19.11.2023 20:18 h

No experiments says Berhalter as US bid to seal semi berth

United States coach Gregg Berhalter said he will pick his strongest team as the Americans look to seal their CONCACAF Nations League semi-final berth against Trinidad & Tobago in Port of Spain on Monday.

Berhalter's men have already put one foot in the last four after a labored 3-0 victory over the Soca Warriors in Austin last Thursday.

But despite their commanding first leg lead, Berhalter on Sunday ruled out any chance of fielding an experimental line-up for Monday's return at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.

"It's not a time for experiments," the US coach said. "We're focused on the result and the opportunities we have in this match.

"I think it would be getting ahead of ourselves (to experiment). All we are at the moment is in a good position. It's up to us to take advantage of that good position."

Berhalter's side are already without the injured Christian Pulisic, striker Tim Weah and captain Tyler Adams, while Juventus midfielder Weston McKennie has been ruled out of Monday's second leg after aggravating a knee injury in Thursday's win.

"We're focused on the best possible line-up we can put on the field," Berhalter said.

"It's not about rotation at this point, it's about who can fit the roles that we need to win this game.

"Weston obviously out of necessity, will not be able to play but other than that we have everyone fit and available."

Berhalter said McKennie played in the first leg despite struggling with an injury in training last week.

"There were some training sessions where he was hobbling around," he said.

McKennie departed the US camp on Saturday after talks with Berhalter.

"After speaking to him it was about recovery and getting this right so it doesn't linger for months and months," Berhalter said.