FOOTBALL

“USMNT could potentially shock the world in 2026” - Berhalter

As the 2020-21 UEFA Champions League started amid the covid-19 pandemic, a record ten American players are eligible to play in some of Europe’s top teams.

“USMNT could potentially shock the world in 2026” - Berhalter

The 2020-21 UEFA Champions League started on 20 October and for the first time in its history five Americans played on the same day. For this season's UCL a record ten United States men’s national team players are eligible to participate, and for some of Europe’s best clubs.

'USMNT could shock the world'

The United States are co-hosting the 2026 World Cup with Canada and Mexico and the USMNT could be one of the top candidates to win the trophy if the current young players keep maturing and improving in their respective teams. That's the view of their coach anyway.

The good thing is we’re hosting in 2026. So if you can project out over these next five years, we think we can build a team that can really perform well and potentially shock the world in 2026,” Berhalter told CBS Sports.

Christian Pulisic earned the No.10 jersey with Chelsea this season and he is a key player for coach Frank Lampard. Sergiño Dest is the biggest transfer for FC Barcelona this season and Giovanni Reyna is becoming an important cog in the impressive Borussia Dortmund wheel.

Like them there are other American players that are making their way to Europe and consolidating a place in their respective teams. For Berhalter qualifying for Qatar 2022 is their main goal, but the coaching staff is also looking at the future.

Our first step, our goal as a team is to qualify for the 2022 World Cup and then we want to perform well in the tournament. The way we’re looking at this project, it is a long-term project. When you think about how young our team is, we’re going to need that experience playing in a World Cup,” he concluded.