Matt Miazga's participation in the USA U-23s' September training camp is over. He played 90 minutes against England's U-21s, and has returned to his club in keeping with an arrangement between US Soccer and the New York Red Bulls. As such, Miazga has made his pitch to U-23 head coach Andi Herzog for inclusion in the roster for CONCACAF Olympic qualifying - a tournament that starts on October 1.
We won't have to wait too long to find out if that pitch was successful. In a sit-down with Joe Prince-Wright for NBC Sports Pro Soccer Talk, Herzog reveals he will confirm the Olympic Qualifying roster on September 17.
He also suggests he will be selecting a 35-man squad for the tournament. Olympic qualifying rules limit match-day squads to 20 players, but it appears Herzog is minded to maximize participation, or at least availability, of the pool of players he is considering. The official list of players for the Olympic tournament itself is limited to 18 players and four alternates, so there are some hard(er) decisions ahead for Herzog if the USA qualifies for Brazil 2016.
But for now, his task is to find a 35-man squad by September 17 that is capable of yielding a match-winning group of 20 in October. With respect to his thinking about the player pool, Herzog repeatedly mentions Montreal Impact's Eric Miller as having impressed so far in the training camp in England. But the first player's name he mentions in the interview is the RBNY defender:
Obviously with Matt Miazga I was really impressed.
Miazga's name pops up a few times in the interview. He's mentioned as just about the only player in the pool Herzog is considering who is getting regular starts for his club and is not a holding midfielder. And the U-23 coach clearly rates the Red Bulls' center back:
Matt Miazga was really good.
Sounds like Miazga made a strong case in England. We'll see whether Herzog's admiration translates into a place in the Olympic qualifying tournament soon enough.