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Applications for USA-TUR Ticket Lottery to be Accepted May 1-2

CHICAGO (April 22, 2014) –Tickets for the USA’s highly anticipated match against Turkey on June 1 at Red Bull Arena will be distributed to the general public through a lottery system. Applications will be accepted through for a 24-hour period beginning May 1 at 10 a.m. ET and concluding May 2 at 10 a.m. ET.  Applications will be limited to four tickets per household.

Applicants will be notified on May 5 if they have been successful. 

The match against Turkey is the second of three Send-Off Series games for the U.S. Men’s National Team prior to its departure for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Kickoff is set for 2 p.m. ET, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, WatchESPN, UniMas and ESPN Deportes Radio. Fans can also follow the match on Twitter @ussoccer.

Fans have several other opportunities to access tickets to this special match.

As a sponsor of U.S. Soccer, Visa is pleased to offer all Visa cardholders access to an advance ticket sale for this match before the sale to the general public. This advance sale starts Wednesday, April 30, at 10 a.m. ET and runs until Thursday, May 1, at 8 a.m. ET on Visa will be the only payment method accepted through the Visa presale and is the preferred card of U.S. Soccer. Terms and conditions apply.

Ultimate Fan Tickets (special VIP packages that include a premium ticket, a custom-made official U.S. National Team jersey with name and number, VIP access to the field before and after the game, and other unique benefits) are also available exclusively through

Additionally, U.S. Soccer’s new Premier Hospitality ticket package is available for businesses and individuals to purchase. Premier Hospitality is an elite, game-day experience that includes premium match tickets, pre-game field access to watch warm-ups, post-game field access for photo-ops, quality food, complimentary bar, VIP parking, gifts and more.

Also available is U.S. Soccer’s new VIP Experience. The VIP Experience is a multi-day travel package including accommodations at the official U.S. Soccer hotel, Premier Hospitality and tickets, the Ultimate Fan behind-the-scenes stadium tour, access to a National Team training session, gifts, apparel, airport transfers, ground transportation and more.

Space is limited for both Premier Hospitality and the VIP Experience. For additional information about either ticket package, contact U.S. Soccer Manager of Development Mary Teeter ( or 312-528-1233).

The U.S. opens the Send-Off Series when it hosts Azerbaijan on May 27 at Candlestick Park in San Francisco [TICKETS]. After the game against Turkey, the MNT will travel to Jacksonville to face fellow World Cup finalists Nigeria in its final match before leaving for Brazil. More than 20,000 tickets have been sold for the game on June 7 at EverBank Field [TICKETS].


