Now that the U.S. men’s national team knows its first opponent at the World Cup, it can continue working in earnest as it prepares for Qatar, and the next item on the to-do list is a difficult friendly vs. Uruguay.
The 13th-ranked Celeste, fresh off a 3–0 win over Mexico in Arizona Thursday night, come to Sporting Kansas City’s Children’s Mercy Park to face Gregg Berhalter’s side. The U.S. is entering on the heels of a 3–0 win of its own, with Christian Pulisic instrumental in a triumph over Morocco, another team that’s headed to the World Cup.
Uruguay, a two-time World Cup champion that was drawn into a difficult group with Portugal, Ghana and South Korea, is likely to be the toughest test left for the U.S. before it begins group play against Wales, a 1–0 playoff winner against Ukraine earlier Sunday. After this match, it’s two Concacaf Nations League group games during the ongoing window, followed by a pair of friendlies in late September abroad, where the options are limited due to the scheduling conflict with the UEFA Nations League.
Uruguay has won all five matches since Diego Alonso replaced longtime manager Óscar Tabárez, including four straight South American qualifiers to surge into the top four in CONMEBOL and automatically qualify for Qatar. It has only conceded one goal in that time.
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Here is the U.S.’s lineup for the match:
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