. I think this team is ready to respond.”

Holding its destiny in its own hands, the path for the United States to advance to the knockout stage of the inaugural Nations League is clear: win both remaining matches and achieve a superior goal differential. Canada is on top of the group with nine points and a plus-nine goal differential, largely on the strength of scoring seven times in two games against Cuba. The U.S. notched seven of their own the first time around against Cuba and will need to keep their foot on the gas. First up, however, is a massive rematch against the Canadian team that ignited their home crowd and support across the nation with a 2-0 win on Oct. 15 in Toronto, their first against the United States in more than three decades. The Canadians have been on a roll since the appointment of John Herdman as head coach in 2018, compiling a 10-2-0 record overall in that time and a 6-2-0 mark in 2019.

While this pool of players continues to gain international experience – seven of them played their first away match in Concacaf official competition last month in Toronto – the USMNT is no stranger to the away-home scenario in group play. In the semifinal round of qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the U.S. played and lost in Jamaica before returning home four days later and collecting a 1-0 win in Columbus. Four years later, it was the same circumstance and the same outcome against Guatemala, only this time the Columbus faithful witnessed a 4-0 shutout.

While the Nations League isn’t exactly the same as the old semifinal round of World Cup qualifying, it does offer some insight into how teams deal with defeats at this stage of the process and their prospect of advancement. Going back to the 1998 World Cup Qualifying cycle, 14 of the 18 Concacaf teams that qualified for the World Cup lost at least one away game during the semifinal round, demonstrating that these are common bumps in the road on the way to earning a place at the FIFA World Cup.

While the Concacaf Nations League isn’t exactly World Cup Qualifying, with its timing and similar format, the group stage has essentially replaced Concacaf’s old semifinal round of the qualifying process. As the USMNT continues to build as a group and in its style of play, the relative youth of the squad is important to remember.

Since the formats and timing are similar, age and experience comparisons to previous World Cup Qualifying cycles back up that the current crop of USMNT talent is greener than earlier cycles. For instance, at 24 years, 350 days, the starting XI for last month’s 7-0 win against Cuba was the youngest for the USMNT in a competitive, group-stage match during the modern era. The average of 23 caps was also the second youngest of the modern era.

In the Oct. 15 match at Canada, the starting XI’s average 25 years, 219 days and 25 caps was the youngest for the USMNT in an away, competitive group-stage match where the team hadn’t already advanced to the next round. Additionally, seven of the 14 players who appeared for the USMNT in Canada were playing in their first competitive road match for the USMNT.

Originally set to be part of the roster for the November matches, attacker Christian Pulisic and veteran midfielder Michael Bradley were both forced to withdraw from the squad due to injuries suffered with their clubs during the weekend.

Scoring his fifth goal in as many matches for Chelsea in Saturday’s 2-0 win against Crystal Palace, Pulisic suffered a hip injury. The USMNT held out hopes that the 21-year-old would be able to join the team for this month’s games, butmade a collaborative decision with the club to allow him to stay in England.

Bradley went the full 90 minutes in Toronto FC’s 3-1 defeat to Seattle Sounders FC in Sunday’s MLS Cup Final, but picked up a right ankle injury during the first half, leaving him unable to join the squad in Orlando.

Following conversations with Fortuna Düsseldorf, Steffen was left off the roster last week after experiencing ongoing tendonitis in his left knee. The issue had been a concern for several weeks and impacted him during the last international window. At this stage it doesn’t prevent him from playing matches – Steffen played in the club’s 3-3 draw with Schalke at the weekend — but the player has been limited in training. Like the Pulisic decision with Chelsea, the choice to allow Steffen to gain additional rest was made collaboratively with his club and done with the long-term health of the player in mind.

This will be the USA’s sixth visit to Orlando and the third since the opening of Exploria Stadium. A near 20-year gap began following a 1-0 win against Sweden in 1998. Then in 2017, the United States returned to overwhelm Panama in a 4-0 World Cup Qualifying win in front of a sellout crowd of 25,303 fans. Most recently, an 81st minute strike from Gyasi Zardes earned the United States a 1-0 shutout victory against Ecuador on March 21. With the win, Gregg Berhalter became the second USMNT head coach to begin his tenure with three straight victories.

Set to manage his 17th match on Friday against Canada, a win would see Gregg Berhalter become the second-fastest USMNT manager to achieve double-digit victories after only Bob Bradley, who achieved his 10 th win in his 11th match as head coach in 2007.



