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US MNT Set for First Friendly Against Panama in Panama

TO PANAMA ON A ROLL: Riding high after a dominant performance against Venezuela, the U.S. Men’s National Team now faces Panama for its first-ever friendly against the Marea Roja on Wednesday, Jan. 25, at Estadio Rommel Fernandez in Panama City. Kickoff for the USA’s second match of 2012 is set for 8:30 p.m. ET, and the match will be broadcast live on Galavision and ESPN3. Fans can also follow the game via ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and on Twitter @ussoccer. The U.S. team arrived Monday evening and will hold its only training session Tuesday night in the stadium.

Game Guide
Kickoff: 8:30 p.m. ET
Uniforms: USA (white/white/white) – Panama (red/red/red)
Maximum Subs: 6
Referee: Francisco Chacon (MEX)

U.S. MNT 2012 Schedule

Date

Opponent

Result/ Time

Goalscorer/Venue

TV

Jan. 21

Venezuela

1-0 W

Ricardo Clark

ESPN3/Galavision

Jan. 25

Panama

8:30 p.m.

Estadio Rommel Fernandez, Panama City

ESPN3/Galavision

Feb. 29

Italy

2:30 p.m.

Stadio Luigi Ferraris, Genoa

ESPN2/ESPN3

June 8

Antigua & Barbuda*

TBD

June 12

Guatemala*

TBD

Sept. 7

Jamaica*

TBD

Sept. 11

Jamaica*

TBD

Oct. 12

Antigua & Barbuda*

TBD

Oct. 16

Guatemala*

TBD

*2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifying

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION – DETAILED ROSTER
GOALKEEPERS (3): Bill Hamid (D.C. United), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (6): Geoff Cameron (Houston Dynamo), A.J. DeLaGarza (LA Galaxy), Zach Loyd (FC Dallas), Jeff Parke (Seattle Sounders FC), Michael Parkhurst (FC Nordsjaelland), Heath Pearce (Chivas USA)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Ricardo Clark (Eintracht Frankfurt), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders FC), Benny Feilhaber (New England Revolution), Jermaine Jones (Schalke), Jeff Larentowicz (Colorado Rapids), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS (3): Teal Bunbury (Sporting Kansas City), C.J. Sapong (Sporting Kansas City), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)

ROSTER NOTES

  • Jurgen Klinsmann has collected back-to-back victories for the first time since becoming head coach last summer, following the 3-2 win against Slovenia on Nov. 15, 2011, in Ljubljana. 
  • Four players earned their first cap this past Saturday: A.J. DeLaGarza, Bill Hamid, C.J. Sapong and Graham Zusi.
  • Jermaine Jones wore the captain's armband for the first time. 
  • Brek Shea, a member of the 2011 MLS Best XI, is now the only player to appear in all eight matches since Klinsmann became head coach.
  • Benny Feilhaber made his first appearance for the U.S. since Oct. 12, 2010, a 0-0 draw against Colombia. 
  • The U.S. defeated a team from South America for the first time since March 25, 2007, a 3-1 win against Ecuador, ending a 13-match winless run against teams from that continent. 
  • Michael Parkhurst and Jeff Larentowicz were on the field together for the first since playing for the New England Revolution in the 2008 MLS Conference Semifinals, a 3-0 loss on Nov. 6, 2008, against the Chicago Fire. 
  • DeLaGarza and Zusi were on the field together for the first time since winning the College Cup for the University of Maryland on Dec. 14, 2008. Opposing them that day for the University of North Carolina was defender Zach Loyd. 
  • The crowd of 22,403 was the second-largest for a game in the state of Arizona. 
  • Goalkeeper Nick Rimando, 32, is participating in his fifth January camp since 2002. Rimando has five caps to his name, splitting time in goal with Sean Johnson during a 1-1 draw against Chile on Jan. 22, 2011, for his lone appearance in the net last year. 
  • Jeff Parke, participating in his first camp with the National Team, is looking for his first international cap. 
  • Seventeen players on this current U.S. roster are signed with MLS clubs. 
  • Sporting Kansas City striker Sapong captured 2011 MLS Rookie of the Year honors. 
  • Six of the players in camp spent time in the offseason training with clubs in Europe: Agudelo (Stuttgart, Liverpool), Beckerman (FC Kaiserslautern), Hamid (West Bromwich Albion), Johnson (Everton), Larentowicz (Bolton) and Shea (Arsenal). 
  • Four players on the roster are age-eligible to compete in qualifying for the 2012 Olympic Games: Teal Bunbury, Hamid, Johnson and Shea.

USA VS. PANAMA SERIES

  • The U.S. holds a 7-1-2 lifetime record against Panama, including a 1-0-1 record on Panamanian soil. 
  • All 10 previous meetings between the two teams have come in either the CONCACAF Gold Cup or FIFA World Cup qualifying. 
  • Both games in Panama came during qualifying for the 2006 FIFA World Cup. In the semifinal phase, the teams dueled to a 1-1 draw on Sept. 9, 2004, after Cobi Jones knocked in the tying goal in the 92nd minute . They squared off again in the final round on June 8, 2005, when the U.S. cruised to a 3-0 victory behind goals from Carlos Bocanegra, Landon Donovan and Brian McBride. 
  • In qualifying for the 2006 FIFA World Cup, the teams met four times, playing home and away in both the semifinal and final rounds of qualifying. The U.S. won three times with one tie.
  • In their last encounter, Clint Dempsey scored the lone goal in the USA’s 1-0 victory in the semifinal round of the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup, marking the fourth straight time that the U.S. has eliminated Panama from the Gold Cup’s knockout round. 
  • Earlier in that tournament, Panama collected its only victory against the United States, a 2-1 win on June 11 in Tampa, Fla. The defeat remains the only U.S. loss ever in the group phase of the tournament dating back to 1991.
  • Ricardo Clark, the USA’s hero in the 1-0 win against Venezuela, made his debut for the United States in the World Cup qualifier against Panama on Oct. 12, 2005, entering as a reserve in the 2-0 win. He also appeared in the 2-1 victory against Panama on June 16, 2007, in the quarterfinal of the Gold Cup.
  • Heath Pearce started and Brad Evans came on as a reserve when the U.S. defeated Panama 2-1 in overtime of the 2009 Gold Cup quarterfinal on July 18, 2009, in Philadelphia. 
  • Jermaine Jones started and Chris Wondolowski entered as a sub in the 2-1 loss in last summer’s Gold Cup. Panama’s Blas Perez drew the penalty kick that proved decisive in that match. Jones and Juan Agudelo were then in the first XI when the U.S. gained redemption in the semifinal.

