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USMNT schedule for final round of Concacaf World Cup qualifying is set

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The U.S. Men’s National Team will open the final round of Concacaf World Cup qualifying in the fall with a pair of road trips to Central America sandwiched around a home clash with a fast-rising foe.

Tuesday night’s results in Concacaf qualifying saw Canada, El Salvador and Panama secure the final three spots in the eight-team Octagonal, the final round of Concacaf qualifying that has replaced the old Hexagonal Round format.

Those results help determine the USMNT’s schedule of opponents for the Octagonal, with the team’s first qualifier taking place on September 2 on the road against El Salvador.

The Americans will play their first home Octagonal qualifier on September 5 against Canada, before returning to Central America to take on Honduras on September 8.

Here is a rundown of the full World Cup qualifying schedule the USMNT will face, starting in September (specific dates have yet to be determined):


USMNT World Cup Qualifying Schedule


September 2 – El Salvador vs. USMNT

September 5 – USMNT vs. Canada

September 8 – Honduras vs. USMNT

October 7 – USMNT vs. Jamaica

October 10 – Panama vs. USMNT

October 13 – USMNT vs. Costa Rica

November – USMNT vs. Mexico

November – Jamaica vs. USMNT

January 27, 2022 – USMNT vs. El Salvador

January 30, 2022 – Canada vs. USMNT

February 2, 2022 – USMNT vs. Honduras

March 24, 2022 – Mexico vs. USMNT

March 27, 2022 – USMNT vs. Panama

March 30, 2022 – Costa Rica vs. USMNT


The top three teams in the Concacaf Octagonal will automatically qualify for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, with the fourth-place team qualifying for an inter-confederation playoff.

What do you think of the schedule? Where would you like to see the USMNT play its home games? Which match are you most looking forward to?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. As we do not have SUM choosing the US MLS venues to play Mexico and Central American teams, we can go back to putting home games in colder latitudes and choose some home events that are away from large metro area that will draw as many opponent fans than US ones. The sole exception is to have the home leg of the US-MX game at SoFi stadium in LA and if not
    There, a place with low altitude and low temps

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  2. Has anyone done the math on what the minimum points total may end up being to qualify this round?

    It does not matter if we finish 1st, 2nd, or 3rd. All that matters is we qualify for the WC. Qualification is about points.

    Qualification performance does not translate into WC success. I always go back to 2002 WC. Argentina dominated South American qualification and looked unstoppable. Brazil barely qualified. Argentina got knocked out in group play and Brazil won the whole thing.

    It’s all about getting the points.

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  3. If we get an average of 2 ppg in each window we will be fine. I’m expecting to get CONCACAF’d at some point on the road … hopefully not in ES … but down in Saprissa or San Pedro Sula is about par for the course. I think we’ll be fine on the road in Canada and Jamaica. Mexican is a whole‘ nother kettle of fish.

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  4. If we finish worse than 2nd, Berhalter should be fired. With our quality and depth, while it won’t be easy, we should get results in almost every game and qualify easily.

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  5. i see the opening schedule sequence as more difficult than it appears. ES away, road games are tough, canada home, rivalry game, Honduras away is the hard game and it’s last. if you play the first choice 1st and 3rd games then you have squad rotation for canada which abused some personnel choices (eg ream) in their home game. you can’t just run out the same team every night and hope for anything from honduras. if you start the B side for ES then those away points are harder and the A team has to go two in a row.

    people thinking this will be easy are fooled by how we almost always host pre WCQ games these days. as it is we beat honduras 1-0 in a close one at home. my theory on road prognostication is it only gets worse from the home result. i also think we don’t have a coherent defense — which likely will not travel well. loading up on offense is a home strategy.

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    • All concacaf teams will have to rotate heavier than ever before since all will be dealing with the 3 game windows. On paper this should favor the USMNT since we have more quality depth developing (for instance: our mostly B side crushing Costa Rica) And logistically I would agree with mostly playing our international stars the 1st and 3rd games. Also in our favor is the current competition except Mexico are less talented than in the recent past. Of course there is always the officiating, and away shenanigans to be dealt with so nothing guaranteed, but we should be heavily favored to finish first or second. The schedule is set up pretty favorably for us, providing we take max points early. With the last window being the most difficult, it would be better to have already qualified or really close (maybe rest some) than have to go to Mexico needing points.

