United States men's national soccer team
|Nickname(s)||Team USA 
The Stars and Stripes 
The Yanks 
|Association||United States Soccer Federation|
|Head coach||Jürgen Klinsmann|
|Most caps||Cobi Jones (164)|
|Top scorer||Landon Donovan (49)|
|Highest FIFA ranking||4 (April 2006)|
|Lowest FIFA ranking||36 (July 2012)|
|Highest Elo ranking||4 (June 24–27, 2009, July 8–10, 2009)|
|Lowest Elo ranking||41 (October 1968)|
| Sweden 2–3 United States
(Stockholm, Sweden; August 20, 1916)
| United States 8–0 Barbados
(Carson, California, United States; June 15, 2008)
| Norway 11–0 United States
(Oslo, Norway; August 6, 1948)
|Appearances||9 (First in 1930)|
|Best result||Third Place, 1930|
|CONCACAF Championship & Gold Cup|
|Appearances||13 (First in 1985)|
|Best result||Champions, 1991, 2002, 2005, 2007|
|Appearances||3 (First in 1993)|
|Best result||Fourth Place, 1995|
|Appearances||4 (First in 1992)|
|Best result||Runners-Up, 2009|
The United States men's national soccer team, often referred to as the USMNT, represents the United States of America in international association football (soccer) competitions. It is controlled by the United States Soccer Federation and competes in CONCACAF (the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football). The team is ranked 28th in the world according to the FIFA World Rankings, and 23rd in the World Football Elo Ratings. They have appeared in the last six FIFA World Cups and hosted the 1994 edition.
The men's national team competes in the FIFA World Cup and the FIFA Confederations Cup, in addition to the CONCACAF Gold Cup and other competitions by invitation. They achieved a CONCACAF-best when they reached the Semi-final in the 1930 World Cup, finishing 3rd. After qualifying for the 1934 World Cup, and withdrawing in 1938, the next World Cup participation came in the 1950 tournament, causing an upset by beating England 1–0 in their second group match. After 1950, the USA didn't qualify for the World Cup again until 1990.
After the 1990 World Cup, the USA qualified automatically as hosts in the 1994 World Cup, losing to Brazil in the round of sixteen. From then on, the team has qualified for every World Cup since, up to and including the 2010 World Cup. The national team improved in international level, reaching the final of the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup, eliminating top ranked Spain in the semi-finals before losing to Brazil 3–2.
1880s to 1940s: Early history
In 1884, the United States and Canada played at Newark, New Jersey, making it the first international match held outside of the United Kingdom; the Canadians won the match 1–0. The following year, a fixture at the same venue resulted in the U.S. winning after scoring the only goal of the game. Neither match was officially recognized. Thirty years later, the United States played its first official international match under the auspices of U.S. Soccer against Sweden in Stockholm, which the U.S. won 3–2, with goals from Dick Spalding, Charles Ellis and Harry Cooper.
The U.S. won both the silver and bronze medals in men's soccer at the 1904 Summer Olympics held in St. Louis, Missouri. The tournament featured only three teams: Galt F.C. from Canada and Christian Brothers College and St. Rose Parish from the United States. Galt defeated both American teams to win the gold. Christian Brothers defeated St. Rose in a third match after two scoreless draws.
In the next match, the United States earned a 3–0 victory over Paraguay. For many years, FIFA credited Bert Patenaude with the first and third goals and his teammate Tom Florie with the second. Other sources described the second goal as having been scored by Patenaude or by Paraguayan Ramon Gonzales. In November 2006, FIFA announced that it had accepted evidence from "various historians and football fans" that Patenaude scored all three goals, and was thus the first person to score a hat trick in a World Cup finals tournament.
Having reached the semifinals with the two wins, the American side lost 6–1 to Argentina. Using the overall tournament records, FIFA credited the U.S. with a third place finish ahead of fellow semi-finalist Yugoslavia. The finish remains the team's best World Cup result and is the highest finish of any team from outside of CONMEBOL and UEFA, the South American and European confederations, respectively.
