As the anticipation builds for the 2024 Copa America, former USMNT striker Clint Dempsey believes that the tournament could be a make-or-break moment for current manager Gregg Berhalter, reported by GOAL. In an exclusive interview on Destination Miami with CBS Sports Soccer, Dempsey shared his insights, emphasizing that the upcoming year will define Berhalter's tenure more significantly than the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Recent performances have placed Berhalter under increased scrutiny, especially following defeats to Germany in an international friendly and Trinidad and Tobago in the Concacaf Nations League. Now, with the Copa America on the horizon, Dempsey sees it as a pivotal moment that could shape the narrative surrounding Berhalter's leadership.

“I think Copa America is truly how you're going to be graded for the team,” said Dempsey. “This is a huge test for this team and for this coach in terms of where we're going.”

Dempsey acknowledged the importance of building momentum for the upcoming 2026 World Cup on home soil. Success in the Copa America could signal a positive trajectory, but failure might raise questions about the direction of the team.

“You don't do well, then you're always on the chopping block,” added Dempsey. “If you're not performing, the question starts to be asked. So I think there's still time to show what you can do. But I think Copa America is going to be a huge test for this team and for this coach in terms of where we're going.”

The US Soccer Federation has arranged an international friendly against Slovenia on January 20, providing an initial challenge for Gregg Berhalter and the team. As preparations unfold, the spotlight will be on players' club performances, with particular attention to Ricardo Pepi's contributions after his Champions League-winning goal for PSV. The coming months promise to be crucial for Berhalter and the USMNT, as they aim to make a statement in the Copa America and set the tone for future success.