We’ll begin on a light-hearted note: The after-practice discussion among the players, according to defender Clarence Goodson, was the number of electoral votes afforded to the District of Columbia. (The answer is three.) Soccer players, a cultured bunch.

Gold Cup organizers have made obstructed-view seats available for Sunday’s quarterfinal doubleheader featureing the United States vs. Jamaica at 3 p.m. (Fox Soccer Channel, Univision) and Panama vs. El Salvador at 6 (Univision). Capacity could exceed 47,000. As of this morning, about 1,000 tickets remained, an official told the Insider.

With a sellout crowd attending, congestion expected on the roads and subway, and heat and humidty returning, please plan accordingly.

In other news.....

Defender Oguchi Onyewu didn’t practice because of illness.

Goodson, who is from Springfield, W.T. Woodson High School and the University of Maryland, said he requested 18 tickets for close family and friends.

The USSF declined to reveal the travel schedule for Landon Donovan and Clint Dempsey, who will attend sibling weddings Saturday and fly on private jets to Washington.

Asked about the oddity of preparing without the team’s two most important attacking players, defender Steve Cherundolo said: “It’s not something that happens all the time, but we are people who get around frequently and fly back and forth from Europe all the time. They’ll be ready for the game and the team will be ready. That’s pretty much all I have to say about that topic.”

Said captain Carlos Bocanegra: “They’re two really important players on our team. Ideal situation, if they were here, that would be great. They’re professionals, we’re all professionals, we’re preparing the same way with them or without them, and come Sunday, we’re all going to be ready to go in the same direction.”