• Sunday Jul 28, 2013

    Soldier Field and Gold Cup – great together

    CHICAGO – In its 84-year history, Soldier Field has staged numerous high-profile soccer events. 

     

    The 2013 Gold Cup final on Sunday will mark the fourth straight time CONCACAF's marquee event has made a stop in Chicago. 

     

    The historic venue staged the memorable 2007 final between the United States and Mexico.  Benny Feilhaber’s stunning 72nd minute goal completed a U.S. comeback for a 2-1 win, giving the Americans their fourth and last confederation title.

     

    Two years later, both semifinals were held there.  In the opener, the U.S. overcame Honduras 2-0 thanks to goals at the end of each half.  Clarence Goodson, the only American to score in each of the last three Gold Cups, netted in the 45th minute and Kenny Cooper struck for an insurance goal as time ran out.  Mexico outlasted Costa Rica in the nightcap, advancing to the final 5-3 on penalty kicks after a 1-1 draw.

     

    In 2011, opening-round matches were hosted at Soldier Field for the first time.  A capacity crowd of 61,500 was treated to two goal-filled games as El Salvador beat Cuba (6-1) and Mexico topped Costa Rica (4-1)

     

    Aside from the Gold Cup, Soldier Field also has hosted the opening ceremony and match of the 1994 World Cup, U.S. men's and women's national team friendlies, international exhibitions and, at one time, served as the home of the Major League Soccer's Chicago Fire.

     

    Those with good memories will recall that current U.S. head Jurgen Klinsmann scored Germany’s only goal in its 1-0 1994 World Cup opening win over Bolivia on the famous pitch.

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