When: Jan. 28, 7:30 p.m. Mountain
Where: Carson, California
How to watch
- TV - FS1, Unimas, Univision Deportes
- Stream: Fox Sports Go, Univision Deportes, fuboTV
Why it matters: Sunday night marks the beginning of a new era in US Soccer. Off the pitch, the federation is still scrambling to find answers to what the future of the sport will look like here in the US. As of late most of the fireworks have come off the field as many former players and soccer elite have positioned themselves for a run to become the new president of the Unites States Soccer Federation. Tonight we will be able to shift our focus from the business side of soccer and fix our attention on what matters most, playing the game.
It is an especially exciting game for us Real Salt Lake faithful as it marks what could be the senior team debut for three of our up and coming MLS stars, Justen Glad, Danny Acosta, and Brooks Lennon. All have featured prominently in US soccer throughout the youth ranks but tonight, if the coach is keen, we could see all three play at the highest level in world soccer.
The game is meaningless in the sense that the US and Bosnia and Herzegovina have nothing on the line in this friendly. The two teams will meet for only the second time, the first took place in 2013, resulting in a US win powered by a Jozy Altidore hat trick. With both teams being eliminated from World Cup 2018 contention, it is no surprise that not a single player that took the field in 2013 is on either roster tonight. Both countries are looking to the future and hoping to find answers in their youth ranks.
Our starting lineup predictions: It is really anybodies guess at this point who will start for the US. Almost half the roster have 0 international caps to their name. So while we have done our best to put together what we think is a winning lineup, keep in mind that the roster decisions could really go in any direction.
Goalkeeper: The easy pick here would be for Bill Hamid to get the start, he is the only keeper on the roster with any international caps at all. My guess is that if Bill Hamid starts, he will be subbed off at half and replaced with an exciting young keeper in Zack Steffen.
Defenders: Along the backline I am giving the starting LB nod to Brandon Vincent with Danny Acosta swinging over to the RB spot to start the game. MLS defender of the year Ike Opara will most likely pair with Walker Zimmerman at CB with Justen Glad getting subbed in at some point.
Midfield: I plan on a traditional 4-4-2 with the two outside midfielders pushing up the flanks into the attack more. I think it’s likely we will see the likes of Paul Arriola, Christian Roldan, Kelyn Rowe and Wil Trapp starting the game.
Forward: This could really go any which way, as is true with all of the starting spots. I am going to go out on a limb and say that CJ Sapong and Juan Agudelo pair up top to begin the game.
Final score prediction: This game will probably not be a work of art, but rather the result of a lot of players who have never played together working things out on the field. I predict the game ends in a 1-1 draw. Either way, it will be awesome to see so many young national team players get their first big opportunity. Who knows, we could be seeing a lot more of these guys in the 2022 Qatar World Cup.