Category: CONCACAF Gold Cup

Texas plays big role in 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup

Image from CONCACAF Twitter (#copaoro2017):

A lot of international soccer will be coming to Texas in July, but none more important than the 7 games (28% of the tournament’s total matches) that will be played as part of the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup.  3 group stage double-headers will take place in Houston, Frisco and San Antonio and a semifinal game, potentially featuring the United States, will take place in Arlington on July 22.

July 11, 2017-Group A-second group stage matches-BBVA Compass Stadium, Houston

6:30 p.m. Canada vs. Costa Rica 

9:00 p.m. Honduras vs. French Guiana.

July 14, 2017-Group A-final group stage matches-Toyota Stadium, Frisco

6:30 p.m. Costa Rica vs. French Guiana

9:00 p.m. Honduras vs. Canada

July 16, 2017-Group C-final group stage matches-Alamodome, San Antonio

5:00 p.m. Jamaica vs. El Salvador

7:00 p.m. Mexico vs. Curacao

The United States will not play a group stage match in Texas, but if the bracket favorites hold to form and they advance, will play the first semifinal match in AT&T Stadium in Arlington at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 22.  

The 2017 Gold Cup will be the 14th edition of the biennial competition to determine the best national team from North America, Central America and Caribbean region (CONCACAF), one of 6 Confederations that make up FIFA. Mexico is the defending champion.

12 teams have qualified for this years Gold Cup.  The United States, Mexico and Canada were automatically entered into the tournament.  25 Caribbean nations and 6 Central American countries competed in qualifying rounds over the last 18 months to determine 9 teams to fill out the rest of the Gold Cup bracket. The 12 teams have been divided into 3 groups of 4.  The two top sides from each group and the two highest third place teams will enter the knock-out rounds.

There will be 25 matches played over 20 days between the Group A openers in New Jersey on Friday, July 7 and the Championship final which will be played in Santa Clara, CA on Wednesday, July 26.

The winner of this tournament will play against the winner of the 2019 Gold Cup in a one-match play-off to determine CONCACAF’s qualifier for the 2021 FIFA Confederations Cup, the 2017 version of which was won by Germany last Sunday.  If the same team wins both the 2017 and 2019 Gold Cups, no playoff will be required.

Tournament previews from Charles Boehm on can be found in the links below:


Weekly Soccer Notes-June 10, 2017

Other news of interest in Texas Soccer this week:

Major League Soccer (MLS):

Bleacher Report’s Noah Davis wrote an excellent long-form piece on former Dynamo defender/midfielder and sometimes forward Geoff Cameron.  He used the word “unheralded” to describe Cameron’s arrival in Houston and that is true.  He joined the team as a third round MLS Super Draft choice in 2008 and in this article Dynamo head coach at the time, Dominic Kinnear, admitted about Cameron’s pick “It was a gamble” .  It didn’t take Dynamo supporters long to consider him heralded.  He scored on his home debut against FC Dallas and was in the starting lineup for the second-leg of a CONCACAF Champions Cup match (predecessor to the current CCL) in Costa Rica early in his rookie season. Now he is one of the top American exports to the English Premier League.

The link to the story is below: (


  • The biennial CONCACAF Gold Cup will be held in the United States from July 7-26. The U.S. submitted a provisional 40 man roster to the Confederation last week…this roster needs to be reduced to 23 by June 27th. Players from Texas teams, or those that are Texas-natives, named to the preliminary roster include:

Defenders:  Greg Garza (Atlanta United), Omar Gonzalez (Pachuca, Mexico),  Matt Hedges (FC Dallas)

Midfielders:  Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas)

Goalkeeper:  Jesse Gonzalez (FC Dallas)

U.S. born Gonzalez had previously announced his intention to play for Mexico, since he is a dual-national and has represented Mexico in youth tournaments. According to an article on, Fox Sports analyst and former Houston Dynamo Stuart Holden reported that he had recently spoken to Gonzalez’s agent, who said Gonzalez would accept the call if he is selected for the US 23-man roster for the Gold Cup. (

  • Other CONCACAF counties also released their provisional rosters.  Players with current Texas connections include: (

Canada:  Tesho Akindele (FC Dallas)

Honduras:  Maynor Figueroa (FC Dallas), Alberth Elis, Boniek Garcia and Rommel Quioto (Houston Dynamo)

Mexico:  Erick Torres (Houston Dynamo)

Panama:  Adolfo Machado (Houston Dynamo)

  • The CONCACAF website featured an interview with former Dynamo legend Dwayne DeRosario who played for Canada in five Gold Cups before his retirement in 2015. Here is a link to the interview: (

National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL):

The Houston Dash were held scoreless for the second consecutive week, losing 2-0 to the Washington Spirit at the Maryland SoccerPlex last Saturday. Though held scoreless, the Dash forced eight saves from the Spirit goalkeeper.  With the loss, the Dash fell into last place in the league (2-6-0 and 6 points from 8 games).  The Dash now have a week off before their next match against Orlando on June 17th.  It is likely that a new permanent coach will be named at some point during the break, to replace Randy Waldrum who was fired two weeks ago. (

United States Youth National Teams:

36 players have been called into the U.S. Under-15 Girls’ National Team training camp in Portland, Oregon, from June 11-18.  Four Texas players will participate in this camp, three from the North Texas Solar Chelsea club…midfielder Olivia Pena (Irving) and forwards Trinity Byars (Richardson) and Alexis Missimo (Southlake).  Goalkeeper Azul Alvarez (Lonestar SC; Round Rock) rounds out the Texas group.

Youth Soccer Development:

The U.S. Soccer Development Academy playoffs will take place June 22-26 in Westfield, Indiana (a suburb of Indianapolis). The Academy conducted its 2016-17 Playoff draw on Wednesday, with the qualified U-15/16 and U-17/18 teams drawn into eight groups of four teams each.

