The Eagles will have a chance to clinch a spot in the World Cup on home soil if they can best Canada on July 1st in San Diego. Torero Stadium will host the second leg of the qualifying series between the two teams with the team with the best aggregate score advancing to the World Cup. Because the Eagles have a higher World Rugby ranking than Canada they have the opportunity to host the second leg. The last several cycles have seen the Eagles host first, mostly keeping it close, before heading to Canada. The U.S. has never beaten Canada at this point of World Cup qualifying to to secure a spot this year would be big for the program.
"Hosting the second leg of this home-and-away series, where net point differential proves to be the determining factor in which team books the first ticket to the 2019 World Cup, in beautiful San Diego on the University of San Diego campus at Torero Stadium provides all of the ingredients for a great event," USA Rugby CEO Dan Payne said in a press release. "The Canada vs. USA rivalry is our most storied and respected and, when you add in World Cup qualification, it only elevates the stakes."
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No word yet on where Canada will host their leg but the word on the street is that it will not be in western Canada. That match will be the weekend before. You can expect the Canadians to be pumped up for the second leg of the series as it falls on Canada Day. Canada is celebrating 150 years of dominion this year.
Torero Stadium might be small for a World Cup qualifying but the Eagles are expecting it to be packed and boisterous. It has a good surface and even better for the team it puts them close to their training grounds in Chula Vista. The idea is to have the match close to their facilities to eliminate the travel part of the series.