What USMNT got right vs.  Morocco as World Cup prep truly arrives

What USMNT got right vs. Morocco as World Cup prep truly arrives

Berhalter’s played around with two different build-out shapes* in his four years in charge. First it was a 3-2-2-3 with the right back tucking inside as an ad hoc central midfielder. He scrapped that after about six months and turned to a 3-2-2-3 with simpler backline rotations and a regista-style No. 6 as the fulcrum, which was understandable given how much success he had with that approach in Columbus.

Understand that this almost always comes out of a base 4-3-3, which was once again the primary formation on Wednesday.

A few bad results early in 2021 forced Berhalter away from regista-style d-mids as the US slowly evolved more into a pressing team than a pure possession team. Part of that was a switch to a 2-3-2-3 with lots of the work coming via combo play from the right back and central midfielders, though again with simplified rotations compared to what we saw in early 2019.

On Wednesday night it was back to a 3-2-2-3, with a few things standing out:

• Right back Reggie Cannon, who’s spent most of his career as a fullback but most of this club season as a right center back in a back three, really was more of a right center back than a right fullback in this one.

• Yunus Musah, playing on the left of the three-man midfield, was much more of a holding No. 8 who’d often drop back alongside the No. 6, Tyler Adams. The other No. 8, Brenden Aaronson, played much more like a pure attacker. The network passing graph (Musah wears No. 6, while Aaronson wears No. 11) actually reflects that to a good degree:

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