By Michael Lewis Editor

Defender Joe Scally almost made the U.S. men’s national team roster for its October window of World Cup qualifiers.

On Thursday, he was named to the squad for November’s two matches against Mexico and Jamaica.

So what was the difference this time for the Lake Grove, N.Y. resident?

Well, a spot opened up because of Sergino Dest’s injury.

And, the 18-year-old has been in form and playing at a high level for Borussia Moenchengladbach, said USMNT head coach Gregg Berhalter.

“If you look at what’s changed from month to month, he’s played in another five Bundesliga games, a Cup game,” Berhalter said during a Thursday afternoon Zoom media call when he announced the 25-year playing side for qualifiers. “They beat Bayern Munich, 5-0. He had an assist the other day. This is what we’re looking at. How is the player performing?

“When we see him going against [Leroy] Sane or Alfonso Davies on the side and he’s being tested. He’s standing up to these tests. For us, it was just gathering enough information. He’s a young player, we want to see him performing consistently at a high level.”

The USA hosts Mexico in Cincinnati Nov. 12 and then visits Jamaica four days later.