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Atlanta, Baltimore, Philadelphia, New Jersey host 2015 Gold Cup knockout rounds


NEW YORK _ The knockout rounds of next year’s CONCACAF Gold Cup will be played at Atlanta, Baltimore and Philadelphia along with East Rutherford, New Jersey, and part of the tournament will be played in Canada for the first time.

The United States will open its title defence in the 12-nation championship of North and Central America and the Caribbean on July 7 at Frisco, Texas. The Americans, who are in Group A, play three days later at Foxborough, Massachusetts, and close their first round July 13 at Kansas City.

Costa Rica will be in Group B and open July 9 at Carson, Calif., then play three days later at Houston and July 14 at Toronto’s BMO Field. In Group C, Mexico starts July 9 at Chicago, plays three days later at Glendale, Ariz., and then July 15 at Charlotte, N.C.

The rest of the groups and schedule will be announced in early 2015.

“Today marks another great step in Canada’s development to become a leading soccer nation and we would like to thank CONCACAF for the opportunity to have such a marquee event played on Canadian soil,” Canada Soccer president Victor Montagliani said in a release.

“Canadian soccer fans have always taken great pride in showing their support for Canada during this key tournament, travelling across the region to represent our country, and it is with great honour that we worked with CONCACAF to bring the beautiful game closer to them for the 2015 edition.

“We now hope that they will be rewarded with seeing Canada play its final group match in Toronto this summer.”

The site of the final is to be announced next year. The tournament also includes Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Jamaica, Panama and Trinidad and Tobago. The final spot will be determined by a playoff between French Guyana and Honduras on March 25 and 29.

The U.S. won the 2013 title and if it wins next year’s tournament will qualify for the 2017 Confederations Cup in Russia. If another nation wins the 2015 Gold Cup, it would meet the Americans in a playoff for the Confederations Cup berth.

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With files from The Canadian Press.

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