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Name Gregg Berhalter
Gender Male
Ethnic American
Job USA Head Coach
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Affiliation

Club as Coach USA National Team [Head Coach]
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2019 03 13 Retrieve

[Berhalter leaving the door open for Johnson to make USMNT return] I was in Germany a couple weeks ago and I was able to meet with Fabian and talk to him about how he’s doing and his international career and his thoughts moving forward, and he’s a guy that still is available.

I spoke to him and said, ‘Listen, if you’re needed, we’ll certainly look at you and bring you in.’ I’m very comfortable with Fabian and what he’s done. I’ve known him for a long time. I’ve probably known him for 12 years. I played with him in Germany and I left the door open and I said, ‘We’ll stay in contact’

[Even with his willingness to return, and his relationship with Berhalter, Johnson still faces an uphill battle to still be a viable option by the 2022 World Cup, when he would be close to 35] When I look at his profile and look at his position and being an outside back and the demands of an outside back and I’m projecting towards 2022, he’s one that’s right on the borderline. It’s a tough one. Having said that, I said, ‘Listen, we’re not closing the door. We’ll leave it open but here’s where we’re at right now’

2019 03 18 Retrieve

[United States national team coach Gregg Berhalter said Wednesday that he and his staff are continuing to watch LA Galaxy teenager Efrain Alvarez and said the 16-year-old will get an opportunity with the U.S. if he continues to excel] Regarding Efrain, for us it’s been interesting to watch from the background because he’s a guy that has taken a pathway that, you’d call it a somewhat normal pathway although it’s been accelerated. He started out in the academy of LA Galaxy, he played there, he went to the second team of LA Galaxy, he did really well with the second team and now he’s making an impact with the first team. That’s exactly what we want to see continuing. It would be great that he continues to chip away and get playing time and now can be a consistent performer for one of the top clubs in MLS

We’ll be there watching the whole thing, and when he’s doing what we expect him to do, there will be an opportunity for him with the U.S. national team. Regarding a potential choice for him, we want to create an environment that players want to be in. We want to create a playing style, a team spirit that players want to be a part of. If we do, we’re confident we can get players like that and keep players like that in our program

We’re not necessarily looking at these players as solely dual national players. We’re looking at them as players. There’s a universe of players that are eligible to play for the United States. We’re looking at all of those guys. I think that’s an important process

I’ve said all along that every player has their own pathway. What I want for my players - each and every one of them - is that they can maximize their own potential, so then they have different ways to do that. For some of them it’s going to be going to an MLS academy, playing for an MLS second team and signing with an MLS first team really developing that way. For other guys it’s going to be different pathways and it is going to be going to Europe or it is going to be playing at a mid-level team in Europe and then making a jump from there. Every player has a different pathway

2019 07 09 Retrieve

[USA coach Gregg Berhalter on Zack Steffen] Zack Steffen is a talented goalkeeper with great potential and someone who has performed on the biggest stages for the USA youth teams

2019 11 11 Retrieve

[Berhalter will be missing at least three key players in Pulisic, Bradley and Zack Steffen, the latter of which pulled out due to a knee injury] Christian Pulisic is officially at this stage ruled out. We just got that information. This was a collaborative decision with the club, looking after the best interest of the player. These decisions are always difficult because this group and the coaching staff want nothing more than to have Christian here, but it was a risk we weren’t willing to take at this time

[While the U.S. did suffer that 2-0 defeat to the Canadians, a 7-0 win over Cuba in their opening fixture does provide a little bit of hope ahead of the group finale against the Cubans on November 19 in the Cayman Islands] Advancing to the knockout phase is our priority, and that starts by getting a win against Canada. We will be ready to play, the team is looking forward to competing in front of our fans. Orlando has been a great venue for the National Team, and the support of our fans makes a big difference

2019 11 12 Retrieve

[USMNT coach Gregg Berhalter has confirmed that Christian Pulisic has been ruled out of his plans with a hip injury] Christian is officially at this stage ruled out. We just got that information. This was a collaborative decision with the club – looking after the best interest of the player

2019 11 13 Retrieve

[Berhalter said of Christian Pulisic’s absence] This was a collaborative decision with the club, looking after the best interest of the player. These decisions are always difficult because this group and the coaching staff, we want nothing more than to have Christian here, but it’s a risk that we weren’t willing to take at this time

[When asked about where goals will come from in the winger’s absence] That’s a good question. We’re going to have to get creative to find that creativity. It’s about putting the right personnel on the field to capitalize on some of the weaknesses we see against Canada. We’ll use this week to determine that, but we certainly want to be aggressive in that game and we want to score some goals

