MIAMI — Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder Efrain Álvarez is on the 48-man preliminary roster for both the United States and Mexico for the Olympic men’s soccer qualifying tournament in North and Central America and the Caribbean.
Now 18, Álvarez played for the U.S. at an under-15 tournament in 2016, then switched to Mexico and played for El Tri at the 2019 Under-17 World Cup. He attended U.S. national team training in December but did not appear in the exhibition against El Salvador in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
The U.S. roster also included included Red Bull Salzburg midfielder Brenden Aaronson, Barcelona forward Konrad De La Fuente, PSV Eindhoven defender Chris Gloster and Norwich forward Sebastian Soto.
The rosters released Tuesday by CONCACAF are nonbinding, and U.S. coach Jason Kreis may announce a training camp roster on Friday. Final 20-man rosters are due March 8.
The U.S., which failed to qualify for the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, opens Group A against Costa Rica on March 18 at the CONCACAF tournament in Guadalajara, Mexico. The Americans play the Dominican Republic on March 21 and complete Group A on March 24 against host Mexico. The top two teams in each group advance, and the semifinal winners qualify for the Olympics.
Qualifying was postponed from last March due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, and FIFA has kept the same eligibility rules that were first established, saying players must be born after Jan. 1, 1997. Clubs are not required to release players to teams for qualifying, so many top young players are expected to miss the tournament. Among those not on the U.S. roster are Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, Tyler Adams, Gio Reyna and Josh Sargent.
For the 16 nations reaching the Olympics, each may include three players over the age limit. The CONCACAF qualifiers will join Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Egypt, France, Germany, Ivory Coast, Japan, New Zealand, Romania, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea and Spain.
The preliminary roster:
Goalkeepers: Drake Callender (Miami), Matt Freese (Philadelphia), Jonathan Klinsmann (LA Galaxy), JT Marcinkowski (San Jose), David Ochoa (Salt Lake), Brady Scott (Austin)
Defenders: Julian Araujo (LA Galaxy), George Bello (Atlanta), Kyle Duncan (New York Red Bulls), Marco Farfan (LA), Justen Glad (Salt Lake), Chris Gloster (PSV Einhoven, Netherlands), Aaron Herrera (Salt Lake), Aboubacar Keita (Columbus), Fredrick Kessler (New England), Maurico Pineda (Chicago), Donovan Pines (D.C.), Bryan Reynolds (Roma, Italy), Miles Robinson (Atlanta), James Sands (New York City), Auston Trusty (Colorado), Sam Vines (Colorado)
Midfielders: Brenden Aaronson (Red Bull Salzburg, Austria), Efrain Álvarez (LA Galaxy), Cole Bassett (Colorado), Gianluca Busio (Kansas City), Caden Clark (New York Red Bulls), Johnny Cardoso (Internacionale, Brazil), Hassani Dotson (Minnesota), Brooks Lennon (Atlanta), Djordje Mihailovic (Chicago), Keaton Parks (New York City), Andres Perea (Orlando), Brandon Servania (Dallas), Tanner Tessmann (Dallas), Eryk Williamson (Portland), Jackson Yueill (San Jose)
Forwards: Frankie Amaya (Cincinnati), Cade Cowell (San Jose), Konrad De La Fuente (Barcelona), Jeremy Ebobisse (Portland), Jesus Ferreira (Dallas), Jonathan Lewis (Colorado), Ulysses Llanez (Wolfsburg, Germany), Benji Michel (Orlando), Ricardo Pepi (Dallas), Sebastian Saucedo (Pumas, Mexico), Sebastian Soto (Norwich, England)