TUKWILA, Wash. — Players only get so many chances to make an impression at the national-team level. DeAndre Yedlin is determined not to let his second chance go to waste.
The Seattle Sounders rookie right back said he was pleased with his performance at the recently-concluded United States U-20 national team training camp in Southern California, at least partially redeeming himself for a subpar display the last time he was called in.
That previous performance cost him a chance to participate in World Cup qualifying earlier this year.
“It’s hard work to get back into it, especially after you don’t have a very good camp and the coach is kind of skeptical of you,” Yedlin told reporters on Monday. “So to get back into it was great for me. Hopefully I can carry that into the World Cup.”
Still just 19 years old, Yedlin has already started six MLS matches and three more in CONCACAF Champions League. He leads the Sounders with 819 minutes in all competitions. But representing the United States on the international stage would be something entirely different.
“It’s pretty incredible, actually,” Yedlin said about the possibility of donning the Red, White and Blue for the US this summer in Turkey. “It’s a feeling that not many people get to feel. It’s definitely special and an honor.”
If Yedlin does make the U-20 World Cup roster, he may actually be joined by a fellow Sounders product. Academy attacker Jordan Morris also had a strong training camp, registering four assists in the national team’s two scrimmage games. And he was often matched up against Yedlin.
“He’s a tough kid to play against,” Yedlin said of Morris. “He’s huge. He’s fast. Once he gets in front of you, it’s impossible to get back around him. He’s definitely a key player, and I think he could be a key player for that team.”