Games Coached

10th Win Date



Bob Bradley


June 24, 2007

2-1 W vs. Mexico

2007 Gold Cup

Bruce Arena


February 16, 2000

1-0 W vs. Peru

2000 Gold Cup

Jurgen Klinsmann


September 11, 2012

1-0 W vs. Jamaica

2014 WCQ

Steve Sampson


June 9, 1996

2-1 W vs. Ireland


Bob Gansler


April 8, 1990

4-1 W vs. Iceland


Bora Milutinovic


May 30, 1992

3-1 W vs. Ireland


* Gregg Berhalter has 9 wins in 16 games coached with the USMNT

Drawn into Nations League A, Group A, the USMNT closes out the year with home and away matches against Canada and Cuba. Those countries faced off during the September window, with Canada earning a 7-0 win on Sept. 7 in Toronto before a 1-0 victory in Cuba’s “home” match on Sept. 10 in Georgetown, Grand Cayman. With those results, the USMNT will have the goal of equaling Canada’s six points by the end of the October window.

2019-20 Concacaf Nations League A, Group A Standings

Team GP W L D Pts. GF GA GD
x-Canada 3 3 0 0 9 9 0 9
USA 2 1 1 0 3 7 2 5
Cuba 3 0 3 0 0 0 14 -14

Sept. 7 Canada 6-0 Cuba Toronto, Canada
Sept. 10 Cuba 0-1 Canada Georgetown, Cayman Islands
Oct. 11 USA 7-0 Cuba Washington, D.C.
Oct. 15 Canada 2-0 USA Toronto, Canada
Nov. 15 USA vs. Canada Orlando, Fla.
Nov. 19 Cuba vs. USA Georgetown, Cayman Islands

(x) – notes qualification to the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup
Click here for full Concacaf Nations League Standings

Another benefit of the Concacaf Nations League is the role it serves as a qualification tournament for the Concacaf Gold Cup. For the first time in tournament history, all 16 participants at the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup will have gone through a qualification process that begins with the current edition of the Nations League. In League A, the top two teams from each group automatically qualify for the next edition of the confederation championship.

The USMNT can officially book its place to the 2021 Gold Cup with a win or draw on Friday against Canada.

Similar to the recently launched UEFA Nations League, Concacaf’s version was created to maximize the quality, quantity and frequency of competitive matches for all of the confederation’s 41 Member Associations. Following a qualifying tournament that concluded earlier this year, teams were placed into one of three Leagues: A, B and C.

From there, teams were drawn into groups within their specific leagues, with each group providing a home-and-away format which runs during the course of the September, October and November FIFA international dates in 2019. At the end of the round-robin competition, the League A and B teams which finish last in their groups will be relegated to the lower league, while the group winners in Leagues B and C will be promoted to the higher league for the next edition of the competition.

Additionally, the four group winners from League A will advance to the Knockout Round where a semifinal and final will be played during the June FIFA international dates to crown the 2019-20 Concacaf Nations League champion. The semifinal matchups will place the No. 1 seed vs. No. 4 and No. 2 seed vs. No. 3.

The tournament has major implication on future competitions as well. With Concacaf changing its World Cup qualifying format for the 2022 cycle, the top six teams in the FIFA World Rankings come June 2020 will advance straight to the region’s final round of qualifying, while those outside will have to play a longer, drawn out format for the chance to go to Qatar in 2022. The Nations League also will serve as qualifying for the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup.

(9-5-2; 30 GF, 13 GA)

Date Opponent Result Location Goal Scorers
Jan. 27 vs. Panama 3-0 W Glendale, Ariz. Mihailovic, Zimmerman, Ramirez
Feb. 2 vs. Costa Rica 2-0 W San Jose, Calif. Lletget, Arriola
March 22 vs. Ecuador 1-0 W Orlando, Fla. Zardes
March 26 vs. Chile 1-1 D Houston, Texas Pulisic
June 5 vs. Jamaica 0-1 L Washington, D.C.
June 9 vs. Venezuela 0-3 L Cincinnati, Ohio
June 18 vs. Guyana^ 4-0 W St. Paul, Minn. Arriola, Boyd (2), Zardes
June 22 vs. Trinidad & Tobago^ 6-0 W Cleveland, Ohio Long (2), Zardes (2), Pulisic, Arriola
June 26 vs. Panama^ 1-0 W Kansas City, Kan. Altidore
June 30 vs. Curaçao^ 1-0 W Philadelphia, Pa. McKennie
July 3 vs. Jamaica^ 3-1 W Nashville, Tenn. McKennie, Pulisic (2)
July 7 vs. Mexico^ 0-1 L Chicago, Ill.
Sept. 6 vs. Mexico 0-3 L East Rutherford, N.J.
Sept. 10 vs. Uruguay 1-1 D St. Louis, Mo. Morris
Oct. 11 vs. Cuba 7-0 W Washington, D.C. McKennie (3), Morris, OG, Sargent
Oct. 15 at Canada# 0-2 L Toronto, Canada
Nov. 15 vs. Canada# Orlando, Fla.
Nov. 19 vs. Cuba# Georgetown, Cayman Island
^-indicates Concacaf Gold Cup; #-indicates Concacaf Nations League