Q&A with U.S. U-21 MNT Defender Shane O’Neill

U.S. Under-21 Men’s National Team defender Shane O’Neill had moved his way up the Colorado Rapids Academy system primarily as a forward and midfielder. Since his time with the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team under head coach Tab Ramos, O’Neill has been primarily at center back for club and country. O’Neill took some time during the recent U-21 MNT camp to chat with about the position switch and his hopes of joining the U.S. squad for the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. Had you ever played on the back line before joining the U.S. U-20 MNT for the previous cycle?
Shane O’Neill: “No, not before Tab put me back there with the U-20s over in Spain for the Marbella Cup [in October of 2012]. It was a bit of an adjustment, but it’s kind of worked out for me so far. Ever since then, it’s been my thing playing center back. Obviously it was a bit of a change. I still think I can offer something in the midfield if somebody wants me to play there, but so far it’s been good. Tab’s put a lot of faith in me. It was good moving back there during the whole U-20 cycle.” So this switch was made in your first U-20 call-up?
SO: “Yes, right away when I came in, Tab kind of told me that he sees me playing center back for this group. He brought me in as a center back even though I hadn’t really played there that much, and he probably saw something in my game that suggested that I could play back there.” What were some of the biggest challenges making the move to defense?
SO: “There are little things that you don’t really know about if you’re not playing back there, challenges such as body positioning, communication and reading the game. I remember going to a couple camps early on and just kind of having no clue of any of that stuff. The U-20 staff really helped me out as I learned the little things about playing center back. I think it helped in the long run, and obviously the Rapids staff helped quite a bit, too.” Are there any aspects of your midfield background that you think made this a successful transition?
SO: “As a midfielder, I was a ball-winner anyway, played 100 percent, won tackles and got stuck in. I think bringing that mentality to center back helps me out a bit. I have gradually moved back, starting as a forward in the Academy and then moving to midfield and then to center back. I’ve kind of gotten experience at every spot, so I think that’s helped to be able to see the game from different spots. As a center back, I’m just trying to read the game and work off of my experiences from the past.” Outside of the U-20s, your club also embraced this move to the defense. Were you surprised by that?
SO: “At first I was pretty surprised. I thought it was only going to be a U-20s thing, and then last preseason the Rapids were like, ‘We want to play you at center back until the U-20 World Cup just so you can get those reps in. If you’re playing in the World Cup, at least you’ve got experience back there.’ So I got to the World Cup having played pretty well in MLS, and then I came back and they just kept putting me back there. It was good, though. I got on the field quite a bit last year and this year as a center back. I definitely didn’t expect it. I thought I was going to move back into the midfield, but as of now, it’s been good. Playing center back has been good to me.” Are there any MLS or National Team players you have talked to who have undergone similar position switches?
SO: “Drew Moor is a guy who has moved around quite a bit – right back, center back, a little defensive midfield – so he’s talked to me about it a couple of times. I’m just trying to learn as I go, no matter what position I’ve been playing, because I’ve been playing a little bit of right back, too, this year. I’m just trying to stay solid and stay focused on the game, because when you’re put in different positions, sometimes it can get a little difficult because there hasn’t been too much consistency with it. But I definitely feel really comfortable at center back now having played there so much the last year.” You had the opportunity at the start of the year to play for the senior team under head coach Jurgen Klinsmann. What was that experience like?
SO: “It was a great experience being down in Brazil. We had intense training sessions and saw the standard of the best players for the National Team. It was a great experience to see that, and hopefully that’s just a stepping stone for the future. Obviously I don’t want that to be the pinnacle. Hopefully I can use that experience and build off of it.” How beneficial was the MNT trip for you specifically on the defensive side?
SO: “It was huge just being around those guys – Omar Gonzalez, Matt Besler, Clarence Goodson – just learning so much about playing center back from those guys, about communication, how to play organized. I learned so much being around the coaching staff. It definitely was a huge learning experience for me – invaluable really. I think that stood out, just learning from the best players from the National Team.” What other advice or direction did you get out of camp, on or off the field?
SO: “I learned a lot about taking care of yourself, getting enough sleep, getting the right nutrition day in and day out. From the coaching staff’s perspective, they told me to try and move the line out a little quicker and organize the players in front of you, and I think that’s one thing I have taken away from it and trying to do a lot more this year. I’m trying to be a leader on the field and get the team higher and press, and be an organizer on the field. It definitely was not something that I was used to doing, so I’m trying to get used to it and trying to shape my game that way.” How has the U.S. U-21 MNT camp been going so far?
SO: “It’s been good. It’s been great to see a lot of the guys from the U-20 World Cup and some of the new faces coming in. Hopefully all of us can use this as a chance to impress Jurgen and the staff, especially in the game against Tijuana. I think it’s a big opportunity for a lot of us to show what we can do on the field. I think it’s good to get the training sessions in with the team and get reunited with everybody and get in front of Jurgen. The training sessions have been good and everyone’s excited for the game. Hopefully we can get a result.” How vital has this U-21 MNT camp been to get a jump-start on forming the USA squad for Olympic Qualifying down the road?
SO: “I think it would have been disappointing if we hadn’t done anything for a couple years and then just got brought back together for the Olympics. I think everyone is excited getting together to have a good camp. It’s short, but at the same time you’ve got to work hard. It’s nice seeing each other and meeting up again as a group to discuss how things are going. I think it’s been really positive for all of us, and it will only help our cause for the Olympics and qualifying.” How excited are you about the opportunity and possibility of being part of an Olympic squad if everything pans out?
SO: “It’s a great opportunity for all of us. You always see a lot of great players at the Olympics, and you never know what can happen from there. This is an opportunity for us to test ourselves against the best teams in the world. It’s definitely something that we need to focus on, to make sure we qualify for, and once we’re there, anything can happen. The Olympics in Brazil probably does not get much better than that in terms of an environment for playing soccer. We’re all excited about it and just trying to stay focused and get into those qualifiers and do well.” How invaluable was the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup to gain some strong international experience?
SO: “It was huge to know that we can play against some of the top guys over in Europe. We got a result against France, the eventual winner, so that was huge for us. It was a little bit unlucky that we got such a tough draw, but at the same time we played pretty well. If not for one or two things that happened, or the ball bouncing another way, maybe we get through. At the end of the day, those experiences are huge for us as a team, and I think we grew together a lot during that time period. I think that will just make us stronger.” In what ways did that tournament prepare you for future international competition and professional play?
SO: “I think just confidence-wise, playing against guys like Paul Pogba and all those guys for France and Ghana who are doing well over in Europe, knowing you can play with those guys and not just play with them but play well, that’s just huge for your confidence level. Just to get those games under my belt – obviously I was disappointed to be suspended for the first game – but to get those two games under my belt in the World Cup, and just an atmosphere like that, playing for your country, it’s a great experience. I took a lot out of it confidence-wise.”


