Sargent and young USMNT looking to 'make America proud'

ShareClose Comments
The Werder Bremen forward believes the current U.S. squad is full of hungry players trying to prove they belong at the top

Josh Sargent wasn't in the starting side for the U.S. national team on Saturday, but he was on the pitch by the time Dave Sarachan's outfit conceded a late goal to the Republic of Ireland to drop a 2-1 result in an international friendly

It was the first loss under Sarachan, who has turned to a very young group of players since taking over for Bruce Arena as the USA's head coach. 

Saturday's starting team had an average age of  23 years, 73 days, a bit up from the average age of the team from Monday’s 3-0 win vs. Bolivia (22 years, 160 days) in large part because the 18-year-old Sargent was replaced in the lineup by Bobby Wood. 

Despite the youth movement, the USA has managed to be competitive, with Saturday's clash against an experienced European opponent providing the first stumbling block, and Sargent believes there is a hunger in the team to prove that they can compete at the highest level. 

"I mean we're all coming in here in the same position," he told Goal after the match. "We're all young kids hungry for a chance and to prove that we can compete with this guys.

"We want to prove we deserve a spot on this team. We're all hungry to play as hard as we can to make America proud."

While Sarachan has been handed the reigns on an interim basis, the future of the U.S. national team is still very much up in the air as the search for a full-time boss continues. 

But midfielder Weston McKennie, another of the teenagers in the team, is confident that the current crop of players will be able to deal well with whatever is thrown at them moving forward. 

"We go into the games with a clear head. If you go into the games with a lot on your mind, it's never healthy for your game and for your personal growth whenever you want to try new ideas," the Schalke midfielder told Goal. "We don't know what the situation is with the coaching staff, or how the future is going to look, but we'll go with the flow and take what's thrown at us.

"We don't know if the coach is going to be here after. If he is, then everyone is comfortable with him. If not, we'll have to adjust and see where the next coach takes us. Right now, we're just thinking about these games coming up next against France."

The match against a France squad in its final warmup ahead of the World Cup will likely provide the sternest test yet for Sarachan's side. 

Article continues below

Les Bleus made easy work of Ireland on Monday and topped Italy 3-1 on Friday. 

The USA will have a week to prepare for the clash in Lyon, and Sargent is confident the team will show up ready to go against one of the world's best teams. 

"It's going to be a really tough challenge for us. We're going to come out like it's any other game and compete as hard as we can."

Next article:
Everton new boy Mina to miss Southampton clash while Gomes is 'weeks' away
Next article:
Klopp: Anyone who thinks De Bruyne injury levels the field is an a**hole
Next article:
An American in Paris: How US teen Timothy Weah is taking PSG by storm
Next article:
'Messi needs to break, to breathe' - Argentina absence justified, says Maradona
Next article:
‘Salah will stay at Liverpool for as long as he can’ – Mido rules out Real Madrid move for Egypt star
Close