Rumors are swirling that Gregg Berhalter will be named as the new head of the USMNT any day now, so let’s take a look at the slate of games that Coach Berhalter should be checking out this weekend as he looks to keep up with Americans playing around the world.
Fortuna Dusseldorf v Mainz 05 - 2:30p on FS2
Berhalter can start his weekend by checking out a player that many USMNT fans assume the federation has forgotten exists when Alfredo Morales and Dusseldorf take on Mainz on Friday. Morales started the first 10 games of the season for Dusseldorf, consistently playing deep into each game. However, he was not able to make the field in their last two games and the team saw their first two positive results after losing six straight. Dusseldorf sit second to last with nine points through twelve games and it will be interesting to see if Morales’ absence continues as the team looks to continue some sort of positive momentum.
- The U17s will take on Turkey in their second match of the Nike International Friendlies in a game that can be seen for free via the US Soccer website at 6:30p.
Borussia Dortmund v Freiburg - 9:30a on FS2
Lucien Favre’s usage patterns with Christian Pulisic would suggest that Berhalter will have to settle for catching a substitute appearance on Saturday after Pulisic started and played 90 for Dortmund midweek in their 0-0 draw with Club Brugge. It was an uninspiring scoreline that saw them qualify for the knockout stage nonetheless.
Dortmund sit first in the Bundesliga with a four point lead over Borussia... <double checking>...yup, Borussia Mönchengladbach. Dortmund have yet to lose in league play with nine wins and three draws through their first twelve games. They’ll be facing a Frieburg team that sits in 11th place and will be looking for their first win in five tries.
Hoffenheim v Schalke 04 - 12:30p on FS1
Perhaps more viewing disappointment for Gregg as Weston McKennie has yet to return from the hamstring injury that he suffered while on duty with the USMNT. However, there were reports that the reason he didn’t travel with Schalke midweek was actually due to the flu, so perhaps he’ll be able to rebound and make an appearance this weekend.
Schalke seem to be back on track after a slow start to the season, though they still have a long way to go to crawl up from their current position at fourteenth in the table. But, the middle of the table is rather crowded and a good run could see them jump into the top seven or eight within a week or two. This weekend, they’ll take on sixth place Hoffenheim, who are undefeated in their last four league games.
Eintracht Frankfurt v Wolfsburg - Noon of FS1
Unfortunately, there’s no opportunity for Coach to watch Americans going head to head this weekend as Timothy Chandler remains out with a knee injury sustained in the preseason. On the opposite side of the field, however, it’s very likely that John Brooks will get the start for Wolfsburg. Wolfsburg sit in ninth place in the Bundesliga, thanks in large part to an above average defense. Frankfurt are in third place and it will be a battle of strengths as they have one of the more potent offenses in the league.
- Tim Ream has found it difficult to see time recently, failing to make it off the bench in the last three games for a disappointing Fulham squad that sits dead last in the Premier league with a porous defense that has given up a league leading 33 goals. They play a potent Chelsea side at 7a on NBCSN.
- Fabian Johnson also failed to make the field last weekend for Borussia Mönchengladbach. They’ll face RB Leipzig this Sunday at 9:30a on FS1.
- If Gregg is feeling adventuresome this weekend, he can pick up an ESPN+ subscription for the opportunity to catch Emmanuel Sabbi and Hobro playing Brøndby in some Danish Superliga action at Noon. The twenty-year-old has five goals and an assist for last place Hobro.
- The U17s are back in action Sunday evening at 5:30 against Brazil. The game can be viewed through the US Soccer website.
- After a rare start Joe Corona was back on the bench last weekend for Club America. They’ll face Toluca at 7:30p on Univision Deportes.
Let us know what you hope Coach Berhalter is seeing this weekend as you follow along in the comments below.