U.S. Soccer Wire: Dec. 7, 2009
Catch up on all the news and notes from your favorite Men's, Women's & Youth National Teams.
Dec. 7, 2009
TO FACE ENGLAND, SLOVENIA AND ALGERIA IN GROUP C AT 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP;
DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY WINTER SHOWCASE UNDERWAY IN PHOENIX;
NEW YORK CITY MAYOR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG AND ESPN EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT JOHN SKIPPER JOIN USA BID COMMITTEE
U.S. MNT DRAWN INTO GROUP C AT 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP: The U.S. Men's National Team has been drawn into Group C with England, Slovenia and Algeria for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. The groups and schedule were determined Friday, Dec. 4, during the FIFA World Cup Final Draw at the Cape Town International Convention Centre in Cape Town, South Africa. The U.S. will open its sixth consecutive World Cup finals tournament against England on June 12 in Rustenburg, and will follow that game with matches against Slovenia on June 18 in Johannesburg and Algeria on June 23 in Tshwane/Pretoria. The USA has faced England, ranked ninth in the FIFA World Rankings, on nine prior occasions and holds a 2-7-0 record against the 1966 World Cup champions. Most recently the two sides met in a friendly on May 28, 2008 at Wembley Stadium, where Fabio Capello's side earned a 2-0 victory. England qualified for its 13th World Cup, setting aside the disappointment of missing out on the 2008 European Championship by marching imperiously to a 9-1-0 record in Group 6 of UEFA qualifying. Slovenia (ranked 33rd) and Algeria (28th) have never faced the United States and the games in South Africa will mark the first meetings between the countries in any competition.
U.S. MNT 2010 FIFA World Cup Group C Schedule
Date Opponent Time (Local/ET) Venue
June 12 England 8:30 p.m. / 2:30 p.m. Rustenberg
June 18 Slovenia 4 p.m. / 10 a.m. Ellis Park Stadium; Johannesburg
June 23 Algeria 4 p.m. / 10 a.m. Tshwane/Pretoria
ussoccer.com’s MNT Coverage – Nov. 30 – Dec. 7
- News: U.S. MNT Drawn Into Group C
- Conference Call: Bob Bradley Post-Draw Transcript | Audio
- Quote Sheet: U.S. MNT Players’ Reaction to 2010 FIFA World Cup Final Draw
- Video: Bob Bradley and Sunil Gulati Reactions to the Draw
- Studio 90: Dec. 5, 2009 – From South Africa
- Notes: FIFA World Cup Final Draw Notes
- Video: Players’ Thoughts on the FIFA World Cup Draw
- MNT Blog | U.S. Soccer on Twitter
NYC MAYOR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG JOINS USA BID COMMITTEE: The USA Bid Committee announced that New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg has joined its Board of Directors in its effort to bring the FIFA World Cup™ to the United States in 2018 or 2022. Mayor Bloomberg taped a short video segment promoting the bid on behalf of New York City. To view it, visit: www.youtube.com/mayorbloomberg. The New York Metropolitan area has a storied tradition with international soccer, highlighted by several matches from the 1994 FIFA World Cup™ being played across the river from New York City at Giants Stadium in New Jersey. The United States, Australia, England, Indonesia, Japan and Russia have formally declared their desire to host the FIFA World Cup™ in 2018 or 2022. Netherlands-Belgium and Portugal-Spain have each submitted joint bids for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments, while Qatar and South Korea have applied as candidates to play host only to the tournament in 2022.All candidates must have their bid applications to FIFA by May 14, 2010. FIFA’s 24 member Executive Committee will study the bids, conduct site visits and name the two hosts for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments in December 2010, completing a 21-month bid and review process.
ESPN EXECUTIVE VP JOHN SKIPPER JOINS USA BID COMMITTEE: John Skipper, Executive Vice President for Content with ESPN, has formally accepted an invitation to join the Board of Directors for the USA Bid Committee in its quest to bring the FIFA World Cup™ to the United States in 2018 or 2022. Skipper is responsible for the creation, programming and production of ESPN and ABC Sports content across all media platforms, including television, radio, Internet, broadband, wireless, publishing, interactive games and home entertainment. ESPN and its family of networks are the official English-language broadcast rights-holder in the United States for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ in South Africa. Beginning with the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ final draw in Cape Town on Dec. 4, the ESPN will feature comprehensive coverage of FIFA World Cup™ on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN360.com, including extensive news and information programming across an array of its multimedia assets.
