Slonina, Zendejas and the players to watch during the USMNT's January friendlies

Slonina Zendejas GFXGetty/GOAL

The start of the United States men's national team's road to the 2026 World Cup begins this week in Los Angeles. Well, kind of.

The U.S. is in LA for the annual January Camp, a gathering of MLS stars and young up-and-comers looking to push into the national team pictures. In some ways, it's a typical January Camp, which is an event that has served as a launch point for plenty of USMNT regulars in recent years.

However, with the coaching situation still in flux, it's a camp lacking the direction and purpose that most of these gatherings have. USMNT assistant Anthony Hudson is in charge, bringing some continuity from Gregg Berhalter's staff, but we still don't know if that staff will even be around when the U.S. next gathers.

Even so, there's reason to look forward to these games against Serbia and Colombia, which could see the debuts of some legitimate stars of the future. There are several players in this camp with the potential to make a difference on the road to 2026, and there are a few that could certainly surprise us by using this camp as a springboard to more USMNT appearances.

So here's a look at who to watch out for in this USMNT January Camp: