Christian Pulisic returns to the US national team for the World Cup qualifier against Mexico next week. The Chelsea striker missed three qualifying matches last month with an ankle injury and played in just two of the Americans’ last six games.
But on Tuesday, he proved his physical form with 16 minutes in Chelsea’s 1-0 UEFA Champions League group game against Malmö.
The 25-man squad is missing defender Serginho Dest and strikers Gio Reina and Gyasi Zardes. Dest has a minor back problem, Reina hasn’t played since injuring her hamstring in the second qualification in September, and Zardes suffered a knee injury.
The United States (3-1-2) is second in the eight-nation CONCACAF qualifiers, behind only Mexico (4-0-2). But the Americans were able to take first place on points, winning November 12 in Cincinnati.
The US will then travel to Jamaica to compete in the 2021 final qualifier on November 16.
“Our focus remains on the mentality of the next game. After this window, we will pass more than half of the octagon, so we have a chance to position ourselves well next year, ”said USA coach Gregg Berhalter in a statement. “As for the USA and Mexico, I am very happy for our players, because this is not just a game, this is an event. This is the best result of the World Championship qualification and our group is ready to take on the challenge. “
Among those joining Pulisic in the 25-member US are Galactica midfielder Sebastian Lletgett, Dallas striker Ricardo Pepi, Juventus midfielder Weston McKenny and Boavista defender Reggie Cannon.
Pepi leads in scoring with three goals in qualifying, while McKenny has a streak of assists in Italy’s Serie A. by Dest.
The roster, announced Thursday, features players from nine countries, including 10 from the MLS. The twenty players called on Thursday were also in the qualifying lineup in October.
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Goalkeeper: Sean Johnson (New York), Zach Steffen (Manchester City), Matt Turner (New England Revolution)
Defenders: Reggie Cannon (Boavista), Mark Mackenzie (Genk), Chris Richards (Hoffenheim), Anthony Robinson (Fulham), Miles Robinson (Atlanta United), Joe Scali (Borussia Monchengladbach), Sam Vinesara (Royal Antwerndrein Awerp) , Walker Zimmerman (Nashville)
Midfielders: Kellin Acosta (Colorado Rapids), Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig), Gianluca Busio (Venice), Sebastian Lletgett (Galaxy), Weston McKenny (Juventus), Yunus Musa (Valencia), Christian Roldan (Seattle Sounders)
Forwards: Brenden Aaronson (Red Bull Salzburg), Paul Arriola (DC United), Jesus Ferreira (FC Dallas), Ricardo Pepi (FC Dallas), Christian Pulisic (Chelsea / ENG), Tim Weah (Lille)