Weston McKennie, Tim Weah lead U.S. national team roster for Bolivia game in Chester
Hershey native Christian Pulisic will play for the national team in his home state for the first time.
Weston McKennie of Germany's Schalke 04 and Tim Weah of France's Paris Saint-Germain are among the big names on the 22-man U.S. men's soccer team roster that will play Bolivia at Talen Energy Stadium on Memorial Day.
They will join Hershey native Christian Pulisic, whose homecoming for this game was announced last month by interim head coach Dave Sarachan.
It will be Pulisic's first time playing for the national team in Pennsylvania. He was on the Copa América Centenario team that came to Philadelphia two years ago but did not play in the game here. Pulisic will visit Pittsburgh later this summer with his club team, Germany's Borussia Dortmund.
Pulisic and McKennie have been close friends for a while, thanks in part to their careers in Germany. They happen to play on opposite sides of one of the Bundesliga's fiercest rivalries.
Trenton native Matthew Olusunde, a 20-year-old defender in Manchester United's academy, is one of three players who got their first senior team call-ups. The others are midfielders Keaton Parks of Portugal's Benfica and Alejandro Guido of Mexico's Tijuana.
Union defender Auston Trusty, another 19-year-old, did not get called up. His time will come later, as the national team has many good centerbacks just a little bit older than him. Two of those players are on this roster: Cameron Carter-Vickers of England's Tottenham Hotspur (age 20) and Matt Miazga of England's Chelsea (22).
The biggest absence is midfielder Tyler Adams of the New York Red Bulls. He, McKennie and Pulisic are likely to form the core of the national team midfield for years to come.
Sarachan left Adams and Coatesville-born Columbus Crew goalkeeper Zack Steffen out to lighten the burden on their MLS clubs. The Red Bulls host the Union on Saturday night.
The only MLS players on the roster are Los Angeles FC defender Walker Zimmerman and Toronto FC goalkeeper Alex Bono.
"It has been challenging to build the roster given that we have these three matches — one domestic and two in Europe — while trying to be sensitive to the fact that MLS teams are currently in season," Sarachan said in remarks published by the U.S. Soccer Federation.
The most prominent absence from a foreign league is striker Bobby Wood. His club, Germany's Hamburg, was relegated from the Bundesliga this month after 54 years in the top flight. He has reportedly considered moving to MLS this summer.
After the Bolivia game on May 28, the U.S. team will play at Ireland on June 2 and France on June 9. Sarachan said there will be "numerous changes" to the roster for the two games in Europe. ESPN reported Sunday that Adams will be one of the additions.
U.S. roster to face Bolivia
Goalkeepers (3): Alex Bono (Toronto FC), Bill Hamid (Midtjylland, Denmark), Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge, Belgium)
Defenders (8): Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham Hotspur, England), Eric Lichaj (Nottingham Forest, England), Matt Miazga (Chelsea, England), Matthew Olosunde (Manchester United, England)*, Erik Palmer-Brown (Manchester City, England), Antonee Robinson (Everton, England), Jorge Villafaña (Santos Laguna, Mexico), Walker Zimmerman (Los Angeles FC)
Midfielders (9): Joe Corona (Club Tijuana, Mexico), Lynden Gooch (Sunderland, England), Julian Green (Stuttgart, Germany), Alejandro Guido (Club Tijuana, Mexico)*, Weston McKennie (Schalke), Keaton Parks (Benfica, Portugal)*, Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund, Germany), Rubio Rubin (Club Tijuana, Mexico), Tim Weah (Paris Saint-Germain, France)
Forwards (2): Andrija Novakovich (Reading, England), Josh Sargent (Werder Bremen, Germany)
* – First senior national team call-up.