How to watch: Nashville SC in World Cup qualifying

Qualifying for the 2022 World Cup is back underway. Concacaf (the FIFA region for North America, Central America and the Caribbean) qualifying kicks off tonight, and four Nashville SC players will represent their countries as they push for a spot in Qatar next winter.

Concacaf qualifying is updated this cycle. Instead of the “Hexagonal” round, featuring six teams playing 10 matches, the pool has been expanded to eight teams in an “Octagonal” round, each playing 14 games. Each team will play three matches in this first window, starting Thursday night and ending on Wednesday.

Alistair Johnston 🇨🇦

Johnston made his international debut in January, and in just eight months has turned himself into a fixture for his national team. The Nashville right back has carved out a role for himself as a right center back in John Herdman’s back three setup, appearing in all 11 of Canada’s matches in 2021. Johnston especially impressed at the Gold Cup, where he played all 90 minutes in four of Canada’s five matches, including a hard fought 2-1 loss to Mexico in the semifinals.

Johnston is part of a Canada team on the rise, with the greatest collection of top-end talent in program history. With a global superstar like Alphonso Davies, as well as several impressive young players like Tajon Buchanan, Stephen Eustáquio and Jonathan David, Canada should like their chances of qualifying for their first World Cup since 1986.

Matches

Canada 🇨🇦 vs Honduras 🇭🇳 – Thursday, September 2 – BMO Field, Toronto – 7:05 pm Central – Paramount+ / UNIVERSO

United States 🇺🇸 vs Canada 🇨🇦 – Sunday, September 5 – Nissan Stadium, Nashville – 7:00 pm Central – FS1 / UniMas / TUDN

Canada 🇨🇦 vs El Salvador 🇸🇻 – Wednesday, September 82 – BMO Field, Toronto – 6:30 pm Central – Paramount+ / UNIVERSO

Aníbal Godoy 🇵🇦

Godoy has been a crucial part of the Panama setup since 2010, making 101 appearances for his country. Godoy started all three matches for Panama at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, but more recently missed the Gold Cup with a hamstring injury. He’s back healthy, returning to his regular spot in Nashville’s starting lineup. He’ll continue to play a key part for Panama this cycle.

Matches

Panama 🇵🇦 vs Costa Rica 🇨🇷 – Thursday, September 2 – Estadio Rommel Fernandez Gutierrez, Ciudad de Panama – 8:05 pm Central – Paramount+

Jamaica 🇯🇲 vs Panama 🇵🇦Sunday, September 5 – Independence Park, Kingston – 5:00 pm Central – Paramount+

Panama 🇵🇦 vs Mexico 🇲🇽Wednesday, September 8 – Estadio Rommel Fernandez Gutierrez, Ciudad de Panama – 8:05 pm Central – UNIVERSO / Telemundo

Randall Leal 🇨🇷

Like Godoy, Leal has been a core part of Costa Rica’s setup in the last few years. The program is at its lowest point in recent years, with manager Rónald González Brenes fired after a poor run of games. Leal wasn’t called up for the Gold Cup, in part to be with his wife and newborn son, and was a major part of Nashville’s resurgent attack over the summer.

Leal should be a fixture for the Ticos over these next 14 matches as they look to return to their 2014 form.

Matches

Panama 🇵🇦 vs Costa Rica 🇨🇷 – Thursday, September 2 – Estadio Rommel Fernandez Gutierrez, Ciudad de Panama – 8:05 pm Central – Paramount+

Costa Rica 🇨🇷 vs Mexico 🇲🇽Sunday, September 5 – Estadio Nacional, San Jose – 6:00 pm Central – UNIVERSO / Telemundo / Paramount+

Costa Rica 🇨🇷 vs Jamaica 🇯🇲Wednesday, September 8 – Estadio Nacional, San Jose – 8:00 pm Central – Paramount+

Walker Zimmerman 🇺🇸

Zimmerman was a fixture in the United States lineup while he was with the team at the Gold Cup, wearing the captain’s armband for the final two group matches. Unfortunately for Zimmerman, a hamstring injury forced him to withdraw early. He’s back to full fitness, and is set to compete with John Brooks, Miles Robinson and Tim Ream for starting minutes over the next three matches. With the U.S. center back position a wide open battle, it’s a chance to further cement his status in the national team picture.

Matches

El Salvador 🇸🇻 vs United States 🇺🇸 – Thursday, September 2 – Estadio Cuscatlan, San Salvador – 9:05 pm Central – CBS Sports / UNIVERSO / Paramount+

United States 🇺🇸 vs Canada 🇨🇦 – Sunday, September 5 – Nissan Stadium, Nashville – 7:00 pm Central – FS1 / UniMas / TUDN

Honduras 🇭🇳 vs United States 🇺🇸 – Wednesday, September 8 – Estadio Olímpico Metropolitano, San Pedro Sula – 9:05 pm Central – UNIVERSO / Telemundo / Paramount+

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