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Americans Abroad: Pulisic shines with hat trick, Sargent assists

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A handful of Americans had a splendid weekend abroad.

Just ask Christian Pulisic, who took the world by storm as he became the youngest player to record a hat trick with Chelsea. The 21-year-old registered a perfect hat trick at Turf Moor in the Blues’ 4-2 win over Burnley on Saturday.

Over in the Bundesliga, Josh Sargent recorded his second assist of the season in Werder Bremen’s 2-2 draw against Bayer Leverkusen. Also in Germany, John Brooks returned to Wolfsburg’s starting lineup.

Here is a list of several other USMNT affiliates making a name for themselves (or not) abroad this weekend.

Premier League

Christian Pulisic, Chelsea — Pulisic had a historic night on Saturday. The Pennsylvanian scored three goals in under 60 minutes against Burnley on Saturday.

DeAndre Yedlin, Newcastle — Yedlin started and played 90 minutes in Newcastle’s 1-1 draw against Wolves on Sunday. The fullback has likely locked in his starting role in Steve Bruce‘s scheme after coming back from injury last month.

EFL Championship

Antonee Robinson, Wigan Athletic — Robinson is a fixture at Wigan. The young left back started and played the full 90 minutes as Wigan picked up a point against Bristol City on Sunday.

Matt Miazga, Reading (loan from Chelsea) — Reading’s match against Nottingham Forrest was rescheduled on Saturday.

Eric Lichaj, Hull City — The Tigers captain started and played the full 90 minutes in Hull City’s 2-0 win over Derby County on Saturday.

Geoff Cameron, QPR — The 34-year-old defender and QPR face Brentford on Monday.

Tim Ream, Fulham — Ream started and played 90 minutes in Fulham’s 0-0 draw with Middlesbrough on Saturday.

Cameron Carter-Vickers, Stoke City (loan Tottenham Hotspur) — Carter-Vickers started and went the full 90 minutes in Stoke City’s 2-0 defeat to Millwall on Saturday. The Potter’s demise continues, and Carter-Vickers is a part of it.

Duane Holmes, Derby County — Holmes started and played 90 minutes for Derby County.

EFL League One

Lynden Gooch, Sunderland – Gooch didn’t play in Sunderland’s 1-0 loss to Shrewsbury Town on Saturday.

Bundesliga

John Brooks, Wolfsburg – The 26-year-old defender started and played 90 in Wolfsburg’s 0-0 draw against Augsburg on Saturday. He made two tackles, won six duels, and made two clearances.

Weston McKennie, Schalke —  McKennie didn’t dress for Schalke on Saturday.

Zack Steffen and Alfredo Morales, Fortuna Dusseldorf — Steffen started and played all 90 minutes in Fortuna Dusseldorf’s 2-0 defeat to Paderborn. Morales came off the bench and played 25 minutes.

Josh Sargent, Werder Bremen  In 84 minutes of playing time, Sargent registered an assist in Werder Bremen’s 2-2 draw against Bayer Leverkusen.

Tyler Adams, RB Leipzig — Adams didn’t dress in RB Leipzig’s loss against Freiburg on Saturday.

Fabian Johnson, Borussia Mönchengladbach Johnson didn’t feature on Borussia Mönchengladbach’s 18 this weekend.

Timmy Chandler, Eintracht Frankfurt — Chandler came off the bench and played 11 minutes in Frankfurt’s 4-2 loss to Borussia Mönchengladbach.

Julian Green, Greuther Furth – The 24-year-old midfielder started and played the full 90 minutes for Greuther Furth. Unfortunately, they lost 2-0 to league-leading Stuttgart in the 2. Bundesliga.

Khiry Shelton, Paderborn – The 26-year-old winger dressed but didn’t play in Paderborn’s loss.

Eredivisie

Sergino Dest, Ajax — Dest started, registered one assist and played 81 minutes in Ajax’s smothering of Feyenoord. An update on his international future is expected soon.

