USMNT's World Cup qualifying match vs. Costa Rica set for Columbus

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The U.S. Soccer Federation announced this Thursday that the United States men’s national team will play Costa Rica in a World Cup qualifier.

The U.S. Soccer Federation announced this Thursday that the United States men’s national team will play Costa Rica in a World Cup qualifier. It will mark the inaugural international match at Lower.com Field. Lower.com Field has become the home of the Columbus Crew. According to U.S. Soccer, the game will air live via ESPN networks and Univision networks. The kickoff time has yet to be set. Ohio's capital has hosted World Cup qualifiers against Mexico five times in the past. But with that match set for Cincinnati's QTL Stadium on Nov. 12, Columbus will instead host the Costa Rica match. Gregg Berhalter from the United States, who had managed the Crew for five seasons before taking over the national role, will also be playing in the game. USSF also announced the use of a weighted randomly drawn system for tickets, due to the high demand. Berhalter said, "One thing to count on in Columbus" was the unwavering support for U.S. teams. This will help us win against Costa Rica. "Having coached there for five seasons and then seeing the opening of the new stadium firsthand, I know how strong the bonds between the team members and the fans are. We can't wait for the opportunity to play there." The USMNT opened World Cup qualifying with El Salvador's match on Sept. 2. They then hosted Canada in Nashville, Tennessee three days later. The U.S. travels to Honduras in September for a match. The Columbus game against Costa Rica marks the end of three games within the October window. The U.S. hosts Jamaica in Austin on Oct. 7, before traveling to Panama three days later. The U.S. will then travel to Jamaica to take on the Reggae Boyz, four days following the Nov. 12 match in Cincinnati. The second segment of the qualifying campaigns resumes in January. Eight teams from CONCACAF will compete for the final round under the new qualifying format. The top three CONCACAF teams will then advance to the 2022 World Cup Qatar. The Intercontinental playoff will determine the last spot.

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