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Pick a Stadium

Thanks to Sepp and his friends, we now know that the U.S. national team will play its first World Cup qualifier in June, probably against Barbados -- which might not have the most imposing team, but does have one of the planet's great flags. (Gotta love a trident!)

We also know that the first leg of the series will be played at a U.S. site.

But where?

Consider:

*Unlike most qualifiers, a large fan base supporting the opponent will not be a factor.
*An enormous stadium is probably not necessary.
*In June, there are no conflicts with football schedules -- or football yard marks.
*Euro club seasons are over and an East Coast venue (allowing players to come and go easier) is not vital.
*More cities than ever are interested in hosting qualifiers and competition will be tense.
*RFK is available again.

The last time the Americans hosted Barbados in qualifying (in 2000), they played at Foxborough and drew 18,334. However, that was a semifinal-round game and fewer soccer-specific stadiums existed. Four years later, when the Americans had to play a first-round series against another tiny Caribbean nation (Grenada), the venue was Columbus and attendance was 9,137.

Let's also keep in mind that, assuming the U.S. team advances, the federation will have to find locations for three home matches in the semifinal round (likely Trinidad & Tobago, Guatemala and Cuba) between August and November, when some large facilities will not be available.

So I ask, where would you like to see the USSF stage these games?

By Steve Goff  |  November 27, 2007; 12:40 PM ET
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
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Comments

HDC, please. no way we get to host any other qualifying games.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 27, 2007 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Since the other qualifications will be subject to a lot of the restrictions that you listed, it makes sense to have this qualifier in a stadium that won't be able to host another qualifier. How about Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Colorado? Right size, not on the East Coast, and good weather in June.

Posted by: Jeff M | November 27, 2007 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I would like to see RFK get a semifinal (not to jinx) i remember going to the US - Panama when Johnson scored his hat trick that game was awesome RFK needs to host again ya cant be the experience...New England doesn't hold a candle to RFK

Posted by: unitedfan07 | November 27, 2007 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Qwest Field.

They won't have a team until 09 and the Sounders already disbanded. Give them one last fix until their soccer drought.

Posted by: James | November 27, 2007 1:15 PM | Report abuse

1) Philadelphia
2) Arsenal-they-are-not (Dick's in Colorado)
3) Bobby Dodd in Atlanta

Posted by: UVA-United | November 27, 2007 1:15 PM | Report abuse

As much as it pains me to say it, RFK has to be considered out of bounds. I know this is a USSF and not MLS event, but soccer has to boycott DC until the DCU Stadium is back on track.

Having MLS cup here was probably a mistake. It showed the fans support the game/league but tax revenue seems to concern district officials only when the city loses it (see Nats Fan Fest in PG county).

Time to play hardball.

Posted by: Looking Dangerous | November 27, 2007 1:17 PM | Report abuse

City Stadium a/k/a U of Richmond Stadium in Richmond, Virginia

Posted by: Anonymous | November 27, 2007 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Portland, OR. Always great fans with a great atmosphere.

Posted by: timoteo | November 27, 2007 1:17 PM | Report abuse

It would be nice to leave RFK for a bigger match...like Mexico or Canada. I say have the first round games in the new stadiums. I would second the Dick's nomination.

Posted by: Southeasterner | November 27, 2007 1:18 PM | Report abuse

How about the Linc In Philly?

Posted by: Johnny | November 27, 2007 1:20 PM | Report abuse

I would hope that one of these games could be at RFK. I remember fondly attending many USMNT games there in the 90s and would really enjoy doing so again.

Other top candidates would have to be places with a nice grass pitch. I'd say that Houston would be a nice candidate (Reliant Stadium). Plus that stadium in Arizona from the recent US-Mexico game was a great venue as well.

Posted by: tmc | November 27, 2007 1:22 PM | Report abuse

It has to be Crew Stadium or DSG Park...and my 3rd choice would be Toyota Park. This game will see about 10,000-15,000 fans at the most so a smaller facility is best. Facilities such as Gillette and RFK can be saved for the Semifinal round. I'd also like to see another qualifier in Salt Lake City...

Posted by: Brian | November 27, 2007 1:27 PM | Report abuse

How about Salt Lake? I remember a game for 2006 qualifying against CR I think that was awesome.

Posted by: Anonymous | November 27, 2007 1:27 PM | Report abuse

If USSF is looking to draw a big crowd, they might want to consider areas with a large Barbadian population.

Posted by: DCBird | November 27, 2007 1:31 PM | Report abuse

P-O-R-T-L-A-N-D!!!

Posted by: matthole | November 27, 2007 1:34 PM | Report abuse

RSL Stadium expected completion Fall 08. The only problem is weather if it gets too late into the year. But for sure, the stadium will see USMNT in 09.

