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Chicago Fire’s Mauricio Pineda earns USMNT U-23 call up

Pineda is vying for a spot on the U.S. Olympic qualifying team

MLS: Chicago Fire at New England Revolution Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Fire defender/midfielder Mauricio Pineda is heading to Florida to join the U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team camp. The second-year Fire player is a part of the squad that will train alongside the senior USMNT in Bradenton, Fla. from Jan. 9-24.

Djordje Mihailovic, who the Fire recently traded to the Montreal Impact, is also a part of the camp.

The U-23s are preparing for the Concacaf Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship, which will determine which nations get a spot in the 2021 Olympics in Tokyo. It’s the first time this group has been together since last March, when the original qualifying tournament was scrapped because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The top two teams at the tournament earn a spot in the Olympics.

There’s a chance Pineda could earn a spot with the senior team for a planned match at the end of January, too. USMNT head coach Gregg Berhalter will conduct a 12-player training camp alongside the U-23 camp consisting of players aged 24 and older. At the end of the camp, several U-23 players will join the senior roster.

Pineda was called into USMNT senior team camp in December. He was on the gameday roster for the 6-0 win over El Salvador, but did not play.


GOALKEEPERS (3): JT Marcinkowski (San Jose Earthquakes), David Ochoa (Real Salt Lake), Brady Scott (Austin FC)

DEFENDERS (10): Julian Araujo (LA Galaxy), George Bello (Atlanta United FC), Chris Gloster (PSV Eindhoven/NED), Aaron Herrera (Real Salt Lake), Aboubacar Keita (Columbus Crew SC), Henry Kessler (New England Revolution), Mauricio Pineda (Chicago Fire FC), Bryan Reynolds (FC Dallas), Miles Robinson (Atlanta United FC), Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids)

MIDFIELDERS (6): Hassani Dotson (Minnesota United FC), Bryang Kayo (Wolfsburg/GER), Andrés Perea* (Orlando City SC), Tanner Tessmann (FC Dallas), Eryk Williamson (Portland Timbers), Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes)

FORWARDS (7): Cade Cowell (San Jose Earthquakes), Daryl Dike (Orlando City SC), Jeremy Ebobisse (Portland Timbers), Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas), Jonathan Lewis (Colorado Rapids), Benji Michel (Orlando City SC), Djordje Mihailovic (Montreal Impact/CAN)

*Player is currently ineligible to represent the United States