USA national team boss Jurgen Klinsmann has revealed the reasons for selecting this week's friendly opponents Russia.
The 27th-ranked US team take on the ninth-ranked Russians in Krasnodar on Wednesday and Klinsmann is hoping his squad can gain some education against such a quality side after recent positive performances against Italy and Mexico.
"We ask for these games because they are big learning curves for us. Playing in Italy, in Mexico and in Russia - we are not the favorites there," Klinsmann told ussoccer.com.
"For us, we can take a lot from the games no matter how the result ends up. But still we want to go there and beat Russia knowing that it's one of the top teams in Europe at the moment.
"In World Cup qualifying they are 4-0, so that's not going to be an easy task. We need to measure ourselves against the best teams out there and build even more confidence. We want to close the year in a very positive way and then go into a busy 2013 that includes World Cup qualifying, the Gold Cup and some exciting friendlies."