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Venue Guide: Check out where the USA will play at 2014 World Cup in Brazil

Dec 11, 2013, 1:28 PM EST

Redeemer-Brazil

With all the excitement of the World Cup draw last Friday for Brazil 2014, now seems like a good time to take a closer look at the cities and stadiums the U.S. national team will play in next summer.

As we all know, Jurgen Klinsmann’s side were handed and incredibly tough draw In Group G with Germany, Portugal and Ghana standing in their way of making it to the knockout stages. Ahem, ‘Group of Death’…

But what many have overlooked is the fact that in the group stages the USA will play in three of the four most Northern cities hosting games in the World Cup, which means unbearable heat, incredible humidity and will put plenty of extra strain on the players bodies as they play three games in 10 days.

FULL WORLD CUP DRAW ARCHIVE FROM PROSOCCERTALK

So, from the Amazon to the North East coastal resorts, here’s a look at what cities fans of the USMNT will be visiting if they’re lucky enough to be heading to South America to cheer on the Yanks. Plus, we take a cheeky look at the venues the USA may play at in the knockout stages, if they make it out of the dreaded ‘Group of Death.’

Warning: take plenty of sun block… and a hat.

source: Getty Images

Estadio das Dunas stadium, named after the famous sand dunes which are in the region of Natal, is a beauty.

NATAL – 16 June, 6pm ET: Ghana v USA

City: In the far North East of Brazil, a tropical climate awaits the USA (that will be a running theme here) as Natal enjoys over 300 days of sunshine per year and is known as ‘Sun City’ in Brazil. Heavy European influence adorns the buildings and architecture of the city and tourism plays a big part in the local economy due to wonders such as Ponta Negra, Genipabu, Redinha, Pipa, Pirangi and the fabulous beaches along the coast. This area has struggled for any domestic soccer success for quite some time as fierce rivals America Futebol Clube and ABC Futebol Clube have both struggled since the 1980′s.

Stadium: The Estadio das Dunas has been newly constructed and it’s fantastic curving shape emulates the sand dunes Natal is famous for. A capacity of over 42,086 means it’s the smallest stadium at the World Cup. Could prove difficult to get tickets for this one.

source: Getty Images

The Arena Amazônia is the host stadium in the humid confides of the Amazon rainforest. Will the USA handle the heat?

MANAUS - 22 June, 6pm ET: USA v Portugal

City: One of the most spectacular, yet problematic, venues in World Cup history, the Amazonian capital of Manaus is host to the USA’s game against Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal. Humidity around the 99 percent mark is likely to greet the USMNT, as well as heat in excess of 100 degrees in the heart of the Amazon rainforest but plenty of stunning sights, such as the convergence of the Negro and Amazon rivers, will make a trip to Manaus a one in a life-time experience. The most northern venue boasts quite a poor crime-record, so be on your guard.

Stadium: There are plenty of concerns over the heat and conditions deep in the world’s largest rainforest, as the kick off time has been moved backwards, but what a stadium they’ve built to welcome the world into the Amazon. Huge interwoven rafters mimics the wooden baskets this region is now far, but once again the capacity is only just over 42,000 so the USA will be playing in another of Brazil’s smallest host stadiums.

source: AP

The Arena Pernambuco has already hosted Confederations Cup games and is ready to go.

RECIFE – 26 June, 12pm ET: USA v Germany

City: Just down the coast from Natal, Recife is the state capital of Pernambuco and the fourth largest metropolitan area in Brazil. The gorgeous beaches close to urban areas makes this city unique and a heavy Dutch influence from the 16th century can be found amongst the architecture. Just like Natal and Manaus, this sprawling Northern city also enjoys searing temperatures and the USA’s noon kick off time vs. Germany may actually play in their favor. Well, at least more of the USMNT’s players will be used to playing in hot conditions compared to the Germans.

Stadium: Built through public and private funding, the stadium is now home to Clube Nautico Capibaribe, one of Recife’s three professional teams. With a capacity of 46,154, again it’s not the biggest stadium in Brazil but there’s sure to be a terrific atmosphere in the ‘capital of the North-east’ when the U.S. face Germany in their pivotal last group game. The stadium itself is located outside of the city proper and close to the region known as Grande Recife where huge poverty affects the local people, but this venue has regenerated the area by offering shops, jobs and other businesses to locals.

USA’s potential venues in knockout stages

Last 16: Porto Alegre on June 30 or Salvador on July 1

Quarterfinal: Rio de Janiero on July 4 or Brasilia on July 5

Semifinal: Belo Horizonte on July 8 or Sao Paulo on July 8

3/4 place game: Brasilia on July 12

Final: Maracana Stadium, Rio de Janiero on July 13

  1. seanb20124 - Dec 11, 2013 at 2:43 PM

    What is crime rate in these areas? What is travel like from distance wise from city to city?

    • talgrath - Dec 11, 2013 at 5:22 PM

      To travel between the three cities the USMNT play in requires about 8,800 miles of travel. I’m not sure about crime rates but search should give you an idea.

  2. rphillish - Dec 11, 2013 at 3:08 PM

    I think everyone needs to chill out about Manaus because, unless I’m missing something, the climate conditions have been way overstated. Temperatures in the hundreds? That would certainly be a record breaking temperature for the city. It seems that average highs in June are in the high 80s. Humidity at 99% would also be considerably high. I get that the temperatures in a city, and in a stadium, can be higher than the reported numbers, but I think we can all relax a little bit.

    The weather wont be ideal, but the bigger issue is going to be traveling out to the boondocks and back.

  3. hildezero - Dec 11, 2013 at 3:20 PM

    Really Brazil?! What’s up with that Estadio Das Dunas design and architecture? Trying to jock U Of P Stadium’s style?…

  4. peiferinc - Dec 11, 2013 at 3:46 PM

    I hate the heat as much as the next guy, but when playing against Germany, and Portugal, the heat might help us a bit. As you said in the article, Germany isn’t used to playing in the heat. As for Portugal, I think we are really even teams once Ronaldo is eliminated, if not better. By playing at Manaus, hopefully, Ronaldo will become exhausted, and the USMNT will be able to take it from there. Those are my hopes, but at the same time, having 3 of the hottest stadiums could be really testing on the USMNT.
    I truly believe that this year, even though we are in hands down the hardest group in the world cup, we do have a chance to make it out.

    In Klinsmann we trust!

  5. hildezero - Dec 11, 2013 at 11:13 PM

    @peiferinc,

    Who’s the next guy? Most people prefer heat over freeze any day, dawg. Where do you live? Kansas? Missouri? Ohio?

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