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March 22, 2013 at 8:22 AM

Road to the World Cup resumes (Friday links)

US Centennial shield-01-1.jpgIt’s game day, and a big one, for the U.S. men’s national team. Eddie Johnson and Co. host Costa Rica in a World Cup qualifier at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colo. (kickoff is around 7 p.m. PT).

In other CONCACAF games, Mario Martinez and Honduras host Mexico and Jamaica hosts Panama.

Back to the action here and the U.S. hasn’t beaten Costa Rica since 2005.

And remember those mysterious reports of forward Alvaro Saborio being out injured for the visitors? Looks like he’ll be able to play. Team notes from The Washington Post here and here, plus a story on our good friend Herculez Gomez and his return to Colorado.

Let’s get to some links:

*     *     *

— Here are some prices and a seating chart for the June 11 World Cup qualifier between the U.S. and Panama.

— Frustrations over a 42,000 attendance cap are understandable, but it might be wise to avoid blindly blaming the Mariners. And a full stadium at that capacity would actually compare quite favorably, according to one reporter’s research.

Kevin Hartman has signed with the Red Bulls?

— Looks like Landon Donovan with be back with the Galaxy in time for a trip to the White House.

— Elsewhere around the league, here’s an interesting story involving a young Whitecap who has been the target of racism while playing abroad, Freddy Adu has arrived in Brazil, PRO is standing up for a big non-call from last weekend, and here’s the latest from the MLS Disciplinary Committee.

— Here is an update on ex-Sounder James Riley.

— BC Place in Vancouver will host the final of the Women’s World Cup. A lot of USWNT stars aren’t exactly pleased the big game will be played on artificial turf, Abby Wambach is one and Alex Morgan is another.

— Reign FC midfielder Megan Rapinoe was among the call-ups for friendlies against Germany and Holland in April.

— The Sounders Women have signed Shannon Woeller, a 23-year-old defender who has played for the Canadian national team. The Sounders FC U-23s made some signings, too.

— When it comes to Argentines and Pope Francis, here is what Messi thinks and here is a quick anecdote involving Mauro Rosales.

— Lastly, Gold Cup tickets are on sale. Remember, Seattle’s will host a doubleheader on July 11.

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