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U-18 Men Win 2005 Milk Cup with 4-2 Victory Over Northern Ireland

COLERAINE, Northern Ireland (Aug. 5, 2005) - The U.S. Under-18 Men's National Team defeated host Northern Ireland 4-2 this evening in Coleraine, Northern Ireland, behind a hat trick from forward Charlie Davies to win the elite group of the 2005 Milk Cup for the first time.

Northern Ireland took the early lead, but the U.S. rattled off four unanswered goals to run away with the contest. Rodrigo Lopez scored the opening goal off a penalty kick before Davies notched the next three goals.

The U.S. had never won the international youth football tournament, which is hailed as one of the premier soccer events in Europe. The U.S. played in the elite group, which also included Brazil and Serbia & Montenegro.

Northern Ireland scored the opening goal after winning a penalty kick when U.S. goalkeeper Chris Seitz took down a forward in the box, receiving a caution for the foul. Northern Ireland converted the spot kick to take the 1-0 lead.

The U.S. found the equalizer minutes later as they also were awarded a penalty by the referee when a Northern Ireland defender was called for a handball in the box. Lopez stepped up and slotted his attempt past the ‘keeper to begin the USA’s barrage.

Davies, who scored the winning goal in a 1-0 victory over Serbia & Montenegro two day earlier, took over the scoring duties for the rest of the match as he buried two strikes before halftime and then drew a penalty kick in the second half, which he converted to complete his hat trick.

Northern Ireland scored a late goal, but the U.S. was never in danger of relinquishing their lead.

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

 U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team vs. Northern Ireland
Competition:  2005 Milk Cup
Location: Coleraine Showgrounds; Coleraine, Northern Ireland
Date: Aug. 5, 2005
Weather: Warm, 70 degrees

Scoring Summary: 
            1st    2nd        Final
USA      3       1             4
NIR        1       1             1

NIR – n/a (penalty kick)                                      10th minute
USA – Rodrigo Lopez (penalty kick)                20.
USA – Charlie Davies (Rodrigo Lopez)           31.
USA – Charlie Davies (Lee Nguyen)               44.
USA – Charlie Davies (penalty kick)                59.
NIR – n/a                                                              82.
USA: 18-Chris Seitz (1-Steve Sandbo, 69); 5-Tony Beltran (2-Pav Castaneda, 72), 4-Karl Schilling, 3-Jamil Roberts, 14-Greg Folk; 12-Mike Vidiera, 7-Rodrigo Lopez (17-Ely Allen, 77), 8-Dax McCarty, 11-Lee Nguyen; 15-Deigo Barrera (13-Jason Leopoldo, 63), 9-Charlie Davies (10-Sal Zizzo, 80)

NIR: n/a

Statistical Summary:    
                             USA      NIR
Shots                     18          8     
Saves                      2          7
Corner Kick            5          5
Fouls                       9          12 
Offside                    3           2

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Chris Seitz (caution)             10th minute
NIR – n/a (caution)                             10.
NIR – n/a (caution)                             20.
USA – Charlie Davies (caution)       31.
NIR – n/a (caution)                             34.
NIR – n/a (caution)                             63.
NIR – n/a (ejection)                            90.
USA – Mike Vidiera (caution)          90+

2005 Milk Cup Results (Elite Group)
Monday, August 1
U.S. 1, Brazil 1
Northern Ireland 3, Serbia & Montenegro 1

Wednesday, August 3
U.S. 1, Serbia & Montenegro 0
Northern Ireland 2, Brazil 0

Friday, August 5
U.S. 4, Northern Ireland 2
Brazil 5, Serbia & Montenegro 0

The Milk Cup began in 1983 and added the elite group, which is an invitation only tournament, in 1995. The tournament routinely includes some of the best national youth teams as well as English Premier League squads such as Manchester United, Rangers, Newcastle United and Everton.

A number of famous players have played in the Milk Cup, including David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Gary Neville, Nicky Butt and Wayne Rooney who played for Everton in the 2000 Milk Cup. In the 2002 World Cup there were 30 Milk Cup veterans playing.

Milk Cup Champions (Elite Group)
1995 -- Wales
1996 -- Turkey
1997 -- Northern Ireland
1998 -- Turkey
1999 -- E.C. Vitoria (Brazil)
2000 -- Chile
2001 -- Mexico
2002 -- Paraguay
2003 -- Paraguay
2004 -- Turkey
2005 -- USA is the official site of U.S. Soccer, the governing body of soccer in the United States.