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USA vs. Jamaica; 2017 Friendly Preview: Scouting Jamaica

A Jamaica squad led by Andre Blake looks to upset the USMNT

Uruguay v Jamaica: Group C - Copa America Centenario Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

The United States Men’s National Team concludes its annual January camp with a friendly against Jamaica in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

The U.S. will be look to improve upon its last performance, which was a disappointing 0-0 draw against Serbia.

The USMNT has struggled recently against Jamaica, with a 3-2 record in the teams’ last five encounters. The last match between the two sides was a shocking 2-1 Jamaican victory in the 2015 Gold Cup semifinals.

This Jamaican squad is a B team missing several regular starters. The group lacks international experience, as only four players (Andre Blake, Kemar Lawrence, Alvas Powell, and Je-Vaughn Watson) have more than 10 caps.

The Reggae Boyz’ roster consists of players from the Red Stripe Premier League, MLS, and USL.

Jamaica Roster:

Goalkeepers (2): Andre Blake (Philadelphia Union), Ryan Thompson (St. Louis FC)

Defenders (7): Sergio Campbell (Unattached), Oneil Fisher (Seattle Sounders), Rosario Harriott (Harbour View), Kemar Lawrence (New York Red Bulls), Damion Lowe (Tampa Bay Rowdies), Alvas Powell (Portland Timbers), Ladale Richie (Montego Bay United)

Midfielders (6): Dwayne Ambusley (Montego Bay United), Michael Binns (Portmore United), Ewan Grandison (Portmore United), Omar Holness (Real Salt Lake), Kevon Lambert (Montego Bay United), Je-Vaughn Watson (New England Revolution)

Forwards (5): Cory Burke (Bethlehem Steel FC), Jourdain Fletcher (Montego Bay United), Owayne Gordon (Montego Bay United), Shamar Nicholson (Boys’ Town), Romario Williams (Atlanta United FC)

Look for Jamaica to lineup in either a 4-4-2 or a 4-5-1. The Reggae Boyz will likely spend much of the game defending and will need to use their speed and athleticism to catch the U.S. on the counter.

Goalkeeper Andre Blake is one of MLS’ best and will need to play well for Jamaica to win.

This Jamaican roster has few natural centerbacks and the U.S. will have many opportunities attacking down the middle. While Jamaica lacks strong centerbacks, it does have good wide defenders.

Kemar Lawrence struggled with injuries this past MLS season, but when healthy he can be one of the best left-backs in the league.

Alvas Powell should lineup at right-back and will look to get into the attack. His blistering pace and excellent tackling make him hard to beat.

Look for the central midfield to be anchored by Je-Vaughn Watson and Omar Holness. Watson is an versatile MLS veteran who tackles hard and excels at intercepting passes.

Holness struggled to get playing time for Real Salt Lake this past year (his rookie season), but showed great potential with 3 MLS goals in just 277 minutes.

Jamaica’s forward line will likely be led by Atlanta United striker Romario Williams. Williams is an athletic, yet raw forward whose pace may cause the U.S. backline problems. The 22 year old spent 2016 on loan with the Charleston Battery in USL and scored 10 goals.

The U.S. will be heavily favored against Jamaica, but the Reggae Boyz are certainly capable of springing an upset.