8 Potential Breakout USMNT Stars in 2018 World Cup

John D. Halloran@JohnDHalloranContributor IIJuly 11, 2014

8 Potential Breakout USMNT Stars in 2018 World Cup

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    As the United States men's national team begins to re-focus on the road ahead, it will have to start integrating new talent in preparation for the 2018 World Cup cycle.

    Luckily for the U.S., it has already bled some of this new talent and gotten them some experience in this summer's World Cup.

    Here are eight potential stars for the U.S. come 2018. 

Mix Diskerud

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    Mix Diskerud has been an exciting prospect for the U.S. since he made his debut under Bob Bradley in 2010.

    Unfortunately, he didn't see any playing time in this summer's tournament, but he still has much to offer the team.

    He proved in last summer's Gold Cup that he has a technical level higher than most players in the U.S. pool, which was something the United States sorely lacked in Brazil.

    With Jermaine Jones and Kyle Beckerman likely to move on from the team, head coach Jurgen Klinsmann will need to turn to Diskerud to help rebuild his midfield for the 2018 World Cup cycle. 

Julian Green

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    If Julian Green can break into Bayern Munich's first team, he will likely become a household name well before 2018.

    Although some criticized Green's inclusion on the U.S. roster for the 2014 World Cup, he helped silence those critics by scoring with his first touch against Belgium in the round of 16.

    He wasn't given much of a chance to play in 2014, but with the U.S. desperate for attacking midfielders heading into the next cycle, Green will likely be a well-integrated part of the team come the 2018 tournament in Russia. 

John Anthony Brooks

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    John Anthony Brooks only made a brief cameo in the 2014 World Cup, coming on as a second-half substitute for Matt Besler against Ghana.

    However, Brooks took advantage of the opportunity. The 21-year-old scored with less than five minutes remaining in their opening match to win the game for the United States.

    Brooks had an up-and-down season in the Bundesliga last year, but he's still young and should be an experienced veteran ready to make his mark in 2018. 

DeAndre Yedlin

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    DeAndre Yedlin's star has risen faster than anyone could have imagined prior to the 2014 World Cup.

    He was a surprise inclusion on the roster, and after two brief substitute appearances in the group stage, he was trusted to replace Fabian Johnson against Belgium when Johnson went down injured.

    Yedlin proved to be one of the team's best players in the match. He has since drawn interest from major clubs in Europe, including Italian giants AS Romaaccording to Sky Sports

Aron Johannsson

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    Aron Johannsson certainly didn't have the World Cup many were expecting after only appearing for the U.S. one time as a first-half substitute for an injured Jozy Altidore against Ghana.

    Klinsmann opted to use Clint Dempsey as the team's lone striker after that game, and when he went to the bench, the coach twice chose Chris Wondolowski over Johannsson.

    It was revealed after the tournament that Johannsson had suffered an ankle injury, which may have contributed to his lack of minutes.

    After his 26-goal season for AZ Alkmaar last season, many had projected a bigger tournament for Johannsson.

    However, even in his brief appearances for the U.S. to date, he has shown a technical level most other U.S. players cannot match. He will likely be a big part of the team moving forward. 

Terrence Boyd

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    Terrence Boyd didn't make the final 23-man roster for Brazil, but he will likely be a big part of the team as it heads into the 2018 cycle.

    He scored 20 goals for Rapid Vienna last season and just secured a move to Bundesliga II side Red Bull Leipzig.

    Assuming all goes well, Boyd should be in the prime of his career come Russia. 

Diego Fagundez

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    Diego Fagundez isn't yet an American citizen, but unlike the United States' other dual nationals, Fagundez didn't grow up abroad—he's been living in Massachusetts since he was five.

    The 19-year-old is already in his fourth season as a professional and has 21 goals and 13 assists in 73 appearances for the New England Revolution

Darlington Nagbe

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    Darlington Nagbe, like Fagundez, isn't yet an American citizen. However, he is married to an American and already has a green card.

    He'll likely finalize the process before the 2018 World Cup cycle begins and can provide some desperately needed help to the U.S. as an attacking midfielder.