DENVER (AP) — Christian Pulisic, Zack Steffen and Antonee Robinson entered the U.S. starting lineup for Thursday night’s CONCACAF Nations League semifinal against Honduras as coach Gregg Berhalter made three changes for the team’s first competitive match since November 2019.
Pulisic missed Sunday’s 2-1 exhibition loss at Switzerland, a day after he played for Chelsea against Steffen’s Manchester City in the European Champions League final in Portugal.
Sergiño Dest took over at right back from Reggie Cannon after playing left back in Switzerland, Antonee Robinson started on the left and Cannon moved to the bench.
Steffen replaced Ethan Horvath in goal, and Pulisic took over in midfield from Brendan Aaronson.
With Tyler Adams apparently not fully fit following a back injury, Jackson Yueill remained in defensive midfield. Weston McKennie remained in midfield, with Sebastian Lletget and Gio Reyna on the flanks. Josh Sargent was up front.
At 23 years, 259 days, the starting lineup was the second-youngest for the U.S. in a competitive match, behind only 23 years, 172 days for a 1-0 defeat to Colombia in the group stage of the Copa America on July 5, 2007.
Reyna, Robinson and McKenzie made their first competitive appearances, tying them to the U.S. program.
Yunus Musah, Jordan Siebatcheu, Tim Weah and backup goalkeeper David Ochoa were on the bench and would be tied to the U.S. if they enter.
The winner of the match will face Mexico or Costa Rica in Sunday’s Nations League final, the last preparation for regular national team players ahead of the start of World Cup qualifying in September.
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