With four matches remaining in World Cup qualifying, the United States men’s national team has risen to the top of the Concacaf Octagonal group after a slow start.
Following back-to-back victories away to Honduras and at home against Jamaica, Gregg Berhalter’s team will look to make it three wins in a row against the Caribbean nation.
They will face another difficult away test when they travel to Panama, which is currently in fourth place in the World Cup qualifying standings.
Because of pandemic-related travel restrictions in the United Kingdom, Zack Steffen, Antonee Robinson, and Weston McKennie will not be able to accompany the team on their trip.
To take Robinson’s place at left back, the two most obvious options are to move Sergino Dest across the field and to bring in either DeAndre Yedlin or Shaq Moore from the bench.
There is also the option of using George Bello, who is more natural on the left side of the field.
There could be several candidates to take McKennie’s place in the midfield, depending on how well they perform this season.
Yunus Musah made a memorable WCQ debut with a brilliant second half performance against Jamaica.
He’ll almost certainly be asked to help with some of the lifting.
Luca de la Torre, Cristian Roldan, Kellyn Acosta, and Gianluca Busio are some of the other players who could be called upon to lend a hand.
Getting away from home in this region is extremely difficult, but if the United States can pull off another positive result, it will set them up for a very profitable window and greatly increase their chances of qualifying for the Qatar World Cup
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United States lineup:
How to Watch
Advertised Kick-off Time: 6:00 p.m. Eastern, 3:00 p.m. Pacific
Venue: Estadio Rommel Fernandez; Panama City, Panama
Available TV: Universo (Spanish)