Soccer Down Here
REPORT: USMNT to Face Serbia on Jan. 31 in Orlando
by Bart Keeler
According to reports in Serbia, the United States men’s national team will host Serbia in a friendly on Sunday, Jan., 31, at Exploria Stadium in Orlando, Florida.
Futbol Total RD reported that the Dominican Republic will host Serbia on Monday, Jan. 25, in Santo Domingo. A second friendly for the USMNT has not been announced.
Serbia does not have a manager in place as of now but the search is ongoing.
This fixture falls out of a FIFA window, so clubs are not required to release players for the match. This is typical for the USMNT, as the January camp usually brings together promising domestic players to train together. The Serbian SuperLiga is technically in season, but has a winter break that ends on February 6.
Head coach Gregg Berhalter will likely call in mainly MLS players but he was able to pull some European-based players for the January 2020 camp.
Serbia and the USMNT have met only once, not long ago. In January 2017, the teams played to a 0-0 draw in San Diego. This was the first camp of Bruce Arena’s second term in charge of the Yanks.
The Eagles finished their 2020 campaign with a 5-0 drubbing of Russia in November. However, they finished third in their UEFA Nations League group with a single win. Serbia is in Group A of European Qualifiers for FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
The U.S. will use this as its first tune-up for the four major competitions on its plate this year. Concacaf Olympic qualifying begins March 30, Nations League Finals take place in June, Gold Cup spans all of July, the 2021 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo run July through August, and Qualifiers for the World Cup start in September. (photo credit: @USMNT)