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INTERNATIONAL SOCCER

February 6, 2013
A GOLD CUP PLAYOFF?
Gulati: there are discussions about a possible special title game for FIFA Confederations Cup


SAN PEDRO SULA, Honduras -- At the present time, there is no golden ticket to the FIFA Confederations Cup for the winner of this year's CONCACAF Gold Cup, but that might change.

U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati on Wednesday said there were talks about having the champions play for the right to perform in the FIFA event.

"There is discussion about making the two Gold Cup winners play each other for the right to go to the Confederations Cup, which offers a lot of credibility to the off-year Gold Cup, which is this year," Gulati told reporters."

Gulati surmised that that decision would be made in the next month or two.

Mexico booked a spot by winning the 2011 competition and will participate at the Confederations Cup in Brazil this summer.

This year's Gold Cup will be hosted by the United States from July 7-28.

There have been rumors about CONMEBOL, the South American confederation, holding a special 2016 Copa America.

"CONMEBOL keeps announcing a tournament without talking to us" Gulati told the Washington Post. "We haven’t had more serious discussions. The biggest challenge to it is that it is not on the FIFA calendar, which means the U.S. can’t get our European-based players. That’s a big problem. The European clubs are saying, ‘Wait a minute: You’ve got the Gold Cup in ’15, the Gold Cup in the middle of ’17, and now you want this thing in the middle of ’16. We’ve got the Olympics in ’16. So when [do the players] get a break?’ "

"That is not an easy answer. If you get past that — and our team can play with a full roster — then you work economics and venues. We are only going to do it if it makes sense for us, meaning we can field a good team, we don’t have to shut down MLS, which plays in the summer. Until we’re much further down the road and have more information — and frankly, better information — it’s on hold right now.”

 
 
 
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