Analysis: Predicting the USMNT 2022 World Cup Roster


With the United States men’s national team and head coach Gregg Berhalter set to unveil their roster selections for the 2022 FIFA World Cup at 5 p.m. ET, here at Last Word on Soccer, I thought I’d take a chance and try to predict the 26 names that will be called in.

I’ve done my best to avoid the numerous rumors and supposed leaks floating around the UMSMNT twitter-sphere and stuck purely to the 26 players that I believe Berhalter will call in for World Cup duties. By no means was this an easy task, having to leave off players I would personally take in favor of those I ultimately believe the coaching staff has decided on but somebody had to try and do it despite these challenges. 

With that, let’s take a dive into the mind of Gregg Berhalter.

U.S. Goalkeepers

Matt Turner – Arsenal

As one of Berhalter’s two main goalkeepers throughout this qualification cycle, Turner seems like an obvious lock for this roster and his performances in the Europa League have only reaffirmed this idea with one goal conceded in four matches for three clean sheets.

Zack Steffen – Middlesbrough (on loan from Manchester City)

I would have said this one felt like a lock as Berhalter’s second main goalkeeping selection throughout this qualification cycle but with 19 goals conceded this season on 16 Championship appearances Steffen has struggled lately but I still think he’ll get the call-up.

Sean Johnson – NYCFC

Johnson has been the go-to number three in the goalkeeping department for Berhalter throughout much of his tenure and after another very solid season captaining NYCFC expect to see him on the final roster.

U.S. Defenders

Sergiño Dest – AC Milan (on loan from Barcelona)

Probably the strongest outside back in the USMNT player pool bringing a high level of versatility and despite battling some injuries he is expected to be fully fit in the coming days. 

Antonee Robinson – Fulham

Despite also battling some injuries this season, Robinson has been as consistent a starter as they come for a Fulham club that’s putting together a decent season and sitting 9th in the Premier League.

Walker Zimmerman – Nashville SC

Easily one of our best CB products if not the very best (Sorry John Brooks) and has been a constant call-up throughout much of Berhalter’s time in charge, definitely expect to see his name on the roster.

Aaron Long – New York Red Bulls

We all know Aaron Long is a Berhalter guy… and while he might not be our strongest CB option, with all the recent injuries at the position Long’s veteran experience will come highly valuable so I expect him to receive a call-up.

Cameron Carter-Vickers – Celtic

Injuries at the position may have helped CCV to find a spot on the roster after not receiving a ton of call-ups throughout this cycle but his performances for Celtic in both the Scottish Premier League and the Champions League have made him a lock.

Tim Ream – Fulham

Similarly, at 35-years-old Ream wasn’t frequently called in during qualifying but injuries at the position have given the wily vet a spot on this roster while some great performances captaining Fulham this season made him a lock.

DeAndre Yedlin – Inter Miami

We need some past World Cup experience in this squad and Yedlin is tapped to be that man as the only member of the United States 2014 roster here but he’s also been in great form this season bringing Miami to the playoffs which may have earned Yedlin to earn a spot over a struggling Reggie Cannon.

Joe Scally – Borussia Mönchengladbach

Another very strong outside back who will provide positionally versatility and at just 19-years-old but he’s also putting in a strong season for Mönchengladbach as their starting RB making it hard not to include him in this 26.

U.S. Midfielders

Weston McKennie – Juventus

McKennie makes for an easy inclusion with how highly Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri has spoken of the little wizard this season behind some great play in Serie A and a couple of goals in the Champions League.

Tyler Adams – Leeds United

Another fairly obvious inclusion as one of the United States’ most important pieces in their system of play but the incredible shifts put in for Leeds United this season certainly don’t hurt.

Giovanni Reyna – Borussia Dortmund

While we’ve seen Reyna struggle a bit as of late at Dortmund his confidence has slowly been working back highlighted by a penalty goal to surpass his Father Cluadio Reyna in career Bundesliga goals just this past weekend. Lock him in and keep giving him confidence boosters.

Yunus Musah – Valencia

A frequent call-up during qualifying and throughout the Berhalter era, his positional versatility will be key to this roster and he’s been in good form for Valencia managing 2 assists in ten La Liga appearances.

Luca de la Torre – Celta de Vigo

An injury just two weeks ago seemed like it would hold de la Torre out for the World Cup but with Celta announcing on Friday that he was healthy and back in training I think he became a lock for this roster.

Kellyn Acosta – Los Angeles FC

After helping to bring LAFC the club’s first MLS crown Acosta has really proven himself as a commodity in the midfield even over the past few seasons and I fully expect him to be called in with this roster for all the great things he adds into the midfield.

Christian Roldan – Seattle Sounders FC

Maybe another name that fans would put in the category of “Berhalter guy” but it’s hard to deny his contributions during qualifying and how well he has performed this past season in MLS with 4 goals and 5 assists in 26 appearances.

U.S. Forwards

Christian Pulisic – Chelsea

Battling for playing time primarily off the bench once again this season has seen Pulisic struggle for Chelsea managing just 1 goal and 1 assist in about 370’ minutes played but he’s an obvious inclusion if healthy and can completely change the dynamics of this US team.

Jesús Ferreira – FC Dallas

With 18 goals and six assists in 33 appearances winning the 2022 MLS Young Player of the Year award, Ferreira seems a lock for this roster despite the competition at striker really heating up within the USMNT player pool of late. I know he’s had issues at the national team level finding his footing but Ferreira will be a key role player in this attack at the World Cup.

Josh Sargent – Norwich City

The debate on which strikers to call up literally shifted from “take nobody” to “take everybody” in a matter of the past few weeks and Sargent has been a real leader of that crusade notching 8 goals and 2 assists to start Norwich’s campaign, he’ll get the call from Berhalter.

Tim Weah – Lille OSC

A key piece during the qualification process, Weah has been not only solid for country but also for club with 2 assists in his first five Ligue 1 appearances of the season which should lock him into Berhalter’s roster if he can stay healthy.

Brenden Aaronson – Leeds United

Can I just insert the video of Leeds fans singing ‘American Boy’ by Estelle and Kayne West substituting the lyrics to match Aaronson’s ascent? He’s electric on the ball at Elland Road and could be the key to unlocking the American’s offensive production at the World Cup, put him on the roster.


Malik Tillman – Rangers (on loan from Bayern Munich)

Something of a surprise inclusion here but I really think Berhalter wants to get a few of these youngsters in the fold where Tillman would be a perfect selection and has been a competitive role player at Rangers so far this year with 2 goals and 2 assists in 11 appearances on loan.

Ricardo Pepi – FC Groningen (on loan from FC Augsburg)

Greatly benefiting from a loan move Pepi has caught fire notching 5 goals and 2 assists in his first 8 appearances in the Eredivisie and while the striker position will no doubt be a hotly debated one I think Pepi gets the call over maybe Jordan Pefork or Haji Wright.

Paul Arriola – FC Dallas

In the hopes of adding a veteran attacking talent to the ranks, I think Berhalter selects Arriola to round out his roster after a 10-goal, 6-assist season with FC Dallas while maybe his counterpart in Jordan Morris struggled in Seattle after coming back from injury.