The United States and England are facing off in the 2022 World Cup ... a match American soccer legend Alexi Lalastells TMZ Sports could be the most popular match in USA history.
"There's going to be a U.S. England game in the group stage and that has the possibility to be the most watched soccer game in American television history," 52-year-old Lalas told Babcock when he joined the "TMZ Sports" TV show (airs weeknights on FS1) on Friday.
August 12th isn't any arbitrary day -- it means we are exactly 100 days out from the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar -- a tournament America hasn't played in 8 years ... after failing to make the cut leading up to the 2018 WC in Russia.
Lalas says it was a real make-or-break moment for USA Soccer.
"It's almost like we took a step back in order to go two steps forward. It was a real come to Jesus type of moment for the United States soccer community and in particular the U.S. Men's National team."
Alexi, who played in the 1994 World Cup, continued ... "They came and they've come back stronger. Like I said, this is a team that has a chip on their shoulder to a certain extent. This is a team that I think has a beautiful arrogance and yeah, this is a team with some swagger with some young players. I think that's gonna excite the American public."