Due to FIFA not wanting interference with the newly founded FIFA World Cup no official tournament was fielded in the 1932 Olympic Games. FIFA claimed the tournament would not be popular in the United States, so it would not be cost efficient to assist in the running of the tournament during struggling economic times. As a result, an informal tournament was organized including local rivals with the United States finishing first, followed by Mexico and Canada. The Olympic Tournament was reinstated in the 1936 Olympic Games.
1950 FIFA World Cup
The 1950 World Cup was the United States's first World Cup appearance since 1934. The USA lost its first match 3–1 against Spain, but then won 1–0 against England at Independência Stadium, in the city of Belo Horizonte. Striker Joe Gaetjens was the goal scorer. The result is considered one of the greatest upsets in the history of sports. Months before the famous World Cup loss to the USA, England had beaten an all-star "rest of Europe" side 6–1 in an exhibition match. Sports Illustrated and Soccer Digest have called World Cup upset by the Americans in 1950 the "Miracle on Grass," a reference to the Miracle on Ice. In USA's third game of the 1950 tournament, a defeat to Chile by a 5–2 margin saw the U.S. eliminated from the tournament. It would be four decades before the United States made another appearance at the World Cup Finals.
1950s to 1980s: The decline of American soccer
After the enthusiasm caused by the creation and rise of the North American Soccer League in the 1970s, it seemed as though the U.S. men's national team would soon become a powerful force in world soccer. Such hopes were not realized, however, and the United States was not considered a strong side in this era. From 1981 to 1983, only two international matches were played.
To provide a more stable national team program and renew interest in the NASL, U.S. Soccer entered the national team into the league for the 1983 season as Team America. This team lacked the continuity and regularity of training that conventional clubs enjoy, and many players were unwilling to play for the team instead of their own clubs. Embarrassingly, Team America finished the season at the bottom of the league. Recognizing that it had not achieved its objectives, U.S Soccer cancelled this experiment, and the national team was withdrawn from the NASL.
U.S. Soccer made the decision to target the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, California and the 1986 World Cup as means of rebuilding the national team and its fan base. The International Olympic Committee provided what appeared to be a major boost to the United States' chances of advancing beyond the group stage when it declared that Olympic teams from outside Europe and South America could field full senior teams as long as those senior players had never played in a World Cup, including professionals. U.S. Soccer immediately rearranged its Olympic roster, cutting many collegiate players and replacing them with professionals. Despite this, the U.S. finished 1–1–1 and failed to make the second round.
By the end of 1984, the NASL had folded and there was no senior outdoor soccer league operating in the United States. As a result, many top American players, such as John Kerr, Paul Caligiuri, Eric Eichmann, and Bruce Murray, moved overseas, primarily to Europe.
The United States did bid to host the 1986 World Cup after Colombia withdrew due to economic concerns. However, Mexico beat out the U.S. and Canada to host the tournament, despite concerns that the tournament would have to be moved again because of a major earthquake that hit Mexico shortly before the tournament.
In the last game of the qualifying tournament, the U.S. needed only a draw against Costa Rica, whom the U.S. had beaten 3–0 in the Olympics the year before, in order to reach the final qualification group against Honduras and Canada. U.S. Soccer scheduled the game to be played at El Camino College in Torrance, California, an area with many Costa Rican expatriates, and marketed the game almost exclusively to the Costa Rican community, even providing Costa Rican folk dances as halftime entertainment. A 35th minute goal by Evaristo Coronado won the match for Costa Rica and kept the United States from reaching its fourth World Cup finals.
In 1988, U.S. Soccer attempted to re-implement its national-team-as-club concept, offering contracts to national team players in order to build an international team with something of a club ethos, while loaning them out to their club teams, saving U.S. Soccer the expense of their salaries. This brought many key veterans back to the team, while the success of the NASL a decade earlier had created an influx of talent from burgeoning grass-roots level clubs and youth programs. Thus U.S. Soccer sought to establish a more stable foundation for participation in the 1990 World Cup than had existed for previous tournaments.
1990s: The rebirth of American soccer
In 1989, FIFA named the United States as the host of the 1994 World Cup, but it did so under significant international criticism because of the perceived weakness of the national team and the lack of a professional outdoor league. This criticism diminished somewhat when a 1–0 win against Trinidad and Tobago, the U.S.'s first away win in nearly two years, in the last match of the 1989 CONCACAF Championship, earned the United States its first World Cup appearance in 40 years.
