The US Men’s National Team came back to home soil after their road draw at El Salvador, and it felt that this team needed to gain a spark at Music City in Nashville, Tennessee as they were about to play their second of three World Cup Qualifiers in this September window. But after certain circumstances went against them, they earned a one-goal draw at home and the failure to get the full three points.
Before we go to the Head Coach of this National Team, we set our sights towards one of the players who is a rising star in Calcio at Serie A in Italy as Weston McKennie did something very rash and paid for it by being suspended by head coach Gregg Berhalter. As we all know during this time with COVID there is tons of scrutiny about staying indoors and not attending a bar, nightclub, or restaurant to have a meal away from your house.
The 23-year-old decided not to stay at the team hotel and went out while breaking COVID Protocols, for his immature decision Berhalter suspended the player and was forced to watch the match away from the players and the bench area. This is not a Juventus match in the Serie A, or the Coppa Italia, a Gold Cup match, or a Nations League match. This is a World Cup Qualifier that deserves the utmost respect from a player with the talent and technical ability he has to earn the full three points.
The rational thing to do was to ask members of US Soccer if he can invite someone over at the hotel, or at least have a conversation six feet away at the hotel lobby, or if he wanted a late-night meal, to help him order something from an app. Instead, McKennie’s actions cost his team two valuable points.
And now to the head coach. Gregg Berhalter has found success in two tournaments in the CONCACAF Nations League & Gold Cup, defeating Mexico twice in both finals and both in extra time. But in two World Cup qualifiers, he has found two points within six and it’s not good enough when you drop two at home against Canada who has become a dangerous side within these past several months.
After Brendan Aaronson converted the opening goals ten minutes after the start of the second half, Canada head coach John Herdman made a substitution in the 58th, then his team got an equalizer, from Cyle Larin in the 62nd, then made two more substitutions two minutes later, then two more subs in the 76th, and Berhalter made his second, third and fourth substitutions in the 83rd. Since Sergino Dest’s injury happened and being subbed out in the 44th minute, Berhalter made no subs for nearly forty minutes of play not counting the halftime stoppage.
For the second time in four official matches in Nations League, Gold Cup & now a home match in FIFA World Cup Qualifying Canada Head Coach John Herdman has outcoached Gregg Berhalter, and to be fair, he got his tactics right. Whatever Berhalter is doing, Herdman is snuffing them out with a better game plan, and until he realizes it, this golden generation could get tarnished before we get to host the 2026 World Cup in our backyards along with Canada & Mexico.
I understand it’s only been two games and so far we haven’t seen them drop to the basement of the Octagon, but if Berhalter can’t get any form of points this coming Wednesday at San Pedro Sula in Honduras, this whole situation will get ugly in a hurry. The internet right now is not kind to Berhalter and the fans are already shouting for Berhalter to be fired. While I’m not on that train at the moment, I want US Soccer to pay attention very carefully and it doesn’t matter if it comes from the board or from Madam PresidentCindy Parlow-Cone, but something has to be addressed before this situation gets a lot worse.
But at the end of the day, if Gregg Berhalter doesn’t shape up his tactics and philoso[phy, then he must be shipped out and in a hurry.