"Deserve" is a funny word. Did Mexico "deserve" to be in the 2014 World Cup, when that last-minute US goal in a meaningless game saved them from elimination? And that's just one such example.
After the debacle of the last cycle, the US needs to do everything in its power to get an advantage in these games. Home field matters. Away support matters. Minimize it. You don't see Mexico or Costa Rica taking it easy on the US, do you? Canada played Mexico in Edmonton not because Edmonton "deserved" a game.
I don't care how they qualify, just qualify please.
If you think/believe the performance in the last ~12 games will translate to next season, you can make the argument that things are looking up for 2022. No guarantees, of course, but that decent streak can certainly be spun as grounds for optimism.