Jordan Pefok deserves another shot with USMNT and should be called up in March

Jordan Pefok’s recent form to start 2024 deserves recognition and an international call-up in March if he remains consistent. 

The 26-year-old provided an assist in Borussia Monchengladbach’s 3-1 defeat to Bayern Munich on Saturday marking his third goal contribution in his last four Bundesliga games.

Pefok joined Gladbach on loan from Union Berlin for the 2023-24 season and has tallied six goals and three assists through 16 games. He’s already surpassed his five goals he scored last season.

If Gregg Berhalter were to call him up for the upcoming March Concacaf Nations League semifinal and potential final, it would be the first time in two years Pefok has represented the USMNT.

Pefok’s last appearance came on March 25, 2022, during a World Cup qualifying game in the Azteca vs. Mexico. It’s safe to assume Pefok wouldn’t want this miss to be his last big moment with the USMNT.

In 2022 he was tearing up the Swiss Super League scoring 27 goals in 45 appearances for the 2021-22 campaign. He secured a move to the Bundesliga with Union Berlin but failed to establish himself.

Fast forward to present day and he’s getting consistent time with a club in Europe’s top five leagues and is either scoring or creating goals. 

Pefok deserves another shot.

Berhalter’s preferred strikers are currently Folarin Balogun and Ricardo Pepi. Pefok has been keeping pace in the goal department with both players this season.

American strikers in Europe

  • Jordan Pefok: 6 goals, 3 assists (16 games)
  • Ricardo Pepi: 6 goals, 2 assists (28 games)*
  • Folarin Balogun: 4 goals, 5 assists (17 games)
  • Josh Sargent: 6 goals, 1 assist (12 games)
  • Haji Wright: 8 goals, 6 assists (30 games)

*All but one of Pepi’s goals/assists have come from off the bench

At this rate Berhalter will have a tough decision as to who will start as striker in this summer’s 2024 Copa América. Sargent, who started in the World Cup for the USMNT, has also recently returned from injury and is performing well in the EFL Championship.

Haji Wright, who went to Qatar with the USMNT, is scoring goals for Championship side Coventry City.

Who Berhalter selects as strikers for the Concacaf Nations League in March should provide a good idea as to who will get to compete in Copa América.

If Pefok continues to perform well in the Bundesliga, then there’s no reason he shouldn’t be in the conversation.

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