Your Weekly USMNT Update— January 21, 2019

With the MLS still in off-season, we’ll be focused more on players in European leagues, but that doesn’t mean we’ll lose sight of our MLS based players, like Matt Polster (25, Milwaukee, WI): he has recently been linked to Steven Gerrard’s Glasgow Rangers in Scotland.

Definitely a surprising move if it does go through. When Polster’s contract with the Chicago Fire wasn’t renewed at the end of last season, most expected a free transfer within the MLS and maybe even an early retirement. However, after a tryout period with local rival Celtic Glasgow, Ranger’s head-coach, Gerrard, seems to be taking a liking to the versatile U.S. International.

While playing time won’t be easy to come by on the Rangers, we think Polster will be primarily used as a right or left back given the Ranger’s lack of depth in that position. Most importantly, the Scottish Premiership, internationally known for its physicality, should teach Polster aspects that are currently missing from his game. Assuming Polster does get some minutes over the next few months and continues to develop into next season, we think he will be an interesting man to keep an eye on for the USMNT in the future. The Scottish media already seems to be warming up to Polster — after all, having a legend like Steven Gerrard on your side probably helps.

STAR OF THE WEEK

Timothy Weah (18, New York, NY) — Celtic Glasgow, Scotland

Minutes Played: 21

Goals: 1

Result: Celtic — Airdrieonians 3–0

Our star of the week goes to eighteen-year-old Timothy Weah, who scored on his debut for Celtic Glasgow. Hands down one of our top five U.S. prospects right now and he is already showing why Celtic Glasgow snagged him for the rest of the season on loan from PSG. In his very first game, he came off the bench to score in the 86th minute in Celtic’s dominant 3:0 victory over Airdrieonians.

His strengths may seem clear: quick, agile, extremely talented on the ball and he has an uncanny ability to finish from seemingly any angle. However, what leaves us most excited about Weah’s long term prospects is his decision making off the ball as he is always able to find space behind and in between defenders. We think the move to Celtic was a good one, as the physical nature of the Scottish Premiership coupled with more playing time should help Weah get ready to play in one of the top leagues in Europe.

OTHER NOTABLE PERFORMANCES

Weston McKennie (20, Little Elm, TX) — Schalke 04, Germany

Minutes Played: 90

Assists: 1

Result: Schalke — Wolfsburg 2–1

In Schalke’s away win over 16th place Hannover, the young American stood out with a great performance at center mid. While his main role was a ball distributor and winner in the midfield (53% won tackles), his assist to Daniel Caligiuri was the exceptional moment in this game. We continue to believe McKennie’s spot for 2022 is on lock assuming he stays healthy.

John Brooks (26, Illinois) — VFL Wolfsburg, Germany

Minutes Played: 90

Result: Schalke 04- Wolfsburg 2–1

Following a few injury-plagued seasons, it seems as though both Wolfsburg and John Anthony Brooks have found their way back to consistency this season. We think Brooks needs to work on his positioning as a leader of the back four for the national team and limiting easy mistakes, but he showed flashes of skill throughout the match with an impressive 90% of his passes completed. Always a threat on set pieces as he almost scored in the 89th minute.

Duane Holmes (24, Columbus, GA) — Derby County, England

Minutes Played: 87

Result: Derby County- Reading 2–1

Holmes has been getting regular minutes at Derby County, but hasn’t amounted a large following of yet. That may change after the quick goal he scored in the 3rd minute against Reading. A pacey right winger with strong dribbling skills, he has shown the ability to score and take on defenders one on one. Hopefully for the USMNT, this game will be a breakout game for him as he seeks to solidify his spot on the squad.

ONEGOAL.US 2022 WORLD CUP TEAM AS OF JANUARY 21, 2019

Goalkeepers:

Zack Steffen (24, Coatesville, PA)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season. Was called up for the U.S. games against Panama and Costa Rica next week.