Haji Wright, VVV-Venlo — The 21-year-old striker started and played 78 minutes in VVV’s 4-1 loss to Fortuna Sittard.

Desevio Payne, FC Emmen — Payne didn’t dress for FC Emmen over the weekend.

Ligue 1

Timothy Weah, Lille — Weah remains sidelined with a muscular injury. There’s no timeline on his return.

Theoson Jordan-Siebatcheu, Rennes — Siebatcheu came off the bench and registered an assist in Rennes’ 3-2 win over Toulouse.

Honorable Mentions:

Emmanuel Sabbi, Hobro – The 21-year-old winger started and scored a goal in Hobro’s 1-1 draw with Silkeborg on Sunday.

Americans Abroad: Weekend roundup

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Mason Mount and Tammy Abraham stole the show in Chelsea’s victory, but Christian Pulisic recorded his first Premier League assist.

In Germany, although in different competitions, Alfredo Morelos and Terrence Boyd opened their scoring accounts. Also in Germany, coming on as a substitute, Timmy Chandler assisted late in Eintracht Frankfurt’s loss.

75 minutes into his Austrian Bundesliga debut, Erik Palmer-Brown was shown a straight red card and sent off.

Here is a list of several other USMNT affiliates making a name for themselves (or not) abroad this weekend.

Premier League

Christian Pulisic, Chelsea — Pulisic played 84 minutes and recorded his first Premier League assist, setting up Mason Mount for Chelsea’s second goal in their 3-2 victory over Norwich City.

DeAndre Yedlin, Newcastle — The fullback remains sidelined as he continues to recover from a groin injury. There’s no timeline on his return.

EFL Championship

Antonee Robinson, Wigan Athletic — Robinson started and went all 90 minutes for the Latics in their 3-1 loss to Geoff Cameron‘s QPR.

Matt Miazga, Reading (loan from Chelsea) — The 24-year-old started but came off in the 10th minutes due to a reported hamstring injury in Reading’s 2-0 against Huddersfield Town.

Eric Lichaj, Hull City — The Tigers captain was sidelined for Hull City’s 3-1 loss to Bristol City due to injury.

Geoff Cameron, QPR — The defender didn’t feature for QPR – on the field or on the bench – for the first time this season, having played at midweek.

Tim Ream, Fulham — 90 minutes and a start for the 31-year-old in Fulham’s 2-1 loss to Nottingham Forest on Saturday. Earlier this week, Ream extended his contract at Craven Cottage until 2021.

Eredivisie

Haji Wright, VVV-Venlo — Wright is starting to fall in VVV-Venlo’s pecking order. On Sunday, the 21-year-old was not called off the bench in his team’s 2-1 win over FC Utrecht.

Sergino Dest, Ajax — Ajax are inactive this weekend.

Desevio Payne, FC Emmen — The U-23 MNT fullback didn’t play in FC Emmen’s 2-1 loss to Willem II.

Ligue 1

Timothy Weah, Lille — Lille are inactive this weekend.

Theoson Jordan-Siebatcheu, Rennes — On Sunday, the Washington D.C. native came on as substitute and played 45 minutes in Rennes’ 2-0 win over Strasbourg.

Bundesliga

Weston McKennie, Schalke — Early signs indicate McKennie will, once again, be a vital piece at Schalke. On Saturday, the midfielder started and played all 90 minutes in his side’s 3-0 to Bayern Munich.

Zack Steffen and Alfredo Morales, Fortuna Dusseldorf Steffen and Morales started and went all 90 minutes in Fortuna Dusseldorf’s 3-1 loss to Bayer Leverkusen. Morales was Fortuna’s lone bright spot, scoring his first goal of the season.

Josh Sargent, Werder Bremen  The 19-year-old stayed on the bench in Werder Bremen’s 3-2 loss to Hoffenheim.

Fabian Johnson, Borussia Mönchengladbach — Johnson, who didn’t start last week, started and played 81 minutes in Mönchengladbach’s 3-1 win over Mainz.

