Gregg Berhalter faces a possible crisis as the World Cup nears. Several American players suffered season-ending injuries in 2022, with Weston McKennie, Gio Reyna and now Miles Robinson most notably out. But as the European campaigns come to a close, the injuries keep coming.
This week, Jordan Pefok and Josh Sargent were both confirmed out with individual lesions. Before heading to Qatar, the USMNT will host several friendlies with nations of a similar caliber and compete in the Nations League, but with many key figures out, it will be interesting to see who the head coach will rely on.
Here's what the American players are up to...
1. Jordan Pefok out with injury
USMNT striker Jordan Pefok suffered a leg injury during his latest appearance for the Young Boys. The player was forced off the pitch in the 34th minute, signalling a problem with his leg while coming off.
A timeline for his recovery has not been provided yet.
Pefok was in the midst of his best season yet in Europe, scoring 27 goals across all competitions for Young Boys. He also added four assists for the Swiss top-flight club.
This is a huge blow for the player and the US men’s national team as they face an injury crisis with the World Cup fast approaching.
2. Josh Sargent out for the season
After aggravating an ankle injury during last month's defeat to Aston Villa, USMNT figure Josh Sargent is now out for the remainder of the season.
Norwich City head coach Dean Smith confirmed the player will not require surgery for the injury but will sit out the rest of the 2021/22 campaign as the team suffers relegation.
“No surgery is needed for Josh,” Smith said Friday. “It will just be a rest period. He trained fully on Friday [before the Aston Villa match] and was fine. He just aggravated it in his first movements during the game, but we all feel that it was worth the risk, as does Sarge.”
3. Americans return to the starting lineups
USMNT players returned to the starting lineups for their respective teams, with Christian Pulisic and Josh Sands most notably taking center stage.
After a rough couple of weeks with Chelsea, Pulisic featured for Tuchel’s starting 11. He registered his first 90-minute performance since March 5, assisting one of the four goals in the 2-2 draw against Wolves. Pulisic set up Romelu Lukaku’s second goal of the match, playing a through ball up the middle of the field to inspire the Belgian. Pulisic also concluded the match by creating the most chances of any player (4), winning seven of his 14 duels, and two tackles.
In Scotland, Sands recorded his first 90 minutes for Rangers since March 13, enabling the 2-0 league victory over Dundee United. Cameron Carter-Vickers also went 90 for league-leaders Celtic in a 4-1 romp over Hearts.
4. Honorable mentions
Tyler Adams played 19 minutes in RB Leipzig’s 4-0 win over Augsburg on Sunday.
Joe Scally came off the bench and played four minutes for Borussia Monchengladbach.