For the 1990 World Cup in Italy, two of the team's more experienced players, Rick Davis and Hugo Perez, were recovering from serious injuries and unavailable for selection, and manager Bob Gansler selected many inexperienced players and recent college graduates. The U.S. lost all three games to Czechoslovakia, Italy and Austria.
In March 1991, the United States won the North America Cup, tying Mexico 2–2 and beating Canada 2–0. This was followed in May by a 1–0 victory over Uruguay in the World Series of Soccer. The national team then went undefeated in the 1991 Gold Cup, beating Mexico 2–0 in the semifinals and Honduras 4–3 on penalty kicks after a 0–0 draw in the final. In 1992, the U.S. continued its run of success, taking the U.S. Cup with victories over Ireland and Portugal, followed by a draw with Italy.
Having qualified automatically as the host of the 1994 World Cup, the U.S. opened its tournament schedule with a 1–1 draw against Switzerland in the Pontiac Silverdome in the suburbs of Detroit, the first World Cup game played indoors. In its second game, the U.S. faced Colombia, then ranked fourth in the world, at the Rose Bowl. Aided by an own goal from Andrés Escobar, the United States won 2–1. (Escobar was later murdered in his home country, possibly in retaliation for this mistake. ) Despite a 1–0 loss to Romania in its final group game, the U.S. made it to the knockout round for the first time since 1930. In the group of 16, the U.S. lost 1–0 to the eventual champion Brazil.
In the 1998 World Cup in France, the team lost all three group matches, 2–0 to Germany, 2–1 to Iran, and 1–0 to Yugoslavia, and so finished in last place in its group and 32nd in the field of 32. Head coach Steve Sampson received much of the blame for the performance as a result of abruptly cutting team captain John Harkes, whom Sampson had ironically named "Captain for Life" shortly before, as well as several other players who were instrumental to the qualifying effort, from the squad. It emerged in February 2010 that Sampson removed Harkes from the team due to Harkes allegedly having an affair with teammate Eric Wynalda's wife.
2002 World Cup Cycle
The United States won the 2002 Gold Cup to set up the team's best performance since 1930 in the 2002 World Cup, where the U.S. team reached the quarterfinals. The team reached the knockout stage after a 1–1–1 record in the group stage. It started with a surprising 3–2 win over Portugal, followed by a 1–1 tie with co-host and eventual fourth place finisher, South Korea. It then lost its third and final match 1–3 to Poland but still qualified for the second round when Park Ji-Sung of South Korea stunned Portugal with the eventual game-winning goal.
This set the stage for a Second round face-off with familiar continental rivals Mexico. Although the teams had played many times in both friendlies and in qualifying, they had never met in the World Cup. The U.S. would win the game 2–0. Brian McBride opened the scoring early in the match and Landon Donovan scored a second goal from a header off an Eddie Lewis cross. That victory advanced the team to the quarterfinals, where they met Germany. The team lost 1–0; after being denied a penalty when Torsten Frings handled the ball to prevent a Gregg Berhalter goal. Germany went on to finish runners-up, losing to Brazil in the final.
2006 World Cup Cycle
The United States followed up this success by winning its third Gold Cup, and second out of three, in 2005.
In the 2006 World Cup, after finishing top of the CONCACAF qualification tournament, the U.S. was drawn into Group E along with the Czech Republic, Italy, and Ghana. The United States opened its tournament with a 3–0 loss to the Czech Republic. The team then drew 1–1 against Italy, thanks to an own goal from Zaccardo, ending up being the only opponent together along with France the Italian side failed to defeat in the tournament (officially, according to FIFA, France and Italy drew 1–1, although Italy won the tournament after a penalty shoot out). The United States was then knocked out of the tournament when beaten 2–1 by Ghana in its final group match, with Clint Dempsey scoring their only goal in the tournament.