Timmy Chandler, Eintracht Frankfurt In his first minutes of the new season, Chandler recorded an assist in Frankfurt’s 2-1 loss to RB Leipzig. The fullback played 13 minutes on Sunday.

Tyler Adams, RB Leipzig — Adams didn’t feature for Leipzig as he continues to deal with a reported “complicated” injury.

Honorable Mentions:

Erik Palmer-Brown, Austria Wein – Palmer-Brown’s stint in Austria is off to a poor start. In his league debut, the defender saw a straight red card in the 75th minute.

Terrence Boyd, Hallescher FC – Meanwhile in Germany, all things indicate that Boyd is feeling comfortable. The ex-Toronto striker scored a goal and played 82 minutes in Hallescher FC’s 3-0 win over Unterhaching in Germany’s third division.

Bundesliga wrap: RB Leipzig slips; USMNT’s Chandler scores

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There’s congestion at the top and bottom of the Bundesliga table, as RB Leipzig fell to Freiburg and Koln continued its long climb back from a horrible start to the season.

[ RECAP: Man City 3-1 Newcastle ]

Schalke can go second with a Sunday win, while Bayern’s table lead could be as much as 16 if it wins its match.

Freiburg 2-1 RB Leipzig

The hosts moved further clear of relegation danger and put the race for second place into severe congestion with a comeback win against third place RB Leipzig.

Timo Werner had put the visitors ahead in the 65th minute, but Janik Haberer and Robin Koch scored four minutes apart to boost all three points for the hosts.

Freiburg is now seven points clear of the relegation playoff spot, while RBL’s 31 points makes it one of six teams within one point between second and seventh.

Mainz 3-2 Stuttgart

Yoshinori Muto scored on both sides of halftime as Mainz came back from 1-0 down and held on to move four points clear of 16th while Stuttgart is ahead of the victors by a single goal of differential.

Wolfsburg 1-3 Eintracht Frankfurt

American midfielder Timmy Chandler scored for the first time in three Bundesliga seasons and Eintracht Frankfurt pulled into a tie for fifth place with a win at Wolfsburg. Sebastien Haller and Luka Jovic also scored for the visitors.

“It’s not such a difficult thing whether it’s my right or left, because I can also play with my left,” Chandler joked after the win.

Hamburg 0-2 Koln

Simon Terodde scored his second and third goals in two matches for Koln, and the visitors continued their climb out of the Bundesliga basement with a third-straight win.

Elsewhere
Hertha Berlin 1-1 Borussia Dortmund — Friday
Borussia Monchengladbach 2-0 Augsburg
Hoffenheim 1-4 Bayer Leverkusen
Bayern Munich vs. Werder Bremen — 9:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Schalke vs. Hannover 96 — Noon ET Sunday

STANDINGS

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Bayern Munich 18 14 2 2 40 12 28 7-1-0 7-1-2 44
 Bayer Leverkusen 19 8 7 4 39 27 12 4-4-1 4-3-3 31
 RB Leipzig 19 9 4 6 31 28 3 6-2-1 3-2-5 31
 Mönchengladbach 19 9 4 6 30 30 0 6-2-2 3-2-4 31
 Borussia Dortmund 19 8 6 5 40 25 15 4-2-3 4-4-2 30
 FC Schalke 04 18 8 6 4 29 24 5 5-3-1 3-3-3 30
 Eintracht Frankfurt 19 8 6 5 24 20 4 2-3-4 6-3-1 30
 FC Augsburg 19 7 6 6 28 25 3 4-4-2 3-2-4 27
 1899 Hoffenheim 19 7 6 6 29 27 2 5-3-2 2-3-4 27
 Hannover 96 18 7 5 6 27 28 -1 5-3-1 2-2-5 26
 Hertha BSC Berlin 19 6 7 6 27 27 0 4-3-3 2-4-3 25
 SC Freiburg 19 5 8 6 20 33 -13 4-5-1 1-3-5 23
 VfL Wolfsburg 19 3 11 5 22 24 -2 2-6-2 1-5-3 20
 VfB Stuttgart 19 6 2 11 16 24 -8 6-1-2 0-1-9 20
 FSV Mainz 05 19 5 5 9 24 33 -9 5-1-4 0-4-5 20
 Werder Bremen 18 3 7 8 14 21 -7 2-3-4 1-4-4 16
 Hamburger SV 19 4 3 12 15 28 -13 3-2-5 1-1-7 15
 1. FC Köln 19 3 3 13 14 33 -19 2-1-6 1-2-7 12

