Dest, Pomykal and Miles Robinson earn first U.S. call-ups

Ajax's Sergino Dest and FC Dallas midfielder Paxton Pomykal, two of the standouts on the 2019 U.S. U-20 World Cup team, and Miles Robinson, who has led red-hot Atlanta United's backline, all earned their first call-ups to the U.S. men's national team for games against Mexico and Uruguay.

Head coach Gregg Berhalter has called up 26 players who will begin reporting Sunday to New Jersey ahead of the matches Sept. 6 against Mexico and Sept. 10 against Uruguay.

“In terms of Sergino and Paxton," Berhalter said, "those were two players that were heavily involved in the U-20 World Cup. It’s nice to bring players through our system, see how they’ve done in major competition and then get a good look with the full national team. I think they’re both ready. They’ve both been getting first-team minutes and are ready for this next challenge.”

“Miles is a guy who we’ve been really impressed with watching league play. He’s been dynamic in the back, is a real physical presence and has been working on breaking lines with his passing. When you evaluate it and look where Atlanta has gone as a team, he’s a big part of why Atlanta has turned things around and are now in first place in the Eastern Conference.”

Two other players have been called in for the first time since Berhalter took charge: Brad Guzan (Atlanta United) and Alfredo Morales (Fortuna Duesseldorf).

Tim Weah, a third member of the U.S. team that reached the quarterfinals of the U-20 World Cup, was a late scratch because of an injury picked up on Sunday at training with French club Lille. Also unavailable due to injuries are European-based players Tyler Adams, Matt Miazga and DeAndre Yedlin.

Dest, Pomykal, Robinson and Weah are among nine players Berhalter called up who are eligible as U-23 players for Olympic qualifying in March 2020 and the Olympic finals in Japan next summer. The others are Reggie Cannon, Weston McKennie, Jackson Yueill, Christian Pulisic and Josh Sargent. U-23 coach Jason Kreis will hold a separate camp in September and name his roster later in the week.

Pulisic is listed as a forward on this roster.

“I think Christian has a unique skill set," said Berhalter. "He’s a great attacking player and we want to put him in position to affect the game. We’re open to where we’re using him. We’ve used him centrally and on the wing before. All those things keep adding up to the fact that we want him affecting the game in a positive way.”

Starters Jozy Altidore, Paul Arriola, Michael Bradley and Miazga were among eight members of the U.S. team that finished second, behind Mexico, at the Gold Cup not called in to the September camp. Altidore and Bradley have matches with Toronto FC on Sept. 7 and Sept. 11. (The Washington Post's Steve Goff reportedthat Arriola withdrew due to family reasons in California.)

The size of the squad -- 26 players -- suggests that some players will return to their European clubs after the Mexico game in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

U.S. Roster:
GOALKEEPERS (4): Jesse Gonzalez (FC Dallas; 0/0), Brad Guzan (Atlanta United; 60/0), Sean Johnson (New York City FC; 8/0), Zack Steffen (Fortuna Duesseldorf/GER; 15/0)
DEFENDERS (9): John Brooks (Wolfsburg/GER; 37/3), Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas; 6/0), Sergino Dest (Ajax/NED; 0/0), Nick Lima (San Jose Earthquakes; 7/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 11/2), Daniel Lovitz (Montreal Impact; 8/0),) Tim Ream (Fulham/ENG; 35/1), Miles Robinson (Atlanta United; 0/0), Walker Zimmerman (LAFC; 10/2)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 9/2), Weston McKennie (Schalke 04/GER; 14/3), Alfredo Morales (Fortuna Duesseldorf/GER; 13/0), Paxton Pomykal (FC Dallas; 0/0), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders; 15/0), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew; 19/0), Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes; 1/0)
FORWARDS (6): Corey Baird (Real Salt Lake; 3/0), Tyler Boyd (Besiktas/TUR; 5/2), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders; 33/5), Christian Pulisic (Chelsea/ENG; 31/13), Josh Sargent (Werder Bremen/GER; 7/2), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew; 51/10)

3 comments about "Dest, Pomykal and Miles Robinson earn first U.S. call-ups".
  1. Wooden Ships, August 29, 2019 at 1:14 a.m.

    GB in an interview stated he wasn’t going to make many changes from
    the first game to the second. He thought it was a mistake the last time, hurt the cohesion or something. Terrific, I wonder how many guys I hope to see play will be called in just to EXPERIENCE the National Team. 

  2. frank schoon replied, August 30, 2019 at 9:50 a.m.

    I don't understand Nagby's absence. After his improvement along with receiving excellent advise and coaching from a real 'footballer' coach like Frank deBoer,similar to what Dest is getting at Ajax is puzzling, he should be picked for the NT...leaves me in a quandary.

  3. Wooden Ships replied, August 30, 2019 at 3:33 p.m.

    From what I heard on XMFC he turned down the call up, not the first time either. That’s alright if he chooses not to, for whatever reason(s). 

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