2010 World Cup Cycle
After failing to maintain his 2002 success at the 2006 World Cup, Bruce Arena was eventually replaced by his assistant with the national team and Chivas USA manager, Bob Bradley, whose reign began with four wins and one draw in friendlies. In the 2007 Gold Cup, hosted by the United States, the U.S. won all three of its group stage matches, against Guatemala, Trinidad and Tobago, and El Salvador. With a 2–1 win over Panama in the quarterfinals, the U.S. advanced to face Canada in the semifinals, winning 2–1. In the final, the United States came from behind to beat Mexico 2–1. This victory in the 2007 Gold Cup meant that the United States qualified for the 2009 Confederations Cup.
The team's disappointing Copa América 2007 campaign ended after three defeats in the group stage to Argentina, Paraguay, and Colombia. The decision by U.S. Soccer to field what many considered a second-tier team was questioned by fans and media alike.
One of the hallmarks of Bradley's tenure as national team manager was his willingness to cap a large number of players, many for their first time. This coincided with many young American players making their first moves from MLS to European clubs, meaning that more American players are gaining experience at the highest levels of club and international soccer than at any other time in the team's history.
The highlight of summer 2009 was the 2009 Confederations Cup, where the U.S. was drawn into Group B with Brazil, Egypt, and Italy. After losing 3–1 to Italy and 3–0 to Brazil, on the final day of group play the United States beat Egypt 3–0. This meant that the United States made an unlikely comeback to finish second in the group and reach the semi-finals. In the semifinals, the U.S. defeated Spain 2–0. At the time, Spain was atop the FIFA World Rankings and was on a record run of 15 straight wins and 35 games undefeated (a record shared with Brazil). With the win, the United States advanced to its first-ever final in a men's FIFA tournament; however, the team lost 3–2 to Brazil after leading 2–0 at half-time.
Only a few days after the Confederations Cup Final, the United States hosted the 2009 Gold Cup, and was drawn into Group B with Grenada, Haiti, and Honduras. Because the U.S. had just played in the Confederations Cup, Bob Bradley chose a side consisting of mostly reserves. The U.S. began group play with victories over Grenada and Honduras and a draw against Haiti. In the quarterfinals, the United States defeated Panama 2–1 after extra time. In the semifinals the U.S. faced Honduras for the second time in the tournament, winning 2-0. In the final the United States was beaten by Mexico 5–0, surrendering its 58-match unbeaten streak against CONCACAF opponents on U.S. soil. It was also the first home loss to Mexico since 1999.
2010 World Cup Qualification
- The United States qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
The U.S. won seven of eight matches against Barbados, Cuba, Guatemala, and Trinidad and Tobago in the Second and Third Rounds of qualification for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. This qualified the United States for the Fourth round, or Hexagonal, against Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, and Trinidad and Tobago.
The U.S. began the Fourth round by beating Mexico 2–0, a loss that extended Mexico's losing streak against America on U.S. soil to 11 matches. Six weeks later, in the second match of the Fourth round, the United States made a late rally to earn a 2–2 draw away to El Salvador. Four days later, Jozy Altidore became the youngest U.S. player to score a hat-trick, and lead the United States to a 3–0 victory over Trinidad and Tobago. Following another six-week break from qualifying, the U.S. travelled to Costa Rica, where they were soundly defeated 3–1. The United States rebounded three days later when they defeated Honduras 2–1. When qualifying resumed near the end of the summer of 2009, the United States suffered a 2–1 loss to Mexico at Estadio Azteca. A few weeks later, the United States came from behind to defeat El Salvador 2–1 at home after being down 1–0. The next week, the U.S. beat Trinidad and Tobago 1–0. On October 10, 2009, the United States secured qualification to the World Cup with a 3–2 win over Honduras. Four days later, the U.S. secured first place in the Fourth round with a dramatic 2–2 draw against Costa Rica.
2010 FIFA World Cup
After drawing against England (1–1) and Slovenia (2–2), in which a potential game-winning goal against Slovenia was disallowed without explanation, the US defeated Algeria through a Landon Donovan stoppage time goal, the first time the USA had won its group since 1930. In the round of 16, the US was eliminated by Ghana, 2–1.
2014 World Cup Cycle
The US team got the cycle underway with a 2–0 defeat to Brazil in the New Meadowlands Stadium. In preparation for the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup, the U.S. played three friendlies; a 1–1 draw to Argentina, a 1–0 loss to Paraguay, and a 4–0 loss to Spain.
