The United States national team unveiled Jürgen Klinsmann as their new manager on Friday, and on Saturday the new boss learned one of the teams that will stand in his way to acheiving one of his major goals: qualifying the US for the 2014 World Cup.
In a draw held in the World Cup host nation, Brazil, to determine the qualifying groups around the world, the US were drawn into Group A of the third round of qualifying in the CONCACAF region with Jamaica. The US and Jamaica most recently met in the quarterfinals of this year's Gold Cup.
The other two spots in the group will come from Groups E and F in the second round of qualifying. Group E includes Grenada, Guatemala, St. Vincent and the Grenedines, and Belize. Group F comprises Haiti, Antigua and Barbuda, Curacao, and the US Virgin Islands.
The third round of qualifying is expected to begin in mid-2012.
Canada, however, must go through the second round of qualifying and so will begin their qualification process earlier than the Americans. After a disappointing Gold Cup, the Canadians will begin the long journey toward Brazil in a little over a month’s time, in the first week of September.
The Canadians headline Group D, joining Puerto Rico, St. Kitts and Nevis, and St. Lucia. The winner will advance to a third-round group that features Honduras, Cuba and the winner of second-round Group C (Bahamas, Dominica, Nicaragua, and Panama).
The top two sides from each third-round group advance to the final round of six — the “Hex” — with either three or four teams from that stage heading to the World Cup.