KLINSMANN ON PLAYING IN PANAMA: This game against Panama represents the USA’s first friendly match on Central American soil since March 25, 1993, a 4-1 loss to Honduras in Tegucigalpa. So why make the trip now? “We wanted to take the players out of their comfort zone and give them a different experience,” said Klinsmann. “It’s important that they have a chance to taste what the environments will be like in World Cup qualifying, everything from the food, weather, hotels and travel. For many of them, including the coaching staff, it will be their first match here, so it’s a chance for all of us to get a feel for playing away games in CONCACAF.”

JONES SPORTS THE ARMBAND: Midfielder Jermaine Jones earned Budweiser Man of the Match honors for his performance against Venezuela, and he did it with the added inspiration of wearing the captain’s armband for the first time. “Everyone could see why he was playing with a Champions League team. He elevated the group within one training session with his energy and with his leadership,” said Klinsmann. “His vision on the field makes a big difference. These young players are all hungry to make the next step, and they want to know how to get to the next level. Jermaine jumped in and talked with the guys and took care of it, and that’s why it was an easy decision to make him a captain. We also wanted to give him a signal that we want this type of leadership from him.”

IF HISTORY HOLDS, SIX PLAYERS HERE WILL MAKE THE 2014 WORLD CUP ROSTER: With 2012 marking the beginning of the USA's FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign and the players here hoping to make a big impression, we decided to look back at the January camp roster from this time in the previous two cycles to see if there is any forecasting to be done on how many players will actually reach the World Cup. The camp held by Bruce Arena in 2004 had 30 players, while four years later Bob Bradley called in 26 total. Each of those camps produced six players that went on to feature in Germany and South Africa, respectively.

IN THE RECORD BOOKS

  • Ricardo Clark's game-winner in the 97th minute against Venezuela marks the latest goal scored in the second half by the United States in team history. 
  • With the shutout in that game, Hamid became the ninth goalkeeper in U.S. history to record a clean sheet in his first game. 
  • The U.S. MNT improved its record in January openers to 8-1-5 since 1998, with the lone loss coming against Honduras on Jan. 23, 2010 (a 3-1 loss).

BY THE NUMBERS:

0 Losses to Panama in Panama

1 Shots on goal against the U.S. on Jan. 21

4 Players who earned their first cap against Venezuela

15 Shots taken by the U.S. on Jan. 21

16 Number of MLS players on the roster

ON USSOCCER.COM: Check out the following articles, journal entries and videos on the U.S. Men’s National Team at ussoccer.com:

JURGEN KLINSMANN FACT FILE: Head coach Jurgen Klinsmann is in the midst of his second year and first full calendar year in charge of the U.S. Men’s National Team. Below are some of his past accomplishments as a player and coach.

  • Klinsmann was named the U.S. Men’s National Team head coach on July 29, 2011, making him the 35th coach in the history of the program. 
  • Klinsmann’s record as head coach of the Men’s National Team is 3-4-1, including consecutive wins against Slovenia and Panama. 
  • Klinsmann’s U.S. coaching debut was a 1-1 draw against Mexico on Aug. 10, 2011, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. During Klinsmann’s abbreviated 2011 tenure, opponents outscored the USA by a 7-5 margin. The U.S.’s two victories during the Klinsmann era include a 1-0 win against Honduras (Oct. 8, 2011) and a 3-2 victory against Slovenia (Nov. 15, 2011). 
  • Klinsmann was named the Germany National Team manager in 2004 and guided Germany to a 20-6-8 record and a third-place finish in the 2006 FIFA World Cup. He earned Coach of the Year honors in Germany, and two years later he took over the head coaching position at Bayern Munich. 
  • As a player, Klinsmann played 17 club seasons from 1981 to 1998 with the following teams: Stuttgarter Kickers (1981-84), VfB Stuttgart (1984-89), Internazionale (1989-92), Monaco (1992-94), Tottenham Hotspur (1994-95, 97-98), Bayern Munich (1995-97) and Sampdoria (1997-98). During that time, he scored 226 goals in 506 appearances. He was named German Player of the Year in 1988 and 1994 and FWA Footballer of the Year in 1995. 
  • Klinsmann earned 108 caps with the German National Team, scoring 47 goals. He participated in three World Cups (1990, 1994 and 1998) and won the 1990 World Cup.
  • Klinsmann was born on July 30, 1964, in Goppingen, Germany.

ITALY ON THE ITINERARY: U.S. Soccer announced earlier this month that it will face four-time World Cup champion Italy on Feb. 29 in Genoa. Kickoff at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris is at 8:30 p.m. local (2:30 p.m. ET), and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and ESPN3. Fans can follow the game live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and Twitter @ussoccer. “Obviously we are very excited to be playing a team of such high quality,” U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann said. “We are slowly trying to raise the bar for our team, and this is an awesome opportunity for the players to be challenged against one of the top teams in the world.”