The United States hosted the 2011 Gold Cup, and was drawn into Group C with Canada, Panama, and Guadeloupe. The U.S. advanced past the group stage with a pair of victories over Guadeloupe and Canada. However, the U.S. lost to Panama 2–1 in the second group stage match. This was the first defeat for the U.S. in a Gold Cup group stage match, and its first ever loss to Panama. In the quarterfinals, the United States defeated Jamaica 2–0. In the semifinals the U.S. avenged their group stage defeat with a 1–0 victory over Panama, and advanced to its fourth consecutive Gold Cup final where the team faced Mexico in a rematch of the 2009 Gold Cup final. The United States was beaten by Mexico 4–2, despite leading 2–0, extending Mexico's winning streak against the U.S. to three matches. It was also the second consecutive loss to Mexico on American soil. Following the loss, Bradley was relieved of his duties as coach.
On July 29, 2011, Jürgen Klinsmann was named by Sunil Gulati to be Bradley's successor as the national team's head coach. After their first six matches resulted in only a win and a draw against four losses, the U.S. embarked on a five-game winning streak. On February 29, 2012 the team won 1-0 in Italy, the first ever win for the USA over Italy. After friendlies against Scotland, Brazil and Canada, the team began their World Cup qualification, and topped their third round qualification group with four wins, one draw and one defeat in six games. On June 2, 2013, the US played 2nd-ranked Germany in its Centennial celebration match at a sold out Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium. The US won 4-3 after leading 4-1 late in the game. This was only the USMNT's third win ever over a top 2 ranked team in the FIFA World Rankings, joining a 1998 1-0 defeat of Brazil in the Gold Cup & the famous 2-0 victory over top-ranked Spain in the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup in South Africa. On June 6, 2013 the US took on Jamaica in Independence Park and won 2-1 from a late goal by Brad Evans. This was the first ever World Cup Qualifier victory by the US in Jamaica. On June 11, the US played against and beat Panama 2-0 at CenturyLink Field in the first US Men's National Team game in Seattle in nearly 40 years. The game was played in front of almost 41,000 fans, representing the seventh largest crowd to date to watch the team play in a World Cup Qualifier on US soil and drew the second largest TV audience on ESPN for a US World Cup Qualifier in history.
ESPN has English rights to all friendlies and all home World Cup qualifiers from 2010 to 2014. Matches will be televised on ESPN or ESPN2. beIN Sport USA has English rights to all away World Cup qualifiers from 2010 to 2014. Univision has Spanish rights to USA's national team matches from 2010 to 2014. Matches will be televised on Univision, UniMás, or Galavision
Since their first unofficial game against Canada, the uniforms have frequently featured white tops with blue shorts. In 1950, the US adopted a Peru style, featuring a diagonal stripe across the shirt. The stripe has been on third kits for 2003, 2004, and 2006, as well as the 2010 home, away and third kits. Adidas was the uniform provider for the United States from 1984 until 1994. Since 1995, Nike has been the uniform supplier.
- 1 Known as "Team America".
- 2 Worn as home kit in the 1994 FIFA World Cup.
- 3 Called the "Centennial." Released to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the national team.
The American Outlaws was started in Lincoln, Nebraska as a local supporters' group. The group's membership attempted to address a lack of consistency from game to game in supporter organization and social events on match days. To achieve this goal the American Outlaws became a nationwide, non-profit, supporters' group.
Sam's Army members wear red to matches, sing or chant throughout the match, and often bring huge American flags and other banners to the game. The American Outlaws can be further distinguished by the fact that they wear American flag bandanas over their faces. The two groups are usually put together in a "supporters' section" at US home games.
The teams of Mexico and the United States are widely considered as the two major powers of the CONCACAF federation. Matches between the two nations often attract much media attention, public interest and comment in both countries. Although the first match was played in 1934, their rivalry was not considered major until the 1980s, when the teams began to frequently compete in CONCACAF cups. On August 15, 2012 the United States defeated Mexico on home ground at Estadio Azteca, it was the first victory for the United States against Mexico on Mexican soil in 75 years.
Schedule and recent results
United States 2013 Record
The following is a list of matches completed so far this calendar year, as well as any future matches that have been officially scheduled this year.