Posted by: Craig | November 27, 2007 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Philadelphia please? Haven't hosted any US game since '91. Time to put us back on the map.

Posted by: anon | November 27, 2007 1:38 PM | Report abuse

SCU Buck Shaw Stadium

Posted by: SJTerremotos | November 27, 2007 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Can you imagine playing the Cuba game somewhere in Florida and what a zoo that would be?

Posted by: Juan-John | November 27, 2007 1:46 PM | Report abuse

having never seen the nat'l team play live, i'm yelling for RFK. i worry, though, that DC would fail to bring out the same crowd that chicago or LA could bring. i imagine that'll be noticed and hurt RFK's chances. but show me a better field on this continent and you can have it.

nevermind the fact that the USMNT would do well to have Barra Brava

Posted by: Anonymous | November 27, 2007 1:47 PM | Report abuse

This would be a great match for Dick's Sporting Goods Park to host. Not expecting a huge crowd, pack them in for great atmosphere.

Posted by: Bonji | November 27, 2007 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Portland. Great fan support, great urban stadium and atmosphere, great future MLS club on par with Toronto.

Posted by: sfa-ptown | November 27, 2007 1:51 PM | Report abuse

I think places with smaller latin populations would be important later on, but for this, it should be held in a big city. Perhaps the Bay area. Chicago just had the Brazil match. Dallas and Houston would be fine, but not in June. Denver is okay.

Posted by: trip | November 27, 2007 1:54 PM | Report abuse

I like DSG in Colorado. We need to keep it at an SSS, why else do we build them? Philly does deserve a game in the near future, just not this one where you couldn't possibly fill all the seats at the Linc.

Posted by: J-Mart | November 27, 2007 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Went to the US v. Jamaica game in Cary, NC at SAS Park before the 2006 World Cup. That would be a perfect place for the game. Great stadium...perfect size.

Posted by: Crewfan | November 27, 2007 1:58 PM | Report abuse

We need to keep it at an SSS, why else do we build them?

Amen.

Soccer specific stadium, commentators, and cameramen, please.

Posted by: Kuz | November 27, 2007 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Any of the smaller S-S-S stadia will do. I would give it to Toronto, but I guess we should keep it within the states, eh?

Posted by: Juanma | November 27, 2007 2:06 PM | Report abuse

When will this decision be made?

Posted by: Anonymous | November 27, 2007 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Well, given that I probably won't be traveling to any US cities to watch the US play the mighty Bajans, I say let a city that doesn't have an MLS team yet get the game. I'd probably vote for Philly over Seattle since Philly didn't even have a Sounders to cheer for, and the Sons of Ben were pretty cool at MLS Cup. Hell, I'm sure they'd give Bobby Convey a nice welcome if he was on the squad.

While I wouldn't be traveling to a US city, the thought of traveling to Barbados is rather intriguing.

Posted by: TCompton | November 27, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse

This might be a better game to have on the East Coast... but if not, San Jose would be a great venue and a sweet way to usher the Earthquakes back into center stage.

Posted by: slims | November 27, 2007 2:14 PM | Report abuse

If USSF is looking to draw a big crowd, they might want to consider areas with a large Barbadian population.

Posted by: DCBird | November 27, 2007 01:31 PM
--------------------------------------------
Well, I live right next to the highest concentration of Barbadians and didn't even know it.

Bring it to Navy Stadium, then.

Posted by: Josh | November 27, 2007 2:16 PM | Report abuse

All I know is that I'd like to go to an away match in Barbados.

Posted by: NamelessFaceless | November 27, 2007 2:16 PM | Report abuse

They should play DCU's new stadium at Poplar Point. Oh wait...

Posted by: Bret | November 27, 2007 2:21 PM | Report abuse

re:

nevermind the fact that the USMNT would do well to have Barra Brava


the barra support united, not the national team...


you'll need to rely on the broken Sam's Army or the up and coming American Outlaws to get some atmosphere.

Posted by: myt! | November 27, 2007 2:22 PM | Report abuse

How about at Reliant Stadium in Houston. Real grass, possible to close roof for inclement weather (rain, heat), home of the MLS Champions 2 years running.

Posted by: DynamoFan | November 27, 2007 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Selfishly, yes to RSL's new digs. It's a great excuse to visit my large tribe of relatives in SLC, as I did for the last cycle's qualifier.

And that was a great, pro-US crowd for that one.

Posted by: seahawkdad | November 27, 2007 2:28 PM | Report abuse

How about Navy's stadium in Annapolis. I think that would be great.

On another topic, Whats going to be on United's jersey next season?

Posted by: Matt | November 27, 2007 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Looking Dangerous has it right regarding RFK. No USSF games should be there until DCU has a deal done with one of the local jurisdictions.

I'm all for Commerce City in the summertime. It's usually much more comfortable in June than any place on the East Coast or SoCal.