NUTRITION 101: U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has utilized this January camp to focus heavily on educating the roster in many areas, and one key away from the pitch is nutrition. On the nutrition side, the U.S. MNT received instruction and advice from Danielle LaFata, the director of performance nutrition at Athletes’ Performance. Some key nutritional tips include eating the least processed forms of food (i.e. fruits, vegetables, whole grains); choosing a variety of colored fruits and vegetables with each meal; eating healthy fats such as nuts, fish and flaxseed oil; eating smaller portions spread evenly across the day; and staying hydrated. Also check out a video of the players receiving this tutorial and going shopping!

U.S. MNT SCRIMMAGED U-23S TWICE: The U.S. MNT and U.S. U-23 MNT converged for two scrimmages on Jan. 13 and 17 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. The U.S. MNT netted four first-half goals and earned a 4-0 win against the U-23s on Jan. 13, and the two sides played to a 1-1 draw on Jan. 17. In the second game, U.S. MNT defender Graham Zusi scored a goal, while the U-23’s Jack McInerney had a tally as the two sides settled for the stalemate. The U-23 MNT is now in San Jose, Costa Rica, where it will face Saprissa and Alajuelense in two more games to wrap up the January training session.

CONTINUITY AMONG U.S. SOCCER TEAMS: This year marks an important overlap between the U.S. Men’s National Team and the U.S. Under-23 MNT as the U-23s prepare for the CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Tournament in March. U.S. MNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has emphasized a desire to play possessive and attack-driven soccer, and he wants to see this type of continuity within the younger levels. That holds true for U-23 head coach Caleb Porter, whose group has been training within a 4-3-3 formation and focusing on connection in the attack and combination play. Klinsmann’s current MNT roster includes several players who likely will play big roles for the U-23s in the qualifying and hopefully the 2012 London Olympics.

U.S. U-23 MNT 2012 Schedule
(2012 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Tournament)

Date

Opponent

Time (ET)

Venue

TV

Mar. 22

Cuba

9 p.m.

LP Field, Nashville, Tenn.

Universal/Telemundo

Mar. 24

Canada

7 p.m.

LP Field, Nashville, Tenn.

Universal/Telemundo

Mar. 26

El Salvador

9 p.m.

LP Field, Nashville, Tenn.

Universal/Telemundo

SIX-GOAL GAME: Jurgen Klinsmann has introduced a tactical training exercise called the “six-goal game” to focus heavily on shifting and moving as a unit, particularly on the defensive side of the ball. The 70-yard-long, 72-yard-wide field is incorporated with big goals in the center of each endline and then two smaller goals on each side of the big goals, placed seven yards from the sideline. Each team has the ability to score on three different goals spread all the way across the field, forcing defenses to quickly move as a group from side to side. Here is a video of how it all works.

ROSTER FILLED WITH FORMER TEAMMATES: It's no surprise with so many talented players having come through the U.S. system that there would be a lot of guys who have shared the same field together and then separated as their careers progressed. Well, it's reunion time here in National Team camp, and a review of the roster reveals several players who have won national championships together, MLS Cup titles, U.S. Open Cups, and even former road roommates. Let the nostalgia begin!

A.J. DeLaGarza and Graham Zusi*
University of Maryland (2005-08) - National Champions 2005, 2008

Jeff Larentowicz and Michael Parkhurst
New England Revolution - (2005-08) - MLS Cup Finalists 2005-07, U.S. Open Cup Champions 2007

Ricardo Clark and Chris Wondolowski
San Jose Earthquakes (2005) - Houston Dynamo (2006-09) - MLS Cup Champions 2006, 2007

Ricardo Clark and Geoff Cameron*
Houston Dynamo (2008-09)

Geoff Cameron and Chris Wondolowski
Houston Dynamo (2008-09)

Heath Pearce and Brek Shea
FC Dallas (2009-10) - MLS Cup Finalists 2010

Zach Loyd and Heath Pearce
FC Dallas (2010) - MLS Cup Finalists 2010

Bonus material

  • Brad Evans, Benny Feilhaber and Michael Parkhurst were on the U.S. team that reached the final of the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup. 
  • Geoff Cameron and Michael Parkhurst were teammates at the Bayside FC Bolts in Rhode Island. Neither can remember which year, so assistance is welcome... 
  • Same goes for Jeff Larentowicz and Jeff Parke, who were together at U.S. Soccer Development Academy club FC DELCO.

*Former road roommates

RECAPPING 2011: The USA posted a 6-8-3 record in 2011 and opened the year with a 1-1 draw against Chile on Jan. 22. The big event last year was the CONCACAF Gold Cup in June, and the USA made a strong run to the final. The team posted shutout victories over Canada, Guadeloupe, Jamaica and then Panama in the semifinal. However, the USA’s run came to a halt when it lost to Mexico 4-2 in the Gold Cup final on June 25 in front of a crowd of 93,420 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif. During the next month-and-a-half-long break between matches, the U.S. MNT parted ways with head coach Bob Bradley and brought in Goppingen, Germany, native Jurgen Klinsmann as the program’s 35th coach on July 29. Klinsmann guided the Germany from 2004-2006, posting a 20-6-8 record, a third-place finish in the 2006 FIFA World Cup and earning Coach of the Year honors in Germany. Klinsmann made his U.S. coaching debut in a rematch against Mexico, and the USA played to a 1-1 draw on Aug. 10 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. Klinsmann earned his first U.S. win on Oct. 8 when the USA shut out Honduras 1-0 at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Fla., and the team wrapped up the year with a 3-2 victory against host Slovenia on Nov. 15. The USA was 2-4-1 under Klinsmann in 2011.

