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A preliminary look at the Gold Cup


1) Preparation:

It looks like the mandatory FIFA release period for all teams (even those not in the preliminaries) might be Monday, June 28th!

https://resources.fifa.com/image/upload/circular-no-1727-updates-to-the-men-s-and-women-s-international-match-calendars.pdf?cloudid=epsntxax0fozi4foovyw
https://resources.fifa.com/image/upload/men-s-international-match-calendar-2020-2024.pdf?cloudid=cd3qpcttmbbjowbso2tz

Even if it's only the usual 10 days before ( June 30th ) we still have time for one friendly.
As in the previous edition, the CSA cannot schedule a friendly match within a 161km radius ( 100 miles) of any of the match venues:
https://stconcacafwp001.blob.core.windows.net/media/vu5ahqsc/2021_concacaf_gold_cup_regulation_-_eng.pdf

If we do play one, we'd want to go the closed-door route, so an opponent that wouldn't draw big crowds anyways seems a likely choice.
I can easily picture us playing Curaçao or Grenada.

 


2) The squad:

A 60-man preliminary roster is due 30 days prior to start of the competition ( this is Thursday, June 10th soon after our match vs Suriname on Tuesday, June 8th).
Unlike for Olympic Qualifying, this preliminary roster is binding.
The final 23-man roster is due 10 days prior to start of the competition (this is June 30th).
https://stconcacafwp001.blob.core.windows.net/media/vu5ahqsc/2021_concacaf_gold_cup_regulation_-_eng.pdf

 


3) The schedule:

Since 2019 was also a 16 team tournament, we can use that old calendar to extrapolate the dates for 2021.


Group A
July 10th
July 14th
July 18th

Group B (our group)
Sunday, July 11th
Thursday, July 15th
Monday, July 19th

Group C
July 12th
July 16th
July 20th

Group D
July 13th
July 17th
July 21st

Rest days: July 22nd & July 23rd

Saturday July 24th - QF for teams that were in pots A & B ?
Sunday, July 25th - QF for teams that were in pots C & D ?

Rest day: July 26th

Tuesday, July 27th - SF for teams that were in pots A & B ?
Wednesday, July 28th - SF for teams that were in pots C & D ?

Rest days: July 29th, July 30th & July 31st

Final: August 1st

The only unusual thing is that the above schedule would force the USA and Mexico to face each other in the semi-finals or even the quarter-finals!

 

4) Match venues:

Where will our matches be held?
In COVID times, trying to hold matches outside the USA seems very unlikely. This will be a USA-only-hosted tournament.


CONCACAF want to have fans and will likely look at the following:
https://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/29910246/where-32-nfl-teams-stands-allowing-fans-stadiums
https://www.sportbusiness.com/news/three-additional-us-states-move-to-allow-fan-attendance/

Mexico matches aside, CONCACAF generally likes it when soccer specific stadiums are used.

Likely candidates

Toyota Stadium in Frisco (Dallas area) have cleared their calendar and will host.
https://www.fcdallas.com/schedule?year=2021

BBVA Stadium in Houston have cleared their calendar and will host.
https://www.houstondynamofc.com/post/2021/03/24/houston-dynamo-fc-announce-2021-regular-season-schedule

Paypal Park in San Jose is hosting no matches between May 22nd and July 24th! (The Earthquakes are even hosting a match at the Stanford Stadium to do this! EDIT: To host the CONCACAF Nations League Finals & a Gold Cup group stage match? )
https://www.sjearthquakes.com/schedule

 

The maybes

Orlando could host an early group stage match
https://www.orlandocitysc.com/post/2021/03/24/orlando-city-sc-announces-2021-regular-season-schedule-presented-orlando-health

The brand new Q2 stadium in Austin could host a group stage game.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Q2_Stadium
https://www.austinfc.com/schedule
and they said they wanted to host here:
https://www.mlssoccer.com/news/austin-fc-submits-bid-host-2021-concacaf-gold-cup-future-ncaa-college-cup-new


Chicago ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SeatGeek_Stadium ) could host

DC could host
https://www.dcunited.com/schedule

The old Colombus crew stadium could host
https://ww.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historic_Crew_Stadium
but new one almost certainly won't:
https://www.columbuscrewsc.com/schedule

The brand new West End stadium in Cincinnati could host a group stage match or a QF match
https://www.fccincinnati.com/schedule
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/West_End_Stadium

LAFC (Banc of California Stadium) won't host
https://www.lafc.com/schedule/
but LA Galaxy (Dignity Health Sports Park) will likely host a later group stage match or QF match
https://www.lagalaxy.com/schedule?year=2021

Red Bull in NJ and Suburu Park in Pennsylvania could host QF matches
https://www.newyorkredbulls.com/schedule/
https://www.philadelphiaunion.com/schedule/matches

The rumour is that Las Vegas will host the final match  ( https://www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegiant_Stadium )


Those venues unlikely to host

Not in Miami (which will be the host venue for the preliminaries https://www.intermiamicf.com/en/schedule )

Unlikely Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Denver
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick's_Sporting_Goods_Park
https://www.coloradorapids.com/schedule

Minnesota, Utah and Kansas seem unlikely too:
https://www.mnufc.com/schedule
https://www.rsl.com/schedule
https://www.sportingkc.com/schedule


My best guess is that we will likely see a situation unlike previous years where a group will play their first AND their second match at the same venue to minimize travel and make bubbles easier.
You just can't have all the flying around that we had in previous years this time around.

