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The USMNT achieved an eleventh-hour victory over Jamaica in the CONCACAF Nations League. A crucial own goal during injury time allowed the USMNT to advance to the finals of the competition. This goal not only saved the team but also saved Coach Gregg Berhalter ‘from everybody calling for his head’ as mentioned by former USMNT player Herculez Gomez.

Possible reconsideration of Berhalter’s reappointment has been a topic of discussion given continuous uncertainties surrounding his leadership. Indeed, USMNT’s contentious performance against Jamaica further fueled these doubts with their overall performance being described as ‘flat’.

Gregg Berhalter is not ‘the coach for the USMNT’

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The recent performance of USMNT has come under a critical lens with noteworthy dialogues prompted between Herculez Gomez, and former USMNT assistant manager Kasey Keller. Gomez expressed his opinion on the 50-year-old, stating, “Gregg Berhalter was two seconds, was a play away from everybody calling for his head. From everybody saying this isn’t the man to lead this team.” 

The 41-year-old continued to criticize the USMNT boss adding, “And I don’t think I feel too much differently today after this game as I did before it.” He concluded by asserting, “Gregg Berhalter may be a good coach at a certain level. He’s not the coach for the US Men’s National team at this level, not the coach to lead the US Men’s National team to the World Cup in 2026.”

As the host country, the upcoming World Cup holds significant importance for the USMNT. Therefore, the CONCACAF Nations League and the upcoming Copa America are crucial for their preparation. Gregg Berhalter himself acknowledged the need for the team to defeat strong opponents in continental competitions to grow and succeed in the World Cup.

Still, criticism towards the current stance upon who should spearhead management is rife. Even USMNT legend Alexi Lalas did not hold back in expressing his criticism of Berhalter following the match against Jamaica.

Alexi Lalas believes Berhalter deserves criticism

Following the CONCACAF Nations League semi-final match, Alexi Lalas was questioned about Gregg Berhalter’s performance. The sports analyst expressed his disappointment by stating, “You can do whatever you want. But I can say it was a horrible performance and, as a coach, Berhalter deserves criticism for his team’s utter lack of urgency, ruthlessness, or energy.”

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Despite his critical remarks, the 53-year-old commended the New Jersey-born for the impactful substitutions like Gio Reyna and Haji Wright, whose contributions led the USMNT to victory. “But he also made the necessary changes in players/tactics to find the win in a knock-out setting,” Lalas remarked. It appears that the pressure is mounting for Gregg Berhalter as the USMNT prepares to face Mexico in the Nations League final.

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Read More: “Wow Is the First Thing”- Gregg Berhalter’s Thoughts on USMNT’s 2026 FIFA World Cup Schedule

What are your thoughts on this? Let us know in the comments.

Written by

Saransh Chauhan

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Saransh Chauhan is a Senior Soccer Writer at EssentiallySports. From dissecting the latest developments in soccer leagues to delving into off-court and entertainment topics, Saransh has cemented his reputation as a true all-rounder. His coverage leans towards players with exceptional dribbling skills and playmaking abilities; Ozil, Xavi, Iniesta, and Neymar for example.
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Sreeda U M