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USMNT GK Zack Steffen Set to Leave Man City for Middlesbrough Loan, per Report

U.S. men’s national team goalkeeper Zack Steffen is expected to join Championship side Middlesbrough on loan from Manchester City for the upcoming season, according to the Manchester Evening News

In the past two seasons, Steffen has won two Premier League medals, but only made two Premier League appearances for Man City while sitting behind starting keeper Ederson. Across all competitions during that time, the 27-year-old has made 21 appearances as City’s regular starter in domestic cups. 

The move is likely to come as a touch of good news for USMNT fans during a World Cup year, should Steffen become the regular starter. Heading into a difficult group featuring England, Iran and Wales, the concern was that the U.S. would be at risk of heading to Qatar without a keeper who plays regularly at the club level. 

Matt Turner, who officially joined Arsenal this week, will likely compete with Steffen for the starting U.S. job, but he is not expected to start at Arsenal with Aaron Ramsdale already established as the Gunners’ No. 1. Steffen has 29 total caps for the USMNT while the 28-year-old Turner has 18. 

Meanwhile, Ethan Horvath only made 11 appearances last season for Nottingham Forest, which was recently promoted to the Premier League and is reportedly landing Dean Henderson on loan to become its starter. 

“I don’t 100% know what will go on, but I think mine and everyone's main focus going into these last couple of months is playing time and just getting as many games as possible before Gregg makes the final decisions,” Horvath said prior to a Concacaf Nations League start in El Salvador earlier this month.

“Yeah, there is the uncertainty. But going into this summer period, my main objective is to play. And I know that, yes, the World Cup is coming around, and that is part of the reason why I want to play. But to be honest, I just want to play to play again, to feel the adrenaline and those butterflies and just that gameday feeling day-in and day-out. So yeah, we'll see what happens. We're in close contact with Nottingham and yeah, whatever happens, happens there. The main objective is to play, if that's with Nottingham or somewhere else.”

The other goalkeeper seemingly in the running to make the Qatar-bound squad is NYCFC’s Sean Johnson, who does start regularly for the reigning MLS Cup winner.

Middlesbrough finished seventh in the English second division last season, just five points shy of making the promotion playoff, and will be pushing to return to the top flight with Steffen after its relegation in 2017. 

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