CONCACAF Champions to Host Mexico on Feb. 6 as Border Rivals Face Off in Houston
CHICAGO (November 13, 2007) — The 2007 CONCACAF Champion U.S. Men’s National Team will host Mexico on Feb. 6 at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas. The game will be shown live on ESPN2 and Univision at 8 p.m. CT, and fans can follow online via ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker.
The last USA vs. Mexico match in Reliant Stadium drew a passionate sellout crowd of 69,582 fans on May 8, 2003 and remains the largest home crowd for the U.S. Men’s National Team this decade.
Four out of the last five USA-Mexico meetings on U.S. soil have been sellouts, including two matches in 2007, and tickets will be in high demand for the 2008 edition of the biggest soccer rivalry on this continent.
In an arrangement unique for this game, U.S. Soccer has divided the seating into U.S.A., Mexico, and mixed/neutral fan sections at each price level. Tickets ranging in price levels from $35 to $165 and special edition U.S. Soccer on-field seats for $275 go on sale to the public Tuesday, Nov. 20, at 10 a.m. CT through ussoccer.com, by phone at 713-629-3700, at all Houston area Ticketmaster ticket centers (including Fiesta stores, Macy’s, Wherehouse Music, FYE, and select HEB stores), and at the Reliant Stadium south ticket office (open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.).
Groups of 30 or more can obtain an order form at ussoccer.com or call 312-528-1290. Ultimate Fan Tickets (a special VIP package which includes a premium ticket, a custom made official U.S. national team jersey with your name and number, VIP access to the field before and after the game, and other unique benefits), are also available exclusively through ussoccer.com.
As a special benefit to Visa cardholders, a Visa-only presale will be held from Saturday, Nov. 17, at 10 a.m. CT until Tuesday, Nov. 20, at 8 a.m. at ussoccer.com. Visa, the preferred payment card of U.S. Soccer, is the only payment method accepted for this advance sale opportunity. Visa is a proud sponsor of U.S. Soccer.
Beginning Monday, Nov. 19, at 10 a.m. CT, U.S. supporters groups including Sam’s Army will be able to purchase special supporters section tickets through ussoccer.com using the password RED.
“Mexico is always a challenging opponent, and we all know this is a game that motivates everyone involved,” said U.S. head coach Bob Bradley. “The first half of 2008 is very important to our team as we prepare for the beginning of World Cup qualifying in June, and the match against against Mexico will be an important part of that process. The atmosphere at Reliant Stadium in 2003 was tremendous, and we look forward to another enthusiastic crowd in Houston in February."
Both the U.S. and Mexico will begin qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in June, and the game in Houston will likely be the last meeting of the two CONCACAF powers prior to Final Round Qualifying for the World Cup, should both teams advance out of the preliminary rounds.
The U.S. has dominated the series of late, collecting an 8-0-1 home record against Mexico since 2000. During that span, the USA has netted 15 goals, while the Mexicans have scored just one. In six friendly matches this decade, Mexico has yet to score a goal on U.S. soil.
The last meeting between the teams saw Benny Feilhaber’s highlight-reel goal in the 73rd minute give the U.S. a second-straight CONCACAF title with a 2-1 win at the Gold Cup Final at Soldier Field in Chicago on June 24, 2007. Mexico’s first-half goal snapped a string of 796 minutes without an away goal against the USA, but the USA’s current nine-game unbeaten streak at home against Mexico remains intact and is now the longest such streak in the history of the rivalry. Overall, Mexico leads the rivalry 29-13-10, but the U.S. has a 12-7-7 record in the series since 1990, including a commanding 9-2-1 mark since 2000.
The 2003 match in Houston was labeled as “Revancha en la Cancha” for the Mexico team, as it sought to avenge a 2-0 loss to the U.S. in the Round of 16 at the 2002 FIFA World Cup that sent Mexico packing. U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard saw to it that the U.S. didn’t surrender any goals with his five saves and DaMarcus Beasley earned Man of the Match honors as the teams played to a 0-0 tie. The only prior visit by the U.S. to Houston was for a 2-0 loss to Ecuador in 1988.
The Mexico match is the second on the schedule for the USA in 2008, with the first match vs. Sweden slated for Jan. 19, 2008, at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. Both matches serve as preparation for the first round of World Cup qualifying in June. The U.S. will learn its first qualifying opponent when the Preliminary Draw is held in Durban, South Africa, on Nov. 25, 2007.