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Sean Johnson, James Sands called up by USMNT

The United States are close to sealing a spot in the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

That's Sean Johnson | Courtesy

New York City FC captain Sean Johnson has been selected for the USMNT as the national team gets ready to play their final three 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifying matches. The USMNT are currently in second place in the CONCACAF table with 21 points. The top three teams automatically qualify for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, while the fourth-place team will face the winner of the Oceania Football Confederation in a single-game playoff. 

The United States are in a good position to advance. If they earn four points from the final three games they will likely earn a spot in the World Cup; six points and they are guaranteed a top-three finish.

Johnson has made nine appearances for the USMNT, and kept a clean sheet three times. He is the number two goalkeeper, behind Manchester City’s Zack Steffen, who is returning from an injury. Nottingham Forest’s Ethan Horvath was also named to the squad.

Johnson will be reunited with former NYCFC player James Sands, who is now on loan with Rangers FC. Since Sands made his debut with the USMNT last year he has earned seven caps.

The USMNT crashed out of the 2022 CONCACAF World Cup Qualifiers in a spectacular fashion. The team lost on the final day of the tournament to last-place Trinidad and Tobago, falling behind Panama and Honduras. It was the first time the USMNT failed to qualify for the World Cup since 1986.

USMNT Schedule:
USMNT vs Mexico at Mexico City, Thursday, March 24, 10 pm ET
USMNT host Panama In Orlando, FL, Sunday, March 27, 
USMNT vs Costa Rica in San José, Wednesday, March 30

While the USMNT have a clear path to making the World Cup, it won’t be easy. The USMNT first play Mexico at the Azteca in Mexico City, where the United States have never won a competitive match. Both of the USMNT’s next two opponents, Panama and Costa Rica, are on the cusp of advancing to the World Cup and will be playing to win.