COLUMBUS, Ohio: U.S. coach Gregg Berhalter shook up his lineup, inserting goalkeeper Zack Steffen among nine changes to the starting 11 for Wednesday nights World Cup qualifier against Costa Rica.
Chris Richards, a 21-year-old central defender, was given his first competitive start as the Americans fielded their youngest lineup in a World Cup qualifier, averaging 22 years, 229 days. That broke the previous mark of 23 years, 85 days set at the Sept. 8 match at Honduras, a 4-1 win.
Midfielder Yunus Musah and winger Paul Arriola were the only holdovers from the lineup that started the 1-0 loss at Panama on Sunday.
Berhalter inserted a new back four of right back Sergio Dest, Chris Richards and Miles Robinson in central defense, and Antonee Robinson at left back.
Tyler Adams was in defensive midfield and captained the team, and Weston McKennie in advanced midfield with Musah. Brenden Aaronson and Arriola were on the wings, and Ricardo Pepi headed the attack.
Steffen took over in goal from New England’s Matt Turner, who started the first four qualifiers. Steffen, Ederson’s backup at Manchester City, used to play for Columbus’ Major League Soccer team at old Crew Stadium.
Steffen and Richards increased U.S. qualifying debuts to 23 in five matches, trailing only 1998 (29), and 2006 and 2010 (26 each). Richards was making just his fourth international appearance.
Goalkeeper Sean Johnson, defender Shaq Moore and midfielder Sebastian Lletget did not dress.
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