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Bocanegra, Hucles to chair USSF technical development group

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CHICAGO (AP) Former U.S. men’s captain Carlos Bocanegra and retired women’s midfielder Angela Hucles will chair a new technical development committee established by the U.S. Soccer Federation.

The organization also appointed eight chief officers who will report to chief executive officer Dan Flynn, but the final two direct reports remain to be hired: general managers for the men’s and women’s national teams.

Bocanegra currently works as the vice president and technical director for Atlanta United while Hucles is a former CEO and has spoken at sports leadership summits. Both Bocanegra and Hucles are members of the U.S. Soccer board. Bocanegra in particular has been floated for the position of U.S. Men’s National Team general manager, and this appointment could be the first step. And with more than 100 caps for the U.S. Women’s National Team and time spent as an executive, Hucles could also be angling for the USWNT general manager position.

The USSF said its board also established a new commercial committee, raising the board’s committee total to six under new president Carlos Cordeiro, who succeeded Sunil Gulati in February.

Nico Romeijn was promoted to chief sport development officer from head of coaching education, Ryan Mooney to chief soccer officer from director of sport development and Brian Remedi to chief stakeholders officer from chief administrative officer. Tonya Wallach was appointed chief talent and inclusion officer

Department heads continuing senior roles who are direct reports to Flynn include Jay Berhalter (chief commercial and strategy officer), Neil Buethe (chief communications officer), Eric Gleason (chief financial officer) and Lydia Wahlke (chief legal counsel).

SUM president Kathy Carter leaving position

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There was a time where it looked like Soccer United Marketing president Kathy Carter was on track to become the next U.S. Soccer Federation president, however, she will be seeking a new challenge starting soon.

[ MORE: UCL returns Tuesday as Man City, Roma look to complete comebacks ]

On Monday, Major League Soccer released an announcement stating that Carter will no longer serve in her current capacity as SUM president, a position she has held since 2010.

Carter’s attentions had been taken elsewhere recently, as she was one of eight candidates that were named on the USSF presidential ballot in March. Current president Carlos Cordeiro ultimately won the election, though, succeeding Sunil Gulati.

“My time with Soccer United Marketing and Major League Soccer has been deeply meaningful – building and expanding the game has been my profession and my passion,” said Carter. “I’m grateful for the life-long friendships I’ve made and the support I’ve received from the Commissioner, MLS Business Ventures President Gary Stevenson and all of my colleagues at the league, and look forward to seeing MLS continue its incredible growth. I will remain a huge supporter of MLS and U.S. Soccer and will be cheering loudly from the stands for our clubs and players.”

MLS commissioner and SUM CEO Don Garber also chimed in on Carter’s departure.

“I would like to thank Kathy on behalf of our owners, clubs and staff for the significant contributions she has made to the sport of soccer in the U.S. and Canada while at SUM and MLS,” said Garber. “Kathy played a critical role in the development of our league and the growth of soccer in North America for many years.  Her energy, leadership and strong relationships helped establish SUM as one of the leading commercial soccer companies in the world.  We wish her the best of luck in the next chapter in her career.”

Morocco gets two CONCACAF endorsements in 2026 World Cup hosting race

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Everything is going to be fine, even if the 2026 World Cup does not arrive on the shores of the United States. Just remind yourself that.

Morocco will feel it has landed some shots — pun very much intended — against the tri-bid of Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. with the endorsement of CONCACAF nations Dominica and Saint Lucia.

 MORE: De Bruyne on UCL comeback bid ]

“Dominica, which was devastated by Hurricane Maria, has a lot to learn from Morocco, which could help us become the first climate resilient country in the world,” said Dominica foreign minister Francine Baron in a release.

“Morocco has never ceased to provide assistance and expertise to farmers in my country,” said Saint Lucien minister of development and sports Edmund Estephane.

A failure to land the 2026 World Cup would be another shot at the legacy of former U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati, who has overseen much growth in the country but did not seek reelection following Bruce Arena’s failure to lead the USMNT into the 2018 World Cup.

MetLife Stadium would host 2026 World Cup final; semis in Atlanta, Dallas

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The United bid to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup appears to be very much in jeopardy, but the structure of the jointly-held competition continues to be revealed bit by bit.

While the USA, Mexico and Canada are in a tough fight against Morocco — the only other nation currently bidding on the 2026 World Cup — the official bid for North America has revealed that the final would be held in New Jersey at MetLife Stadium if the United bid is selected.

[ MORE: How will USMNT line up against Paraguay? ]

The New Jersey-based stadium has hosted various major soccer events in the past, including, the 2016 Copa America Centenario final contested by Argentina and champions Chile.

Meanwhile, the two World Cup semifinal matches would take place in Atlanta and Dallas, respectively.

Atlanta boasts a newly-developed Mercedes-Benz Stadium — which opened in 2017 to Atlanta United and the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons. Meanwhile, Dallas features AT&T Stadium — which is home to the Dallas Cowboys and holds a capacity of over 100,000.

The bid — which announced 23 cities across the U.S., Mexico and Canada on March 15 — was officially submitted to FIFA on March 16 for approval.

With the tournament set to expanded to 48 teams by 2026, the bid has proposed that Canada and Mexico each host seven group stage matches and an additional three knockout round matches (two in Round of 32, one in Round of 16).

USMNT reveals new kits ahead of Paraguay friendly

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U.S. Soccer’s teams has donned some pretty sweet kits in the past, but this go around has particularly patriotic feel about it, and we like it.

[ MORE: Zlatan Ibrahimovic has joined the LA Galaxy ]

The U.S. released a video on Friday (below) with several USMNT stars, including Bobby Wood and Tyler Adams wearing the new kits ahead of Tuesday’s international friendly against Paraguay.

The home jersey features a flag design engraved on a white kit, which is representative of the American flag. Meanwhile, the away version holds a similar design, but with a blue base for the jersey.

Meanwhile, the USWNT will don their new kits on April 5 when they take on Mexico in the first two matches in the U.S. The two rivals will meet three days later for the second meeting.