Report: U.S. Soccer pondering mini-tourney with Italy, Netherlands

by 5d ago
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The United States Soccer Federation has held talks with Soccer United Marketing about hosting a potential mini-tournament with fellow World Cup rejects Italy, the Netherlands, Ghana, and Chile, sources told ESPN FC's Jeff Carlisle.

Each of the teams in question failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, but it's unclear if they've expressed or even entertained the idea of playing a series of matches against the U.S.

"Probably a longshot but worth a try," The Washington Post's Steven Goff, who confirmed Carlisle's account, said on Twitter.

Italy joined the list of high-profile nations to miss out on a trip to Russia on Monday, losing to Sweden on aggregate. The Italian football federation has already booked a friendly against England in March.

The U.S. was eliminated from World Cup contention thanks to an embarrassing 2-1 defeat to Trinidad & Tobago in October. The Netherlands' major-tournament woes continued after missing Euro 2016, and Copa America holder Chile's purple patch ended with a chastening 3-0 loss to Brazil. Ghana, meanwhile, finished an unsavory third in CAF qualifying Group E.