Tim Weah could make US Soccer debut against Paraguay
CHICAGO (AP) — Tim Weah, a son of former world player of the year and current Liberia president George Weah, is among seven players who could make their U.S. Soccer debuts in an exhibition against Paraguay on March 27 at Cary, North Carolina.
Weah, a midfielder who turned 18 on Feb. 22, made his senior-level club debut for Paris Saint-Germain as a second-half substitute at Troyes on March 3 and got in late again against Metz a week later. He had a hat trick for the U.S. against Paraguay last October in the second round of the Under-17 World Cup. George Weah was FIFA Player of the Year in 1995 and became Liberia’s president in January.
“He’s playing for a high-profile club who has seen fit to give him first-team minutes, which is a great sign of his progression,” U.S. interim coach Dave Sarachan said. “He’s a versatile player than can fit in at a couple different positions, and when you have speed and technical ability combined as a young kid, I think he’s an interesting prospect to offer an opportunity to.”
Six others with no previous national team experience were on the 22-man roster announced Sunday: goalkeeper Alex Bono; defenders Shaq Moore, Erik Palmer-Brown and Antonee Robinson; midfielder Marky Delgado; forward Andrija Novakovich.
Four have appeared just once for the U.S.: goalkeeper Zack Steffen, defender Cameron Carter-Vickers and midfielders Weston McKennie and Kenny Saief.
Saief made his debut last July in an exhibition ahead of the CONCACAF Gold Cup and then got hurt and did not play in a club match until late November.
The only players selected with extensive international experience were defenders DeAndre Yedlin and Jorge Villafana, midfielder Darlington Nagbe and forward Bobby Wood.
Star midfielder Christian Pulisic was left off the roster so he could remain with Borussia Dortmund ahead of a Bundesliga match against first-place Bayern Munich on March 31.
The roster’s average age is 23 years, 84 days. Moore, Novakovich, Palmer-Brown, Robinson and Weah will be attending their first national team camp.
Forward Aron Johannsson was to have been on the roster but was a late cut because of a leg injury. Johannsson, who last played for the U.S. on Sept. 8, 2015, against Brazil, has played in nine games since the start of January for Werder Bremen and scored against Bayer Leverkusen in the German Cup and Borussia Moenchengladbach in the Bundesliga.
Sarachan has led the U.S. since Bruce Arena quit as coach in October after the Americans failed to qualify for the World Cup, ending a streak of seven straight appearances. The U.S. tied 1-1 at Portugal in November and 0-0 at home against Bosnia-Herzegovina in January.
The U.S. also has exhibitions against Bolivia on May 28 at Chester, Pennsylvania, and against Ireland in Dublin on June 2 and versus France at Lyon on June 9.
New U.S. Soccer Federation president Carlos Cordeiro says a general manager of the men’s team will be hired and lead the search for a coach. It is not clear whether the search will be delayed until after the World Cup, which runs from June 14 to July 15.
Goalkeepers: Alex Bono (Toronto), Bill Hamid (Midtjylland, Denmark), Zack Steffen (Columbus)
Defenders: Cameron Carter-Vickers (Ipswich Town, England), Eric Lichaj (Nottingham Forest, England), Matt Miazga (Vitesse, Netherlands), Shaq Moore (Levante, Spain), Erik Palmer-Brown (Kortrijk, Belgium), Antonee Robinson (Bolton, England), Jorge Villafana (Santos Laguna, Mexico), DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle, England)
Midfielders: Tyler Adams (New York Red Bulls), Marky Delgado (Toronto), Weston McKennie (Schalke, Germany), Darlington Nagbe (Atlanta), Cristian Roldan (Seattle), Kenny Saief (Anderlecht, Belgium), Wil Trapp (Columbus), Tim Weah (Paris Saint-Germain, France)
Forwards: Andrija Novakovich (Telstar, Netherlands), Rubio Rubin (Tijuana, Mexico), Bobby Wood (Hamburg, Germany)