The 2023 Major League Soccer season is nearing its closing stages, and the playoffs are looming larger with every passing day. Before we dive into postseason play, though, we’ve got one more international break to get through. I know we’d all rather keep our momentum rolling in league play right now, but try your best to enjoy a few national teams instead while you’ve got the chance. This guide should help hold you over until we can get back to the main course.
It’s a Loons’ World
Minnesota United saw six players get called into national-team camps this window, spreading across four different continents and six different nations. While most of the boys will be playing in friendly matches, a few of our players will be taking to the field with real points on the line.
Teemu Pukki and Finland will continue their quest to secure a spot at Euro 2024, a goal that is well within reach at the moment. Qualifying for Group H is tight right now, but a match against first-place Slovenia will put Finland’s fate in their own hands. Meanwhile, Zarek Valentin and Kervin Arriaga will be playing in the Concacaf Nations League for Puerto Rico and Honduras, respectively. If you want to catch your Loons in international action, check out their game times below. Euro qualifying will be airing on the FOX Sports network, as well as TUDN, while Concacaf Nations League will be broadcast on Paramount+.
- Slovenia vs. Finland: Saturday, Oct. 14 at 11:00 a.m. CT
- Finland vs. Kazakhstan: Tuesday, Oct. 17 at 11:00 a.m. CT
- Cuba vs. Honduras: Thursday, Oct. 12 at 8:00 p.m. CT
- Honduras vs. Cuba: Sunday, Oct. 15 at 7:00 p.m. CT
- Puerto Rico vs. Guyana: Saturday, Oct. 14 at 2:00 p.m. CT
- Guyana vs. Puerto Rico: Tuesday, Oct. 17 at 3:00 p.m. CT
- New Zealand vs. DR Congo: Friday, Oct. 13 at 11:00 a.m. CT
- Australia vs. New Zealand: Tuesday, Oct. 17 at 1:45 p.m. CT
Dayne St. Clair
- Japan vs. Canada: Friday, Oct. 13 at 5:35 a.m. CT
- South Africa vs. Eswatini: Friday, Oct. 13 at 11:00 a.m. CT
- Ivory Coast vs. South Africa: Tuesday, Oct. 17 at 2:00 p.m. CT
Déjà Vu in Red, White and Blue
Gregg Berhalter has reassembled the Stars and Stripes for two more friendlies this month, and this time, we’re taking a jaunt down memory lane. The USMNT will be rewinding to the 2014 World Cup, when the USA was in the Group of Death with Ghana, Germany, and Portugal. A quick flight to Lisbon could complete the set, but we’ll have to fill in the gaps on our own while Ronaldo and company continue their Euro qualifying campaign this window. Germany hasn’t been the same since winning the World Cup in Brazil, nor has Ghana reached the same heights. However, these are still two quality sides, and these should be entertaining matches nonetheless.
This month’s roster has a few notable names, including the return of Gio Reyna for the first time since Berhalter’s renewal as head coach. Defensive midfielder Lennard Maloney received his first call-up and would be the first Heidenheim player to represent their nation at the senior level if his debut comes in this window. Aside from that, it’s the usual suspects: Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, Matt Turner, Chris Richards, Timothy Weah, and more familiar names fill this window’s roster. To catch the USMNT in action, stream the games on Max or Peacock.
- USA vs. Germany: Saturday, Oct. 14 at 2:00 p.m.
- USA vs. Ghana: Tuesday, Oct. 17 at 7:30 p.m.
Bonus Games to Scratch Your Soccer Itch
If that isn’t enough to hold you over, I’ve picked a few bonus games to keep you entertained. Qualifying for the UEFA European Championship is heating up, with many nations in need of valuable points to keep their hopes alive. This window could see several teams secure their spot, or watch it slip away if they aren’t able to get a result. While there isn’t quite as much at stake in the Concacaf Nations League, there are still a few matchups worth catching on our side of the Western Hemisphere. Look out for these big matches:
Thursday, Oct. 12
- Spain vs. Scotland
- Croatia vs. Turkey
Friday, Oct. 13
- Netherlands vs. France
- Austria vs. Belgium
Saturday, Oct. 14
- Hungary vs. Serbia
Sunday, Oct. 15
- Norway vs. Spain
- Haiti vs. Jamaica
Monday, Oct. 16
- Greece vs. Netherlands
- Belgium vs. Sweden
Tuesday, Oct. 17
- England vs. Italy
- Panama vs. Guatemala