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Report: USMNT to face Ecuador, Chile in March friendlies

Italy v USA - International Friendly

GENK, BELGIUM - NOVEMBER 20: Christian Pulisic of the United States battles for possession with Stefano Sensi of Italy and Federico Chiesa of Italy during the International Friendly match between Italy and the United States at Cristal Arena on November 20, 2018 in Genk, Belgium. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

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Gregg Berhalter’s first full strength U.S. Men’s National Team side is setting up friendly matches against a pair of solid South American sides.

Yahoo! Sports’ Doug McIntyre reported that the USMNT is set to face Ecuador in Orlando on March 21 or 22 followed by a match against Chile on March 26 in Houston. Chile currently holds the No. 13 spot in FIFA’s latest world rankings, while Ecuador sits at 57.

The March FIFA dates are the first chance that Berhalter will have to call in a full USMNT squad, with likely call-ups to Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie and Tyler Adams, among others. It will be those players first chance to play in Berhalter’s system, learning his tactical ideas and overall philosophy.

Due to the UEFA Nations League and the near start of 2020 European Championship qualifying, its become much tougher for nations in CONCACAF and CONMEBOL to schedule friendlies with European opposition, as most of their dates are packed with qualifying games.

If the friendly match with Ecuador is accurate, it will be the first of two friendlies in three months the teams will have, with Ecuador scheduled for a pre-Gold Cup friendly.