MIAMI: This year’s CONCACAF will be stretched across one of the widest possible geographical spreads in the United States writes KEIR RADNEDGE.
Some 13 venues and host cities have been confirmed by the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Football Associations for the event bein staged between July 7 and 28.
The breadth of the spread – from Seattle in the northwest to Miami in the south-east, from New York in the east to Los Angeles in the west – should encourage the European federation.
UEFA and its president Michel Platini aroused some scepticism with a proposal to strew the 2020 European Championship finals across the continent so officials might learn a modus operandi by checking out the Gold Cup logistics.
CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb said: “We would like to thank all cities and venues in the United States for their interest.
“CONCACAF is looking forward to a successful tournament, working in close partnership with both stadium and local authorities, while expanding the reach of our competition to a larger number of fans in more locations throughout the US.”
The region’s premier national team tournament will again expand its footprint by visiting eight new world-class venues in this year’s edition such as the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Sports Authority Field at Mile High in Denver, Rentschler Field in East Hartford, BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, JELD-WEN Field in Portland, and Rio Tinto Stadium in Salt Lake City.
Six new Gold Cup cities are featured in this group of newcomers, including Atlanta, Baltimore, Denver, Hartford, Portland and Salt Lake City. Houston and Miami return to host the tournament, for the fifth and ninth time consecutive time, respectively.
The event will also return to five venues from its previous editions including Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Soldier Field in Chicago, Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey, and CenturyLink Field in Seattle.
A CONCACAF statement said: “With a mix of historic venues and brand new state of the art soccer facilities that average 57,000 spectators, the 2013 edition of the Gold Cup promises to provide fans both in stadium and at home with unforgettable atmospheres in world class venues.
“In 2011, the tournament drew more than 600,000 fans throughout 13 match-days, including nine sell-outs.”
Eleven of the 12 finalists are known: Belize, Canada, Costa Rica, Cuba, El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Martinique, Mexico, Trinidad & Tobago and the United States.
The final spot will be decided on Friday in the fifth-place match of the 2013 UNCAF Copa Centroamericana between Guatemala and Panama, which is being held in Costa Rica.
2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup Host City & Venue list
(In alphabetical order by host city)
HOST CITY – VENUE (Venue Location)
• Atlanta – Georgia Dome (Atlanta, GA)
• Baltimore – M&T Bank Stadium (Baltimore, MD)
• Chicago – Soldier Field (Chicago, IL)
• Dallas – Cowboys Stadium (Arlington, TX)
• Denver – Sports Authority Field at Mile High (Denver, CO)
• Hartford – Rentschler Field (East Hartford, CT)
• Houston – BBVA Compass Stadium (Houston, TX)
• Los Angeles – Rose Bowl (Pasadena, CA)
• Miami – Sun Life Stadium (Miami Gardens, FL)
• New York– Red Bull Arena (Harrison, NJ)
• Portland – JELD-WEN Field (Portland, OR)
• Salt Lake City – Rio Tinto Stadium (Sandy, UT)
• Seattle – CenturyLink Field (Seattle, WA)
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