Jurgen Klinsmann and Co. boarded up bright and early today, bound for Miami’s airport and then the big plane into Antigua.
What will they find? Good question.
They’ll have the usual day-before happenings (“Match-day minus-1” in official U.S. Soccer federation parlance); a press conference in Antigua and a practice at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in North Sound, Antigua.
That’s where the mystery element will disappear; U.S. Soccer staff is eager to see the condition of the field, which is actually a cricket ground. Combined with the fact that showers are predicted for game day (60 percent chance), and then lumped in with memories of a poor field in Guatemala … yes, there is a bit of concern.
“We haven’t seen the field yet but anything can happen there in Antigua in terms of the field and conditions,” U.S. manager Jurgen Klinsmann said earlier this week from Miami.
I talked to a U.S. Soccer spokesman as he left for the airport this morning. He reiterated that nothing had changed on the left back situation; there will be no additional cover for a position that just became super model thin: No Fabian Johnson and no Edgar Castillo.
At present, there is no plan to summon additional cover for next week’s match in Kansas City; if all goes according to plan, Johnson will meet the team there on or near the team’s Saturday arrival.