Edited by Olympique_de_Marseille
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Not sure where this belongs but here we are   

This is the reason why I come to this site:  hard hitting information that can be found nowhere else in Canada.

No, it means more shady CONCACAF refs decisions.

Posted Images

1 hour ago, Olympique_de_Marseille said:

Paypal Park in San Jose is hosting no matches between May 22nd and July 24th! (The Earthquakes are even hosting a match at the Stanford Stadium to do this! EDIT: To host the CONCACAF Nations League Finals & a Gold Cup group stage match? )

The Quakes often host the LA Galaxy at Stanford Stadium and sell it out, but you're right in that it does open their regular stadium up for GC or other international matches.

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33 minutes ago, RS said:

The Quakes often host the LA Galaxy at Stanford Stadium and sell it out, but you're right in that it does open their regular stadium up for GC or other international matches.

Ok, thanks. I didn't know this was a regular thing.

Stadiums are back to ¼ capacity in California: https://www.abc10.com/article/sports/baseball/baseball-fans-return-to-california-stadiums/103-b5273582-dc99-4abe-a92e-70be11b9f4a1

This should make the Quakes and Galaxy more likely to host.

 

-----

This makes Ohio seem more likely to host (MAPRE or West End) : https://www.10tv.com/article/sports/local-stadiums-try-to-make-sense-of-ohios-new-health-orders/530-9f029733-8c4c-452b-87d9-00fe34967319

Edited by Olympique_de_Marseille
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4 minutes ago, Olympique_de_Marseille said:

Ok, thanks. I didn't know this was a regular thing.

The "California Clasico." It's usually a July 4th weekend thing. Not sure why it's in late June this year.

 

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Some important new info:

1. Vegas will indeed host the final.

-----

2.

Unlike the format of two years ago, Group B (our group) will cross over with Group C. This change was to be expected as this avoids a USA vs Mexico matchup before the semi-finals. 

Assuming we can get past both Martinique and Haiti (or maybe Bermuda, St. Vincent & the Gs or Barbados) we would play one of Costa Rica / Jamaica / Suriname / Guatemala ( or maybe Guyana / Guadeloupe / Bahamas). 

Getting a draw vs the USA + an overall better goal difference in the group, or, getting a win vs the USA, would allow us to avoid the USA(again) or Mexico until the final. Interesting stuff.

https://www.concacaf.com/gold-cup/article/las-vegas-awarded-2021-concacaf-gold-cup-final/

Edited by Olympique_de_Marseille
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Very interesting notes.. US doesn't expect Euro players. Mexico and Honduras focused on Olympics 

Can we win? Whats our team going to look like? I guess build an all domestic team and then go from there. I'm thinking some euro players will participate obviously many won't 

Vegas final typically would be amazing

Edited by SpursFlu
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31 minutes ago, Olympique_de_Marseille said:

I think Euro players that might be "on the bubble" like Paton and Kennedy might join.

I think it might have a lot to do with their standing in their club and the level they play at

Like as an example if just say Eustaquio goes to a new team there is no way he would miss their camp. That type of thing but yah your examples fit because their clubs might see it as a beneficial experience for a young player

Edited by SpursFlu
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I wonder if they'll be any players called for both WCQ and Gold Cup? I don't see why a few players couldn't play both. Who do we think. if any, would play both? St. Clair and Crepeau seem most likely, as they'll be backing up Borjan in June and shouldn't be gassed, plus neither just went through a full European season. Maybe it will only be the euro guys who don't play both? I don't see much risk in MLSers participating in both windows, does anyone else?

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Assuming all our MLSers are considered for Gold Cup (but all euro guys ruled out):

Nelson--Cavallini--Buchanan 

Kaye--Piette--Osorio

Laryea--Cornelius--Miller--Johnston

-----Crepeau/St. Clair-----

Subs: Crepeau/St. Clair, Pantemis, ZBG, Waterman, Didic, Guiterrez, Priso, Fraser, Okello, Tabla, Akindele, , Schaffleburg

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2 minutes ago, SpursFlu said:

I don't but maybe another question is what if they qualify for the Octagon? It starts in I think September. So thats a lot to ask for guys like Osorio and Cavallini with full MLS duties

That's a good point, but maybe it's a case-by-case with those two, along with Kaye, Piette and Laryea? I would say those are our 5 core MLSers. Do we not bring them to Gold Cup to keep them just a little bit more fresh for September? Hard to say. They are all in their prime, so managing their minutes may not be so necessary.

