US men's national team - Aaron Long celebrate with Walker Zimmerman

The lineup is out for Friday night’sUS men's national team friendly (8:30 pm ET | FS1, Univision, TUDN) against Mexico, and Gregg Berhalter has trotted out a mix of young stars and established veterans.

In all, the starting XI against El Tri features five MLS players, a former one in ex-Columbus Crew goalkeeper Zack Steffen and, as released pre-game, outside back Sergino Dest making his first appearance for the senior USMNT. The dual-international, 18, can also represent the Netherlands and plays his club soccer for Eredivisie powerhouse Ajax.

Dest is joined on the backline by three other MLS players, including New York Red Bulls center back Aaron Long, LAFC center back Walker Zimmerman and FC Dallas outside back Reggie Cannon.

The midfield looks to be anchored by Crew captain Wil Trapp, who played in the No. 6 role during Berhalther’s time coaching in Columbus. The Crew connections continue up top via striker Gyasi Zardes.

One other notable is Bundesliga midfielder Alfredo Morales (Fortuna Dusseldorf) is making his first appearance since a May 16, 2016 match against Puerto Rico. Other European-based players are midfielder Weston McKennie (FC Schalke 04), attacker Christian Pulisic (Chelsea) and attacker Tyler Boyd (Besiktas).

This rematch of the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup final, which Mexico won 1-0, also sees two MLSers on the bench for Tata Martino's team. The ex-Atlanta United coach has named an LA Galaxy pair as reserves: midfielder Jonathan dos Santos and winger Uriel Antuna.


Eight of 10 players on the USMNT bench suit up in MLS, with Atlanta center back Miles Robinson and FC Dallas midfielder Paxton Pomkyal each close to making their first USMNT appearances. Both teams will be allowed six substitutes, so it’s also possible that Seattle Sounders duo Cristian Roldan and Jordan Morris see action, as well as midfielders Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes) and Sebastian Lletget (Galaxy). Same goes for NYCFC goalkeeper Sean Johnson and Montreal Impact left back Daniel Lovitz.