United States coach Bruce Arena has challenged his team to finish the job and seal World Cup qualification against Trinidad & Tobago on Tuesday after an emphatic rout of Panama which has transformed American fortunes.
Even if FIFA committed $63 million to equipping a stadium in each country with goal-line aids, that is still less than the $72 million spent over the last three years on congresses. But the governing body is the ultimate organizer of the games and in charge of whittling 210 teams into 31 finalists, all of whom will benefit from technology in Russia.
In Europe, France and Portugal joined Germany, Serbia, Poland, England, Spain, Belgium and Iceland as automatic qualifiers for next year's edition of the World Cup, while the remaining playoff spots were determined - group runners up Sweden, Greece and Switzerland joined Italy, Denmark, Croatia, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland in the next round of qualifying.
"It would force everyone to really reevaluate in an academic way what has been happening with soccer in this country in a different way than if they qualify", Curtis said last week. Time was running out on the Americans.
Panama sits fourth in the group just ahead of Honduras with just 10 points.
Davis adds, "You're going to hear a lot of yelling and see a lot of people going in that direction".
Keep in mind that in soccer, the ball must completely cross the line.
After losing the first two matches in the final round under Jurgen Klinsmann, the Americans seemed back on track with Arena in charge.
Trinidad and Tobago beat the U.S. despite having very little to play for, other than pride.
The first goal against the U.S. came courtesy of an own goal by defender Omar Gonzalez, whose attempt to clear a crossing pass sent a wickedly looping ball toward - and over - U.S. goalie Tim Howard. "This program, we have to get better". The United States is out and has no recourse for protest against its absence from a World Cup for the first time since 1986.
"It was the most unlucky goal ever for myself", Gonzalez said, "one that will haunt me forever".
After last night's loss, Arena said it was a "blemish" for the U.S. squad. Just look at all the attention Clint Dempsey garnered for the Seattle Sounders when he starred in the 2014 World Cup. Telemundo is spending about $600 million for the Spanish-language rights. This has been the biggest disappointment of my career.