Academy Alumni: Manneh Tallies Equalizer for Whitecaps

Kekuta Manneh, a former Development Academy player with the Texas Rush and Lonestar SC, scored the game-tying goal to help the host Vancouver Whitecaps earn a 2-2 draw against the LA Galaxy on Saturday.

Manneh’s 86th-minute strike from 20 yards out was driven inside the right post and is up for MLS Goal of the Week for Week 7.

Manneh was a halftime sub for Russell Teibert and he scored his second goal of the season and eighth career MLS tally. Manneh was the No. 4 overall selection in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft.

Trapp Helps Crew Earn Draw: Former Crew Soccer Academy midfielder Wil Trapp set up Hector Jimenez’s 90th-minute, game-tying goal as the Columbus Crew drew 1-1 with D.C. United on Saturday. The Crew trailed for the majority of the match, but in the final minute of regulation, Trapp helped Columbus in the game’s dying moments.

Trapp stole the ball from the edge of his own 18-yard box, dribbled to midfield, placed a diagonal ball perfectly to Jimenez on the left side and Jimenez found the inside of the far right post as Columbus earned a point at home. Trapp has two assists in six games this year.

Fire’s Shipp Sets Up Amarikwa: Chicago Fire rookie midfielder Harry Shipp, formerly of the Chicago Magic PSG and Fire Academy sides, notched his third assist of the season on Saturday. Shipp’s through ball set up Quincy Amarikwa in the 16th minute and the Fire played the New England Revolution to a 1-1 draw. It was the team’s sixth straight stalemate of the season


Road to the Roster, Featuring Jurgen Klinsmann: Episode 6's "Road to the Roster" returns for Episode 6, with U.S. MNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann discussing the significance of strikers scoring goals, the upcoming World Cup preparation camp in Northern California, and the importance of staying connected with the Youth National Teams. In addition, Jurgen answers your questions from Twitter. We also hear from Chris Wondolowski about his recent form and competing for a spot on the roster at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.


Across the Academy – April 16, 2014

PDA U-17/18s, LA Galaxy U-15/16s and RSL AZ U-15/16s Clinch Playoff Spots: The Development Academy Playoffs are a little more than two months away, and three clubs have clinched the first Playoff spots in this 2013-14 season. The Players Development Academy U-17/18, LA Galaxy U-15/16 and Real Salt Lake AZ U-15/16 teams have all qualified for the 2013-14 Academy Playoffs, which take place from June 23-27 at Grand Park in Westfield, Ind.