Ethan Horvath — (23, Highlands Ranch, CO)

  • Played 90 Minutes in Bruegge’s 1:0 loss to RSC Charleroi.

Alex Bono — (24, Baldwinsville, NY)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season.

Defenders:

John Anthony Brooks — (26, Chicago, IL)

  • Played 90 Minutes in Wolfsburg’s loss to Schalke.

DeAndre Yedlin (could push him up to midfield) — (25, Seattle, WA)

  • Played 90 Minutes in Newcastle’s win against Cardiff City.

Antonee Robinson — (21, White Plains, NY)

  • Currently out on injury.

Matt Miazga — (23, Clifton, NJ)

  • Did not see action this weekend.

Cameron Carter-Vickers — (21, Louisiana)

  • Played 69 minutes in Swansea’s win over Sheffield United.

George Bello (17, Douglasville, GA)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season.

Aaron Long — (26, Oak Hills, CA)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season. Was called up for the U.S. games against Panama and Costa Rica next week.

Walker Zimmerman — (25, Lawrenceville, GA)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season. Was called up for the U.S. games against Panama and Costa Rica next week.

Nick Lima — (24, Castro Valley, CA)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season. Was called up for the U.S. games against Panama and Costa Rica next week.

Midfield/Forward:

Christian Pulisic — (20, Hershey, PA)

  • Came off the bench to play 14 minutes in Dortmund’s win over Leipzig.

Tyler Adams — (19, Wappingers Falls, NY)

  • Did not see action in Leipzig’s loss against Dortmund.

Weston McKennie — (20, Little Elm, TX)

  • Played 90 Minutes in Schalke’s win over Wolfsburg. Had 1 Assist.

Wil Trapp — (26, Columbus, OH)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season. Was called up for the U.S. games against Panama and Costa Rica next week.

Duane Holmes — (24, Columbus, GA)

  • Played 87 minutes in Derby County’s win over Reading. Noted 1 Goal

Kellyn Acosta — (23, Plano, TX)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season.

Djordje Mihaliovic — (20, Lemont, IL)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season. Was called up for the U.S. games against Panama and Costa Rica next week.

Jonathan Amon — (19 Summerville, SC)

  • Not in action this weekend with the Danish Superliga in off-season.

Josh Sargent — (18, O’Fallon, MO)

  • Played 10 Minutes in Werder Bremen’s 1:0 win against Hannover.

Timothy Weah — (18, New York, NY)

  • Played 21 minutes in Celtic’s win over Airdrieonians. Scored 1 Goal.

Paul Arriola- (23, Chula Vista, CA)

  • Not in action this weekend with the MLS in off-season. Was called up for the U.S. games against Panama and Costa Rica next week.

ON THE RISE / IN THE HUNT

  • Taylor Booth (17, Eden, UT), Midfield, Bayern Munich

  • Andrew Carleton (18, Powder Springs, GA), Midfield

  • Chris Richards — (18, Hoover, AL), Defense, Bayern Munich

  • Sean Davis (25, Long Branch, NJ), Midfield, NY Red Bulls

  • Romain Gall (24, Herndon, VA), Midfield/Forward, Malmo FF

  • Jonathan Lewis (21, Plantation, FL), Midfield/Forward, NYCFC

  • Matt Polster (25, Milwaukee, WI), Defense/Midfield, Glasgow Rangers

  • Danny Wiliams — (29, North Carolina), Defense, Huddersfield Town

  • Haji Wright- (20, Los Angeles, CA), Forward, Schalke 04

NEWS/TRANSFERS

Christian Pulisic Addresses Dortmund Fans on Transfer to Chelsea next season: “We believe this is our year”

Neymar on Timothy Weah’s Move to Celtic “Has Everything to be a top Player in Europe”

Berhalter Names U.S. Squad for friendlies against Panama and Costa Rica

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Check out Christian Pulisic and Tyler Adams at their Game: