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U.S. U-17 MNT Drops Final Game of Nike International Friendlies to Tournament Champion Turkey

PHOENIX (Dec. 5, 2010) – The U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team finished the 2010 Nike International Friendlies with a 2-0 loss to tournament champion Turkey. Goals on either side of halftime from Ahmet Yilmaz Calik and Enver Cenk Sahin were enough to give Turkey the win and seven points from their three games.

After starting the tournament with a 2-1 win against Korea Republic, the U.S. put up a hard fought scoreless draw with Brazil on Friday evening. Coming into the final game, both teams knew that the winner would also win the trophy.

In front of more than 2,000 fans at the Reach 11 Sports Complex, both teams came out looking for the victory.

In the 16th minute, a Turkish counter attack led to the game’s first dangerous chance. Selahattin Ozcan fired a hard shot that forced U.S. goalkeeper Kendall McIntosh into an athletic save in his first appearance in Phoenix.

Just a minute later, Turkey broke through for the first goal of the game. From a corner kick taken from the left side by Recep Niyaz, the ball came to the near post for Aykut Guler who smacked his header off the far post. Calik was there for the rebound and got off a solid header that beat McIntosh.

Mario Rodriguez, who was dangerous in all three games, drew a number of fouls as the Turkish defense had clearly set out to shut down the U.S. striker. The most dangerous opportunity of the game for the U.S. came after Rodriguez was pulled down and Turkey defender Taha Can Velioglu was sent off for the challenge in the 61st minute.

Marc Pelosi stepped up to take the ensuing free kick and hit it hard toward the upper right corner of the goal, but goalkeeper Sercan Sen came up with a brilliant overhand save that got just enough of the ball to tip it into the crossbar. The rebound popped out to Nathan Smith, but his header toward the far post was picked off by Sen, who had recovered his position quickly after the impressive save.

With the U.S. pressing and keeping players forward, Turkey was able to pounce on a giveaway to start a counterattack. The ball moved forward to Sahin, who ran past the last U.S. defender on a dead sprint and moved around McIntosh to the left. His final shot was impressive, knocking the ball into the far side netting while moving the opposite direction.

The 2010 Nike International Friendlies marked the first time that the event, held annually since 2003, was played as a tournament and crowned a champion. With the loss, the U.S. finished in third place with a 1-1-1 record. Brazil finished second with one win and two draws and Korea Republic finished in fourth place with three losses.


U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team Game Report

Participants: U.S. U-17 Men's National Team vs. Turkey 
Competition: Nike International Friendlies
Location: Reach 11 Sports Complex; Phoenix, Arizona
Date: December 5, 2010
Weather: 54 degrees

Scoring Summary
          1    2    F
USA    0   0    0
TUR    1   1    2

TUR  - Okan Deniz 17th minute
TUR  0 Enver Cenk Sahin 72nd minute

USA: 18-Kendall McIntosh; 3-Kellyn Acosta (13-Paul Arriola), 2-Andrew Souders, 6-Mobi Fehr, 4-Nathan Smith (19-Daniel Flores); 16-Dillon Serna (8-Esteban Rodriguez), 5-Tarik Salkicic, 7-Matt Dunn, 11-Marc Pelosi; 9-Mario Rodriguez
Subs not used: 1-Fernando Pina, 10-Alejandro Guido, 12-Joe Amon, 14-Alessandro Mion, 15-Luis Martir, 17-Andrew Oliver, 19-Daniel Flores
Head coach: Wilmer Cabrera

TUR: 1-Sercan Sen, 2-Selahattin Ozcan, 3-Aykut Guler, 4-Taha Can Velioglu, 5-Ahmet Yilmaz Calik, 7-Kadir Ari (17-Okan Deniz), 8-Okay Yokuslu, 9-Ibrahim Yllmaz (19-Berk Ismail Unsal), 10-Recep Niyaz (6-Hakan Calhanoglu), 14-Mehmet Erkut Senturk (13-Burak Yilmaz), 20-Enver Cenk Sahin (18-Tugay Kacar)
Subs not used: 12-Yusuf Mersin, 11-Beykan Simsek, 15-Ilkay Durmus, 16-Burak Kardes, 18-Tugay Kacar
Head coach: Abdullah Ercan

Statistical Summary
      USA / TUR
Shots 5 / 6
Shots on goal 2 / 5
Saves 3 / 2
Corner Kicks 6 / 4
Fouls 7 / 9
Offsides 1 / 3

Misconduct Summary:
USA - Mario Rodriguez (caution)       35th minute
TUR -Taha Can Velioglu (sent off)     60
TUR - Ahmet Yilmaz Calik (caution)   66
TUR - Enver Cenk Sahin (caution)      79