Why isn't the U.S. men's national team at the 2018 World Cup?

ESPN Illusttration

Since we know the United States won't be at the world's biggest sporting event in Russia this June, there is an obvious question: Where in the world is American soccer? Where is it going? These are the questions poking at anyone connected to the sport in the United States now. Players, instructors, federation executives and fans are all sifting through the same rubble in search of something -- anything -- to explain it all. This is why ESPN is continuing to examine the state of American soccer, through a series of stories and videos looking back at what led to this point as well as spinning forward to uncover where -- and how -- the next generation of American stars will emerge. See our coverage below and look for more as the World Cup draws closer.

How to watch U.S. games pre-World Cup

  • U.S. vs. Ireland (friendly): Sat., June 2 at 3 p.m. ET Watch on ESPN2

  • U.S. vs. France (friendly): Sat., June 9 at 3 p.m. ET Watch on ESPN

State of men's U.S. soccer: Features and video

  • Where in the world is the U.S. men's national team?: The reality is sinking in for U.S. fans: Their Yanks won't be suiting up for the 2018 World Cup. As June 14 approaches, there are still no clear answers as to what went wrong in qualifying. Read

  • Is college soccer too much of a risk for rising U.S. talent?: There are many pathways to the U.S. men's national team, but there's one in particular that's in jeopardy: the college route. E:60 reporter Tisha Thompson explores how college coaches are fighting to keep it from going extinct. Read

  • What would have been for the U.S. at this year's World Cup: As the U.S. readies for a handful of friendlies between now and June, we started wondering what the starting lineup would look like if the U.S. were in the World Cup. Here's what we came up with. Read

  • Video: What might have been for the USMNT Herculez Gomez breaks down how the United States would have lined up in Russia had the team not failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. Watch

  • Has the U.S. men's national team lost its fight? Some say most definitely. ESPN FC talked to 18 former and current players and staff about what happened during the 2018 World Cup qualifiers -- and how everything eventually fell apart. Read

  • Video: Where it all went wrong for the USMNT. ESPN FC's Jeff Carlisle shares his findings after speaking to 18 sources on the factors that led to the USMNT's World Cup qualifying failure. Watch