Looking Ahead to Trinidad & Tobago
TUNAPUNA, Trinidad (Monday, March 19, 2001) - After a trip to the beach on Monday to relax and unwind following their 5-0 victory over Guatemala to open the CONCACAF Youth Tournament, the U.S. Under-20 Men's National Team will return to the field Tuesday night to take on the hosts, Trinidad & Tobago.
March 19, 2001
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%DAY AT THE BEACH: The U.S. team spent part of the day Monday at Maracas Beach on the Northern coast of Trinidad. After a 50-minute bus ride through beautiful, lush, green, winding mountains, the beach appeared out of nowhere as the two U.S. buses rounded a corner. The buses quickly pulled in to a scenic lookout to take pictures of the beaches and the seemingly neverending forest in the background. The teams crammed back in the buses and made their way down to the large, gorgeous beach that the team had almost all to themselves when they arrived. The team went for a jog on the beach to stretch their legs after last night?s convincing 5-0 win against Guatemala. After stretching out, the team was given almost an hour to enjoy the beach and the emerald green water. Goalkeeper D.J. Countess, goalkeeper coach Bill Irwin and midfielder Brad Davis all tried their hands at body surfing, to varying degrees of success. Countess, who spent last semester at UCLA, seemed to have the most success, although last night's goalscorer Davis caught on quickly. The team also sampled a Maracas Bay delicacy, Bake and Shark. The Bake and Shark can only be found on Maracas Bay and is a grilled filet of shark placed inside of a piece of hot baked bread and covered with seasoning. The Bake and Shark was just as good as Athletic Trainer Anthony Garcia remembered from his trip there six years ago. Head coach Wolfgang Suhnholz is in the midst of his third trip to Trinidad, but Monday marked the first time he has ever made it to the beach.
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%LOOK AHEAD TO TRINIDAD & TOBAGO: Trinidad & Tobago fell 3-0 to Costa Rica in the tournament opener Sunday night, giving up three goals in the second half after being reduced to ten men late in the first half. A loss to the U.S. will knock the hosts out of the tournament with one match still remaining on Thursday. A win will put the U.S. one step closer to Argentina 2001 and an unprecedented three consecutive appearances in the World Youth Championship.
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%LOOK BACK AT U.S. vs. TRINIDAD & TOBAGO: The U.S. and Trinidad have played eight times since 1990 in the CONCACAF qualifying tournaments. The U.S. has won the last three matches, scoring 12 goals while only conceding one. This match will be the fourth time that the teams have played in Trinidad & Tobago. The teams also clashed in 1984, 1986 and 1998. Following are the results from the matches played in Trinidad:
- Sept. 3, 1984: 1-0 win
- August 31, 1986: 0-1 loss
- August 9, 1998: 6-1 win
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%PROUD PARENTS: When the U.S. opened the scoring on Sunday night, a large cheer went up from the middle of the Centre of Excellence stands. And it wasn't from Trinidad & Tobago fans switching loyalties after a brilliant opening strike. The U.S. is represented by a large family contingent in Trinidad as a number of the players' parents chose to make the trip to Trinidad to enjoy the warm weather and beautiful soccer. Phyllis Arena (Kenny Arena's mother), Terry Casey (Conor's father), MaryAnn and Ralph Martino (Kyle's parents), Delvin Countess (D.J.'s father), Harry and Pat Davis (parents of Brad Davis), Kim Yi (Alex's father) and Mosella and Tim Lewis (Ricky's parents) were treated to a great display of soccer after their long trip to Tunapuna, Trinidad. The Martino's, Phyllis Arena and the Davis' accompanied the team to Maracas Beach on Monday.
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%TRINIDAD & TOBAGO HOSTS 1998 CONCACAF YOUTH TOURNAMENT: The 1998 CONCACAF Youth Tournament was also held in Trinidad, with the first matchday taking place at the Centre of Excellence before the teams moved to the National Stadium for the final two matchdays. CONCACAF Group B consisted of the host Trinidad & Tobago side, as well as Costa Rica, the U.S. and Canada. Costa Rica and the U.S. advanced out of the group to Nigeria '99, where both teams advanced to the second round and the U.S. finished 11th and Costa Rica 15th. The U.S. opened the CONCACAF tournament with a 1-1 draw against Costa Rica, before the offense awoke. Chris Albright and Nick Garcia scored two goals in each of the last two matches as the U.S. topped Canada, 5-1, and T & T, 6-1. The 11 goals in consecutive matches is the all-time U.S. record for goals in consecutive matches at a CONCACAF or FIFA Youth Championship.
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%PORTUGESE FOOTBALL: U.S. Head of Delegation Francisco Marcos spends most of his time residing in Portugal, where he has been a die hard Sporting Lisbon supporter since age nine. Monday evening two giants of the Portugese League clashed in the Game of the Week as FC Porto squared off agaisnt Marcos' beloved Sporting Lisbon. Marcos, head coach Wolfgang Suhnholz and assistant coach Erik Visser ventured to a Portugese restaurant, "Little Lisbon," to watch the match, which ended in a 2-2 draw after Porto equalized in injury time.
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%STAT OF THE DAY: The 2001 CONCACAF Youth Tournament is the fourth such tournament held in the Trinidad & Tobago. T & T has only won one match in the previous three tournaments they hosted, a 1-0 win against the U.S. on August 31, 1986.
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%STAT OF THE DAY, II: After watching the U.S. offensive machine power past Guatemala, it is worth noting that only one American, Ricky Davis, has ever bagged a hat trick in the CONCACAF Youth Tournament. Davis tallied three times in a 9-0 win against the Dominican Republic on September 26, 1976 in Puerto Rico.
%=macroPart|font/arialBlue2=%QUOTE OF THE DAY:
"All in all it was a great day, a great day for American soccer and a great day for youth soccer."