2019 11 14 Retrieve

[USMNT looking to rediscover intensity and send a message in Canada rematch] Canada hadn’t beat us in 34 years and was playing like it. And for us to be successful in away matches, we need to match the intensity of our opponents and that’s been a consistent message in this camp. You would think that it would go without saying that we know that, right? That’s the logical thing to think, but when you think of seven players playing in their first away game, when you think about a coaching staff coaching in their first away game together, in a competitive Concacaf match, these are the things that go along with it. The message was received loud and clear

[Changing that perception starts on Friday. If the U.S. fails to secure all three points, Canada will move on in the Nations League] We’re embracing it because that is our situation. When you look at the history of U.S. Soccer, we’ve been in games like this before. In the pre-Hex groups, we’ve been in must-win situations. In the Hex round, we’ve been in must-win situations. This is what builds the team and makes the team strong. We need matches like this. We talked about the benefit of the Nations League before and I feel it’s absolutely good for us to be able to play in these type of matches

2019 11 16 Retrieve

[Gregg Berhalter on Sergino Dest] Sergino Dest is a gamer. He’s the type of kid that shows up in a game when the bright lights are on. He has no problem performing and we haven’t really seen much like that from a player, the ability to just step up and perform like that. We’re really happy that he committed to us and you can see his overall display today how calm and smart he is in some situations. It’s really going to help our program moving forward

2019 11 19 Retrieve

[Americans accomplished all that without three of their best players, missing forward Christian Pulisic, midfielder Michael Bradley and goalkeeper Zack Steffen to injury] One thing I said to the team after the game is you have nights where you play absolutely brilliant, and everything works and you’re executing everything, you’re scoring goals. And then you have days that you don’t play great and things aren’t working and it’s not as fluid as it is normally. In all those cases you need to show the type of effort and type of tenacity that the group showed today

There was some real big criticism on the group. You know, it was a perceived lack of effort, a lack of heart. You couldn’t mention that today. The way the guys were fighting for each other, the way they had their back, the amount of effort that was put in. To me the difference was we were ready to overcome anything

2019 12 30 Retrieve

[Llanez, Pomykal, Morris headline USMNT squad for January camp] At the start of an exciting year, this is a great opportunity to continue our process and build on the foundation established in the last 12 months. At the same, there are a number of players getting their first exposure to the senior national team who will be provided the platform to make a positive impression. We appreciate all the support and cooperation from MLS and the clubs that released their players and gave us a chance to get a head start on the challenges ahead

2020 01 31 Retrieve

[Concacaf’s qualifiers begin in September, and there’s still a lot of work to be done before the U.S. tries to erase the memory of 2018] It’s a good opportunity to see how the guys have progressed int his month. The guys have been off for a while so first getting them in and getting them up to an acceptable fitness level and to work on some concepts that we’re looking to integrate this year is going to be very important.

For us, it’s about gathering information. We talked about the theme of this camp being ‘stake your claim’ or ‘seize your moment’. Everyone has a different situation, somewhat to make the Olympic qualifying group, some want to be starters in that group, some want to be starters on the full national team, some want to be involved with the full national team. Everyone has a different way that they’re looking at this, but collectively, can we perform well as a group? Individually, can guys make a case for their involvement going forward?

It’s a strong age group that we have right now. It would be nice to put these guys in position to compete in the Olympics. We’re not going to be able to pull from all of the players in this qualifying tournament, but nonetheless it’s still an opportunity for guys to step up and be battle-tested in a Concacaf qualifying format and learn from it. When you think about what we have in store for us this year, we’re going to be going through 60 percent of our qualifying games for the World Cup. It’s a good testing ground for that

It’s a good opportunity to see how the guys have progressed in this month. The guys have been off for a while so first getting them in and getting them up to an acceptable fitness level and to work on some concepts that we’re looking to integrate this year is going to be very important. Tomorrow we’re looking for execution. There are a couple of key topics that we want to execute tomorrow and it will be interesting to see against a good opponent if we can do that. We’re going to be measuring a couple of key things tomorrow

2020 02 01 Retrieve

[Ulysses Llanez scores in debut as U.S. men defeat Costa Rica in exhibition in Carson] We were training for four weeks now and we knew the age of our guys, we knew the capabilities of our guys. And it was nice to see them grow throughout the month. We were very comfortable that they would be able to perform today

2020 02 26 Retrieve

[Gio Reyna has seized that opportunity, scoring a goal in the DFB-Pokal while emerging as one of Dortmund’s go-to supersubs] They’re using him in a way where you know they’re not asking him to take full responsibility. He doesn’t have to carry a team. He’s playing a role, and he’s executing his role. What I really liked from him? His position when he gets the ball in the pocket, his awareness to turn and his efficiency and when he’s turning is excellent. He doesn’t waste any touches turning, he turns right away.

Second thing is his ball security under pressure is phenomenal. And, you know, there’s a play against PSG where I mentioned he got the ball on the sideline. And [Thomas] Meunier, and I forgot who the other player was try to close him down, and he just turns and gets out of pressure.

