USMNT announce friendly against Slovenia: where and when will it be played?
Both the United States and Slovenia will play major tournaments in the summer, qualifying for the Copa América and Euro 2024 respectively.
After booking their place at the 2024 Copa America with a victory over Trinidad and Tobago, the USMNT will now turn their attention to the CONCACAF Nations League finals, which will take place in March. As part of their preparation, Gregg Berhalter’s team will start 2024 with a friendly match against Slovenia, a team that qualified for the upcoming European Championship in Germany.
Big stars to miss USMNT-Slovenia
US Soccer has announced the game will take place on 20 January in San Antonio, Texas, a little over two months before they face Jamaica in the CONACAF Nations League semi-finals on 21 March.
The encounter will also help Slovenia fine-tune ahead of Euro 2024, which runs from 14 June to 14 July next year. The Central European national finished second in their qualification group behind Denmark.
As the match will take place outside the FIFA international calendar, neither team will expect to be at full strength, with the likes of Christian Pulisic, Gio Reyna, Weston McKennie and Folarin Balogun to miss out for the USMNT, while Atlético Madrid goalkeeper Jan Oblak will be Slovenia’s main absentee.
Berhalter: “An opportunity for the next generation”
“This is an opportunity for us to identify and work with the next generation of players who have the potential to make an impact on our program,” said USMNT head coach Gregg Berhalter. “With the World Cup coming to the United States in 2026, we have placed a huge priority on getting as many players as possible experience in important competitions. Between the Olympics, Concacaf Nations League and Copa America, the chances are there for players to make a statement, and for many of them the game in San Antonio can be an important first step.”
Previous meetings between the USMNT and Slovenia
The United States and Slovenia have only ever faced each other twice before. The most high-profile meeting came in the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. On that occasion, the Stars and Stripes came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 in Johannesburg in a group stage game.
While the U.S. topped Group C ahead of England, Slovenia failed to progress to the knockout rounds in their second, and most recent, World Cup appearance. They also suffered the same fate on their tournament debut in 2002.
A re-match of sorts followed a little over a year later, with Clint Dempsey scoring one goal and setting up another as the CONCACAF nation won 3-2 in Ljubljana on 15 November 2011.