IN FOCUS: PANAMA
Federación Panameña de Fútbol
Founded: 1937 (Joined FIFA in 1918)
Head Coach: Julio Dely Valdes
Best World Cup Finish: Never qualified
Best CONCACAF Gold Cup Finish: Second Place (2005)
Caps Leader: Ricardo Phillips (110)
Top Scorer: Luis Tejada (34)
Key Players: Blas Perez, Gabriel Gomez

PANAMA UPDATE

  • Panama takes the field for the first time in 2012, having finished the past year on top of Group C in the second round of CONCACAF qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and advancing to the semifinal phase. 
  • The team went undefeated in the group that included Nicaragua and Dominica, outscoring its opponents 15-2 in four matches. 
  • Canada, Cuba and Honduras will be Panama’s opponents in Group C of semifinal round qualifying. 
  • Newly signed FC Dallas striker Blas Perez is the leading scorer with 23 goals in 38 matches. He is joined by FCD defender Carlos Rodriguez. 
  • Philadelphia Union midfielder Gabriel Gomez is the leading cap winner, with 74 appearances for Panama. Gomez scored the penalty that secured Panama’s only victory against the United States. 
  • Head coach Julio Dely Valdes has called on a total of 10 players who are age-eligible for the Olympics, including the starting U-23 goalkeeper Luis Mejia.

PANAMA ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS (2): Luis Mejia (Fenix), Kevin Melgar (Alianza)
DEFENDERS (6): Carlos Rodriguez (FC Dallas), Sergio Thompson (Sporting), Eric Vasquez (Chorrillo), Eduardo Dasent (Tauro), Rolando Algandona (San Francisco), Edward Benitez (Sporting)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Luis Ovalle (Sporting), Amir Waithe (San Francisco), Marcos Sanchez (Tauro), Rolando Botello (Tauro), Gabriel Gomez (Philadelphia Union), Juan De Gracia (Chepo), Alberto Quintero (Chorrillo)
FORWARDS (3): Blas Perez (FC Dallas), Manuel Mosquera (Arabe Unido), Luis Renteria (Tauro)

LAST TIME
On the field for USA:
Jan. 21, 2012 – University of Phoenix Stadium – Glendale, Ariz. – International Friendly

USA        1  Ricardo Clark 90+7
Panama  0

USA: 1-Bill Hamid; 2-A.J. DeLaGarza, 4-Michael Parkhurst, 5-Geoff Cameron, 3-Heath Pearce (13-Zach Loyd, 72); 6-Jeff Larentowicz (15-Ricardo Clark, 62), 8-Jermaine Jones (capt.); 7-Graham Zusi (18-C.J. Sapong, 74), 10-Benny Feilhaber (17-Chris Wondolowksi, 62), 11-Brek Shea; 9-Teal Bunbury (16-Brad Evans, 88)
Subs not used: 12-Nick Rimando, 14-Jeff Parke

Head Coach: Jurgen Klinsmann

VEN : 1-Jose Morales; 2-Carlos Rivero, 3-Carlos Salazar, 4-Jose Manuel Velasquez, 21-Andres Rouga; 5-Miguel Mea Vitali (23-Emilio Renteria, 78); 10-Alejandro Guerra (14-Diego Guerrero, 89), 8-Francisco Flores, 6-Angel Flores, 7-Edgar Perez Greco (17-Angel Chourio, 73); 15-Alejandro Moreno (9-Richard Blanco, 86)
Subs not used: 11- Jose Reyes, 12- Alan Liebeskind, 13-John Chancellor, 16-Ruben Arocha, 19-Rubert Quijada, 20-Javier Gonzalez, 24-Diomar Diaz, 25-Darwin Machis
Head coach: Cesar Farias

On the field for Panama:
Nov. 15, 2011 – Estadio Rommel Fernandez – Panama City, Panama –2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifier, Second Round
Panama    3 Rolando Blackburn 6', Ricardo Buitrago 20', Blas Perez 84'
Dominica  0

PAN : Kevin Melgar; Roderick Miller, Rolando Algandona, Felipe Baloy, Sergio Thompson; Gabriel Gomez, Armando Cooper, Federico Marines (J. Ruiz, 62), Ricardo Buitrago Jr.; Anibal Godoy; Rolando Blackburn (Blas Perez, 76)
Head coach: Julio Dely Valdes

DMA: Glenson Prince; Colin Bernard, Prince Austrie, Elmond Derrick, Calvin Christopher; Josley Prince (Mitchell Joseph, 46), Euclid Bertrand (Rasheed Betrand, 73), Craig Reid, Jonathan Abel; Kurlson Benjamin, Lester Langlais (Jerome Thomas, 84)
Head Coach: Kirt Hector

vs. Panama:
June 22, 2011 – Reliant Stadium – Houston, Texas –2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup, Semifinal
USA         1   Clint Dempsey 76’
Panama   0

USA : 1-Tim Howard; 6-Steve Cherundolo, 21-Clarence Goodson, 3-Carlos Bocanegra (capt.), 14-Eric Lichaj; 4-Michael Bradley, 13-Jermaine Jones; 22-Alejandro Bedoya, 16-Sacha Kljestan (10-Landon Donovan, 46), 8-Clint Dempsey; 9-Juan Agudelo (20-Freddy Adu, 66)
Subs not used: 7-Maurice Edu, 11-Chris Wondolowski, 12-Jonathan Bornstein, 15-Tim Ream, 23-Marcus Hahnemann
Head Coach: Bob Bradley

