New York Red Bulls Sacha Kljestan and Luis Robles will hope to add to their international experience in the US Men's National Team's first match of 2017. As, of course, will Dax McCarty, RBNY's recently ousted captain, now attached to Chicago Fire.
The friendly against Serbia is expected to be a relatively easy outing for USMNT. January is not included in the FIFA international match calendar, and Serbia and the USA are each bringing squads that exclude many of their best-known players.
But there is quite a difference between a USA roster selected entirely of players based in North America and a Serbia roster made up almost entirely of players from the Serbian SuperLiga. USMNT's team will include first-choice players like Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore, as well as several (like Kljestan) vying to be considered starters over the remainder of the Nats' World Cup qualifying campaign. Serbia's squad is barely a B team. The mostly uncapped, mostly U-25 roster surely contains some capable players, but there aren't many - if any - of them who might feature even in a top-50 list of the Serbian national team player pool.
Under normal circumstances, Serbia would be expected to test USMNT. This match ought not to be considered normal circumstances.
Still, the players in Bruce Arena's first training camp of his second stint as USMNT head coach will not care about the opposition: this is their opportunity to make a case for competitive minutes later in the year.
Anything less than a win would be a surprise and disappointment for the home team; the second-string Serbs will do well to keep up with what should be a highly motivated USMNT.
Per livesoccertv.com, here's where to find the match.