Big game tonight. Very big game. It’s the United States versus Mexico in the final of the CONCACAF Gold Cup. Kickoff at the Rose Bowl will be 6 p.m. There are a lot of MLS games today, but fortunately the Sounders have the rest of the day off after an early practice.
I asked coach Sigi Schmid what he thought about the game and if he had any predictions.
“I mean obviously you’d love to see the U.S. win,” he said. “It’s going to be a great game because Mexico is playing well. It’s an important game. This is the Gold Cup final that qualifies you for the Confederations Cup, so financially it’s a big game. The players pick up a nice bonus on either side for winning this game. It should be a highly charged game, highly motivated, played with a lot of intensity and desire. From that standpoint it’s going to be good. Like I said, I’d like to see the U.S. win but I can’t really predict who’s going to win. It’s going to be a tight game.”
I also asked him if he thought it was peculiar that the U.S. is the host country, but it might feel like a road game in the Los Angeles area.
“The U.S. is the home country, but it’s run by CONCACAF, so CONCACAF is going to put the game where they know they can draw people,” Schmid said. “I remember back in 1993 we played in June against Mexico in the Rose Bowl. It was 100,000 fans: 98,500 were for Mexico and 1,500 for the U.S. Things have improved an awful lot, but it’s still probably going to be a pro-Mexican crowd by probably 70-30 or 80-20. It’s obviously going to have a great atmosphere because the Rose Bowl is a great venue to play, especially when it’s packed.”