PAN : 1-Jaime Penedo; 5-Román Torres, 14-Eduardo Dasent, 17-Luis Henríquez, 23-Felipe Baloy (capt.); 6-Gabriel Gómez (20-Anibal Godoy, 86), 10-Nelson Barahona (8-Gabriel Torres, 86), 11-Armando Cooper (16-Luis Renteria, 71), 21-Amilcar Henríquez; 18-Luis Tejada, 19-Alberto Quintero
Subs not used: 3-Harold Cummings, 4-Aramis Haywood, 9-Renan Addles, 12-Luis Mejía, 15-Eric Davis, 22-Eybir Bonaga
Head Coach: Julio Dely Valdes

 

Ricardo Clark Scores in Stoppage Time as U.S. Men’s National Team Defeats Venezuela 1-0 in Opening Match of 2012

  • Ricardo Clark Nets Game-Winner Seven Minutes Into Stoppage Time 
  • U.S. Earns First Win Against South American Team Since 2007 
  • USA Travels to Panama City for Wednesday Match Against Panama at 8:30 p.m. ET Live on Galavision, ESPN3

GLENDALE, Ariz. (Jan. 21, 2012) – The U.S. Men’s National Team opened the year in dramatic fashion as Ricardo Clark tallied a game-winning goal seven minutes into second-half stoppage time for a 1-0 win against Venezuela at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.

The U.S. kept Venezuelan goalkeeper Jose Morales on his toes all night and finally earned the well-deserved victory in the final moments when Clark emphatically headed home a Jermaine Jones corner kick from the right side. Jones, serving as the U.S. captain for the first time in his career, capped off his Budweiser Man of the Match performance with the assist. The game-winner was the second in Clark’s career, following the lone goal in the 1-0 win against Trinidad & Tobago in qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

The U.S. improved to 3-0-1 all-time against Venezuela and earned its first win against a South American team since a 3-1 win against Ecuador on March 25, 2007.

Next up for the U.S. MNT is an international friendly against Panama on Wednesday, Jan. 25 at Estadio Rommel Fernandez in Panama City. Kickoff is set for 8:30 p.m. ET, and the match will be televised live on Galavision and ESPN3. Fans can also follow the game live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and Twitter @ussoccer.

“Overall I thought we had a very good performance tonight,” said U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann, who collected his second straight victory. “We created a ton of chances and really didn’t give them any good opportunities. We did an extreme amount of work these past two and a half weeks, and we were glad to see the players get the reward. We switched to a 4-4-2 to push the game towards the end. It was just about getting one goal sooner or later. We got it—a bit late, but not too late.”

Four players made their U.S. MNT debut on Saturday, with goalkeeper Bill Hamid, defender A.J. DeLaGarza and midfielder Graham Zusi earning their first cap in starting roles, and forward C.J. Sapong debuting 14 minutes into the second half.

Hamid, a U.S. Soccer Development Academy alum, becomes the ninth goalkeeper in U.S. history to collect a shutout in his first game. The Annandale, Va., native was only forced into action once in his first match, as the U.S. defense held Venezuela to just a single shot on goal.

DeLaGarza and Zusi won two national championships together at the University of Maryland in 2005 and 2008. DeLaGarza started at right back, and Zusi was a key midfield presence during both the run of play and set pieces.

Two of the USA’s other big scoring opportunities came on either side of halftime. In the 23rd minute, Zusi took a free kick and found Brek Shea in front of his defender. Shea sent a solid header toward goal, but Morales made a clutch save with his left glove. In the 76th minute, second half sub Chris Wondolowski had a header that Morales cleared to his left to maintain the scoreless draw.

The U.S. was the offensive instigator for much of the first half, and the scoring chances started to present themselves within the first 20 minutes. On 19 minutes, Teal Bunbury had a strike that went just over the crossbar. Bunbury’s opportunity came shortly after captain Jermaine Jones had intercepted the ball from Venezuela. Then in the 20th minute, Shea pushed a shot just wide right as he found space behind Venezuela’s defense. Benny Feilhaber started the sequence by splitting a pair of Venezuelan defenders to put Shea in on goal. Feilhaber made his first U.S. MNT appearance in more than a year, last taking the pitch on Oct. 10, 2010, against Colombia.

In the second half, the U.S. nearly struck as Jones received the ball inside the penalty box in the 48th minute, but the high-percentage opportunity was pushed wide left of the goal.

U.S. midfielder and Phoenix native Brad Evans made an appearance in front of his hometown crowd, earning his fourth cap as a second-half substitution for Bunbury.

From Venezuela’s perspective, the team only managed one shot on frame during the night, and most of its chances were taken from distance. Angel Flores (15th minute) and Francisco Flores (39th minute) both missed with shots from outside the box.

The Venezuelans continued to muster only modest opportunities in the second half. Miguel Mea Vitali had a 70th-minute attempt off of a free kick that went wide right, and Emilio Renteria had an opportunity on top of the box where he whiffed completely.

Following Wednesday’s match against Panama, the National Team looks forward to a Feb. 29 match against four-time World Cup champion Italy at Stadio Luigi Ferraris in Genoa. Kickoff is at 8:30 p.m. local (2:30 p.m. ET), and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and ESPN3.