LAST WEEK FOR BEST OF U.S. SOCCER AND ATHLETE OF THE YEAR VOTING: Voting for the 2009 Best of U.S. Soccer awards and Athlete of the Year is open until Sunday, Dec. 13. Fans can vote once a day from now until Sunday for each of the 12 2009 Best of U.S. Soccer awards categories, as well as for the Male, Female, Young Male and Young Female Athletes of the Year. The Best of U.S. Soccer awards will be determined entirely by online fan votes, while online votes for Athlete of the Year will be tallied and equivalent to 50 percent of the total votes. As in years past, the other 50 percent will be represented by votes compiled from members of the national media and U.S. Soccer representatives (from national team coaches to the National Board of Directors).
U.S. SOCCER STATEMENT REGARDING USL AND NASL: U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati, CEO/Secretary General Dan Flynn and Professional Council Chairman Don Garber met with representatives from both the United Soccer League (USL-1) and the North American Soccer League in New York on Sunday (Dec. 6) to discuss Division II league plans in 2010. “We had a productive meeting and the discussions will continue,” said Gulati. “In the interim we have asked both groups to submit additional information,” Both leagues have been requested to provide further details of their respective league plans by Dec. 9 to U.S. Soccer’s Professional League Task Force. Once the Task Force determines the parties have provided the needed information, it will update the U.S. Soccer Board of Directors for further review. U.S. Soccer’s Professional League Task Force is chaired by Flynn, and includes board members Carlos Cordeiro and Mike Edwards.
– U.S. SOCCER DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY –
DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY SHOWCASE UNDERWAY IN PHOENIX: The U.S. Soccer Development Academy heads into its third year as the 2009 Academy Winter Showcase takes place at the Reach 11 Sports Complex in Phoenix, Ariz. All 154 teams representing 77 Development Academy clubs will participate in 234 games during the extended weekend, while six Under-17 international matches will highlight Friday, Saturday and Monday. The Winter Showcase will incorporate the overall theme for the Development Academy’s 2009-10 season, the Everyday Environment. The Everyday theme involves specific player development recommendations for individual training, team training, offifield routines and games. The message will be highlighted throughout the weekend in video content featuring members of the Men’s National Team and Development Academy technical advisors and player education opportunities found inside the Players Lounge. The Development Academy will once again welcome some of the top referees from across the country, with 34 states sending officials to Phoenix. Referees will receive mentoring from three of U.S. Soccer’s full-time referees as Ricardo Salazar, Baldomero Toledo and Terry Vaughn will all be on site. The referee education will continue with an assessor academy that will be held in conjunction with state and national referee assessors.
ussoccer.com’s Development Academy Coverage – Nov. 30 – Dec. 7
- Everyday Environment: Individual Training | Team Training | Off-Field Lifestyle | Games
- Highlights: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3
- Features: Technical Advice | Lace Up, Save Lives | DA on the Draw
- Recap: Day Two Wraps Up
- Recap: Day One In the Books
- YNT Blog | U.S. Soccer on Twitter
U.S. U-17 MNT FALLS TO PORTUGAL, DRAWS AGAINST BRAZIL: The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team will face off against the Netherlands at 7 p.m. MT on Monday, Dec. 7, in their third and final match of the Nike International Friendlies at the Reach 11 Sports Complex in Phoenix, Ariz. The match will be broadcast live on Fox Soccer Channel. The Nike International Friendlies are taking place in conjunction with the 2009 Development Academy Winter Showcase and feature the U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team, as well as the U-17 national teams from Brazil, the Netherlands and Portugal. The U.S. kicked off the event Dec. 4 falling 2-1 to Portugal, with the lone goal scored by Irvin Gijon, before rallying on Dec. 5 to a 1-1 tie against Brazil with a 75th minute goal from Kellen Gulley.
