Hard to imagine Fratelli d'Italia being played in Oakland, but OK

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The US Bid Committee for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups (whose awarding is less than 2 years away), has released through its site http://www.gousabid.com/ the cities who are still in the running to host a World Cup game should the United States be awarded either tournament. This list is down from a prior list of 70, which frankly included just about every NFL and major college stadium in a town with more than two stoplights.

Did anyone really think Fayetteville, AR would host the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Fernando Torres?

The list has been narrowed to 27 cities, of which likely 12-14 will likely be chosen to host matches.

Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York City, Oakland, Orlando, Philadelphia, Glendale-Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis, Tampa, and Washington, D.C.

Just a few notes
12 cities on the list host MLS teams in their metro areas (Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, New York City, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington DC). The only US Cities with an MLS team that failed to make the cut are Columbus, Salt Lake City, and Portland.

All 9 sites of the 1994 World Cup are still eligible (Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, Orlando, Chicago, Detroit, Washington, New York, Boston)

Should each city use the venue that most would assume they would use, then 22 of the 27 potential host cities are using venues constructed or substantially renovated in the 15 years SINCE the 1994 World Cup.

21 of the 27 potential host cities have hosted a major soccer event (MLS game, International friendly, Club friendly, World Cup Qualifier, Gold Cup game) since 2006.


Anonymous,  12:40 PM  

Mike, you left off the second half of your column. Typically a YCS article will state a few facts and then explain why that makes the poster so angry, here we just have the facts.

Mike 3:33 PM  

I'm....pissed they chose all the right cities, leaving me nothing to argue about?

1.) Gillette Stadium
2.) New Meadowlands
3.) Lincoln Financial Field
4.) FedEx Field
5.) LandShark/Dolphin/ProPlayer/Joe Robbie Stadium
6.) New Cowboys Stadium
7.) Reliant Stadium
8.) U. of Phoenix Stadium
9.) Soldier Field
10.) Qwest Field
11.) Stanford Stadium
12.) Rose Bowl

Opening match at FedEx, Final at New Meadowlands.

Book it.

Mike 3:42 PM  

OK, here's what I'm pissed about!

How is Denver still on this list?
The Rapids are supported tepidly at best. Denver's a nice town, but a soccer city it is not.

From a more logistical standpoint, World Cup games have a margin for error that is impossibly slim. Likewise, the games are often played within days of each other, and group games never take place at the same site. (Designed so that the team in game B doesn't know what result they need after seeing the result in game A).

So with that in mind, you could potentially have one game in the group taking place in the high altitude of Denver, where it's a challenge at times to walk without sucking wind, much less play soccer, and another game at sea level. If it came down to one result or goal difference, it would have to come with an asterisk.

Also, it would have been nice to see some MLS stadia expanded to show the growth of the sport since the 1994 World Cup, but no grounds really meet FIFA's 40,000 capacity minimum without significant expansion. Crew Stadium (Roughly 22k if I recall correctly) and Home Depot Center (27k) are the only ones who could come close to this.

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