Ferreira, Mihailovic, Sargent & Musah: US soccer forwards offer Berhalter World Cup options

The World Cup schedule has surely had an impact on the significant comings and goings of the USMNT in the final days of the summer transfer window.

Ricardo Pepi has escaped his painful start to life at Augsburg, at least for now, thanks to a season-long loan move to Groningen in the Netherlands. There he should be able to gain some regular playing time and hopefully, from his perspective, start scoring regularly again. As difficult as his first few months in the Bundesliga were, Pepi is still young and, like most strikers, lives and dies by goals, something he is far more likely to accumulate in the open attacking surroundings of the Eredivisie.

Sergino Dest moved from FC Barcelona, ​​where Xavi Hernandez had made it clear he was surplus to requirements, to AC Milan, a very good landing spot, all things considered.

He watched the Rossoneri’s Derby della Madonnina win against Inter from the bench and his prospects for minutes are hazy given the quality players who are established ahead of him on the depth chart. But it’s a better situation than FCB, and we suspect Dest will be central to Berhalter’s plans for Qatar no matter what – he’s so unique and shameless among the group of American players.

And John Brooks waited and got a good thing. After the German-American remained without a club for weeks following his departure from Wolfsburg, with some even suggesting he was close to retirement, he landed at Benfica in the final hours of the window, where he will be in the mix for a UEFA Champions League. club.

It sure looks like the writing is on the wall regarding his prospects for a last-minute return to the USMNT fold — that writing being a big, blood-red “no” — but if you take Berhalter at his word, then Brooks may well have a small chance for a second World Cup.

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