Posted by: LeesburgSoccerFan | November 27, 2007 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Agreed that RFK has to be considered out of bounds for soccer events. Every event held there [including MLS Cup] actually HURTS DCU's work towards a SSS, IMHO. RFK is an armpit, though not without its charms.

I'd put it in a city where MLS is coming soon, such as Seattle, or in an extant SSS.

Posted by: khan | November 27, 2007 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Well, I live right next to the highest concentration of Barbadians and didn't even know it.

Bring it to Navy Stadium, then.

Posted by: Josh | November 27, 2007 02:16 PM

---------------

Yeah, 2.6% of 567...what is that, 15 people? Just quickly looking at that list, Brooklyn wins...they'd be able to fill an SSS with the people from Barbados living there.

What about going up to PaeTek Park or whatever the Rochester stadium is called? It's small, nice in the summer, and made for soccer. The Rhinos have a decent following, don't they? Of course, I guess it makes more sense to go to either Dick's or maybe even the Santa Clara stadium to go along with the e-Quakes first season.

Posted by: DE | November 27, 2007 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Fenty's backyard.

Posted by: Ohboyohboy | November 27, 2007 2:56 PM | Report abuse

you'll need to rely on the broken Sam's Army or the up and coming American Outlaws to get some atmosphere.

Posted by: myt! | November 27, 2007 02:22 PM
------------------------------------------

Please explain further. What has happened to Sam's Army? And I must confess that I'm not familiar with the American Outlaws.

Posted by: 22201 | November 27, 2007 3:06 PM | Report abuse

I think United's shirt sponsor is gieco. American Outlaw should creat some nice songs with slow tunes not just usa..usa... that lift the spririt of the game.

Posted by: td | November 27, 2007 3:10 PM | Report abuse

If we lose to Barbados, are we out?

Posted by: David | November 27, 2007 3:10 PM | Report abuse

I'm guessing an MLS Doubleheader will be involved with the Barbados match. All stadiums with FieldTurf should be eliminated from contention.

Sounds like a great excuse to go to Commerce City, CO!

Posted by: DWE4 | November 27, 2007 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Yep David. Two-legged contest and the winners go forward to group play (3 groups of 4); top 2 from each of the groups form a group of 6 for the final group.

Top 3 of final group go to WC.
4th place plays off CONMEBOL

Posted by: Kyle | November 27, 2007 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Kyle. So that means this is real game, and he'll put his best team in there, right? European-based players and all? Or would he use it as a chance to try out some young talent? Despite the tiny size of Barbados, considering all that is on the line, it seems kind of risky to take this game lightly.

Posted by: David | November 27, 2007 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Matt

On another topic, Whats going to be on United's jersey next season?

----------------------------------------

Four stars. Again :(

Posted by: TCompton | November 27, 2007 3:34 PM | Report abuse

How about the T-Bone's Stadium. It could be the only sellout all season in KC!!

Posted by: Fritzy | November 27, 2007 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Here's all you need to know about The American Outlaws:
http://www.theamericanoutlaws.com/

The club leaders were in town for MLS Cup to introduce themselves and this new US supporters group. Sam's Army has been dead for a long time.

K

Posted by: SEKim | November 27, 2007 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: steve-o | November 27, 2007 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Sounds like Kim may have an agenda...http://www.sams-army.com/ looks ok to me.

Posted by: RK | November 27, 2007 4:27 PM | Report abuse

http://sports.yahoo.com/mls/news?slug=txdynamongwenya&prov=st&type=lgns

Houston Dynamo forward Joseph Ngwenya on Tuesday joined German soccer club Alemannia Acchen to train and try out with the Bundesliga club.

"I'm here in Germany to train for a week and see what it is like in the second Bundesliga," Ngwenya said.

Posted by: emanon | November 27, 2007 6:16 PM | Report abuse

I think they should toss one to Dick's. It's not location thought of immediately for internationals.
Also, it's at altitude which will be an advantage to the US and it's pretty much the only chance Dick's will have of hosting a qualifier.

Posted by: papa bear | November 27, 2007 6:28 PM | Report abuse

I think they should go to hopeful MLS expansion cities...

Posted by: RK | November 27, 2007 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Goff, I'd read that DC United's rental agreement for RFK Stadium was set to expire at the end of Dec 2007.

(it was in our good friend's the Raw Fisher blod onSeptember 23, 2007)
http://blog.washingtonpost.com/rawfisher/2007/09/goodbye_rfk.html

----
the D.C. Sports and Entertainment Commission plans "to continue our relationship with D.C. United for next year and beyond," says spokesman Chinyere Hubbard. The contract with United -- "our only tenant," Hubbard says -- expires in December.
----

Is that accurate?

