Audi Field to play host to USA-Cuba Nations League match
The U.S. Men’s National Team will return to Audi Field this Fall, as it kicks off its Nations Cup campaign against Cuba.
U.S. Soccer officially announced Audi Field as the host of the October 11th clash between the Americans and Cuba as they kick off Concacaf Nations League play in a group that also features Canada.
The match will mark the U.S. team’s first appearance in the Concacaf Nations League.
The USMNT will be returning to Audi Field for the first time since suffering a 1-0 loss to Jamaica in a friendly on June 5.
The match against Cuba will be the U.S. team’s first official competitive match since suffering a 1-0 loss to Mexico in the Gold Cup final in June.
The Americans will follow up its match against Cuba with a trip to Canada to face the Canadian National Team in Nations League action in Toronto.
Venues for the second set of Nations League matches in November have yet to be announced, with the Americans set to travel to Cuba before playing host to the Canadians.
October’s match against Cuba will be the USMNT’s 13th meeting against Los Leones. The Americans hold a 10-1-1 advantage in the series, having last faces the Cubans in a friendly victory in 2016.
The winners of the four Concacaf Nations League groups will compete in a knockout round tournament in June of 2020 to determine a champion.
The Nations League carries added significance due to the changes in Concacaf’s World Cup qualifying format, which will determine the six teams competing in the Hexagonal Round of World Cup qualifying based on FIFA rankings.
Nations League results will have a significant part to play in those rankings, and while the United States isn’t in danger of missing out on qualifying for the Hex due to its lofty FIFA ranking (currently 30th in the world), Canada is currently the eighth highest-rated Concacaf team (78th overall), nine spots behind El Salvador, the team currently ranked as the sixth place team in the region.
The Americans return to action in September, with friendlies against Mexico and Uruguay. The USMNT faces El Tri on Sept. 5 at Met Life Stadium, before traveling to St. Louis to take on Uruguay.