U.S. Soccer has invited the South American confederation's men's national teams to compete in a joint tournament also featuring Concacaf nations and held in the United States in 2020, according to The New York Times.
U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro reportedly extended the offer to CONMEBOL's 10 soccer federations through a letter on Tuesday. The offer included "almost $200 million in guarantees to the invited teams and their governing bodies," according to the report, while the tournament, which would take place around the same time as Euro 2020, could feature either 16 or 20 nations total, according to the Associated Press.
Its structure would be similar to the 2016 Copa América Centenario, which celebrated the 100th anniversary of the South American competition by playing an expanded and off-year edition in the United States featuring the 10 South American nations and six Concacaf participants. Chile won the final in East Rutherford, N.J. The 2019 Copa America is slated to be played in Brazil this summer, featuring CONMEBOL's 10 teams and guest nations Japan and Qatar.
Cordeiro said in the letter that U.S. Soccer would guarantee each nation millions for appearance fees, travel costs and bonuses for each point earned in the new prospective tournament, and the winner could reportedly earn more than $11 million. The potential competition could be discussed in meetings pitched by Cordeiro in Miami next week.
The tournament, according to Cordeiro's letter, is being billed as a one-off, not a bigger-picture replacement for the Copa America or Gold Cup, but a sticking point could involve CONMEBOL's apparent hopes to shift the Copa America's timing to coincide with the Euros every four years starting in 2020. The potential windfall from this 2020 offer, however, could throw a curveball into those plans. Concacaf, for one, appears to be in favor of the proposal.
“Concacaf is in receipt of the communication sent by the U.S. Soccer Federation to CONMEBOL Member Associations," Concacaf wrote in a statement. "We view this opportunity positively as it is not intended to replace or substitute any future editions of the Concacaf Gold Cup and it complements our vision to continue providing opportunities for our Member Associations to play competitive football at the highest level.”
Like the Copa America Centenario, the proposed tournament would need to be placed on the FIFA calendar in order for clubs to be compelled to release their players for it.