The rise of American male talent in Europe cannot be ignored. It’s a wave that shows a clear sign of hope for the future of the United States Men’s national team and to be perfectly honest, Gregg Berhalter’s tenure. 

From Christian Pulisic at Chelsea, Weston McKennie and Juventus and Gio Reyna at Borussia Dortmund, the list goes on. 

The key is now to turn hope into success. 

Naturally, it’s important to remember that this success won’t come overnight but as we see the development of Americans inside some of the biggest clubs in the old continent, USMNT fans should at the very least expect improvement. 

Qualifying for Qatar in a very doable CONCACAF region, therefore, should be the absolute least of it.

“Everybody is really hungry for the opportunities,” says Barcelona star Sergino Dest, a key player for the United States. “Everybody wants to make the U.S. great and for me personally, I work really hard and I want to reach my full potential, not only for myself but also for the country. I want to achieve big things with the U.S and I think we have a good generation coming up and hopefully everybody is doing the same and working hard.”

Dest is a force of nature, and in my opinion, could really be one of the best full-backs in the world. At 19, with Barcelona — in a system that compliments his attributes — his ceiling could reach extreme heights. Plus, playing with Lionel Messi doesn’t hurt. Dest — turning into an excited teen fan upon answering — explained to me how he felt when he first met him. “It was unbelievable, just unbelievable. He was in the gym when I first saw him,” explains Dest excitedly. “I turned to see him and my face just went, ‘WOW. It’s Lionel MESSI next to me!’ It was just really special. Also on the field to play with him, the pass him the ball, to get the ball from him, it’s really special to play with the best player in the world.”

It was a great chat with a very impressive young man. 

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