September 23 – The American men’s national team won’t play or train during October’s international window because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The US haven’t played a match since a 1-0 defeat against Costa Rica in February in California. The US federation said that no camp or match will be organised next month because of difficulties in flying both the foreign-based players and a potential opponent, who would be subject to various quarantine rules for entering and leaving American soil.
“After extensive conversations about holding a men’s national team camp in October, we ultimately determined the unique challenges created by COVID-19 as it relates to hosting international opponents and getting our players together wouldn’t allow us to move forward,” said the team’s general manager Brian McBride in a statement.
McBride did add that the federation was making “considerable progress” on scheduling matches in Europe for the November window.
The October window is the latest casualty for the American team after friendlies with the Netherlands and Wales had to be postponed in March, along with the CONCACAF Nations League final four in June. Last month, the qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar had also been due to kick-off.
“Both players and staff are disappointed not to be able to get back on the field and continue the progress we have made as a group,” said US coach Gregg Berhalter. “While COVID-19 continues to create challenges for us, we are confident we can find a way forward in the near future that will provide an opportunity to play matches in preparation for the important competitions next year.”
On Tuesday, the coronavirus death toll in the US passed 200,000.
Contact the writer of this story, Samindra Kunti, at moc.l1603368559labto1603368559ofdlr1603368559owedi1603368559sni@o1603368559fni1603368559