Bundesliga wrap: Yarmolenko stars again for BVB; Americans nab points

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A day after American teen Weston McKennie covered more ground than any other Schalke player, four more USMNT players hit the pitch in Bundesliga action Saturday.

[ RECAP: Chelsea 0-1 Man City ]

League leaders Borussia Dortmund stayed unbeaten away from home, and Borussia Monchengladbach pushed itself back into the Top Four discussion with a home win.

It’s all in the wrap.


Eintracht Frankfurt 2-1 Stuttgart

You have to hand it to Timmy Chandler and his pals at Eintracht; It’s seemingly never over when they’re concerned. Simon Falette took a 64th minute red card with the score knotted at one, only to see Seb Haller bury an overhead kick and give the hosts a stoppage time win. As usual, Chandler led the match in crosses with five.

Augsburg 1-2 Borussia Dortmund

Andriy Yarmolenko is proving an upgrade over Ousmane Dembele, as the Ukrainian had a goal and an assist for BVB on Saturday. Shinji Kagawa also scored for BVB, and Christian Pulisic went 90 minutes and led the match in sprints while finishing fourth in tackles won.

And since we seemingly can only glow with praise for BVB in these things and certainly there are some who dislike the club, here’s a horribly hit panenka from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Hamburg 0-0 Werder Bremen

USMNT forward Bobby Wood attempted four shots, one fewer than match-leading teammate Andre Hahn, as Hamburg couldn’t gather a goal for three points.

Borussia Monchengladbach 2-1 Hannover 96

Fabian Johnson went 78 minutes and Gladbach overcame a second-half equalizer to win on Thorgan Hazard‘s stoppage time goal.

Elsewhere
Schalke 1-1 Bayer Leverkusen — Friday
Wolfsburg 0-0 Mainz
Freiburg vs. Hoffenheim — 7:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Hertha Berlin vs. Bayern Munich — 9:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Koln vs. RB Leipzig — Noon ET Sunday

STANDINGS

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Borussia Dortmund 7 6 1 0 21 2 19 3-0-0 3-1-0 19
 1899 Hoffenheim 6 4 2 0 11 5 6 3-1-0 1-1-0 14
 Bayern Munich 6 4 1 1 14 5 9 2-1-0 2-0-1 13
 Hannover 96 7 3 3 1 7 4 3 2-1-0 1-2-1 12
 FC Augsburg 7 3 2 2 9 6 3 2-1-1 1-1-1 11
 Mönchengladbach 7 3 2 2 10 12 -2 3-0-1 0-2-1 11
 RB Leipzig 6 3 1 2 10 7 3 2-1-0 1-0-2 10
 Eintracht Frankfurt 7 3 1 3 6 6 0 1-0-2 2-1-1 10
 FC Schalke 04 7 3 1 3 8 9 -1 2-1-1 1-0-2 10
 Bayer Leverkusen 7 2 2 3 13 11 2 2-1-0 0-1-3 8
 Hertha BSC Berlin 6 2 2 2 6 6 0 2-1-0 0-1-2 8
 VfL Wolfsburg 7 1 4 2 6 9 -3 0-3-1 1-1-1 7
 FSV Mainz 05 7 2 1 4 7 11 -4 2-0-2 0-1-2 7
 VfB Stuttgart 7 2 1 4 4 9 -5 2-1-0 0-0-4 7
 Hamburger SV 7 2 1 4 4 11 -7 1-1-2 1-0-2 7
 Werder Bremen 7 0 4 3 3 7 -4 0-1-2 0-3-1 4
 SC Freiburg 6 0 4 2 2 9 -7 0-3-0 0-1-2 4
 1. FC Köln 6 0 1 5 1 13 -12 0-0-2 0-1-3 1

