Dodged Barplots of Birthplaces (US or non-US) of USMNT Players (2004 to 2017)

I am interested in seeing how the composition of the USMNT has changed over time with respect to the proportions of US-born versus non-US-born players. Ideally I would like to look at this going back to the qualification games for the 1990 World Cup. However, the "statistics" page for the USMNT on US Soccer's website includes lists of all players to get on the field in at least one game only for each year since 2004. But it's a place to start. I paired this data with the birthplaces for each player as reported on their respective Wikipedia pages and produced a few new figures, one of which I will present in this post.

The figure below is a series of barplots of the number of players who played at least part of one USMNT game for each year since 2004. Each year has a pair of bars, one of which represents the number of US-born players while the other represents the number of non-US born players.

(click to enlarge)

According to this figure, the number of foreign-born US players started creeping up after Bob Bradley took over at the end of 2006 (his first game in charge was in 2007) and rose even higher under the reign of Jurgen Klinsmann (which started in the middle of 2011), peaking in 2016, the year he was relieved of his duties. Of note, Bruce Arena II has already used more foreign-born players than in any of the Bruce Arena I years that are included in the figure (2004-2006) and it is only May. Part of this likely is the legacy of his immediate predecessor's recruitment of foreign-born players and might well trend downward in the next few years.

Tomorrow's figure: the foreign countries that are the birthplaces of these non-US-born USMNT players. No prizes for guessing correctly which country accounts for the most.


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