ussoccer.com’s U-17 MNT Coverage – Nov. 30 – Dec. 7
- Highlights: U.S. U-17 MNT 1, Brazil 1
- Highlights: U.S. U-17 MNT 1, Portugal 2
- YNT Blog | U.S. Soccer on Twitter
– U.S. YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE –
U.S. U-23 WNT TO TRAIN AT THE HOME DEPOT CENTER: U.S. Under-23 Women’s National Team head coach Bill Irwin will run a unique training camp at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., from Dec. 13-20 with players called in from Women’s Professional Soccer clubs as well as the college ranks. Of the 24 players in camp, 11 are from WPS teams and 13 are from college programs. The age cut-off date this year for the Under-23 WNT is players born on or after Jan. 1, 1986, and many WPS players fall into this category. Six of the WPS players called up were born in 1986 and this camp will be their last run with the U-23s while the other five are still age-eligible for U-23 competition in 2010. The beginning of the U.S. U-23 training camp will overlap three days with the end of the full Women’s National Team training camp at The HDC, giving U.S. head coach Pia Sundhage and her staff the chance to evaluate the younger players in a competitive environment. The U.S. U-23s will also get the chance to compete with and against the full WNT players.
U-23 WNT Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (4): Kelsey Davis (Portland; Thousand Oaks, Calif.), Val Henderson (Philadelphia Independence; Orinda, Calif.), Allison Lipsher (Boston Breakers; Honolulu, Hawaii), Meagan McCray (FC Gold Pride; Novato, Calif.)
DEFENDERS (10): Jordan Angeli (Santa Clara; Lakewood, Colo.), Allison Falk (Philadelphia Independence; Danville, Calif.), Caitlin Farrell (Wake Forest; Ft. Meyers, Fla.), Kaley Fountain (Wake Forest; Austin, Texas), Alicia Jenkins (Stanford; Diamond Springs, Calif.), Nikki Krzysik (Philadelphia Independence; Clifton, N.J.), Kat Reynolds (Santa Clara; Medina, Wash.), Brittany Taylor (UConn; Campbell Hall, N.Y.), Elise Webber (St. Louis Athletica; Elk Grove Village, Ill.), Lauren Wilmoth (UCLA; Garland, Texas)
MIDFIELDERS (5): Ashley Bowyer (Ohio State; Aliso Viejo, Calif.), Bianca D’Agostino (Wake Forest; Longmeadow, Mass.), Tina DiMartino (FC Gold Pride; Massapequa Park, N.Y.), Brittany Klein (Chicago Red Stars; Arcadia, Calif.), Allie Long (Washington Freedom; Northport, N.Y.)
FORWARDS (5): Kiki Bosio (Santa Clara; Mission Viejo, Calif.), Amanda Cinalli (Atlanta Beat; Maple Heights, Ohio), Kia McNeil (St. Louis Athletica; Avon, Conn.), Christen Press (Stanford; P.V. Estates, Calif.), Katie Schoepfer (Penn State; Waterford, Conn.)
U.S. UNDER-20 WOMEN HEAD TO FLORIDA FOR CONCACAF QUALIFYING PREP: The U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team will head to Sunrise, Fla., for a 24-player training camp from Dec. 12-19. Head coach Jillian Ellis will use the camp to make some final decisions on a roster that will represent the United States at the CONCACAF U-20 Women’s Qualifying Tournament that will send three nations to Germany for the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup. The qualifying tournament will be held in Guatemala from Jan. 19-30, at the 17,000-seat Estadio Cementos Progreso. The roster is filled with players coming off excellent college seasons, including UCLA forward Sydney Leroux, the only holdover from the U.S. team that won the 2009 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Chile. Leroux, who won the Golden Ball as the best player in that tournament, scored 23 goals for the Bruins this season. The roster includes just five players not yet in college in defender Crystal Dunn, midfielders Elizabeth Eddy, Samantha Mewis and Jenna Richmond and forward Maya Hayes. Dunn, Eddy and Mewis represented the USA in New Zealand. Richmond would have made that roster if not for a knee injury. Ellis will add two more players to the roster before camp begins.
U-20 WNT Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (3): Tara Campbell (Duke; Cincinnati, Ohio), Adrianna Franch (Oklahoma State; Salina, Kansas), Taylor Vancil (Louisville; South Elgin, Ill.)
DEFENDERS (5): Cloee Colohan (Portland; West Point, Utah), Vicki DiMartino (Boston College; Massapequa, N.Y.), Crystal Dunn (Albertson SC; Rockville Centre, N.Y.), Kendall Johnson (Portland; Portland, Ore.), Rachel Quon (Stanford; Lake Forrest, Ill.)
