The recently released U.S. men’s soccer team’s World Cup roster does not include Downingtown’s Zack Steffen, writes Jonathan Tannenwald for The Philadelphia Inquirer.
The roster unveiled by manager Gregg Berhalter had several more surprises, but Steffen is perhaps the biggest omission from the group heading to Qatar later this month.
Berhalter was expected to choose Steffen as one of the team’s goalkeepers as he has known and trusted him for years. Instead, he has opted to go with Ethan Horvath along with starter Matt Turner and Sean Johnson.
Steffen, who plays for English powerhouse Manchester City, went on loan to second-tier Championship team Middlesbrough this season to be able to get regular playing time. While he has managed to get it, it has not always worked out for the best. His record includes 19 goals conceded and four shutouts in 16 games.
“Me and Zack go way back,” said Berhalter. “Zack’s been there for me a bunch of times, and to tell him he’s not going to be a part of the World Cup team was heartbreaking for me. But those are the decisions that we made as a staff.”
Read more about Zack Steffen in The Philadelphia Inquirer.