D.C. United duo Paul Arriola and Bill Hamid have been included in Gregg Berhalter’s latest USMNT squad, with the group heading to Florida to face El Salvador on December 9 in Fort Lauderdale.
With no FIFA international window for December, Berhalter has assembled an almost entirely domestic-based squad more in line with the traditional winter camp. Arriola, who made his return from a torn ACL in United’s season finale, will be the most internationally experienced player in the entire squad, while Hamid is the only goalkeeper with any previous caps to get a call. U.S. Soccer may opt to call additional players into the group following MLS’s Western Conference semifinals, which take place tomorrow and Thursday.
Elsewhere, the squad includes a dozen players who have never played for the senior national team and three more who have just one cap. Berhalter has also included four dual nationals (Ayo Akinola, Efrain Alvarez, Frankie Amaya, and Daryl Dike) as he continues to try to increase the size of the USMNT player pool.
For Arriola and Hamid, being called in means keeping themselves in the frame after a largely European-based contingent drew rave reviews for their performances against Wales and Panama. Hamid will be looking to establish that he is the best MLS option available to Berhalter, after recent camps have included Sean Johnson and Matt Turner. Arriola, meanwhile, gets meaningful training and a game after spending virtually all of 2020 recovering from a preseason ACL tear.
The full roster is as follows:
Goalkeepers (3): Bill Hamid (D.C. United), CJ Dos Santos (Benfica), David Ochoa (Real Salt Lake)
Defenders (8): Julian Araujo (LA Galaxy), Kyle Duncan (New York Red Bulls), Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC), Mark McKenzie (Philadelphia Union), Mauricio Pineda (Chicago Fire), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls), Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids), Marco Farfan (Portland Timbers)
Midfielders (5): Brenden Aaronson (Philadelphia Union), Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy), Frankie Amaya (FC Cincinnati), Cole Bassett (Colorado Rapids)
Forwards (6): Efrain Alvarez (LA Galaxy), Chris Mueller (Orlando City), Ayo Akinola (Toronto FC), Daryl Dike (Orlando City), Paul Arriola (D.C. United), Djordje Mihailovic (Chicago Fire)