USMNT gets an OK Copa America draw

USMNT gets an OK Copa America draw

Every tournament draw show is just about the biggest, “This could have been an email” event on the planet. Yes, the World Cup, Copa America or the Euros only come around every four years so they want to stress their significance by having as much pomp as they can. But anyone watching the Copa America draw last night was about ready to stick their head in the oven five minutes in. As Tom Petty said, “Don’t bore us get to the chorus.” Show us the mascot, unveil the ball if you have to, and then get to the plastic balls with all the team names. Move it along here, people.

Anyway, the USMT didn’t get the worst draw possible, but it could have been better. The way the fixtures have shaken out, everything looks like it’ll come down to the third group game against Uruguay — which will take place in Kansas City in late June, so it should only be 115, 117 degrees. The US might have hoped to get Peru or Ecuador, not the team that has recently gotten one over both Brazil and Argentina, the latter in Buenos Aires.

Bolivia and Panama comprise the rest of Group C, which is on the better side of what could have been for the US. As they will be the first two games, it’ll be a good way for them to slowly build into the tournament. However, they’re hardly just warm-up games, as the US will almost certainly need all six points in order to win the group and avoid Brazil in the quarters.

That doesn’t mean the Seleção won’t be waiting in the semis. But should the US progress that far and then take a decent swing at Brazil in a loss, most would regard that as an acceptable performance. Though this will be Brazil without Neymar, when they tend to play their best (yeah, a cheap shot. Sue me).

Earlier all the sites were announced for the tournament, and only three games will be played above the Mason Dixon line, which certainly is a choice for a summer tournament. Sofi, JerryWorld, Glendale and Atlanta are all indoors or capable of being so, though how they’ll get natural surfaces into Sofi and JerryWorld will be a wonderful science experiment.

The final will also be played in Miami, and while the Hard Rock has a roof over the stands, that doesn’t do much to keep the soup-like humidity of South Florida out, which won’t help those games be much of a spectacle. Maybe the US should be having a World Cup in the winter?

Problems for another day. Now that the draw has been made, it’s real. The USMNT will be playing their last games that count before the 2026 World Cup, and they do have a chance to make more noise in a tournament than they have since the 2009 Confederations Cup (where they weren’t even that good but were able to upset Spain. The brief hope of Charlie Davies, man…). Giddy up.

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Original source here

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About the Author

Anthony Barnett
Anthony is the author of the Science & Technology section of ANH.