  • FC Dallas, the defending champions at both age levels, was one of 23 club programs to qualify teams for the 2017 playoffs at both age levels.  At the lower age level, FCD has been grouped with Crew SC Academy Wolves, New York City FC and Baltimore Armour.  The older group will face New York Red Bulls, Seattle Sounders FC and Beachside Soccer Club in the group Stage.  The game against Red Bulls will be one of the marquee match-ups of the group stage.
  • The Houston Dynamo qualified a team at the U 15/16 level and face an all MLS group stage bracket, the first time this has happened in the Academy playoffs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC, LA Galaxy, Philadelphia Union join the Dynamo in what will certainly be a challenging group.

Further details can be found in the link below:  (

Weekly Soccer Notes-Saturday April 27, 2017

Other news of interest in Texas Soccer this week:

Major League Soccer (MLS):

Austin-native Khiry Shelton, who currently plays for New York City FC, has been ruled out of action for 4-6 weeks.  Shelton suffered a hamstring injury near the end of a 2-0 victory over Philadelphia Union last Friday.

United States Youth National Teams:

  • Two North Texas youth players have been selected to the roster for the CONCACAF Mens U-17 Championship that started yesterday in Panama. Brian Reynolds Jr., a FC Dallas Homegrown signing, and Blaine Ferri from the Solar Chelsea Club are part of the 20-man selection for this tournament. This confederation championship doubles as the qualifying tournament for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup to be played Oct. 6-28 in India. The United States opens group round play tomorrow against Jamaica.
  • Three players from the FC Dallas program will be part of the U.S. U-18 men’s national team that will travel to play in the 2017 Slovakia Cup.  Paxton Pomykal from the first team and two Academy members, midfielder Brandon Servania and forward Shaft Brewer, have been selected. Additionally, midfielder Koby Carr from Houston-area club Texas Rush will be part of this squad. Last year the U.S. sent a group of U-19’s and won the tournament.
  • Starting today, the U.S. Under-15 Girls’ National Team will hold a week-long training camp in College Station.  36 players, 3 of them from Texas, were invited to participate in this camp.  In two years the plan is for this group of players to become the core of the team seeking to qualify for the 2020 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup. Azul Alvarez from Austin-area Lone Star SC and Olivia Pena and Trinity Byars, both from North Dallas Suburban Solar Chelsea, are the Texans selected to participate.

National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL):

After their season opening 2-0 victory over Chicago, the Houston Dash head to Seattle to play at 9:00 p.m CDT Saturday night. Rachel Daly’s superb strike in the Chicago match was named the NWSL Goal of the Week.  Two key Dash starters, United States international Morgan Brian and Brazilian Andressa, will miss tonight’s match.

CONCACAF Champions League:

  • FC Dallas’s disappointing semifinal round exit from the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League a few weeks ago left two Mexican teams, Tigres UANL and Pachuca, to battle in the finals.  On Tuesday night, Pachuca managed to score a crucial away goal and tied Tigres 1-1 in the first-leg of the finals in Monterrey.  The second-leg will be played in Pachuca next Wednesday, April 26.
  • Panamanian defensive midfielder Amilcar Henriquez was shot and killed in Colon, Panama last Saturday.  Henriquez was a part of the Arabe Unido team that recently lost to FC Dallas in the qualifiers of the CONCACAF Champions League.  He also a key international who made 87 appearances for his country, including three CONCACAF Gold Cups played in the United States. Henriquez most recently played in the 1-1 World Cup Qualifying draw with the United States late last month in Panama City.  Panamanian authorities say they’ve arrested seven people and so far no motives have been advanced for this senseless killing.

National Professional Soccer League (NPSL):

Houston Dutch Lions:

Dutch Lions will play their second preseason game tonight against San Jacinto College at the Dutch Lions facility in Conroe tonight.  In other news, the team announced that 2016 top scorer Carlos Acevedo will return to the team for the upcoming season.  Acevedo was an Honorable Mention selection on the All-NPSL 2016 team.

Ft. Worth Vaqueros:

Fort Worth Vaqueros will play Sporting Fort Worth in a preseason game tonight.

Houston Regals FCA:

The Regals announced three player signings this week.  Two Brazilians from LSU Alexandria University, Pedro Diaz and Ricardo Caliman and a Spanish goalkeeper, Gonzalo Santa “Lalo”.

Premier Development League (PDL):

2017 PDL Mid-South Preview from Aaron Cranford (

Brazos Valley Cavalry:

Three new players were added to the Brazos Valley Cavalry FC roster earlier this week. Huntley Munn, Emmanuel Usen Jr. and Matt Dorsey will join the team for the inaugural season which begins next month.  Dorsey, a Houston Dynamo Academy graduate from Spring, is currently a redshirt sophomore at the University of New Mexico.  Usen Jr., also an Academy alumnus from Katy, attends California State University Northridge. Munn is a defender who plays his college soccer at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington.

2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup Schedule announced

Last week CONCACAF rolled out the group-stage schedule for the 2017 Gold Cup, which will be played throughout the United States from July 7-26.  There will be 3 group stage nights played in Dallas, Houston and San Antonio this summer.

July 11:  Houston-Group A second group-stage match:  

Costa Rica vs. Canada and Honduras vs. French Guiana

July 14:  Frisco-Group A third group-stage match:

Canada vs. Honduras and Costa Rica vs. French Guiana

July 16:  San Antonio-Group C third group-stage match:

Jamaica vs. El Salvador and Curacao vs. Mexico

Additionally, the first semifinal will be played at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.  If the stars align and the brackets hold to form, this game will include the United States National Team.