Opportunity Knocks: PDA’s Hunter Pinho and LAFA’s Jake Arteaga: At a recent U.S. Under-14 Boys’ National Team camp, chatted with Players Development Academy U-13/14 goalkeeper Hunter Pinho and Los Angeles Futbol Academy U-13/14 defensive midfielder Jake Arteaga for the Opportunity Knocks series. Pinho reflected on the intensity of the U-14 BNT camp and his greater responsibility and leadership from the back. Arteaga talked about how he tries to be a strong distributor of the ball in his game.

U.S. U-20 MNT Opens Dallas Cup with Two Victories: The U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team took control of Bracket C of the Gordon Jago Super Group at the 35th Dallas Cup this week, opening with a pair of victories. The U-20 MNT started the event with a thrilling 3-2 comeback win against Club Athletico River Plate of Argentina on Sunday. Chivas USA Academy alum Ben Spencer tallied two goals, including the game-winner in the 79th minute. The U-20s followed that up with a 3-0 victory against Eintracht Frankfurt of Germany, led by FC DELCO alum Zac Pfeffer, who had a goal and an assist. U-20 MNT head coach Tab Ramos also sat down with U.S. Soccer to discuss the opportunity to compete against international teams as the staff continues to identify the top talent for this current U-20 cycle.

For the latest Development Academy news, visit Academy home page, follow us on Twitter @ussoccer_ynt or like us on Facebook.
Share your Academy news, comments, photos, links and more using the #OpportunityKnocks hashtag.

ACADEMY QUICK HITS (Weekend of April 12-13):

  • West Conference: The San Diego Surf U-15/16s of the Southwest Division played a pair of crossover matches over the weekend. San Diego earned a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Saturday, followed by a 2-0 victory against Crossfire Premier on Sunday. Against Vancouver, which is second in the Northwest Division, San Diego’s Guillermo Bermudez scored his team’s only goal in the 58th minute. Against Crossfire Premier, which is fourth in the Northwest Division, the Surf’s Jacob Cintas and William Blackburn each scored first-half goals. It marked the fifth win of the season for the San Diego Surf.
  • Central Conference: The FC Wisconsin Nationals U-15/16 team has had a strong April with a 4-0-0 record, earning two big victories this past weekend. FC Wisconsin earned a 4-1 win against Mid-American Division leader Vardar on Saturday and edge third-place Crew Soccer Academy Wolves by a 2-1 margin. Blake Carr had three goals during this stretch – two tallies against Vardar and the game-winner against CSA Wolves.
  • East Conference: Bethesda-Olney’s U-17/18s continued their banner first season in the Academy with a 2-0 victory against Baltimore Bays Chelsea on Sunday. Georgetown-bound Matthew Ledder provided all the scoring Bethesda-Olney needed with both goals in the 51st and 75th minutes. Ledder now has 14 goals in 17 games, and Bethesda-Olney leads the Atlantic Division at 15-2-0 (2.65 points per game).

Academy Honors:

  • Player of the Week: Chicago Fire U-17/18 midfielder Shannon Seymour was named Academy Player of the Week during the April 5-6 weekend. Seymour, who is eligible for the U-15/16s, has played up an age level for the Fire and has put in a solid 2013-14 campaign. He has currently started in 16 of 18 games played this season with four goals, including a brace during the Fire U-17/18 team’s 4-0 victory against Sockers FC on March 29.
  • Referee of the Week: Luis Guardia, a 28-year-old Grade 4 referee from southern Texas, was named Academy Referee of the Week for his work during the U-17/18 match between Lonestar SC and FC Dallas on April 5. In addition to Academy matches and the Academy Winter Showcase, Guardia has worked MLS Reserve and preseason games, international matches, the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, NASL, PDL and USL PRO.

