Musah becomes USA's youngest World Cup starter against Wales

By Sports Desk November 21, 2022 598

Yunus Musah became the first teenager to be named in the United States' starting lineup for a World Cup match ahead of their Group B opener against Wales on Monday.

Having missed out on qualification for the tournament in Russia four years ago, Gregg Berhalter's side marked their return to the finals at the Ahmed Bin Ali Stadium, against a Wales side featuring at just their second World Cup.

Musah, who also made his senior international debut against Wales in 2020, is now the youngest player to start a World Cup match for the USA, aged 19 years and 358 days.

The Valencia midfielder also becomes the first LaLiga-based player to represent the Stars and Stripes at the finals, while 10 of the starting XI play their club football in Europe - the team's highest total in a World Cup lineup.

Musah was selected to partner Tyler Adams in midfield, with the Leeds United man – aged 23 years and 279 days – becoming the USA's youngest World Cup captain since Harry Keough in 1950.

Berhalter, who becomes the first person to represent the Stars and Stripes at the World Cup as a player and coach, began with Matt Turner in goal behind a back four of Sergino Dest, Walker Zimmerman, Tim Ream and Antonee Robinson.

Adams and Musah were selected to anchor the midfield behind Timothy Weah, Weston McKennie and Christian Pulisic, with Josh Sargent starting as a lone striker.

Meanwhile, Gareth Bale – at least temporarily – drew level with Chris Gunter's record of 109 Wales caps, with the full-back being named on the bench by Rob Page.

Wayne Hennessey was preferred to Danny Ward in goal behind a back three of Chris Mepham, Joe Rodon and Ben Davies.

Connor Roberts, Ethan Ampadu, Aaron Ramsey, Harry Wilson and Neco Williams comprised a five-man midfield, with Dan James providing support to Bale in attack.

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Last modified on Monday, 21 November 2022 16:07
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