Monday, 20 November, 2017

United States to open CONCACAF Gold Cup against Panama on July 8

Getty Images Getty Images
Saul Franklin | 09 March, 2017, 00:39

Following the opening match, the US will go on to play Martinique on Wednesday, July 12, at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla.

"This is an important tournament for us", United States coach Bruce Arena said.

Toyota Stadium hosts the Group A finale on Friday, July 14.

Haiti and Nicaragua will meet in a two-legged series (March 24 in Haiti and March 28 in Nicaragua) to determine the final member of Group B.

Jamaica are in Group C with Oniel Fisher also likely to be selected.

CONCACAF released the 2017 Gold Cup groups and schedule on Tuesday with plenty of Seattle Sounders expected to be in the mix.

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Beyond earning regional supremacy, the victor of this summer's tournament will at the very least book its place in the playoff to represent CONCACAF at the 2021 FIFA Confederations Cup in Qatar. "We don't take any of our opponents for granted". "We open with a challenging game against Panama, and Martinique has the ability to surprise some teams with the quality of their players". The complete draw brings Costa Rica, Canada, and French Guiana to Toyota Stadium. "We will need to be prepared".

Defending champion Mexico plays El Salvador on July 9 at San Diego and Jamaica, the team it beat in the 2015 final, four days later at Denver.

Group A games are set for MLS stadiums in New Jersey, Houston and Frisco, Texas. El Tri will finish off the group stage against Curacao at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, on July 16.

The top two teams from each group and the two best third-place teams advance to the quarterfinals July 19 in Philadelphia and July 20 in Glendale, Arizona.

Jeff Carlisle covers MLS and the USA national team for ESPN FC.

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