MIDFIELDERS (10): Amber Brooks (UNC; New Hope, Pa.), Charney Burk (Portland; North Tuscan, Calif.), Zakiya Bywaters (UCLA; Las Vegas, Nev.), Elizabeth Eddy (So Cal Blues, Costa Mesa, Calif.), Katy Frierson (Auburn; Birmingham, Ala.), Kristie Mewis (Boston College; Hanson, Mass.), Samantha Mewis (Scorpion SC; Hanson, Mass.), Mariah Nogueira (Stanford; Winchester, Calif.), Jenna Richmond (McLean SC; Centreville, Va.), Casey Short (Florida State; Naperville, Ill.)
FORWARDS (4): Maya Hayes (Aristics Club; West Orange, N.J.), Sydney Leroux (UCLA; Pheonix, Ariz.), Tiffany McCarty (Florida State; Laurel, Md.), Toni Pressley (Florida State; Melbourne, Fla.)
U.S. U-17 WOMEN PREPARE FOR FOUR MATCHES IN ARGENTINA: The U.S. Under-17 Women’s National Team is in Buenos Aires, Argentina, until Dec. 14 to play four international matches. U.S. head coach Kazbek Tambi traveled with 18 players to face the Argentina U-17 and U-20 Women’s National Teams as well as combined U-17 and U-20 squads from Chile and Uruguay. The matches will be valuable preparation for the U.S. U-17s, who are getting ready for CONCACAF qualifying for the 2010 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Trinidad & Tobago from Sept. 5-25. The qualifying tournament is being held in Costa Rica next March with the USA going for one of three spots from CONCACAF. As host, T & T has an automatic berth. The U.S. roster features one hold-over from the squad that took second place at the 2008 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in New Zealand in team captain Morgan Brian. The USA opens its four-match run in Buenos Aires against a combined Chile team on Dec. 7. The USA will face the Argentina U-17s on Dec. 8 and the U-20s on Dec. 11 before finishing with the combined Uruguay team on Dec. 13.
U-17 WNT Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Bryane Heaberline (Clearwater Chargers; St. Petersburg, Fla.), Abby Smith (Dallas Texans; Dallas, Texas)
DEFENDERS (5): Olivia Brannon (Michigan Jags; Troy, Mich.), Abby Dahlkemper (MVLA; Menlo Park, Calif.), Brooke Gilbert (Emerald City; Snohomish, Wash.), Casey Morrison (Spirit United; York, Pa.), Cari Roccaro (Albertson Fury; East Islip, N.Y.)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Morgan Brian (Ponte Vedra Storm; Saint Simons Island, Ga.), Kaysie Clark (KC Select Scream; Liberty, Mo.), Alexandra Doll (Bethesda SC; Bethesda, Md.), Caprice Dydasco (HSC Bulls; Honolulu, Hawaii), Jessica Lee (Arsenal World Class; Tenafly, N.J.), Karin Samonian (Albertson SC; Westbury, N.Y.), Kaili Torres (Ponte Vedra Storm; Orange Park, Fla.), Clarissa Wedemeyer (Dallas Texans; Colleyville, Texas)
FORWARDS (3): Alesha Blair (Anza Force; Pleasanton, Calif.), Jennifer Gonzalez (Arsenal FC; Alta Loma, Calif.), Kylie McCarthy (San Diego Surf; Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.)
U-17 Women’s National Team Schedule
Date Opponent Venue
Dec. 7 Chile (U-17 and U-20 players) Buenos Aires, Argentina
Dec. 9 Argentina U-17 WNT Buenos Aires, Argentina
Dec. 11 Argentina U-20 WNT Buenos Aires, Argentina
Dec. 13 Uruguay (U-17 and U-20 players) Buenos Aires, Argentina
JIM BARLOW CALLS IN 32 PLAYERS FOR U.S. U-15 BNT TRAINING CAMP: U.S. Under-15 Boys' National Team head coach Jim Barlow has called in 32 players, all born in 1995, for a domestic training camp from Dec. 12-19, 2009, in Bradenton, Fla. Of the 32 players on the roster, 25 hail from Development Academy clubs, including five from the New York Red Bulls, who send the most. The roster was chosen in part from the scouting network at the 2009 Development Academy Winter Showcase, which is taking place this weekend in Phoenix. It will be the first training camp for the ‘95s under Barlow and the U-15 BNT staff.
