United States vs. Brazil
MetLife Stadium — East Rutherford
Friday, September 7 — 7:30 pm ET
WATCH: FS1, UniMás, UDN
The U.S. men’s national team's Kickoff Series begins Friday night with a showdown against powerhouse Brazil at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
There are also matches scheduled against Colombia and a soon-to-be-named opponent before a November trip to Europe to meet England and Italy.
“For these matches against Brazil and Mexico, the theme remains the same in that we are using the opportunity against these high-powered opponents to continue building on the foundation that we’ve laid,” head coach Dave Sarachan said. “We felt it was right to continue allowing this group to get valuable experience for the big picture that includes competitive matches in the future with the Gold Cup, Olympic qualifying and World Cup qualifying.”
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United States Outlook
As has been the case for the past several months, Sarachan called in another youthful roster for the matches against Brazil and Mexico, with the average age 23 years, 241 days and an average cap total of just 11.
Noticeably absent is Christian Pullisic, who has been sidelined for Borussia Dortmund with a muscular injury. However, there’s still a lot of familiar faces, at least since the failed World Cup qualifying bid, including FC Dallas product Weston McKinnie from Schalke 04, Tim Weah from Paris Saint-Germain and young Major League Soccer standouts Tyler Adams from the New York Red Bulls and Wil Trapp of Columbus Crew SC.
There’s also the return of Gyasi Zardes, who has regained his form under Gregg Berhalter with Crew SC and Kellyn Acosta, who has shined with increased playing time since a trade from Dallas to the Colorado Rapids.
With the match being played during FIFA’s September international window, the stars will be out for five-time World Cup champion Brazil, ranked No. 3 in the latest FIFA rankings.
Leading the charge are 13 players who competed for Seleção at the 2018 World Cup, including global superstar Neymar, a teammate of Weah’s at PSG, fellow attackers Philippe Coutinho from Barcelona and Liverpool’s Roberto Firmino, Chelsea's Willian and PSG defender Thiago Silva and Filipe Luis from Atletico Madrid.
They are part of a group of 11 players who combined for 21 trophies across domestic and European club competitions last season.
There are also nine players seeking their first cap, including 21-year-old Everton forward Richarlison, Porto defenders Eder Militao and Felipe and 22-year-old Barcelona midfielder Arthur.
The United States have met Brazil 18 times since 1930, losing 17 times. The lone victory came in the 1998 Concacaf Gold Cup semifinals, with Preki scoring the lone goal and Kasey Keller earning the clean sheet.
The USMNT dropped a 4-1 decision to Brazil in their last encounter, on Sept. 8, 2015 at Gillette Stadium. Zardes and DeAndre Yedlin, who were both in the starting XI that day, and Bobby Wood, who came off the bench, are the only players on the current roster to have previously faced Brazil.
Players to Watch
United States — Aaron Long: It’s unclear if Sarachan will go with the more established duo of John Brooks and Matt Miazga or give the Red Bulls duo of Parker and Long the shot in their backyard, but it will be interesting to see how the success Long has had in MLS this season will translate to the international stage.
Brazil — Neymar: Yes, maybe this is a cop-out, but has there been a match Neymar plays, for club or country, that you’re not watching him? Whether it’s a stunning goal, some eye-popping footwork or his now-infamous post-foul rolls, all eyes will be on the icon.
United States Roster
|GK||Alex Bono||Toronto FC||1/0|
|GK||Ethan Horvath||Club Brugge||2/0|
|GK||Zack Steffen||Columbus Crew SC||3/0|
|D||John Brooks||VfL Wolfsburg||33/3|
|D||Cameron Carter-Vickers||Swansea City||5/0|
|D||Eric Lichaj||Hull City||15/1|
|D||Aaron Long||New York Red Bulls||0/0|
|D||Shaq Moore||Reus Deportiu||2/0|
|D||Tim Parker||New York Red Bulls||2/0|
|D||Antonee Robinson||Wigan Athletic||2/0|
|D||DeAndre Yedlin||Newcastle United||52/0|
|M||Kellyn Acosta||Colorado Rapids||17/1|
|M||Tyler Adams||New York Red Bulls||6/0|
|M||Paul Arriola||D.C. United||16/2|
|M||Marky Delgado||Toronto FC||1/0|
|M||Julian Green||Greuther Furth||10/4|
|M||Sebastian Lletget||LA Galaxy||3/1|
|M||Weston McKennie||Schalke 04||4/1|
|M||Cristian Roldan||Seattle Sounders FC||3/0|
|M||Wil Trapp||Columbus Crew SC||6/0|
|M||Tim Weah||Paris Saint-Germain||3/1|
|F||Andrija Novakovich||Fortuna Sittard||2/0|
|F||Bobby Wood||Hannover 96||39/12|
|F||Gyasi Zardes||Columbus Crew SC||38/12|
|D||Filipe Luis||Atletico Madrid||35/2|
|D||Thiago Silva||Paris Saint-Germain||76/6|
|M||Andreas Pereira||Manchester United||0/0|