Christian Pulisic and his U.S. teammates could be playing a WCQ at RBA Sept. 1. (Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports)
By Michael Lewis
A World Cup qualifier in the metropolitan area?
Now, that would be a first.
In fact, it could very well happen come Sept. 1 at Red Bull Arena.
Sports Illustrated writer and FOX journalist Grant Wahl reported Tuesday that U.S. Soccer is making plans for the Harrison, N.J. stadium to play host to a World Cup qualifier that day. The U.S. national team is slated to play Costa Rica on that date.
The federation also is making plans for the Orlando City Stadium to host the U.S.-Panama qualifier Oct. 6.
Incredible it may sound, no venue in the metropolitan area has played host to a World Cup qualifying match since the process began in 1934.
The area has welcomed the U.S. national team 25 times for full internationals.
That includes 18 games in New Jersey at Giants Stadium (East Rutherford), MetLife Stadium (East Rutherford), Rutgers Stadium (Piscataway) and RBA.
That also includes seven matches in New York at Ebbets Field (Brooklyn), Hofstra Stadium (Hempstead), Downing Stadium (New York City) and Yankee Stadium (Bronx).
While the American side has never played in the metro area, head coach Bruce Arena had the U.S. train in his old stomping rounds at the N.Y. Hota/Bavarians field in Franklin Square, N.Y. on Long Island prior to a 2004 WCQ in Grenada. Arena played a year for the Hota Under-19 boys teams back in the day.