The United States men’s national team makes its first ever visit to St. Vincent and the Grenadines on Friday in World Cup qualifying for CONCACAF’s fourth round. Here’s everything you need to know, including how to watch. Also, be sure to bookmark this page and return before the game for our live blog.
When: Friday at 3:30 p.m. ET.
TV: beIN Sports
Stream: beIN Sports Connect
What’s at stake: Three points in the fourth round of qualifying.
How things stand: Here’s a look at the standings. The top two after six games advance to the fifth round of qualifying. The U.S. is in good shape, but anything but a win here would put some pressure on the team before Tuesday’s final match against Trinidad and Tobago.
How important is this game? Look at it this way — the U.S. boosts its chances of advancing incredibly with a win. A draw brings the pressure, and a loss would be the most embarrassing result in U.S. soccer history.
Who is missing? The U.S. is without arguably its two best players for this match. Clint Dempsey (irregular heartbeat) and John Brooks (back) will both miss the two matches over the next four days, dealing a big blow to the team’s overall quality. Dempsey has been the nation’s best player over the last few years and Brooks is a towering central defender who plays smart and is physical. Midfielder Jermaine Jones is also out. It isn’t a full-strength USMNT, but it still has more than enough to win comfortably.
Goalkeeper situation: It seemed as if this would Brad Guzan’s team moving forward. Well … Jurgen Klinsmann went with him at the Copa America and will go with him in this one, but longtime starter Tim Howard will start the team’s game on Tuesday. A goalkeeper platoon.
What the U.S has to do to win: Look, this team the U.S. is playing isn’t much. It should be a walk in the park (or on the island). The Vincy Heat (yes, that is their nickname) are ranked No. 156 in the world. That means teams like India, Aruba, Lesotho, Dominican Republic and Madagascar are ahead of them. An average performance for the U.S. should be enough to win comfortably. Remember, these teams played earlier in qualifying, with the Americans winning 6-1 despite allowing the opening goal.
What St. Vincent has to do to win: Play the best game it has ever played and see the U.S. play sloppy as can be.
Predicted USMNT starting XI: Guzan; Johnson, Gonzalez, Besler, Yedlin; Bradley, Bedoya, Zusi; Altidore, Wood, Nagbe.
Prediction: U.S. 4, St. Vincent and the Grenadines 0.
Source: CBS Sports Headlines / How to watch USMNT vs. St. Vincent and the Grenadines live on TV, stream, preview