Barcelona duo Sergino Dest and Konrad de la Fuente have been called into the USMNT squad for November internationals against Panama and Wales.
Coach Gregg Berhalter has included the two youngsters in his 24-man party for their camp in Europe.
Visual reference of this month’s #USMNT squad.
Who are you most excited to see take on 🏴 and 🇵🇦?
— U.S. Soccer MNT (@USMNT) November 3, 2020
The players are scheduled to report on November 8 in Cardiff to prepare for the game against Wales three days later. The USMNT will then travel to Austria for their second match against Panama.
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First Cap for Konrad?
Konrad will be hoping for his first cap for the national side after making progress at Barcelona in recent months. The 19-year-old featured for the senior side in pre-season but is now back with Barcelona B.
Manager Ronald Koeman spoke about the youngster on Tuesday in his pre-match press conference ahead of Barca’s clash with Dynamo Kiev in the Champions League.
He is part of the team, he was good in pre-season, but there is a lot of competition in his position, so we prefer him to play with the second team so that he adds minutes, but I am very happy with his work.
Konrad will be hoping to impress with the reserve team and earn some playing time with the senior side this season under the new manager. The Barca boss has been keen to promote youth since taking over and has made it clear he will play youngsters if they prove they deserve playing time.
Dest Eyeing World Cup
New team-mate Dest arrived at Barcelona from Ajax in the summer and has already made his international debut, featuring for the national team in September 2019 against Mexico
Dest has spoken recently about his ambitions with the USMNT and his desire to play at a World Cup in an interview with CBS Sports.
For the U.S., we have qualifiers in the summer. Qualifiers or Gold Cup, I’m not sure, but I want to win every single game with the U.S. and then qualify for the 2022 World Cup. It’s important for all of us and, for me, I want to play in a World Cup.
The 20-year-old has been quick to make an impression at Barcelona. He filled in at left-back recently while Jordi Alba was out injured and has since moved over to his favored position on the right.
Dest now faces a battle with Sergi Roberto to make the right-back spot, his own but there are positive signs he can become a regular in the Barcelona backline and enjoy a successful career at the Camp Nou.
Koeman spoke about both youngsters earlier in the season and feels the national team will benefit from the duo being at Barcelona and playing at the highest level, as reported by NBC.
It’s good for American football that you have players like Dest, like Konrad here in Barcelona. But both players are still young. Sergino last season in Ajax first team, in the Champions League, that experience will help the player and also the U.S national team.
Barcelona play Dynamo Kiev on Wednesday in the Champions League and Real Betis on Saturday before the duo are due to depart for USMNT duty.