The USMNT’s Road to Qatar so far

The USMNT is more than halfway through their journey to qualify for the 2022 Men’s World Cup. USA is currently second place in the qulaifying standings, the top three automatically qualify for Qatar 2022. This week the USA will continue their journey playing three-games-in-seven-days. If you missed how the USMNT got to where they are now in their journey through the Octaganal, take a look back at the road to qatar so far.

CINCINNATI, OH – NOVEMBER 12: United States midfielder Weston McKennie (8) talks to forward Christian Pulisic (10) during a CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying game between the United States and Mexico on November 12, 2021 at TQL Stadium in Cincinnati, OH. (Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire)

The Road to Qatar so far

The USMNT has played eight of their fourteen matches World Cup Qualifiers (WCQ) matches. Throguh this quantlet there has been three windows of matches where the USA plays either two or three matches in a seven day span. There’s little room for error, and even less room for a weak mentality. These windows so far has helped bleed the upcoming crop of young USMNT talent; players like Brenden Aaronson and Ricardo Pepi have emereged and made major impacts. Let’s look back at each window, and take a look at how USA is doing on their road to Qatar.

Window one

In the first window, there was a lot of uncertainty surrounding the USMNT. They had just had an amazing summer winning both the CONCACF Nations League, and the Gold Cup. Now it was time to take those succeses and morph them to a much bigger task of qualifying for the World Cup. The first window showed that this would not be an easy feat.

0-0 Draw @ El Salvador

1-1 Draw vs Canada

4-1 Win @ Honduras

The first window started out a little shaky. The draws against El Salvador and Canada meant the USA was not near the top of the standings after the first two matches. Their resolved showed in their comeback win at Honduras, and set the table for how to play in their next qualifying window.

Window two

Taking five points from the first three matches wasn’t the best, but it also wasn’t the worst thing in the world for USA. They knew that in the second window they would play two matches at home rather than on the road. The key to qualifying for a World Cup is to win your home qualifiers while pushing for points on the road. That is exactly what the USMNT did in the the second window.

2-0 win vs Jamaica

1-0 Loss @ Panama

2-1 win vs Costa Rica

Getting those two wins really helped the USMNT to rise up the standings. This helped to overshadow the disapointment of the road loss to Panama. Through six matches the USA took 11 points and was right where they wanted to be. Heading into a third window, which was shorter, gave USA the oppertunity to take the top spot in the standings.

Window three

The third window of matches was the final WCQ matches played in 2021. It also marked the halfway point to the quantlet that is the Octaganal. The USA had to take on thier biggest rivals Mexico at home and go on the road to Jamaica. The potnetial was there for USA to either be at the top of the table, or fall from the top three depending on results in this window.

2-0 win vs Mexico

1-1 draw @ Jamaica

The USMNT had a convincing win against Mexico. It was another Dos a Cero, and the third time the USA beat Mexico in 2021. The result in Jamaica went from good to bad, as they blew a lead and almost lost the match late on. After these results the USA knew they were firmly in second place with 15 points, one point behind leaders Canada. Now there are two more windows in 2022; six matches will determine if the USMNT can redeem themselves by getting back to the Men’s World Cup.

six matches left in two windows

The first window of the two remaining starts this week. It’s another three-games-in-seven-day stretch with two home matches. This produced their best results back in the second window. Could we see similar results?

  • Window four:
  • vs El Salvador – 1/27/2022
  • @ Canada – 1/30/2022
  • vs Honduras -2/2/2022
  • Window five:
  • @ Mexico – 3/24/2022
  • vs Panama – 3/27/2022
  • @ Costa Rica – 3/30/2022

The fifth and final window will be played out in March of 2022. It could be seen as the hardest seven-day window as the USA has to go to Mexico, return home to play Panama then go to Costa Rica to finish the Octaganal. Will the USMNT have enough points going into the final window to give them a boost in thos tough games? We’ll find out over the next eight days. If you aren’t paying attention to this team, it’s time to start doing so. The USMNT continue thier journey to qualify for Qatar 2022 tomorrow, don’t miss out on the drama and fun!

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Mandatory Credit: Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire

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