  • The USA and Canada meet for the 35th time on Friday, with the USMNT holding a 14-9-11 all-time advantage.
  • The USMNT holds a 11-1-9 edge in home matches and is 6-1-3 in competitive matches on U.S. soil.
  • Cesar Ramos of Mexico is the referee for Friday’s match against Canada. He has previously officiated four USMNT matches: July 7, 2015 vs. Honduras (2-1 W; Gold Cup); Nov. 17, 2015 at Trinidad & Tobago (0-0 D; WCQ); Nov. 15, 2016 at Costa Rica (0-4 L; WCQ); March 28, 2017 at Panama (1-1 D; WCQ)


  • The average age of the roster as of Nov. 15 is 26 years, 1 day and 21 caps.
  • The roster features 15 players from MLS and eight from Europe with Germany (4), England (2), Netherlands and Turkey (1 each) represented.
  • Eighteen players took part in the USMNT‘s October camp.
  • Forward Jordan Morris and midfielder Cristian Roldan join the squad off their 3-1 victory against Toronto FC in Sunday’s MLS Cup Final.
  • DeAndre Yedlin will come to Orlando after tallying an acrobatic header in Newcastle United’s 2-1 win against Bournemouth on Saturday. The goal was Yedlin’s second in the English Premier League.
  • Having declared his international future to the United States, Ajax defender Sergiño Dest would be cap-tied to the USMNT with an appearance in either game this month.
  • After last appearing in September’s match against Mexico, the German-based duo of Alfredo Morales and John Brooks return to the squad.
  • Morales returns after suffering a strained right groin during September’s match against Mexico. The Fortuna Düsseldorf midfielder made his USMNT debut against Canada on Jan. 29, 2013 in Houston.
  • Thanks to his hat trick last month against Cuba, USMNT midfielder Weston McKennie is tied for the Concacaf Nations League A scoring lead along with Junior Hoilett (Canada), José Juan Macías (Mexico) and Nahki Wells (Bermuda).

GOALKEEPERS (3): Milan Borjan (Red Star Belgrade/SRB; 48/0), Maxime Crépeau (Vancouver Whitecaps FC; 2/0), Jayson Leutwiler (Blackburn Rovers/ENG; 3/0)

DEFENDERS (8): Samuel Adekugbe (Vålerenga/NOR; 9/0), Derek Cornelius (Vancouver Whitecaps FC; 10/0), Amer Didić (FC Edmonton; 0/0), Doneil Henry (Vancouver Whitecaps FC; 30/1), Richie Laryea (Toronto FC; 3/0), Kamal Miller (Orlando City SC/USA; 3/0), Steven Vitória (Moreirense/POR; 13/1), Dominick Zator (Cavalry FC; 0/0)

MIDFIELDERS (7): Scott Arfield (Rangers/SCO; 18/2) Stephen Eustáquio (Cruz Azul/MEX; 0/0), Liam Fraser (Toronto FC; 1/0), Mark-Anthony Kaye (LAFC/USA; 13/0), Jonathan Osorio (Toronto FC/CAN; 30/4), Samuel Piette (Montreal Impact/CAN; 45/0), David Wotherspoon (St. Johnstone/SCO; 2/0)

FORWARDS (5): Lucas Cavallini (Puebla/MEX; 16/11), Jonathan David (Gent/BEL; 11/11), Alphonso Davies (Bayern Munich/GER; 16/5), Junior Hoilett (Cardiff City/WAL; 26/9), Liam Millar (Kilmarnock/SCO; 8/0)


  • Canada sits 69th overall in the latest FIFA Coca-Cola World Ranking and is sixth among Concacaf nations, putting Les Rouges in position to make the final round of World Cup Qualifying. The top six-ranked teams in the region as of June 2020 will be placed in the Hex, which kicks off in September.
  • Formerly Canada’s Women’s National Team head coach, John Herdman was appointed to lead the Men’s Team in January 2018 and has compiled a 10-2-0 record in that time and a 6-2-0 mark in 2019.
  • Canada is 3-0-0 in Nations League A, Group A, earning two victories vs. Cuba, winning 6-0 on Sept. 7 in Toronto and 1-0 on Sept. 10 in Georgetown, Cayman Islands. Canada defeated the USA 2-0 on Oct. 15, 2019 in Toronto.
  • Canada has not given up a goal in its last 284 minutes, a shutout streak that dates back to the 76th minute of the Gold Cup quarterfinal defeat to Haiti on June 29 in Houston.
  • Nine players on the roster currently feature in Major League Soccer.
  • USMNT defender Daniel Lovitz has the opportunity to line up against Montreal Impact teammate Samuel Piette, while Walker Zimmerman and Mark-Anthony Kaye will be familiar with each other from their time at LAFC.