DeAndre Yedlin

DeAndre Yedlin returns to Seattle, but laments rare suspension for USMNT

SEATTLE – DeAndre Yedlin returned to the Emerald City with the U.S. national team on Sunday night, but it’s not exactly the happy homecoming he was expecting.


The Seattle native and former Sounders defender is suspended for the USMNT’s huge Copa America Centenario quarterfinal matchup against Ecuador at CenturyLink Field on Thursday (6:30 p.m. PT; FS1/Unimas/UDN) after a pair of successive yellow cards in the team’s final group stage game against Paraguay on Saturday.


Yedlin worked out with the rest of the USMNT at Seattle University’s Championship Field on Tuesday morning, but he admitted he’s frustrated he won’t be able to play in front of his hometown crowd.


“It’s disappointing, of course,” Yedlin said. “You want to play in front of the fans you’ve played in front of before, and in front of your family. But at the end of the day, the biggest thing is that we made it through the group, that we’re in the quarterfinals and that we have a chance to get the semifinals.”



Yedlin’s red card on Saturday was his first in 37 international appearances with the USMNT, and came as a surprise to both him and his teammates. He was booked in the 47th minute for a foul near midfield on Paraguay’s Miguel Almirón, and he was sent off a minute later for a tackle on Miguel Samudio right in front of the U.S. bench.

“The first one I’m not going to comment on, because I’ll probably get fined if I do,” Yedlin said Tuesday. “But the second one, I caught him. I was coming in fast and my left foot slipped, and my right foot came up and I caught him. That one deserved a yellow, I think. The first one, I don’t know about, but he called it.”


Yedlin only received one red card in 56 regular-season appearances in Seattle.


Yedlin’s suspension not only leaves a hometown hero out of the mix, but also throws a wrench in the plans of head coach Jurgen Klinsmann after he started the same lineup each of the three games in the group stage.


Yedlin has been the de facto starting right back since he broke out in the 2014 World Cup, and now Klinsmann and the USMNT will be faced with the challenge of replacing Yedlin’s speed, aggressiveness and increasing defensive prowess against one of South America’s top teams.



“It’s a bummer, obviously, not to have DeAndre in the lineup for this very, very crucial game,” Klinsmann said. “Especially in his hometown. But this is how a tournament goes, sooner or later you lose a player through an injury or a second yellow card, and everyone on the bench is ready to step in.”


This week marks the first time Yedlin is back in Seattle with the USMNT since 2014, when he leveraged his success at the World Cup into a transfer to EPL side Tottenham after two seasons as a fan favorite and an MLS All-Star with the Sounders.


“For me, it’s the best crowd that I’ve played in front of in the U.S, so I expect nothing less,” Yedlin said. “I know they’ll be out in numbers, cheering on the boys.”

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