The Washington Post

U.S. vs. Brazil friendly at FedEx Field is set; U.S. & Mexico under-23 soccer teams to meet this month in Olympic tuneup

The slate of matches involving U.S. national teams the first half of the year is beginning to take shape.

The big one involves the United States and Brazil in a men’s friendly at FedEx Field outside of Washington on May 30. A deal is in place and an official announcement might come as early as Thursday, with tickets likely to go on sale next week, the Insider has learned.

On Wednesday, the U.S. Soccer Federation announced the under-23 men’s squad will play its Mexican counterparts Feb. 29 at FC Dallas Stadium in Frisco, Tex. — a key tuneup before Olympic qualifying begins in late March. Kickoff is at 10 p.m. ET.

USA Coach Caleb Porter is planning to recall many of the players who will compete in the CONCACAF qualifiers in Nashville and, with passage, to the final rounds in Kansas City, Kan. “A match against Mexico will serve as a great measuring stick both individually and collectively as we put the finishing touches on our roster selection,” he said.

The match, and the preceeding training camp, will conflict with MLS training camps, but because the season hasn’t started, Porter is not expected to face resistance from the clubs.

Under-23 matches are rarely televised, but given the opponent and the build-up to Olympic qualifying, this one seems likely to be shown on one of the usual outlets.

That day, Feb. 29, is a big one for American soccer: The senior national team will play Italy in Genoa (2:30 p.m. ET, ESPN2, and the women’s national team will face Denmark at the Algarve Cup in Portugal.

Aside from the USA-Brazil friendly, the USSF is also in the final stages of naming home venues for a men’s friendly against Scotland in late May and the 2014 World Cup qualifying opener against Antigua & Barbuda on June 8. The Americans will also face Canada in a June 3 friendly in Toronto.

Steven Goff is The Post’s soccer writer. His beats include D.C. United, MLS and the international game, as well as local college basketball.


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