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USA vs. El Salvador, 2020 friendly: What to watch for

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Let’s close out 2020 with a win.

SOCCER: JAN 27 USA v Panama Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The United States Men’s National Team are set to play their final match (for real, this time) in 2020 when they host El Salvador Wednesday night in Fort Lauderdale. For the USMNT, it’s another roster with some fresh faces that are looking to show that they can be a part of the fold moving forward, with others that are hungry to show that they can be counted on during what will be a busy 2021. Can they get the win and finish 2020, the worst year ever (*gestures at all of outside*), undefeated?

2020 Form

USA

W (6-2) - Panama - Friendly

D (0-0) - Wales - Friendly

W (1-0) - Costa Rica - Friendly

El Salvador

L (0-1) - Iceland - Friendly

What To Watch For

Who will make their mark? We have so many players who are in their first USMNT training camp. This is their chance to make an impact so that when 2021 hits, they’re fresh on the minds of the coaching staff. Who will be that guy to have a breakout performance?

Let Brenden Aaronson cook. It would be great if the offense ran through Brenden Aaronson. In his last match stateside before he heads to Austria to join Red Bull Salzburg, Aaronson is the creative playmaker that should be the focus of this team on Wednesday night.

Finish, finish, finish. Our offense should generate plenty of scoring chances, so it will be on the forwards to finish those chances. The USMNT will want to find ways to get behind the Salvadorean defense and give them fits, but inside the box, they need to pounce on every opportunity.

Lineup Prediction

Head coach Gregg Berhalter has a lot of options when he puts together a lineup for this match. He has some players he tends to rely on more than others, and with some of the names that have been called in, he could try to experiment with a lineup that puts some players in key spaces.

USMNT Projected Lineup vs. El Salvador

At goalkeeper, Bill Hamid gets the start. He did play for the USMNT back during January Camp to preserve the 1-0 victory, and Berhalter will give him a shot. On the back line, Sam Vines will likely begin at left back, with Walker Zimmerman and Mark McKenzie as the centerback pair. Julian Araujo gets the nod at right back, a shot that many fans have no doubt waited for him to get.

In the midfield, Jackson Yueill will be the defensive midfielder. When he arrived at camp, it was clear that he was there to be the starter, and he’s someone that Berhalter has called on in the past. Kellyn Acosta could also help shore up the defense and serve in more of a box-to-box role, freeing Sebastian Lletget up to go foward. In the central attacking role is Brenden Aaronson.

Up top, Ayo Akinola operates as the second striker, with Sebastian Soto coming in behind him to provide attack and see if they can be a one-two punch that sends many balls into the back of the net.

Prediction

The USMNT wants to do well against a team that is fighting to be one of the 8 teams in next’s year’s Octagon of World Cup qualifying. The young kids lead the way once again and the result is a nice night for the USMNT. A 4-0 victory closes the chapter on a wild 2020.