FLORIDA — The U.S. Soccer Federation announced that it will be honoring the song of the US men’s national team for the first time in their history, replacing the old anthem in honor of the U.K.’s Wembley Stadium.
Federation officials announced Wednesday that it is choosing a new song that is “in keeping with the current values of the sport, tradition and traditions of the American soccer nation.”
The new song, called “The World Cup Anthem,” will be sung on the field at all matches at home and away, as well as at a pregame ceremony in England on Sept. 9.
The US men have won the past two World Cups and will be looking to repeat in 2017, when they host Japan.
On Thursday, the USSF also announced it will honor the anthem of the New Zealand women’s national soccer team for one match on Sept 5 at Wembley Stadium in London.
Wembley Stadium hosted the 2016 and 2022 World Cups.
While the US is now the first major country to officially honor the song, the decision to include the new anthem comes after several years of criticism that it was not sufficiently patriotic, especially after it was revealed that the song’s lyrics were anti-Semitic.
“The US Soccer Federation is honored to honor the World Club Challenge and the song that was performed by the women’s soccer team of the United States,” the federation said in a statement.
“It is important to note that the United Kingdom’s Wembley Stadium, home of the World Football Championship in 2019, will also feature the new U.N. anthem.”
The song, which is also known as “A Night in the Country,” was produced by singer, songwriter, producer and conductor Phil Collins, who also sang the national anthem at the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cups, respectively.
The song has been performed at several soccer matches since its debut in 2000.
It was also performed by both the New York Red Bulls and Chicago Fire during the 2016 FIFA World Cup.
The lyrics to the song are: “To a country, a city, a world that is bursting with hope, joy, pride, love, pride and a country that is rising again, you have just come.”
It has been a divisive issue in the United State, with some people saying it was insensitive to the Holocaust and others saying that it glorified the Nazis and was not fitting for a soccer stadium.
In 2017, the AFL Players’ Association said it was pulling its players from the upcoming All-Star Game due to the anthem’s lyrics.
The U, however, is the first nation to honor a song for the national team that has not been a part of a World Cup since the 1998 match between Italy and Argentina at Wembley.
The anthem was sung at the first-ever World Cup by Germany’s national side in South Africa.