Top 7 USMNT players of all time
Updated: Apr 8
Charting the best of the best the USMNT has had to offer
The United States Men's National Team (USMNT) has featured an array of talented soccer players over the years. From trailblazing pioneers to world-class athletes, these stars have represented the USA with pride and skill.
In this article we will try and crown the top 7 USMNT players of all time and celebrate their contributions to American soccer.
Often referred to as the face of American soccer, Landon Donovan has left an indelible mark on the sport. With 57 goals in 157 appearances, he remains the all-time leading goal scorer for the USMNT. Donovan's ability to score crucial goals and provide valuable assists made him a fan favourite, and his unforgettable stoppage-time goal against Algeria in the 2010 World Cup will forever be etched in US soccer history.
Clint Dempsey's fierce determination and never-say-die attitude made him a force to be reckoned with on the pitch. With 57 goals in 141 appearances, he shares the title of all-time leading goal scorer for the USMNT with Landon Donovan. Dempsey's versatility allowed him to excel as both a forward and midfielder, and his successful European club career with Fulham and Tottenham Hotspur only adds to his impressive resume.
As a goalkeeper, Brad Friedel consistently provided the USMNT with a sense of security between the sticks. With 82 caps to his name, Friedel enjoyed a lengthy international career, participating in three World Cups (1994, 1998, and 2002). His impressive club career in the English Premier League with teams like Liverpool, Blackburn Rovers, and Tottenham Hotspur further solidifies his status as one of the best American goalkeepers of all time.
Brian McBride's aerial prowess and powerful heading ability made him a constant threat in the opposition's box. With 30 goals in 96 appearances for the USMNT, McBride played a key role in the team's success during the 2002 World Cup, where they reached the quarterfinals. His successful club career, most notably with Fulham in the English Premier League, makes him one of the most respected American forwards in history.
An elegant playmaker with exceptional vision, Claudio Reyna captained the USMNT during some of their most memorable moments, including the 2002 World Cup quarterfinal run. With 112 caps and 8 goals to his name, Reyna's leadership and composure in the midfield were vital to the team's success. In recognition of his contributions, he was named to the 2002 World Cup All-Star Team.
A skillful and creative midfielder, Tab Ramos played an important role in the USMNT's growth during the 1990s. With 81 caps and 8 goals, Ramos participated in three World Cups (1990, 1994, and 1998). His ability to control the tempo of a match and create scoring opportunities for his teammates made him a standout player in American soccer history.
Although Christian Pulisic's career is still in progress, his impact on the USMNT and American soccer as a whole cannot be understated. The youngest player on this list, Pulisic has already accumulated over 40 caps and double-digit goals. His skill, pace, and creativity have already earned him a key role at European powerhouse Chelsea, making him the most high-profile American player in the sport today. The sky's the limit for Pulisic, and he may one day find himself at the very top of this prestigious list.
The USMNT has been graced with many talented players throughout its history, each contributing to the growth and success of American soccer. From the goal-scoring prowess of Landon Donovan and Clint Dempsey to the commanding presence of Brad Friedel and the creativity of Tab Ramos and Claudio Reyna, these athletes have left their mark on the international stage.
The rise of Christian Pulisic, among other promising young talents, signals an exciting future for the USMNT. As American soccer continues to evolve and gain prominence on the global stage, these top 7 USMNT players will remain iconic figures, inspiring future generations to strive for greatness.
Stuart Kavanagh is a journalist currently residing in Broken Hill, Australia. He writes for the Barrier Truth newspaper, along with being the owner of the sports and entertainment website thepyrrhic.com, He contributes at edgeofthecrowd.com when time permits. He is also the Media & Communications Director at the Newosis Mental Health Foundation. You can find more about the work Newosis Mental Health Foundation does here.
Football mad, he is always down for debate and discussion at @stueyissickofit on Twitter.
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