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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

A Guess At The Eagles 2016 Schedule


The calendar is quickly set to turn to 2016 and with it comes another busy year for the Eagles. We already know the team is going to play five matches in the Americas Rugby Championship, a summer tour, a November tour, and maybe even more. We thought we'd take a look at what might be on tap.

Americas Rugby Championship: Also known as the Americas Six Nations. We've known about this one for awhile but only recently got confirmation. Beginning on February 6th, the U.S. will play Argentina in Houston, Canada in Austin, and Chile in Florida. They will then head to South America to play Brazil and Uruguay. As has also been mentioned several times in the past, while regulation 9 will be in effect, do not expect Canada, Argentina, or the U.S. to bring in their top internationals. You could see some from the lower leagues but the likes of Samu Manoa, Chris Wyles, and Blaine Scully will almost certainly stay with their clubs. 

Take the jump to read more. June Internationals: After the A6N the U.S. will have a couple of month break until the June internationals. It hasn't been confirmed by U.S.A. Rugby or Italy but with Italy traveling to Canada it only makes sense that the U.S. is going to play Italy as well. 

The question then becomes who the U.S. are going to play in their other two matches? If you look back in 2012 the U.S. played Canada and Georgia. The next year was four matches in the Pacific Nations Cup in addition to facing Ireland. That scenario could play out again this year but that seems very unlikely. More likely is a repeat of 2012 with a match against Canada with possibly one or two more matches against Tier II countries. Romania is headed to Argentina on June 11th which could make sense if they simply wanted to head north. At the same time, they are the traditional hosts of the Nations Cup. That tournament may also be hosted by Uruguay next year. That same goes for Georgia who are hosting the Tbilisi Cup. 

Japan has been a natural pair with the U.S. and Canada when the Pacific Nations Cup has split into regions but they are hosting Scotland twice next summer. Maybe they come to play either the U.S. or Canada but it's unlikely. The most likely scenario is that the U.S. and Canada get a visit from a Pacific Islands nation or a team like Georgia. Maybe a team like the Maori All Blacks could return. 

Americas Rugby Championship: We've heard that the ARC, which has featured Argentina, Canada, the U.S., and Uruguay playing 'A' sides in October is still on. However, with the A6N that is still up in the air. Both the U.S. and Canada have used it as a selection tool for the November test series in the past and there is some argument that timing makes it an important tournament. 

November Internationals: The U.S. is headed back to Europe once again from what we understand. Whether that comes with a home match is still to be determined. You can bet that U.S.A. Rugby would like one but finding a good opponent might be more difficult. A special circumstance like that would have to come against a team like the Barbarians or the Maori All Blacks with all of the Tier I nations occupied. 

However, it's possible that the U.S. could play a Tier I nation in Europe. Canada just announced that they will be playing Ireland. Wales, Italy, and Scotland are also set to host Tier II nations. It looks like Tonga might get to play Italy. Japan has also been strongly suggested as a team that might play at Tier opponent while in 2014 Georgia were given an opportunity. Romania hasn't faced a Tier I opponent in Europe in ages. As far as things go, it might seem unlikely that the U.S. will play a Tier I team in Europe in the fall. Instead, the U.S. are once again likely to face countries like Georgia, Romania, Russia, or even Spain or Portugal at home as well as the possibility of a Pacific Island nation. Additionally, don't rule out the U.S. taking their turn to play a team like the French Barbarians, RFU Championship XV, or Basque Selection. 


5 comments:

  1. Is the proposed USA v Maori ABs (venue unstated) the night before the ABs v Ireland (Chicago) still on the table for Nov 4th?

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  2. Is the Pacific Nations Cup on hiatus? Why isn't that listed here?

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    Replies
    1. The PI nations will be playing their own round-robin series in June-July 2016-17 to sort 2019RWC qualifying.

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  3. I thought I saw a press release that the Romanian team going to Argentina is it's U20 team, not the senior team.

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  4. Hearing that Italy comes to the US in June & that the US gets Maori All Blacks as curtain raiser to All Blacks v. Ireland in Chicago.

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