U-15 BNT Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (3): Santiago Castano (NY Red Bulls; Union City, N.J.), Arthur Eggers (CESA; Moore, S.C.), Zackary Steffen (FC DELCO; Downington, Pa.)
DEFENDERS (8): Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas; Plano, Texas), Russell Canouse (NY Red Bulls; Lancaster, Pa.), Dylan Greenberg (Albertson SC; Dix Hills, N.Y.), Trevor Haberkorn (Solar SC; Roanoke, Texas), Matthew Habrowski (Derby County Wolves; Berkley, Mich.), Jose Ocampo (Crossfire Premier; Bothell, Wash.), David Raizes (Concorde Fire; John’s Creek, Ga.), Zachary Reed (NY Red Bulls; Teaneck, N.J.)
MIDFIELDERS (16): Jordan Allen (Empire United SA; Rochester, N.Y.), Michael Chang (Sockers FC; Highland Park, Ill.), Osvaldo Chavez Jr. (Mexicas FC; El Paso, Texas), Christian DeLuna (Mustangs; Bay Point, Calif.), Nicholas Gaitan (Albertson SC; Oceanside, N.Y.), Emerson Hyndman (FC Dallas; Plano, Texas), Anthony Jeffries (Chicago Fire; Downers Grove, Ill.), Keegan McHugh (Scott Gallagher; St Charles, MO), Antonio Murillo (Brazil FC; Las Vegas, Nev.), Adam Najem (NY Red Bulls; Clifton, N.J.), Zachary Pfeffer (FC DELCO; Dresher, Penn.), Miguel Polley (Derby County Wolves; West Bloomfield, Mich.), Christian Rodriguez (LMVS Hawks; Alexandria, Va.), Kristian Scott (Bristol City FC; Winterbourne; Bristol, England), John Toher (NY Red Bulls; Blauvelt, N.Y.), Henry Wingo (Crossfire SC; Lake Forest Park, Wash.)
FORWARDS (5): Martin Arrieta (LAFC Chelsea; Pasadena, Calif.), Paul Arriola (Chula Vista Rangers; Chula Vista, Calif.), Kainoa Bailey (DC United; Henderson, Nev.), Nicholas Corriveau (Bethesda SC; Potomac, Md.), Keith Grieshaber (Scott Gallagher; Chesterfield, Mo.)
– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –
LAST MONTH FOR 2010 WERNER FRICKER BUILDER AWARD NOMINATIONS: Nominations are now being accepted for the 2010 U.S. Soccer Werner Fricker Builder Award, which is presented annually to an individual or individuals who have worked tirelessly in furthering the interest of the sport of soccer, without regard to personal recognition or advancement. The award was created in 2002 and is the greatest recognition bestowed by U.S. Soccer on its membership. The award is designed to honor those who have created or fostered programs that will outlast their own active involvement in the sport and that establish a lasting legacy in the history and structure of soccer in the United States. Interested persons can nominate individuals for the annual Werner Fricker Builder Award by downloading the form at ussoccer.com and mailing it to U.S. Soccer, c/o the Werner Fricker Builder Award Committee, 1801 S. Prairie Avenue, Chicago, IL 60616 or emailing it to AGM@ussoccer.org. Applications must be postmarked or sent by January 1, 2010 (download application).
U.S. SOCCER NATIONAL GOALKEEPING LICENSE COURSE ANNOUNCED: U.S. Soccer’s Coaching Department will conduct its National Goalkeeping License course Jan. 24-31, 2010, in Carson, Calif. at The Home Depot Center.
COACHESNET OFFERS INTERNATIONAL TRIPS IN 2010: U.S. Soccer’s CoachesNet is offering educational trips to both Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Madrid, Spain, in 2010. The announcement comes six months after the inaugural and successful coaching education trip that took place in Buenos Aires.
USA BID COMMITTEE GIVES FANS THE CHANCE TO “SUPPORT YOUR CITY”: The USA Bid Committee has added a “Support Your City” section to goUSAbid.com, the online home for the United States’ bid to host the FIFA World Cup™ in 2018 or 2022. The new “Support Your City” section of the Web site features city-specific pages for each of the 27 cities currently being considered as potential host cities to be included in the U.S. bid that will be submitted to FIFA in May 2010. The new pages provide valuable city-specific information and photos while giving fans another opportunity to put their support behind the candidate city of their choice by signing the online petition at goUSAbid.com.
