SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- The U.S. will open the fourth and final round of World Cup qualifying Feb. 6 in Honduras while Mexico will begin its quest by playing host to Jamaica.
Pairings and dates for six-nation, 10-match regional qualifier were determined Wednesday in Miami Beach, where CONCACAF, the governing body for soccer in North and Central America and the Caribbean, staged its tournament draw.
That draw laid out a difficult qualifying path for the U.S., which will play its first and last games on the road.
The top three finishers in the tournament are assured berths in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil while the fourth-place finisher will meet the winner of the Oceania region in a home-and-away playoff for another World Cup spot.
After Honduras, and a late March home match with Costa Rica, the U.S. will play in Mexico on March 26, meaning the Americans will play their first three matches against teams that qualified for at least one of the last two World Cups.
The March match in Mexico will probably be a key game for both teams given that last August the U.S. beat Mexico in Mexico City for the first time.
The U.S., which has not missed the World Cup since 1986, plays three times -- against Jamaica and Costa Rica on the road and against Panama at home -- during an 11-day span in June before playing host to Honduras and Mexico in another set of matches in September.
Juergen Klinsmann's team, which climbed five places to No. 27 in the latest FIFA rankings, then closes out qualifying with Jamaica and Panama in October. Jamaica was the only team to beat the U.S. in the third round of qualifying.
Mexico, No. 14 in the FIFA rankings, visits Honduras before hosting the U.S. It will visit Panama and Jamaica and play Costa Rica at home in June before finishing with games against Honduras, the U.S., Panama and Costa Rica.
The draw (home team listed first; cities still to be determined):
Wednesday, Feb. 6: Mexico vs. Jamaica; Honduras vs. U.S.; Panama vs. Costa Rica
Friday, March 22: Jamaica vs. Panama; Honduras vs. Mexico; U.S vs. Costa Rica
Tuesday, March 26: Mexico vs. U.S.; Panama vs. Honduras; Costa Rica vs. Jamaica
Friday, June 7: Jamaica vs. U.S.; Panama vs. Mexico; Costa Rica vs. Honduras
Tuesday, June 11: Mexico vs. Costa Rica; Honduras vs. Jamaica; U.S. vs. Honduras
Tuesday, June 18**: Jamaica vs. Mexico; U.S. vs. Honduras; Costa Rica vs. Panama
Friday, Sept. 6: Mexico vs. Honduras; Panama vs. Jamaica; Costa Rica vs. U.S.
Tuesday, Sept. 10: Jamaica vs. Costa Rica; Honduras vs. Panama; U.S. vs. Mexico
Friday, Oct. 11: Mexico vs. Panama; Honduras vs. Costa Rica; U.S. vs. Jamaica
Tuesday, Oct. 15: Jamaica vs. Honduras; Panama vs. U.S.; Costa Rica vs. Mexico
** The fixture involving Mexico on 18 of June will be moved to June 4th to allow Mexico, the CONCACAF representative, to participate in the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013.