U.S. Men's National Team vs. Bosnia and Herzegovina
Sunday, Jan. 28 | 8:30 p.m. CT | FS1, UniMas, UDN
StubHub Center | Carson, California
Sporting Kansas City defender Ike Opara looks to make his U.S. Men’s National Team debut on Sunday when the United States opens 2018 with a friendly against Bosnia and Herzegovina at StubHub Center in Carson, California. Kickoff is slated for 8:30 p.m. CT, airing live on FS1, UniMas and UDN.
Opara joined interim head coach Dave Sarachan’s squad earlier this month for January Camp, marking the center back’s first inclusion at the U.S. senior international level. Opara’s selection to the MNT comes on the heels of a stellar 2017 campaign that saw him earn MLS Defender of the Year honors as the dominant lynchpin of Sporting KC’s stingy backline.
Entering his sixth season with Sporting KC and his ninth in Major League Soccer, Opara is one of 13 players on the current U.S. roster hoping to land a first career cap for the senior team. The 28-year-old provides a veteran presence on a youthful squad that includes 20 players aged 24 or younger.
Should he earn minutes on Sunday night, Opara would become the third active Sporting KC player to appear for the U.S. MNT, joining Matt Besler and Graham Zusi — both of whom have featured regularly for the Yanks over the last five years.
The U.S. is preparing to face Bosnia and Herzegovina for just the second time ever, having prevailed by a 4-3 scoreline in the first meeting on Aug. 14, 2013. The Bosnian roster notably includes Philadelphia Union midfielder Haris Medunjanin, who has bagged 11 goals in 55 international appearances. Bosnia and Herzegovina failed to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, finishing behind Belgium and Greece in its qualifying group.
On the international stage, Opara first represented the U.S. at the U-20 level in 2008. He then competed at the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Egypt, starting all three games, and made eight total starts for the U.S. U-20s in 2009. In 2012, Opara joined the U.S. U-23 roster for the CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Tournament, where he started all three group stage matches.
U.S. MNT Roster (Club; Caps/Goals):
GOALKEEPERS (4): Alex Bono (Toronto FC/CAN; 0/0), Bill Hamid (Midtjylland/DEN; 4/0), Cody Cropper (New England Revolution; 0/0), Zack Steffen (Columbus Crew SC; 0/0)
DEFENDERS (9): Danny Acosta (Real Salt Lake; 0/0), Justen Glad (Real Salt Lake; 0/0), Nick Lima (San Jose Earthquakes; 0/0), Justin Morrow (Toronto FC/CAN; 3/0), Ike Opara (Sporting Kansas City; 0/0), Tim Parker (Vancouver Whitecaps FC/CAN; 0/0), Matt Polster (Chicago Fire; 0/0), Brandon Vincent (Chicago Fire; 1/0), Walker Zimmerman (Los Angeles Football Club; 1/0)
MIDFIELDERS (11): Tyler Adams (New York Red Bulls; 1/0), Paul Arriola (D.C. United; 15/2), Russell Canouse (D.C. United; 0/0), Marky Delgado (Toronto FC/CAN; 0/0), Marlon Hairston (Colorado Rapids; 0/0), Ian Harkes (D.C. United; 0/0), Brooks Lennon (Real Salt Lake; 0/0), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders FC; 1/0), Kelyn Rowe (New England Revolution; 3/1), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew SC; 2/0), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew SC; 37/6)
FORWARDS (5): Juan Agudelo (New England Revolution; 27/3), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders FC; 24/5), Christian Ramirez (Minnesota United FC; 0/0), Rubio Rubin (Unattached; 3/0), CJ Sapong (Philadelphia Union; 3/0)
Bosnia and Herzegovina Roster (Club; Caps/Goals):
GOALKEEPERS (3): Kenan Pirić (HSK Zrinjski; 0/0), Ibrahim Šehić (FC Qarabag/AZE; 6/0), Nemanja Trjulja (FK Borac Banja Luka; 0/0)
DEFENDERS (6): Almir Bekić (FK Sarajevo; 1/0), Daniel Graovac (FK Željezničar; 1/0), Marko Mihojević (FK Sarajevo; 0/0), Besim Šerbečić (FK Radnik Bijeljina; 0/0), Darko Todorović (FK Sloboda Tuzla; 0/0)
MIDFIELDERS (10): Dino Beširevic (FK Radnik Bijeljina; 0/0), Marijan Ćavar (Eintracht Frankfurt/GER; 0/0), Zoran Kvrižic (HNK Rijeka/CRO; 3/0), Stjepan Lončar (NK Široki Breijeg; 0/0), Haris Medunjanin (Philadelphia Union/USA; 55/11), Elvis Sarić (FK Sarajevo; 0/0), Adnan Šećerović (FK Mladost Doboj Kakanj; 0/0), Ognjen Todorović (HSK Zrinjski; 0/0), Tomislav Tomić (NK Olimpija Ljubljana/SVN; 0/0), Goran Zakarić (FK Željezničar; 1/0)
FORWARDS (5): Mersudin Ahmetović (FK Sarajevo; 0/0), Nemanja Bilbija (HSK Zrinjski; 0/0), Elvir Coljić (FK Krupa; 0/0), Elvir Ibisevic (University of Nebraska-Omaha; 0/0), Luka Menalo (NK Široki Brijeg; 0/0)