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

Match: USA vs. Venezuela
Date: Jan. 21, 2012
Competition: International Friendly
Venue: University of Phoenix Stadium; Glendale, Ariz.
Kickoff: 7 p.m. MT
Attendance: 22,403
Weather: indoors

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA                        0 1 1
Venezuela                0 0 0

USA – Ricardo Clark (Jermaine Jones)     90+7 minute

Lineups:
USA: 1-Bill Hamid; 2-A.J. DeLaGarza, 4-Michael Parkhurst, 5-Geoff Cameron, 3-Heath Pearce (13-Zach Loyd, 72); 6-Jeff Larentowicz (15-Ricardo Clark, 62), 8-Jermaine Jones (capt.); 7-Graham Zusi (18-C.J. Sapong, 74), 10-Benny Feilhaber (17-Chris Wondolowksi, 62), 11-Brek Shea; 9-Teal Bunbury (16-Brad Evans, 88)
Subs not used: 12-Nick Rimando, 14-Jeff Parke
Head Coach: Jurgen Klinsmann


VEN: 1-Jose Morales; 2-Carlos Rivero, 3-Carlos Salazar, 4-Jose Manuel Velasquez, 21-Andres Rouga; 5-Miguel Mea Vitali (23-Emilio Renteria, 78); 10-Alejandro Guerra (14-Diego Guerrero, 89), 8-Francisco Flores, 6-Agnel Flores, 7-Edgar Perez Greco (17-Angel Chourio, 73); 15-Alejandro Moreno (9-Richard Blanco, 86)
Subs not used: 11- Jose Reyes, 12- Alan Liebeskind, 13-John Chancellor, 16-Ruben Arocha, 19-Rubert Quijada, 20-Javier Gonzalez, 24-Diomar Diaz, 25-Darwin Machis
Head coach: Cesar Farias


Stats Summary: USA / VEN
Shots: 15 / 6
Shots on Goal: 5 / 1
Saves: 1 / 4
Corner Kicks: 7 / 0
Fouls: 15 / 13
Offside: 0 / 4

Misconduct Summary:
VEN – Jose Velasquez (caution)    44th minute
VEN – Carlos Salazar (caution)     46
USA – Jermaine Jones (caution)   67
VEN – Francisco Flores (caution)  90+2
VEN – Emilio Renteria (caution)   90+3
VEN – Jose Velasquez (sent off)   90+8

Officials:
Referee: Roberto Garcia (MEX)
Assistant Referee 1: Marcos Quintero (MEX)
Assistant Referee 2: Hector Delgadillo (MEX)
Fourth Official: Terry Vaughn (USA)

Budweiser Man of the Match: Jermaine Jones

Renaissance Men: Benny Feilhaber and Ricardo Clark Look to Make Their U.S. Comebacks

Here in Phoenix, the USA’s 20-man roster fits the typical profile for a January camp: a group of mostly MLS-based players who are young, inexperienced, and hoping to make a good impression at the dawn of their international careers. And then you see two names that stand out: 2010 FIFA World Cup veterans Benny Feilhaber and Ricardo Clark. Each came to the annual January camp as established players who are looking to launch a renaissance of their National Team careers.

Having collected his last cap Oct. 12, 2010, against Colombia, Feilhaber was named to the roster for the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup but was forced to withdraw because of an ankle injury suffered before the start of the tournament. Clark’s most recent appearance in camp came at Jurgen Klinsmann’s first match in charge, the 1-1 draw against Mexico in August of last year, but he has not earned a cap since he represented the U.S. in two matches at the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Now that the players have another chance to impress the National Team staff, they plan on capitalizing on their opportunity. But both men admit waiting for that elusive call-up can be difficult.

“I’m not going to lie, it’s tough,” Feilhaber said. “You always want to get called in, and you definitely always value the opportunity to come in into the National Team because it’s always an honor and a privilege, and there’s so many players that have the skill set to be part of it. It wasn’t an easy last six months not being called into the National Team. But now that I got my chance, I get to prove it to Jurgen and his staff that I should be involved, and hopefully that’s what I’m going to be able to do in this camp.”

Clark has been biding his time since August focusing on improving at a club level with Eintracht Frankfurt in Germany.

“I’ve been training and playing scrimmage games,” Clark said. “When I’m not playing with the first team, I’m playing with the second team. I just try to stay fit and try to stay on top of my form as much as possible, so that’s how I’ve dealt with it.”

Because the annual January camp does not fall on FIFA international fixture dates, most of the players called in are domestically based, making Feilhaber and Clark two of the most veteran men on the roster. Feilhaber joined the New England Revolution in April 2011 after three seasons with AGF Aarhus in Denmark. Clark is one of only two international players in the camp, along with FC Nordsjaelland’s Michael Parkhurst.

Even with their years of experience in huge games for the United States, the January camp still brings a different challenge.

“It’s a tough camp to be in because you have to show your best, and you know that you have to show maybe better than the other guys because you don’t know who’s going to be called in for qualifying when it really matters,” Feilhaber said. “All that experience – playing with the National Team in pressure situations, playing overseas and in big games – that obviously helps mentally with being able to approach the trainings and games when they come.”

For Clark, playing in important tournaments with the U.S. not only helps him to be better prepared for camps, it also allows him to be a leader to some of the younger players.

“It’s always good to have that experience under your belt because you can kind of gauge yourself and gauge your body and know what to expect,” Clark said. “You can encourage some of the younger players who don’t have that experience and give them some advice on what to expect.”

For Feilhaber, the January camp represents the first time he has trained under Klinsmann. His initial impression of the new coach is one with big ideas.

“We’ve had a lot of filled days this first week of camp,” Feilhaber said. “[Klinsmann] really wants to focus in on our fitness, our diet, and the way we do things off the field. He definitely wants us to be doing things the right way so that it can reflect on the football field. It’s obviously a good coaching staff, and it’s good to be working with them.”

The U.S. Men have their sights set on the 2014 FIFA World Cup, and that process begins this summer with CONCACAF qualifying right around the corner. Having already experienced a World Cup, both players want to be a part of the U.S. squad that would travel to Brazil.

“It’s an unbelievable experience to play in a World Cup, and I just want to better my performance individually and as a team in the next World Cup,” Clark said. “That’s three years down the road, so I kind of want to take it one day at a time. If it’s supposed to be, then it’s supposed to be.”

Born in Rio de Janeiro, Feilhaber has more personal reasons for wanting to compete in the 2014 World Cup.

