CINCINNATI (AP) — Goalkeeper Matt Turner, right back Reggie Cannon, defender Aaron Long, midfielder Brenden Aaronson and forward Jesús Ferreira entered the starting lineup as U.S. coach Gregg Berhalter made five changes Wednesday night for an exhibition against Morocco.
In the first of four World Cup warmups in June for the Americans, central defender Walker Zimmerman, left back Antonee Robinson, and midfielders Tyler Adams and Yunus Musah were the four holdovers from March 30, The Americans lost 2-0 at Costa Rica that night in their final World Cup qualifier, but still clinched their first berth since 2018 in soccer’s showcase.
Starters dropped from that game include goalkeeper Zack Steffen, right back DeAndre Yedlin, central defender Miles Robinson, midfielder Kellyn Acosta and forward Ricardo Pepi. Yedlin and Acosta were on the bench, Steffen withdrew from the June matches for family reasons, Robinson will miss the World Cup after tearing his left Achilles tendon and Pepi is being given time off.
Aaronson started in central midfield rather than his wide role during qualifying.
Three players on the bench were in position to make their U.S. debuts: midfielder Malik Tillman, forward Haji Wright and defender Joe Scally. Tillman, who turned 20 last weekend, was approved by FIFA this week to switch his affiliation from Germany to the U.S.
Long starts for the first time since March 28, 2021, at Northern Ireland after recovering from a torn Achilles sustained in May 2021.
Pulisic captained the U.S. for the ninth time.
Midfielder Kellyn Acosta, goalkeeper Ethan Horvath and forward Jordan Morris did not dress.
Entering the match, the U.S. had used 115 players in this World Cup cycle, including 88 under Berhalter. Of those, 38 appeared during the 14 World Cup qualifiers.
Fifty-three players had made their debuts under Berhalter.
More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sport