The 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil is rapidly approaching, as teams from all six regions continue to compete for a spot. Just 3.5 slots remain for the 35 squads competing from North America, Central America, and the Caribbean, and the U.S. Men’s National team is gearing up for several matches that could propel it into next summer’s competition.
In June, the USMNT claimed its third consecutive World Cup qualifier win over Honduras, and the team will look to continue that streak on Sept. 10 against Mexico at Columbus Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. The USMNT currently sits in first place of the final round of qualifiers with 13 points from six matches. Landon Donovan’s return has been quite promising for the team’s upcoming matches, as he has contributed seven goals and assists, in addition to seven goals and two assists from Jozy Altidore, and five goals from Clint Dempsey.
Following the match against Mexico, the final remaining World Cup qualifying match stateside will take place against Jamaica at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kan., on Oct. 11. Other matches held outside the country will feature USA Soccer versus Costa Rica (Sept. 6) and Panama (Oct. 15).
Although it is still years away, there are already big changes underway for the 2022 World Cup. Usually held in the summer, the event is scheduled to take place in Qatar, which has an average summer temperature of over 104 degrees. Due to the risks of extreme heat, FIFA officials have been working on a new timeframe for the World Cup, and dates in May and November have already been suggested.
Brazil National Soccer vs. Portugal Friendly
For those on the East Coast that can’t make it to the USMNT match in Ohio on Sept. 10, Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., will be playing host to a friendly in the evening between the Brazil National Soccer team and Portugal. The match is one of several friendlies to take place at a major U.S. sports venue this summer. Past soccer matches have included Chelsea FC and Manchester City FC at Busch Stadium in St. Louis and Yankee Stadium in New York in May.
MLS Soccer News
When USMNT stars aren’t competing for the national team, you can find them on the field playing for your favorite Major League Soccer teams. The MLS playoffs are just around the corner, and teams from both conferences are fighting to clinch the top five spots to continue to the postseason. The newest team in the league and the only one outside of U.S. borders is the Montreal Impact, which currently sits atop the Eastern Conference with 41 points and a 12-7 record. The New York Red Bulls and Sporting Kansas City are just behind in the standings, with 9-6 records as the month of August comes to a close.
The LA Galaxy, one of the most tenured teams in the league, is close behind the Western Conference-leading Real Salt Lake with a 12-9 record. The Galaxy are the two-time defending MLS champions, and despite the loss of star midfielder David Beckham after the 2012 season, have continued to be a viable threat in the MLS. Both the Seattle Sounders FC and Portland Timbers are also currently residing within the top five as well.