“For me, it’s even a little added incentive because it’s being played in Brazil, and that’s where my whole family is from,” Feilhaber said. “It starts in this camp, but of course the ultimate goal is to make the World Cup squad.”

With the games against Venezuela and Panama on the horizon, both players will be looking to earn their first caps in more than a year. More importantly, they want to put their names in the mix for the next time Jurgen Klinsmann is making the call on who gets the call to be a part of U.S. National Team.

 

Klinsmann Calls In 22 Players to Face Mexico on Aug. 10 in Philadelphia

CHICAGO (Aug. 4, 2011) — U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has named a 22-player roster that will travel to Philadelphia in advance of the match against regional rival Mexico on Aug. 10 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. The match will be the first for the former FIFA World Cup and European Championship winner at the helm of the U.S. Men’s National Team since being named head coach.

Kickoff for the teams’ first meeting in a friendly since 2008 is set for 9 p.m. ET, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, ESPN3.com and Univision. In addition, Univision will air a live pre-game show beginning at 8:30 p.m. ET. Fans can also follow the match live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and Twitter @ussoccer.

Tickets starting at $38 are on sale through ussoccer.com, by phone at 1-800-745-3000, and at all Ticketmaster ticket centers throughout the Delaware Valley (including Walmart and Boscov’s) and the Lincoln Financial Field ticket office (open Monday-Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). Groups of 30 or more can obtain an order form at ussoccer.com or call 312-528-1290.

“One of the goals of the roster for this game and moving forward is to create competition at each position,” said Klinsmann. “There are many players who are established as well as many players who will get opportunities, and we want there to be a healthy contest for spots on the roster. We will get a good look at where each player is as quickly as we can during the short time in camp, and we will finish with an exciting game against Mexico.”

The roster delivers a combination of experience and youth at virtually every position. In goal, Tim Howard enters with 65 caps to his credit and is joined by 20-year-old Bill Hamid, a U.S. Soccer Development Academy product who was the first D.C. United Academy player to sign with the first team. Two-time World Cup veteran Carlos Bocanegra is just seven games shy of reaching 100 caps. He will patrol the center of the park along with 2010 FIFA World Cup teammate Clarence Goodson, the newly named captain of Brondby in Denmark, and two young players in Tim Ream and Michael Orozco Fiscal. Hannover 96 captain Steve Cherundolo returns after an injury forced him out of the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup final, while fellow Bundesliga-based right back Timmy Chandler is making his second appearance in a national team camp after debuting against Argentina in March. Chivas USA defender Heath Pearce and Edgar Castillo make up the options for the left side of the backline.

Central midfield is packed with experience, including four players from the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Michael Bradley has nine goals in 59 appearances for the full team, with eight of his goals coming in official competitions. Maurice Edu comes from three-time defending Scottish Premier League champion Rangers, and Ricardo Clark and Jose Torres make their first appearance in the squad since the World Cup in South Africa. Jermaine Jones has reached double digits in caps for the U.S. after competing in his first official competition earlier this summer, and has rejoined Schalke 04 after a loan spell with Blackburn Rovers. Real Salt Lake contributes captain Kyle Beckerman and FC Dallas sends Brek Shea, who is currently in third place in scoring in MLS this season behind Landon Donovan and Thierry Henry as the 21-year-old has netted nine goals in 22 games.

The USA’s all-time leading scorer, Donovan leads the attacking corps with 46 goals in 146 international appearances. Donovan is the only player on the roster who has experience with the new coach, having played for Klinsmann in 2009 at Bayern Munich during a loan spell. Both Freddy Adu and 18-year-old Juan Agudelo are coming off significant contributions in the 2011 Gold Cup, Adu having started in the final against Mexico while Agudelo appeared in five of six matches. DaMarcus Beasley returns to the squad with 93 caps to his credit that include stints in the last three World Cups, and Edson Buddle travels from FC Ingolstadt after his great run of form in 2010 led to a spot in the team in South Africa.

A total of nine professional leagues in eight different countries are represented on the roster. MLS contributes seven players, while German-based players number six total from the top two divisions and the Mexico first division sends four. New York Bulls contribute two players to the roster, the most from any single club.

The match on Aug. 10 will mark the 59th meeting between the USA and Mexico. The U.S. has a lifetime record of 15-32-11 against Mexico in a series that dates to 1934, but the U.S. has a 13-8-9 advantage in home matches since 1957. Since the rivalry between these two teams began in earnest in 1990, the sides have played 31 times, with the U.S. holding a 13-10-8 advantage. In the teams’ most significant matchup, the United States defeated Mexico 2-0 in the Round of 16 of the 2002 FIFA World Cup.

At the stadium, U.S. Soccer will continue to implement the Respect Campaign, which was launched in 2011 and includes a number of initiatives to enhance the game experience, particularly in the areas of customer service and fan-friendly behavior. U.S. Soccer is committed to providing a safe and secure environment for fans to enjoy the special atmosphere at these matches.