TICKETS FOR 2011 FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP ON SALE: The Organizing Committee for the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup in Germany has launched its ticketing campaign. Sales phases will be divided in three periods, two of which, “City series” and “Twenty11” are focusing on families and clubs. The first round of ticket sales began on Oct. 29. The day was specifically chosen to launch the online order form on www.fifa.com as it coincided with the match between women's soccer powerhouses Germany and the USA at the new FIFA Women's World Cup Stadium in Augsburg, Germany. It marks the start of the first sales period, which will continue until Jan. 31, 2010, with the "city series" being exclusively on offer during this phase.
2010 US YOUTH SOCCER WORKSHOP EARLY REGISTRATION SAVINGS ENDS DEC. 15: Early registration, the opportunity to save 50 percent ($100) on admission to the 2010 US Youth Soccer Workshop, is available through Dec. 15. Admission to the Workshop provides many opportunities, including access to educational sessions that will accelerate and enhance knowledge of the game for anyone involved in youth soccer, from parents and coaches to regional, state and club administrators. The annual convention will be held in Fort Worth, Texas, Feb. 25-27 at the Fort Worth Convention Center and over 3,000 soccer coaches, administrators, referees and enthusiasts are expected. Learn more at www.USYouthSoccer.org/workshop.
SCHEDULE ANNOUNCED FOR 2009 US YOUTH SOCCER ODP GIRLS WINTER INTERREGIONAL: The 2009 US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (US Youth Soccer ODP) Girls Winter Interregional is scheduled for Dec. 27-30 at Freedom Ridge Park in Ridgeland, Miss. US Youth Soccer ODP regional teams in the 1990 and 1992 age groups will train and compete in front of national and leading collegiate coaches to maximize their exposure. Rosters for the US Youth Soccer ODP Girls Winter Interregional will be released Dec. 14. Visit www.USYouthSoccer.org for more information. US Youth Soccer ODP Boys Winter Interregional schedule will be announced later on Monday, Dec. 7.
2009 US YOUTH SOCCER NATIONAL LEAGUE BOYS OPEN SEASON IN WILSON, N.C.: The US Youth Soccer National League Under-15, Under-16 and Under-17 Boys teams will open the third season of League play Dec. 10-13 at Wilson Gillette Soccer Complex in Wilson, N.C., in conjunction with the NCAA Division I College Cup Championships to provide greater exposure of these elite teams to collegiate and national team coaches. The National League girls just completed their first weekend of play in College Station, home to the 2009 NCAA Women’s College Cup. For more information on all US Youth Soccer National League play, including team pages with college commitment status, visit www.USYouthSoccer.org/national_league/.
*** CENTER CIRCLE SPOTLIGHT ***
PEAK PERFORMER: U.S. Men's National Team goalkeeper Tim Howard came up big for Everton on Sunday. The USA’s No. 1 stopped a 90th minute penalty from Spurs striker Jermain Defoe to preserve his sides 2-2 draw. Everton came back from two goals down before Howard used his feet to keep out Defoe's spot kick and ensure the Toffees grabbed a morale-boosting point at Goodison Park.
MARQUEE MATCHUP: No doubt about this one, this week's Marquee Matchup will be taking place in Rustenburg, South Africa on June 12, 2010. That's when the USA will meet England as both sides open their 2010 FIFA World Cup campaigns. The sides have not met in a World Cup since the famed 1950 game in Belo Horizonte, Brazil and the buildup is already beginning for what will surely be one of the most talked about games in U.S. history.
MARQUEE MATCHUP – PART 2: The Nike International Friendlies wrap up today at the Development Academy Winter Showcase in Phoenix, Ariz. After tying Brazil on Saturday, the U-17 Men's National Team looks to put in another good performance against the Netherlands on Monday night. The game can be seen live at 7 p.m. MT on Fox Soccer Channel.
QUOTABLE: "It’s a very fair group. It gives us an opportunity to play well and to advance. We don’t take any opponent lightly and these are big games. We have a really good opportunity now and one that we’re excited about and one that we want to take advantage of.” -- U.S. Men's National Team head coach Bob Bradley on the USA being drawn into Group C for next year's World Cup.