Details on the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup are now emerging, as Traffic Sports USA, a soccer event management company, accidentally leaked image with tournament information this past weekend.
The company states that next year’s Gold Cup competition will be hosted by at least 10 different cities across America. This will be the 11th time (out of 13 total tournaments) that the U.S. has solely hosted the Gold Cup. The U.S. has also co-hosted two of the previous competitions with Mexico as well.
Traffic Sports also claimed that the upcoming Gold Cup will feature 26 total matches and a newly designated third-place consolation match. Match days will consist of double-headers, except obviously for both the consolation and final matches. The specific venues of the 26 games will be announced later this year.
The CONCACAF Gold Cup debuted in 1991 and is held every two years. Countries from North America, Central America, and the Caribbean are all eligible to play in the tournament. A total of 12 teams qualify for the competition (3 from North America, 4 or 5 from Central America, and 4 or 5 from the Caribbean). The U.S. are the reigning (and five-time) champs of the Gold Cup; however, Mexico has the most titles with six. The only other country to win a Gold Cup was Canada, when they beat Colombia (playing because of an invitation) 2-0 in 2000.
While the Gold Cup is still around 11 months away, the United States Men’s National Team will play plenty of international friendlies between now and then. The USMNT will play the Czech Republic (in Prague) and Colombia (in San Antonio) next month, and then face off against Ecuador and Ireland later in the year.
The U.S. are currently the highest-ranked CONCACAF team at the moment, as the Americans are ranked 15th by FIFA. Two other CONCACAF teams are presently ranked in the top 20 of FIFA’s rankings. World Cup shockers Costa Rica is ranked 16th, while Mexico is ranked at 18th.
Updated FIFA rankings are on track to be released later this week.