United States vs Trinidad and Tobago Preview: Yanks battle it out in Denver

In the fifth match for the United States, they take on Trinidad and Tobago in the hexagonal for qualification to the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

United States vs Trinidad and Tobago Preview: Yanks battle it out in Denver
Christian Pulisic, expected to be star for tomorrow's game. Photo: SI

The road to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia continues for the United States as they look to take a step closer to qualification. They will also look to distance themselves from the other rivals in the table by taking on Trinidad and Tobago in at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colorado.

A lot will be expected from Bruce Arena's team following the rollercoaster start in the Hex following a win, a draw and two losses in their first four matches to only give the United States five points with six left.

Focus at home before tilt away

Bruce Arena focused on game against island rather than Mexico. Photo: AFP
Bruce Arena focused on the game against the island rather than Mexico. Photo: AFP

Despite the Thursday night game has less of an importance than the tilt against Mexico at the Estadio Azteca, Arena has stated that his team is more focused on taking on the Soca Warriors first and then to shift all attention to El Tri three days later.

The United States go into this match coming off a 1-1 draw against Venezuela in a friendly, in which Borussia Dortmund's Christian Pulisic scored the only goal for the Yanks. 

"The players are focused on the match Trinidad and Tobago and they do not care about Mexico," said Arena. "We will prepare the Mexico match immediately after the final whistle."

In team news, with the injury of John Brooks at centre-back, expect Matt Hedges to play alongside Geoff Cameron with the possible inclusion of Kellyn Acosta partnering up with Michael Bradley as the center midfielders.

Nevertheless, we will most likely see a 4-4-2 with Jozy Altidore and Clint Dempsey up front as the lone strikers and Pulisic going deep at the center attacking midfielder, with Fabian Johnson and Darlington Nagbe on the flanks.

Soca Warriors looking for a surprise

Trinidad and Tobago are looking to avenge their previous World Cup qualifier loss last September when they were trashed 4-0 in Jacksonville in the Fourth Round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying.

Currently last in the Hex Table, on three points, the Carribean nation has only one win and three losses to their names. The Soca Warriors have never beaten the United States in an away World Cup qualifier, but should we see a surprise happen in the Mile High City, service would have to be provided from players such as Atlanta United's Kenwyne Jones. 

The match will broadcast on FS1, UniMás, and UDN at 8:00 PM EST.

Predicted Lineups

United States: Howard; Yedlin, Cameron, Hedges, Villafaña; Bradley, Johnson, Pulisic, Nagbe; Dempsey, Altidore.

Trinidad and Tobago: Williams; David, Bateau, J. Jones, Cyrus; Mitchell, Hyland, Boucaud, Williams, Molina; K. Jones.

The Road to Russia does not get any easier after this, but if the USMNT pick up all three points, it'll give the squad a much needed confidence boost.


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