For all Development Academy results, visit or click on the following links:


U.S. U-18 MNT Tops Canada, Falls Late to Mexico: It was a mixed bag for the U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team during its two international friendlies at U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center in Carson, Calif. The USA defeated Canada 2-1 on April 8, with FC Dallas Academy forward Coy Craft scoring the game-winner and assisting the USA’s first tally by recent Real Salt Lake homegrown signing Justen Glad. Against Mexico, the U.S. held a 3-2 lead heading into stoppage time, but gave up two late tallies and dropped a 4-3 decision. The USA’s goal scorers included Jorge Ruiz of the LA Galaxy Academy, Sebastian Elney and Real Salt Lake Arizona’s Sebastian Saucedo.

U-18s Value Klinsmann’s Tutelage: The U-18 MNT recently had the privilege of U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann helping coach one of the team’s sessions during its April camp in Carson, Calif. Klinsmann, U-18 head coach Javier Perez and Crew Soccer Academy midfielder Ben Swanson spoke to U.S. Soccer about this valuable experience.

Academy Alumni: Agudelo Tallies winner for FC Utrecht: Former New York Red Bulls Academy forward Juan Agudelo scored the game-winning goal to lead FC Utrecht to a 2-1 victory against Heracles this past Sunday for his second goal with the Dutch club. In Major League Soccer action, former PA Classics forward Andrew Wenger scored a goal during his debut with the Philadelphia Union.


  • 2013-14 Academy Schedule
  • Development Academy Regular Season: A lighter schedule is on the docket, with 15 games over the April 18-19 stretch and no games on Sunday, April 20. A combined 10 games are scheduled at the U-15/16 and U-17/18 age groups and five fixtures at the U-13/14 level.




Academy Alumni: Agudelo Tallies Winner for FC Utrecht

Former New York Red Bulls Academy forward Juan Agudelo scored the game-winning goal to lead FC Utrecht to a 2-1 victory against Heracles on Sunday. Agudelo was brought into the match in the 36th minute and tallied four minutes later.

It marked Agudelo’s second goal for the Dutch club. His first goal came on Feb. 6 during a 2-1 loss to PEC Zwolle.

Wenger Tallies in Union Debut: In his first match since being traded from the Montreal Impact, former PA Classics forward Andrew Wenger scored a goal during the Union’s 2-2 draw against Real Salt Lake on Saturday. The No. 1 overall selection of the 2012 MLS SuperDraft wasted no time contributing for his home state team, tallying a 55th-minute goal to tie the score at 1-1. Wenger’s goal was up for MLS Goal of the Week.

Dillon Duo Sets Up Rapids Winner: Colorado Rapids Academy alumni Dillon Serna and Dillon Powers helped set up an Edson Buddle goal and Colorado held on for a 1-0 victory against Toronto FC on Saturday. Powers, who was the Man of the Match for his efforts, dished near the end line to Buddle just above the six-yard box for the game-winner, which was Buddle’s 99th career MLS goal.

Elsewhere, a pair of alumni had assists during the 1-1 draw between the Portland Timbers and Chivas USA. Internationals SC alum Darlington Nagbe assisted Will Johnson’s seventh-minute goal for Portland, and Albertson SC product Andrew Jean-Baptiste helped set up Erick Torres’ equalizer in the 79th minute for Chivas.


U-18 MNT Drops Last-Minute Decision to Mexico in Friendly

CARSON, Calif. (April 12, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team suffered a last-minute defeat to Mexico, which scored two goals in second half stoppage time to win the teams’ international friendly 4-3 at U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center in Carson, Calif.

The U.S. led on three occasions thanks to a first-half Jorge Ruiz penalty kick, and a pair of second-half strikes from Sebastian Elney and Sebastian Saucedo. However, Mexico answered on each occasion with Erick Germain Aguirre notching the tying and winning goals in the 92nd and 95th minutes, respectively.