When it comes to bringing a different team to Gold Cup, all we really have to go on are Herdman's comments, but I get this feeling he was specifically thinking about the euro guys when he said that. 

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13 hours ago, SpursFlu said:

I don't but maybe another question is what if they qualify for the Octagon? It starts in I think September. So thats a lot to ask for guys like Osorio and Cavallini with full MLS duties

I guess the trendy (overused?) term is "load management" and I agree, especially if the clubs' fixture schedules are congested.  I know the Caps have a lot of matches in and around GC time.

I always saw this year's version of the GC as one where we would see fewer A listers and more prospects or MLS club benchwarmers looking to get in the shop window, so to speak.

 

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On 4/11/2021 at 3:56 PM, Olympique_de_Marseille said:

....


Those venues unlikely to host

Unlikely Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Denver
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick's_Sporting_Goods_Park
https://www.coloradorapids.com/schedule

....

Well, it's pretty much confirmed now that Denver will not host a Gold Cup match because the CONCACAF Nations League finals will be there instead.

https://www.concacaf.com/nations-league/news/denver-to-host-first-ever-concacaf-nations-league-finals-in-june-2021/

 

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9 hours ago, DavemTFC said:

I forget do they still do that weird thing that doesn't happen in any other FIFA tournament where you're allowed to sub out some of the players on your rosters for the knock out stages?

I quickly went through the player eligibility section of the tournament document @Olympique_de_Marseille posted and I never saw that, just noticed their will be 12 subs allowed and that you can replace an injured player up to 24 hours before your first match, but the replacement must come from the preliminary list.

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19 hours ago, El Diego said:

60 man preliminary roster could lead to some interesting names...

Man I feel like the final 23-30 man roster will have a lot of interesting names, nevermind the 60 man preliminary roster.

We are faced with several factors that will ultimately determine our reality, which are:

- We have June WCQ the month before, JH has stated he will have to rotate the squad. Our best players are in Europe, meaning that they would most likely be in that team. 
- Knowing that, it's been stated that the Gold Cup would be a B team, however MLS is not taking a break throughout the entire tournament. So again we will be faced with a dilemma with the release of players (specifically with the Canadian teams) mixed in with guys not doing double month duty. 

All in all, there's been talk of a B team, but with the several factors I suspect it will be an B-/C+ team. So. I'll predict at least 25% of these names like Elva, Trafford, Paton, Ricketts, Cordova, James, Hamilton, Leutwiler, Godinho, Halbouni, Twardek, Brym, Dias, Romeo, Nogueira, Simpson, Jebbison, Mitrovic, and maybe.....Yankov. 

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2 hours ago, Obinna said:

https://www.mlssoccer.com/news/2021-concacaf-gold-cup-host-cities-and-stadiums-announced

As I expected, the most open states would be the winners here, while the closed states lose out.

Games to be in Texas, Florida, Arizona and Kansas.

Thanks.

Links from CONCACAF:

https://www.concacaf.com/gold-cup/article/concacaf-announces-host-cities-and-stadiums-for-2021-gold-cup/
https://www.concacaf.com/gold-cup/article/austin-and-orlando-to-host-first-ever-gold-cup-matches/

 

The small (soccer-specific) stadiums:

BBVA Stadium Houston
Q2 Stadium Austin
Toyota Stadium Frisco (Dallas suburb)
Exploria Stadium Orlando
Children's Mercy Park Kansas City


The large stadiums:

The Cotton Bowl stadium in Dallas ( host venue for the FIFA World Cup in 1994 )  :
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cotton_Bowl_(stadium)

AT&T Stadium in Arlington (Dallas Suburb):
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AT%26T_Stadium

NRG Stadium in Houston:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NRG_Stadium

State Farm Stadium in Glendale (suburb of Phoenix):
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_Farm_Stadium

As already announced, the final will be in Vegas.

Interesting news is that "that all the final group stage games will be played simultaneously."

There are a maximum of 6 matches that can be played ( 3 group stage , ¼s , ½s and final ) but only 5 large stadiums and 5 small ones.

On 4/11/2021 at 3:56 PM, Olympique_de_Marseille said:

My best guess is that we will likely see a situation unlike previous years where a group will play their first AND their second match at the same venue to minimize travel and make bubbles easier.

 

↑ I will stick with my previous assumption. 

- Mexico will play two group matches in the same venue and their 3rd group stage match elsewhere.  El Salvador might play Mexico in game 1 or game 2 of the group and play their final group stage match in Austin.

- Toyota Stadium will host 3 group stage matches for 2 teams and 2 group stage matches for 2 teams (with 2 teams moving to play elsewhere on the final matchday - probably taking a bus for 4 hours from Dallas to play in Austin )

- BBVA Stadium in Houston will host 3 group stage matches for 2 teams and 2 group stage matches for 2 teams (with 2 teams moving to play elsewhere on the final matchday - probably taking a bus for 3 hours to Austin )

- One of Kansas/Orlando will host a ¼final #3 & #4 (so for teams from groups B & C, including Canada)

 

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