Comment: The Gold Cup offers a dramatic return to check every box – Soccer Sports

July 28 – The United States won 14-8 when these two teams last met Qatar. It was a vote for the 2022 World Cup in 2010, unleashing a storm like never before in football.

Tonight, Asian champion Qatar will face the United States in the Gold Cup semifinals, a Concacaf blue ribbon event for the men’s national team.

Voting for the 2010 World Cup has triggered a series of football-centric events as the voting process has begun to be investigated. World wide. It was a dark time for football and its rule.

But since then, the world of football, especially the world of Concacaf, has been in a very different place.

Invited as a guest, Qatar breathed fresh air into the Gold Cup with both an exciting attack formation on the pitch and action on the pitch. It was the Gold Cup that reminded me of the announcement of a distressed international calendar. This is a tour with the Concacaf organization and the determination to bring international football back on schedule and return fans to the stadium.

In 2019, Concacaf expanded the Gold Cup from 12 to 16 teams, not only immediately succeeding in terms of broadcast and commercial indicators, but also opening up more member states to compete.

In 2021, they inevitably expanded the Gold Cup again. In the Gold Cup qualifiers, 12 countries gathered in Miami to compete in the final three group slot knockout rounds. Putting them together in Florida a week before the Gold Cup group stage began was the only way to get the qualifying on the calendar.

More countries, more games, and more exposure to the Gold Cup experience. If Concacaf can claim that this is their strategy, it will be the masterstroke of the plan. Who cares, it was a great way to announce that the area is still playing, and we have 25 countries here to prove it.

Counting goals and group points has become a much more attractive indicator than counting covid positives, hospitalizations, and deaths.

Still, the Gold Cup wasn’t without a share of enthusiastic controversy. Before the ball was kicked on the group stage, an outbreak at the Curacao camp caused the ball to withdraw, promptly calling for a return to Guatemala that did not pass the playoffs.

Outbreaks in Haiti camps have limited their progress and have influenced Jamaica’s anticipated challenges by keeping them isolated before major matches.

Similarly, the challenge of getting a visa into the United States has caused more problems than many expected. Saint Kitts and Nevis participated with only 14 players, but Cuba did not participate at all. The reason for their no-show is currently under investigation.

Dealing with the homophobic “Puta” chanting that Mexican fans don’t want to give up has always been a challenge. It’s a battle that is approaching victory.

Mexicans didn’t seem to like much in this tournament, and definitely one of them was the referee. So they complained to FIFA after the first match. In fact, some references seem to like a little bash – and sometimes there were a lot of them. Concacaf referees don’t seem to like VAR-they should try to like it, which will save them a lot of abuse.

But perhaps the biggest point to come is knowing that there is a good football tournament when it’s controversial. At that level, the era of tournaments and their competitiveness has arrived. Negotiating key issues and overheated passion was a great theater. Without this kind of controversy, and how much of it is actually a controversy rather than a test of human mental flexion and boundaries, it would be quite a vanilla tournament experience.

Victor Montagliani, president of Concacaf, said the biggest things he wanted to achieve in this tournament were the return to international football in his area, the return of fans to the stadium, and great football. He said it was to see.

In the semi-finals and finals alone, he can check all three boxes. This knows that the storyline of this tournament may still be twisted. Perhaps it begins with the first meeting between Qatar and the United States outside the FIFA Power Corridor.

Paul Nicholson is the editor of Insideworldfootball. moc.l1627533379labto1627533379ofdlr1627533379owedi1627533379sni @ n1627533379osloh1627533379cin.l1627533379uap1627533379

– Soccer Sports

Comment: The Gold Cup offers a dramatic return to check every box Comment: The Gold Cup offers a dramatic return to check every box

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