It was a bad, bad night for the United States of America – as President Donald Trump would probably have put it.
For the first time since 1986 the country’s national men’s side failed to qualify for the World Cup.
Heading into their final qualifier against Trinidad and Tobago on Tuesday night, the USA simply had to avoid losing or else their fate would be out of their hands.
But it was not to be as Bruce Arena’s men succumbed to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of their Caribbean opponents.
This would have been fine if both Panama and Honduras had lost too, but unfortunately the former took down Costa Rica while the latter beat Mexico.
For some certain individuals in America, though, the ignominy of missing out on football’s central showpiece will be considerably greater than for others.
Indeed, Murdoch-owned broadcaster Fox, whose news arm have courted controversy after a string of sexual harassment cases, paid a staggering $400m for the rights to broadcast the 2018 World Cup.
Except the USA won’t be a part of it.
Fox’s deal stretches to the 2022 World in Qatar so it might not all be in vain but they’ll have to wait another four years until they find out whether it’s money well spent.
Many will enjoy the schadenfreude at play here as the network were awarded the 2026 World Cup TV rights without even having to bid for them – a gift from Fifa after the broadcast company bent over backwards to help move the 2022 World Cup to the winter despite the bid guidelines clearly stating it would be a summer tournament.
Rival broadcasters couldn’t get those 2026 rights which will now hand Fox a huge payday but the broadcaster will nonetheless take a hit next summer as the USMNT stays at home.