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Posted at 06:54 PM ET, 07/05/2011

U.S. men’s national soccer team to play friendlies against Costa Rica and Belgium

The U.S. men’s national team will play Costa Rica on Sept. 2 in Carson, Calif., and Belgium four days later in Brussels, the U.S. Soccer Federation announced Tuesday.

Both matches fall on FIFA international fixture dates, meaning clubs must release players who are summoned. The Americans are also likely to play a friendly on Aug. 10, also a FIFA date. Details are close to being finalized.

Because of the distance between the September venues and the fact that the matches will take place during club seasons, Coach Bob Bradley seems likely to utilize two different squads: MLS and Mexican-based players for the Costa Rica match and European-based players for the Belgium visit. Some players might end up being named to both units.

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“We will have the chance to look at a variety of players and at the same time challenge ourselves against two very different opponents,” he said in a written statement accompanying the match announcement.

The United States and Costa Rica are frequent foes in World Cup qualifying and Gold Cup competitions but haven’t faced one another in a friendly since 1995. ESPN2, Galavision and ESPN3.com will show the Sept. 2 encounter. (Perhaps an opportunity to call in Charlie Davies, if he’s in good form? Conveniently, D.C. United is off that weekend.)

The last U.S.-Belgium meeting was in 1998. ESPN Classic and ESPN3.com will carry the Sept. 6 game.

By  |  06:54 PM ET, 07/05/2011

Tags:  U.S. national team

 
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