- U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. U-18 MNT v. Mexico U-18 MNT
April 12, 2014
International Friendly
Mooch Myernick Field, National Training Center
3 p.m. PT
61 degrees

Scoring Summary:   1          2          F
USA                            1          2          3
MEX                            0          4          4            

USA                Jorge Ruiz                                                        41st  minute
MEX                Luis Fernando Cruz                                        54
USA                Sebastian Elney (Kyle Scott)                           62
MEX                Ian de Jesus Arellano (Luis Fernando Cruz)  69
USA                Sebastian Saucedo                                           76
MEX                Erick Germain Aguirre                                   92
MEX                Erick Germain Aguirre                                   95

1-JT Marcinkowski (12-Jonathan Klinsmann, 61); 14-David Chavez, 18-Mauricio Pineda, 17-Justen Glad, 20-Pablo Pelaez; 8-Jorge Ruiz,10-Jackson Yueill (23-Kyle Scott, 61), 4-Ben Swanson(capt.), 7-Mukwelle Akale (16-Sebastian Elney, 61); 11-Sebastian Saucedo, 19-Coy Craft (6-Collin Fernandez, 88)
Subs not used: 2-Christian Lucatero, 3-Shannon Seymour, 5-Henry Martin, 9-Stephen Payne, 13-Alex Ramos, 15-Quentin Pearson, 21-Cameron Lindley, 22-Christian Herrera, 24-Patrick Jean-Gilles
Head Coach: Javier Perez

MEX: 12-Angel Francisco Rascon; 4-Cesar Guillermo Jimenez, 3-Diego Rangel (14-Edson Omar Alvarez, 44), 5-Bryan Gael Castrejon, 16-Frnacisco Cordova; 13-Erik Germain Aguirre (capt.), 7-Ian de Jesus Arellano (17-Jose Luis Chavez, 94), 8-Miguel Angel Tapias, 9-Ricardo Javier Cruz; 11-Diego de Jesus Aguilar (18-Luis Enrique Gonzalez, 82), 10-Luis Fernando Cruz (19-Jose de Jesus Godinez, 81)
Subs not used: 1-Jose Santiago Hernandez, 2-Carlos Alan Ortega, 6-Jonatan Becerrill,15-Manuel Alejandro Mayorga, 20-Gerardo Perez
Head Coach: Marco Antonio Sanchez Yacuta

Stats Summary: USA / MEX
Shots: 9 / 12
Shots on Goal: 3 / 7
Saves: 3 / 0
Corner Kicks: 5 / 4
Fouls: 15 / 16
Offside: 2 / 1 

Misconduct Summary:
USA – 11-Sebastian Saucedo             (caution)          26th minute
MEX – 9-Ricardo Javier Cruz            (caution)          32
USA – 19-Coy Craft                           (caution)          47
MEX – 7-Ian de Jesus Arellano          (caution)          67
USA – 14-David Chavez                    (ejection)         94

Head Referee – Ashbir Singh
Assistant Referee 1 – Brandon Chapman
Assistant Referee 2 – Adrian Gonzalez
4th Official – Shaine Danbeli           

Scoring Summary:
USA – Mukwelle Akale fouled inside the penalty area. Jorge Ruiz scores the ensuing penalty kick. (1-0)
MEX – Luis Fernando Cruz turns into the box from the right side and converts a shot inside the far post. (1-1)
USA – Kyle Scott passes to Sebastian Elney who swivels in the box and pings a shot off the left post into the net. (2-1)
MEX – Luis Fernando Cruz passes to Ian de Jesus Arellano outside the box. Arellano takes a touch and scores a drive from near the top of the 18. (2-2)
USA – Sebastian Saucedo takes the ball from midfield through the middle and unleashes a shot into the left upper 90. (3-2)
MEX – Erick Germain Aguirre scores from close range. (3-3)
MEX – Erick Germain Aguirre scores on penalty kick after David Chavez received red card for a handball on the goal line. (3-4)