USA will likely be without Pulisic and many other key players for the Gold Cup
The team's chances will take a big hit with Bruce Arena looking to give star players a break
It looks like the U.S. men's national team will be without star Christian Pulisic and others for the Gold Cup. U.S. coach Bruce Arena said it is unlikely that the 18-year-old will be on the roster, according to Sports Illustrated. He also said other big players will likely be left off the roster in favor of rest.
"I doubt it," Arena said about Pulisic's chances.
Pulisic was on the provisional 40-man roster but after logging so many minutes for Dortmund and in recent matches for his national team, a break may just be in order.
"It's bad timing for [the Gold Cup], because the guys in Europe have gone through this long club season and now the World Cup qualifiers. They need a break. They have three weeks off, and asking them to come in for Gold Cup makes no sense. It would take three weeks to get them ready," Arena said.
That also means other big names could miss. Arena said "almost none" of the players for the Gold Cup will come from the strongest U.S. roster, so we might not see Fabian Johnson, DeAndre Yedlin, John Brooks and others.
This certainly opens the door for other teams to possibly take home the cup. Mexico was going to be the favorite but has opted to bring its B team, with the top guys headed to Russia for the Confederations Cup this month. With the U.S. likely fielding a squad that looks nothing similar to that of World Cup qualifiers, it could open the door for a team like Costa Rica to make a run to the final.
The Gold Cup begins on July 7.
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