MLS

US won’t pressure Efraín Álvarez to make a decision

Álvarez has been named in the roster for both the USMNT and the Mexico team, but Jason Kreis says he won't put pressure on the player.

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US won’t pressure Efraín Álvarez to make a decision

On Tuesday the teams from North, Central American and Caribbean regions announced the preliminary rosters for the next month’s qualifying tournament and it surprised many that Efraín Álvarez was included in both the United States and Mexico squads.

The Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder has dual citizenship and both countries want him in their roster for the tournament that is set to start on 18 March in Guadalajara, Mexico. The 18-year-old played with the United States at U15 level and then with Mexico in the 2019 FIFA U17 World Cup.

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Jason Kreis will be the manager in charge of the United States youth national team for the CONCACAF Olympic qualifying championship and he hopes Álvarez makes a decision soon. The United States under-23 men’s national team will start a two-and-a-half-week preparation camp next month prior to the start of the tournament.

No pressure on making a decision

“Efra’s a player that we worked with in December, and to be frank with you, I hadn't seen a whole lot of Efra, because I don't think he’s really been a regular, consistent performer in MLS. And so to work with him for a week and see him in and around the rest of the full national team players was eye-opening,” said Kreis.

“Gregg and I both feel this is a player that has some potential, and some tools that arguably nobody else in the national team pool has. And so he becomes very, very interesting for us,” he continued.

“And so we want to afford him the opportunity to be a part of our national teams program going forward. Now having said that, we want to let him know that, but then we need to step back and say, this is a very personal decision for somebody, and so we don't mean to put any undue pressure on you. We just want to let you know how highly we regard you, how highly we think your potential could be in our program. So the decision is left to Efra, but there will be no pressure put on him from the US men’s national team perspective.”