He just did it with so much awareness, that it was really impressive. So it’s been nice to see how they’ve been utilizing them. It’s nice to see their group, you know where they have [Erling] Haaland now is that tearing it up and it’s really good to see them embracing younger players, and giving younger players an opportunity

I think I can see him playing as a winger. I can see him playing as potentially a number 10 in a 4-3-3. He can play in a number of different positions. I like him being able to affect the game on the offensive side, similar to Christian Pulisic. They’ve been using on him on the left, (but) he can also play on the right, so I think he gives you flexibility

[Berhalter says that Gio Reyna would not have been released to join that group] We talked about this a number of times about this throughout the course of last year and saying we want our younger players performing playing at a high level, and he’s doing that. And as a result of him doing that he gets an opportunity with the first team

It was a collaborative process together with Jason. Jason’s taking the lead on who he prioritizes in each position, and then us deferring in some cases. Normally we’d love to have Reggie [Cannon] and Jackson Yueill come to Europe and play with us, but it was a priority of Jason to use them. And, we’re doing everything we can to support him and his group to qualify. It’s challenging, the qualifying process, with 17 players on the roster plus three goalies and there’s a lot of games in a short period of time. But we’re going to do everything we can to get to the Olympics

2020 02 27 Retrieve

[Gregg Berhalter also has an optimistic view of the future of MLS league] I see in the 25 years, the whole world watching our game on television. The production quality that we can produce in America, we’re going to be the leader in soccer

2020 03 26 Retrieve

[Gregg Berhalter said following that Costa Rica game on Ulysses Llanez] It’s typical he took the penalty because that’s what type of player he is. He plays with confidence. Even at the beginning of the game, he didn’t see nerves, he was going at guys one v one, he’s getting into good spaces, he’s running behind the line. His defensive work was strong as well

2020 04 20 Retrieve

[USMNT coach Berhalter sees improvement in Christian Pulisic] When Christian was moving from Dortmund to Chelsea we knew there was going to be an adaptation period. The Premier League is an extremely fast and physical league, and we knew time would be needed for him to get up to speed. What I really like about how his season unfolded, particularly in the beginning, is that he had to endure adversity to overcome struggle. He had to get used to the English game. It took time, and as he did that he came out performing really well, helping the team and scoring goals and being influential. All these things we projected him being able to do took an understandable time period. When you go into the injury period he had, it’s unfortunate because he was in such good form. The next part of it was him dealing with a serious injury. He was in a lot of pain. It was a difficult injury to come back from quickly although I know the fans wanted him back

[Berhalter added on where Pulisic has taken his game to even greater heights] The thing he’s really improved on that I’ve seen this year is his finishing ability. He’s done a great job of that, and it’s something the high-level players, when you look at the top players in the world, they’re able to score a big number of goals because they have that finishing quality

Some of his best actions for Chelsea have been when he’s central, playing the ball behind the line, combining and making things happen in a central position, but having moved inside from the wing. Both Chelsea and us want him affecting the game, in a position where he can hurt the opponent. Sometimes it’s going to be wide, sometimes that’s going to be central. It’s a different Chelsea than we’re used to seeing. It’s interesting what they’re doing and that they’re still able to get results. They’ve done a great job of that with a young team. They have an athletic team with exciting players in key positions, and to me it’s been fun to watch. Christian has the quality that he can adapt with a more experienced team as well, but there’s a lot of room for these players to grow and he’s in a good spot

2020 05 15 Retrieve

[How the Bundesliga became USMNT players’ league of choice] The Bundesliga is a top league in the world, so that’s taken into consideration when you consider a player’s performance. For us to be a top team in the world, we need players performing in top leagues in the world, so that’s one of the issues we’re faced with. This is a high-level program and if you can perform here, that means you’re a high-level player

2020 05 25 Retrieve

[USMNT head coach Gregg Berhalter on Llanez’s penalty on debut] It’s typical he took the penalty because that’s what type of player he is. He plays with confidence. Even at the beginning of the game, he didn’t see nerves, he was going at guys one v one, he’s getting into good spaces, he’s running behind the line. His defensive work was strong as well

2020 05 29 Retrieve

[Josh Sargent’s struggles at Werder Bremen a major concern for USMNT] With Josh, in particular, I see [his issues] as partly down to how the team functions. They haven’t been creating a lot of chances, and that’s difficult for a striker. For him, it’s a case of hanging in there, continuing to do the things that got him to that level. It’s about continuing to think about his movement off the ball, how he’s moving in the penalty box, and when he gets opportunities, making the most of them

After 25 minutes, I could see Josh suddenly closing down the central defender at pace because he wants to put pressure on. This means that the eight has to step out, then the six steps out, and [Hertha winger Matheus] Cunha comes into the danger area in behind. Sometimes we do not do things that are clearly discussed and that work well as a solution. And that drives me crazy. Why do you move away from the plan? So, Josh has to learn that to focus on completing the little things