- IF = International Friendly
- WCQ = World Cup Qualification
- 4R = Fourth round
- GC = Gold Cup
- GS = Group Stage
|Head coach||Jürgen Klinsmann||Place of birth: Göppingen, Germany. Born: July 30, 1964 .
Previously head coach of the German national football team
and Bayern Munich, and German international player.
Long time resident of California and former MLS Club consultant.
|Assistant coach||Martín Vásquez||Place of birth: Yahualica, Mexico. Born: December 24, 1963 .
Previously director of soccer operations of Real Salt Lake - AZ Academy,
and a Major League Soccer player.
|Assistant coach||Andreas Herzog||Place of birth: Vienna, Austria. Born: September 10, 1968 .
Former head coach of the Austria national under-21 football team and an Austrian football player.
|Goalkeeping coach||Chris Woods||Place of birth: Swineshead, Lincolnshire, England. Born: November 14, 1959 .
Former England goalkeeper and current Everton goalkeeping coach.
|Scout||Matthias Hamann||Place of birth: Waldsassen, Germany. Born: February 10, 1968 .
|Fitness coach||Masaya Sakihana||Place of birth: Tokyo, Japan. Born: June 13, 1974 .
Previously a coach of Germany national football team.
Education: Exercise science at Ithaca College, New York.
The following 23 players were called up for the World Cup qualifier against Honduras on June 18, 2013.
Goals and caps are updated as of June 11, 2013.
The following players were named in a squad in the last twelve months.
Most capped and top scorers
Most capped players
Active players are shown in Bold.
An all time team based on performances in World Cup finals tournaments was published in February 2013.
CONCACAF Gold Cup
|CONCACAF Championship & CONCACAF Gold Cup|
|1963-1971||Did Not Enter|
|1969||Did Not Qualify|
|1971||Did Not Enter|
|1973-1981||Did Not Qualify|
World Cup record
FIFA Confederations Cup record
The United States has competed at the Summer Olympics (when that tournament was considered a full international tournament), the FIFA World Cup, the FIFA Confederations Cup, as well as NAFC and CONCACAF regional tournaments. The U.S. has also played in the Copa América by invitation, as well as several minor tournaments. Since 1988, the men's Olympic event has been age-restricted, and participation has been by the United States men's national under-23 soccer team.
During the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup the United States appeared in their first ever international tournament final. The United States upset top ranked Spain, 2–0, to advance to the final. In the final, the United States took an early 2–0 lead through goals from Clint Dempsey and Landon Donovan. Brazil scored 3 second-half goals to defeat the United States, 2–3, and win the cup.
The best result for the United States in a World Cup came in 1930 when they finished in third Place. In the Confederations Cup, the United States has finished in third place in both 1992 and 1999, and were runner-up in the 2009 Confederations Cup. In the Olympics, the United States finished fourth in 2000, they also finished 9th in 2008 with a 1-1-1 record.
In regional competitions, the United States had never finished higher than runner-up until the 1991 CONCACAF Gold Cup, the first competition in the Gold Cup format. Since then, they have finished as winners four times. Their best ever finish at the Copa América came in a fourth place finish at the 1995 Copa América.
FIFA World Ranking history
In August 1993, FIFA began monthly rankings of every national team in the world. After staying near the 20's for the first few years of rankings, the U.S. began a steady climb upwards. After the success of the 2002 FIFA World Cup, their ranking continued to climb, culminating in their all-time highest ranking of 4th in April 2006. However, after they finished last in their group and failed to reach the knockout stage at the 2006 FIFA World Cup, their ranking slipped heavily. In the following three months, their ranking fell 25 places, from 4th to 29th. Currently, they are ranked at 28th in the world. Below, their past ranks are in bold. Inside the parenthesis are the total number of points awarded through FIFA World Rankings' point system, which is used to rank the teams. FIFA has twice changed their point system, once in January 1999 and again in June 2006, indicated by background colors.
* – Before the FIFA World Cup began in 1930, the football tournament at the Summer Olympics was, between 1908 and 1928, considered both a full international tournament and the World Championship of Football. Since then, it has become a mostly youth international tournament (currently U-23 plus 3 "overage" players), at least for men.