Can the USA Qualify for the 2022 World Cup?
By Space Coast Daily // June 4, 2020
The FIFA World Cup is the biggest event in international soccer. The next edition of the World Cup is set to be hosted in Qatar in 2022. It will be the first time that the competition will be held at the back end of the year.
Organizers have opted for it to take place in November and December due to temperatures being dangerously high in June and July in Qatar.
The USA has a rich history in the World Cup. They hosted the 1994 tournament where they reached the last 16. In 2002 the United States produced their best ever performance as they advanced through to the quarterfinals.
2018 was a big blow for the USA as they did not qualify for the event in Russia. The USA could only finish fifth in the Hexagonal table which was not enough to remain in the competition.
Qualification Format For 2022 World Cup
Qualification for the 2022 World Cup is scheduled to begin in September. USA will be joined by other CONCACAF members as they also look to secure their place at the finals of the competition.
The top three nations in the Hexagonal group will advance automatically to Qatar. The country which finishes fourth will then feature in an intercontinental playoff encounter (home and away).
A draw will be made for the playoffs where an opponent will either come from Asia (AFC), South America (CONMEBOL) or Oceania (OFC).
Young USA Side On The Up
Since Gregg Berhalter took over as the head coach in 2018, the average age of the USA soccer team has come down. The former Columbus Crew coach has been preparing his side to have the experience it needs to qualify for the next World Cup.
Berhalter will know that the minimum requirement in his role will be to qualify for Qatar. USA are seen as one of the outsiders to win the tournament in the international football betting. Winning the tournament is definitely likely to be a step too far for them at this stage; however, the USA has proved in the past that they are capable of causing an upset or two at the finals.
In 2019 the USA won eight of 14 matches across the year. They were beaten in the final of the Gold Cup by Mexico after going down 3-0.
USA began 2020 with a 1-0 victory over Costa Rica. VfL Wolfsburg forward Ulysses Llanez Jr. scored the only goal in that game on his debut for the Stars and Stripes. The 19-year-old could play a crucial player for the national team over the next decade.
Berhalter also has the inaugural CONCACAF Nations League finals to look forward to this year. The USA will meet Honduras in the semi-finals. That game will give his young side some vital experience in competitive action.
With a lot of young talent on the roster, the future is definitely bright for Team USA. CONCACAF is as competitive as it has ever been though, so the US have a big challenge on their hands to qualify for the 2022 World Cup.
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