Has a new rental agreement been reached? Are the club and the city expecting DC United to continue to use RFK Stadium for many more seasons?

Posted by: Speaking of stadiums | November 27, 2007 6:45 PM | Report abuse

HDC b/c i havent seen the US mens team live in a while

Posted by: Chris | November 27, 2007 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Anchorage. June will do. October or November would be better against Carribean opponents.

Posted by: Curious | November 27, 2007 7:20 PM | Report abuse

!

Posted by: Cary, NC | November 27, 2007 9:05 PM | Report abuse

That flag fails in comparison to Guam's flag...
http://www.theodora.com/flags/guam_flags.html

Posted by: Dominghosa | November 27, 2007 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Blackbaud Stadium, Charleston, SC. Great pub and it's walking distance to the hotel.

Posted by: bbarrie | November 27, 2007 9:57 PM | Report abuse

Lockhart

Posted by: Lloyd Heilbrunn | November 27, 2007 10:08 PM | Report abuse

its verizon

Posted by: atlanta | November 27, 2007 11:09 PM | Report abuse

Rochester is best for a game like this.

Posted by: UCSBGauchofan | November 28, 2007 2:50 AM | Report abuse

"DAMARCUS BEASLEY could today be ruled out for MONTHS after damaging ligaments in his right knee last night." -- Glasgow Evening Times

Posted by: Kurt | November 28, 2007 6:37 AM | Report abuse

Agree USSF should stay away from RFK. They have been pushing more and more games at MLS venues (SSSs) so this will probably be no exception, although with probable low turnout against a weak opponent, and their seeming desire to go to different places, one of the smaller, closer venues could be a good fit for the team and for locals to the DC area, like Annapolis or Richmond. Although UR stadium leaves much to be desired from an amenity standpoint. I think they still bring in ice blocks on mule carts to chip them up before the game.

Posted by: MR Caretaker | November 28, 2007 8:16 AM | Report abuse

I killed a man with a trident.

Posted by: Brick Tamland | November 28, 2007 8:57 AM | Report abuse

If the USSF schedules a game anywhere but RFK do you guys really think Fenty will even notice or care?

Posted by: DirtyHarry | November 28, 2007 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Barbados/Dominica game: Portland.

First group stage games: Columbus, Chicago (Toyota Park), and Philadelphia.

Second group stage games: Foxboro (against Mexico), Seattle (Costa Rica), Denver, Houston, and RFK.

Avoid NY and LA at all costs :-)

Posted by: SSMD | November 28, 2007 9:37 AM | Report abuse

should be a doubleheader with an MLS game.

Posted by: furia yanqui | November 28, 2007 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, Brick. . .

I've been thinking about that. You might wanna lay low for a while.

Posted by: Ron Burgundy | November 28, 2007 11:15 AM | Report abuse

New York, NY

Posted by: 12th man | November 28, 2007 12:50 PM | Report abuse

PAETEC Park in Rochester has 12,600 permanent seats (13,768 with bleachers). It would be perfect for lower-level CONCACAF matches.

Posted by: Greifie | November 28, 2007 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Tulsa, Oklahoma -or- Edmond, Oklahoma ... both great soccer cities rumorerd for a time to be in the mix for an MLS team. An early round qualifier could pull a great crowd in a relatively small, but soccer-loving city. Both have college stadiums that are good soccer watching venues (especially Tulsa).

Posted by: TS | November 28, 2007 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Lambeau Field

Posted by: Adam | November 28, 2007 5:06 PM | Report abuse

It was reported in July that the Lambeau folks wanted to diversify into soccer. This would be be a good opportunity for them to get their feet wet.

Posted by: 22201 | November 28, 2007 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Tulsa, Oklahoma -or- Edmond, Oklahoma ... both great soccer cities rumorerd for a time to be in the mix for an MLS team. An early round qualifier could pull a great crowd in a relatively small, but soccer-loving city. Both have college stadiums that are good soccer watching venues (especially Tulsa).

Posted by: TS | November 28, 2007 02:03 PM
------------------------------------------

I see that the U. of Tulsa is hosting a second-round NCAA contest tonight. Please report back to us on what sort of crowd turned out.

Posted by: 22201 | November 28, 2007 7:00 PM | Report abuse

I would like to think that Cuba in Seattle would be a good venue. Last time they played there the Sounders and then Chavis USA got Galindo. might make the Cuban Federation a little worried.

Posted by: Greg | November 28, 2007 11:35 PM | Report abuse

New York, NY

Posted by: 12th man | November 28, 2007 12:50 PM

Hilarious! How about Central Park? Certainly won't be Red Bull Park!

Is Lambeau wide enough? I don't think that the USSF would choose an NFL shrine over soccer specific though. I think Salt Lake will be the favorites.

Posted by: Kev | November 29, 2007 1:05 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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