Report: USMNT will face Japan, Saudi Arabia pre-World Cup

Jun 1, 2022; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; United States forward Christian Pulisic (10) dribbles against Morocco forward Samy Mmaee (23) in the first half during an International friendly soccer match at TQL Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports

World Cup-bound Japan and Saudi Arabia will be the United States’ last foes before the quadrennial tournament begins later this year, TUDN reported Monday.

The U.S. men are in discussions to play the two nations, with the games to be held in Germany and France, per the report.

The U.S. Soccer Federation previously announced that the team’s two friendlies in the Sept. 19-27 international window would be held in Europe, and coach Gregg Berhalter mentioned Sunday that the opponents would be World Cup teams from Asia.

In Asian World Cup qualifying action that concluded in March, Saudi Arabia topped Group B with a record of 7-1-2 (wins-losses-draws) and 23 points, just ahead of Japan (7-2-1, 22 points). The top two teams in each of the groups earned direct berths to the World Cup, which kicks off Nov. 21 in Qatar.

The U.S. team has just four games left before its World Cup opener against Wales on Nov. 21, with two of those contests scheduled for the next eight days. The United States kicks off CONCACAF Nations League play against Grenada at Austin, Texas, on Friday, then faces El Salvador in San Salvador on June 14 in another CONCACAF Nations League match.

The Americans claimed their World Cup berth in March by finishing in third place in CONCACAF qualifying with a 7-4-3 record and 25 points. Canada and Mexico, both 8-4-2 for 28 points, finished first and second, respectively, with the top three teams earning automatic qualification.

–Field Level Media

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