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    • Disagree with your strategy a bit. The Most important game is the game against Canada. If you view the U.S., Mex. and Honduras as the three best teams it’s imperative you don’t drop points to anyone other then Honduras and Mexico as you don’t want anyone else to garner enough points to challenge for top 3. Thus We have to take 3 points from Canada at home. So i would say, play the first team in the first game to get 3 points on the road, first team against Canada to get 3 points at home, and then squad rotate on the road because it’s ok if you don’t get a result on the road against a solid team if you have taken care of business in the first two games. Also Canada has exactly the dangerous type of team that could easily give a back up squad problems. Against the back ups Canada could arguable have the best player on the field.

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      • Against the USA starters, Canada could arguably have the best player on the field. I do hesitate to say Honduras is the 3rs best team. I think they are pretty similiar to Costa Rica. Stealing pts from Honduras would be huge.

  6. I mean…if the USMNT somehow doesn’t qualify for Qatar this time, it’s time to officially abandon soccer in this country. Aside from Mexico, CONCACAF consists of…El Salvador (#69 in the world) Canada (#70 in the world), Honduras (#67 in the world), Jamaica (#35 in the world) , Panama (#78) in the world)…and Costa Rica (#50 in the world.)

    Yeesh CONCACAF has gotten bad, especially now that the Ticos have fallen off, and Jamaica, Honduras, and Panama have just never really come on like people thought they might.

    Against this slate, you would THINK we should split with Mexico, get no more than the odd road draw, and a minimum of seven wins, and qualify easily. Anything less than that…well. The only thing that makes it challenging is, well, CONCACAF itself, and the extremely compressed timeline. The kids are going to have to manage their business, and not faff about, and get behind the math like they did last cycle. It’s hard to see Mexico and the USA NOT making it, out of this group. After that…does it really matter? They’re Group Stage fodder, basically.

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    • my first instinct was to say panama is a mess based on 6-2 neutral site — and that they did us a favor knocking out curacao, who was organized and tough to beat. but based on lineup comparisons the vast majority of the 6-2 team wasn’t even in the curacao playoff side. in other words, we didn’t see their A team. in reality the margin may be closer to the 1-0 squeaker from the gold cup.

      i also think our scheduling penchant for home games my hide it being tougher away. when we had to play both places we split with canada. we’ve won half our home games with mexico this cycle. i think NL flattered us and we have some work ahead.

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  7. Are home teams listed first? Because January 30th in Canada is going to be a cold one, no matter where they play it.

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    • We need to schedule our Jan. 27 fixture at a cold weather location too to help acclimate our players for Canada.

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      • Vancouver, Toronto SkyDome (ugh for soccer), or the Big O in Montreal are the only places you can play in January in Canada. Anywhere else with a stadium will be outdoors and too high a risk of unplayable conditions. Vancouver does not have a suitable outdoor stadium so it would have to be BC Place if it’s there.

  8. Obviously. September and October of this year are huge, gosh that’s not far away. This is a favorable schedule for the USA, but only if we book the early wins. We should be gunning for the full 15 points going into an Oct 13 home game with the Ticos. That game is followed by a home clash with el tri. Sitting on 21 points after this game, would be delish.

    7 other teams, home and away, that’s 14 games times 3points for a win and max points available, 42. You wanna do damage in Qatar, do damage in the OcTaG first. And try and play like the Italians, with a total commitment to defense, team defense, and countering with majestic endeavor.

    It’s shouldnt be lost on anyone that the early qualifying will be coming when MLS is in full swing and euro leagues are just getting started. There is going to be a lot of talent to manage over these next 9 months, and this roster is going to have to be very fluid and flexible. I’m expecting huge things from this group and am hoping that as a team and federation, we are cultivating a positive identity that fans can admire and appreciate. This is after all, just distraction, according to some.

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