September 10, 2013 in Sports

U.S. Cup berth on line

 

Alejandro Bedoya (19) remembered back four years ago, when he walked onto the field with his American teammates to face Mexico at the Rose Bowl and saw the crowd of 93,000-plus.

“A sea of green,” the 26-year-old midfielder said, referring to the Mexican jersey color.

While American soccer fans are outnumbered by visiting supporters at many venues, the U.S. team has found a home at cozy Columbus (Ohio) Crew Stadium. It’s become the traditional site of the Stars & Stripes’ World Cup qualifier against regional rival Mexico following 2-0 victories in 2001, 2005 and 2009. And tonight the Americans hope to emulate their performance of four years ago, when they clinched a World Cup berth by beating El Tri.

“We have history here. And for soccer in our country, that’s not always the case,” said midfielder Michael Bradley, who will miss the match because of a sprained left ankle. “Soccer is still in its growing stages, and so for us to feel like we walk into a stadium and there’s history is a special feeling.”

Coming off a dismal 3-1 loss at Costa Rica on Friday, the U.S. can clinch a seventh straight World Cup berth if it beats Mexico and Honduras beats or ties Panama. – AP

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