On Friday FIFA announced that the U.S. national team will play Belgium in a behind closed doors friendly on June 12 in Brazil.
While the rest of the world are tuning in to watch the opening game of the 2014 World Cup in Sao Paulo, Jurgen Klinsmann and his side will be facing one of the tournament’s dark horses in a final tune-up, also in Sao Paulo, before the action gets underway.
In a brief statement on their website FIFA stated the “friendly will be staged behind closed doors in Sao Paulo.” While the Belgian football federation confirmed the game and said: “It will be a kind of training session for each side.” After speaking with U.S. Soccer, they confirmed to ProSoccerTalk that the scrimmage will take place ahead of the tournament kicking off in Brazil.
The last time the U.S. played Belgium came in Cleveland back in May 2013, when the Diables Rouges ran riot in a 4-2 victory over the USMNT. In that match Belgium raced into a 4-1 lead thanks to a brace from Christian Benteke and goals from Kevin Mirallas and Marouane Fellaini, while the U.S. goals came from Geoff Cameron and Clint Dempsey.
One final scrimmage before the action kicks off against Ghana on June 16 in Natal could be crucial for Klinsmann to get his starting lineup in place before the USA’s three Group C games against Ghana, Portugal and Germany.