Is 3 the answer? Formation options for USMNT in key October battles

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The United States men’s national team controls its own destiny when it comes to World Cup qualifying, a fact that has been in its corner since the beginning of the Hex and even its 0-2 start.

Matches remain at home against Panama, the team currently occupying the final automatic spot in Russia, and on the road against Trinidad and Tobago. The Yanks drew Panama on the road and waxed T&T at home, but that was before this week’s setbacks put the U.S. under World Cup qualifying pressure it hasn’t faced in years.

[ MORE: USMNT’s World Cup scenarios ]

Even worse? A draw against stingy Panama, which has only allowed five goals in eight Hex matches, would leave the Yanks requiring a win and help in order to slide into third.

The United States has picked up just two points from its five matches against the teams ahead of it on the table, a home draw with Panama and a road point at Mexico. The Yanks have also kept just two clean sheets, and those came in 6-0 and 2-0 home wins over Honduras and Trinidad and Tobago.

The biggest problem, by far, is defense. Whether set pieces, counterattacking, or even the run of play, the U.S. has allowed 11 goals in the Hex. And clean sheets against Panama have been hard to come by, with 1-1 draws in the last four competitive matches between the two.

So is the answer three at the back?

It’s a small sample size, but the U.S. looked bright in recent matches against Mexico and late in the Honduras draw when it moved to three defenders at the back. Arena used Tim Ream, Omar Gonzalez, and Geoff Cameron in the 1-1 draw at Mexico, flanking them with DaMarcus Beasley and DeAndre Yedlin. Against Honduras, there was Cameron, Gonzalez, and Matt Besler in the middle.

[ USMNT: Recap | Player ratings | 3 things ]

A 3-5-2 or even a 3-6-1 with Jozy Altidore or Bobby Wood up top would give the Yanks a plethora of midfielders, a position which has been lonely if not awful over the last two qualifiers (Alejandro Bedoya, Danny Williams, or even — gasping while ducking — Jermaine Jones would be welcome respites from the soft play of the middle section).

John Brooks’ thigh injury will keep him out of October’s qualifiers, but Yedlin should return to return Graham Zusi to backup status. Timmy Chandler continues to perform very well for Eintracht Frankfurt, but Arena has said he doesn’t want to call up players who haven’t been involved with the team. That’s problematic because he’s the one who hasn’t taken a look at the right-sided Bundesliga player, who’s had struggles in the U.S. shirt but played the third-most minutes for a mid-table German side (Might wanna look, Bruce).

Also, I believe that Arena should be forced to watch Zusi and Gonzalez on Honduras’ goal every morning when his alarm goes off and then during the final two hours before he announces his lineups for Panama and T&T.

Alas, that’s digression.

Arena loves the 4-4-2, so it seems likely three at the back remains a break glass in case of emergency tactic. But humoring the idea, would you rather have Fabian Johnson at left back — if we see Jorge Villafana again, oh my — left mid, or left wing back? To me that’s the question.

Here’s a 3-5-2:

Wood — Altidore

Johnson — Pulisic — Bradley — Bedoya — Yedlin

Besler — Cameron — Ream

Howard

And a 4-4-2:

Wood — Altidore

Pulisic
Nagbe — Arriola
Bradley

Johnson — Besler — Cameron — Yedlin

Howard

And, for fun, a 4-4-2 if Arena breaks from his routine of only using guys who’ve been in his call-ups:

Wood — Altidore

Pulisic
Chandler — Arriola
Bradley

Johnson — Besler — Cameron — Yedlin

Howard