Sporting KC goalkeeper John Pulskamp makes debut with U.S. Olympic Team in 4-1 win over Japan


Sporting Kansas City goalkeeper John Pulskamp made his debut with the U.S. Men's Olympic National Team on Tuesday, playing 27 minutes as a second-half substitute in the United States' 4-1 win over Japan at Phoenix Rising Stadium.

Pulskamp entered the friendly in the 63rd minute with the scoreline at 3-1 behind goals from Johan Gomez, Paxten Aaronson and Aidan Morris before Duncan McGuire added a fourth for the United States on a set piece in the 73rd minute.

Tuesday's match concluded the U.S. U-23 training camp as part of preparation for the 2024 Olympic Games next summer in France. The U.S. qualified for its first Olympic tournament in 16 years by winning the 2022 Concacaf U-20 Championship in dominant fashion.

Pulskamp, 22, continues to earn opportunities with the United States national teams after joining the U.S. senior national team for a training camp in December 2021. The goalkeeper previously competed at a U.S. U-18 training camp in June 2018 before making his U.S. U-20 debut in a friendly against rivals Mexico on Jan. 18, 2020.

One of the best young goalkeepers in the country, Pulskamp has earned 10 clean sheets and posted a 13-12-8 record in 33 first-team appearances across all competitions since signing for the club in early 2020. He has played an additional 43 matches for Sporting Kansas City II since 2019, spread across the USL Championship and MLS NEXT Pro.

Pulskamp has kept clean sheets in four of his 10 appearances for Sporting this season, featuring in MLS, Leagues Cup and U.S. Open Cup competitions. He also played nine MLS NEXT Pro matches for Sporting KC II, where he posted a 7-2 record and won both shootouts in which he participated. Over the course of Pulskamp’s professional career, opponents have failed to beat him from the penalty spot in the MLS regular season, MLS NEXT Pro, USL championship and U.S. Open Cup.

In 2022, Pulskamp hit MLS career highs with 12 games played, five wins and three shutouts, finishing the year with a 5-4-3 league record. He also helped Sporting reach the Open Cup semifinals, starting four matches during the club’s tournament run. Pulskamp made his MLS debut in April 2021 by becoming the third-youngest keeper in league history to win a regular season match in a 2-1 victory at the New York Red Bulls. He ended 2021 with a 3-2-1 record as an MLS starter.

Pulskamp arrived in Kansas City in 2019 after a two-year stint in the LA Galaxy Academy, where he competed at the U-17 and U-19 levels in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy. During his time with the Galaxy, he also went on trial with English Premier League side AFC Bournemouth in 2018. Prior to joining LA, he represented youth academies Real So Cal and Central California Aztecs in his home state.