Less than a week before the U.S. national team gathers in New Jersey, defender Omar Gonzalez returned to active duty for Mexican club Pachuca on Tuesday. The veteran center back did not play in the 4-1 home victory over Veracruz, but his inclusion on the 18-man squad suggests he has fully recovered from an undisclosed injury that sidelined him for two weeks.
U.S. Coach Bruce Arena is planning to unveil his roster Sunday. Training camp will open in earnest Monday as the Americans prepare for 2018 World Cup qualifiers against Costa Rica on Sept. 1 at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J., and Honduras on Sept. 5 in San Pedro Sula.
Gonzalez’s return overlaps with the loss of Wolfsburg center back John Brooks, whose thigh injury will sideline him for three months and force him to miss the remaining four World Cup qualifiers. Pachuca will visit Tijuana on Friday before releasing players for international duty.
Arena’s corps of center back will include Stoke City’s Geoff Cameron and Sporting Kansas City’s Matt Besler. Fulham’s Tim Ream is also in the mix.
Meantime, DeAndre Yedlin, Arena’s first-choice right back, is in a race to regain health and fitness after missing Newcastle’s first two Premier League matches with a hamstring ailment. He is questionable for the match-day roster Wednesday against Eric Lichaj and Nottingham Forest in the League Cup and Saturday vs. West Ham. Arena’s other options on the right corner are Lichaj, Cameron and Graham Zusi.
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In Mexico …
Midfielder Joe Corona entered in the 67th minute and midfielder Alejandro Guido did not play during Tijuana’s 3-1 victory at Queretaro. Defender Jonathan Bornstein logged 77 minutes for Queretaro.
Wednesday night, Jorge Villafaña, a contender to start for Arena at left back, is with Santos Laguna to face visiting Chivas Guadalajara.
In England …
Lynden Gooch, a 21-year-old attacker with two U.S. caps, assisted on one goal and scored the match winner in the 80th minute — his first senior-level goal — as second-flight Sunderland won at fourth-tier Carlisle United, 2-1, in the League Cup’s second round.
Dreamt this moment ever since I came to Wearside as a 10 year old boy and to get it in front of the away fans was so special! ⚪️ pic.twitter.com/4GFjpgFLzO
— Lynden Gooch (@lyndengooch46) August 23, 2017
Emerson Hyndman, a 21-year-old midfielder, returned from a foot injury that sidelined him for several months. He was in the 18 but did not play in first-flight Bournemouth’s 2-1 victory at second-level Birmingham City in the League Cup.
> The starting times are set for the World Cup qualifiers: around 7 p.m. ET at Red Bull Arena (it’s listed as 6:30) and 5:30 ET in Honduras (which is 3:30 in steamy San Pedro Sula). ESPN and Univision platforms will present the Costa Rica match; beIN Sports and NBC Universo have the rights to the Honduras game.
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