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION (as of Aug. 4, 2011) - Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Bill Hamid (D.C.United), Tim Howard (Everton)
DEFENDERS (8): Carlos Bocanegra (Saint-Etienne), Edgar Castillo (Club America), Timmy Chandler (FC Nürnberg), Steve Cherundolo (Hannover 96), Clarence Goodson (Brondby), Michael Orozco Fiscal (San Luis), Heath Pearce (Chivas USA), Tim Ream (New York Red Bulls)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Michael Bradley (Borussia Mönchengladbach), Ricardo Clark (Eintracht Frankfurt), Maurice Edu (Rangers), Jermaine Jones (Schalke 04), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), José Torres (Pachuca)
FORWARDS (5): Freddy Adu (Benfica), Juan Agudelo (New York Red Bulls), DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Edson Buddle (FC Ingolstadt), Landon Donovan (Los Angeles Galaxy)

 

U.S. Men Defeat Turkey 2-1 In Final Match Before Departing For 2010 FIFA World Cup In South Africa

Donovan Assists on Both Goals as U.S. Beats Turkey for the First Time
U.S. Teams Travels to South Africa Tomorrow to Set Up Base Camp in Pretoria
One Match Remains Before World Cup as U.S. Men Take on Australia on June 5 at Ruimsig Stadium in Roodepoort, South Africa

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (May 29, 2010) – In its final match before leaving for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, the U.S. Men’s National Team put together a marvelous 2-1 come-from-behind win against Turkey with second half goals from Jozy Altidore and Clint Dempsey, both of which were assisted by Landon Donovan.

A crowd of 55,407 red, white and blue-bathed fans turned out on gorgeous afternoon at Lincoln Financial Field and their energy helped propel the U.S. team to a an excellent second half performance.

Against the Czech Republic last Tuesday, U.S. head coach Bob Bradley gave time to numerous players as a last look before the World Cup team was selected the next day. Against Turkey, many of the players U.S. fans will surely see on the field during the World Cup were on display as goalkeeper Tim Howard, defenders Jonathan Spector, Jay Demerit and team captain Carlos Bocanegra, midfielders Landon Donovan, Michael Bradley, Ricardo Clark and Benny Feilhaber and forwards Dempsey and Altidore – all of whom were rested against the Czechs – got the nod into the starting lineup.

Still, it was a choppy first half against Turkey who was the aggressor with Tuncay Sanli pushing a great chance from close range just a foot wide of the left post five minutes into the match while Arda Turan looked menacing coming down the left flank.

In the 15th minute, Turan cut hard into the middle from the left side and tried to stuff a shot inside the near post, but Howard had it covered and it skipped wide of the goal.

Turkey opened the scoring in the 27th minute after Spector made a nice attacking run on the dribble up the middle. He was dispossessed near the top of the penalty area and Turkey launched a lightning-quick counter-attack into the space he had just vacated on the right side of the U.S. defense. Colin Kazim-Richards released Turan down that wing with a perfectly-weighted pass and it became a footrace into the penalty box between Turan, center-back Jay Demerit and Spector, who had sprinted back at top speed to catch the streaking Turkish attacker. Just when it seemed that both Demerit and/or Spector had done the work to block the shot, converging on Turan with slide tackles, the Galatasaray star lifted his shot over the legs of both U.S. backs and into the left side of the net past Howard, who was also charging to the cut off the chance.

The USA struggled to create dangerous opportunities in the first half even though Dempsey got shots early in the game and several corner kicks did give the Turks some issues before they managed to clear.

In the 40th minute, Turan got around the U.S. defense again down the left wing, but there was no one in the middle to get on the end of his cross after he had powered to the near post before serving.

The U.S. foreshadowed what was to come in the second half with just two minutes left before the break as Altidore beat three defenders on a slashing dribble into the right side of the penalty area. He spun a cross on the ground through the middle of the six-yard box, but the sliding Dempsey couldn’t get a foot on it or he surely would have swept it into the open net.

Bradley made four changes to start the second half, sending on Steve Cherundolo for Spector, Oguchi Onyewu for Goodson, José Torres for Ricardo Clark and Robbie Findley for Feilhaber.

The Americans found their spark after the break and immediately took the game to the Turks. Less than a minute into the half, Bocanegra sent a long cross from the left wing past the far post where Donovan expertly brought it down before laying a pass back to the cutting Bradley, but his shot from about nine yards was well-blocked by a sliding defender.

Torres did some fine work in midfield, winning balls and keeping possession while Findley looked dangerous down the flanks in stretching the Turkish defense. The Real Salt Lake striker was playing in just his fifth match for the USA, but he had a cross from the left that had to be collected on a dive by Turkish goalkeeper Volkan Demirel in the 49th and tried to bend a shot into the left corner from 25 yards out in the 55th.

Findley then played a key role in the tying goal in the 58th minute as he took a pass out of the back from DeMerit before turning toward goal and sending a chip over the top of the Turkish defense to Donovan. The USA’s all-time leading scorer blazed into the penalty area, beat Demirel to the ball and with the sole of his left foot, pulled off a perfect touch to round the ‘keeper to the outside.

Altidore was on a powerful run straight up the middle and Donovan hit him in stride for the big striker to blast the ball into the open net. It was Altidore’s ninth international goal in 25 caps, with Donovan assisting on five of those.

As the second half progressed, it was the U.S. team which surely looked more likely to get a winning goal as the Americans pushed forward in the attack. In the 68th, Donovan burst through two defenders about 35 yards from the goal, but they cut him off before he could get clear for the breakaway and he fouled one of them.

The winning goal came with 15 minutes left and it originated off a throw-in seconds after the game had momentarily paused for Bornstein to replace Bocanegra. Cherundolo threw the ball into Donovan on the right wing and he spun towards goal before lifting a short pass to Dempsey inside the penalty area. Dempsey’s first touch pushed the ball forward and then he showed great balance in riding the tackle of Sabri Sarioglu before stuffing his shot under Demirel from five yards away.

It was Dempsey’s 18th career goal in his 61st cap for the USA.

The USA protected the lead well in the final quarter of an hour, although substitute Mehmet Topal got a good look at net while firing from distance in the 79th minute, but Howard gobbled up the shot with no sign of a rebound. Earlier, Onyewu had done well to give up his body, throwing himself into a dangerous shot from inside the box to block the ball away.

Turkey’s best chance to tie the game came when substitute Sercan Yildirim burst through into the right side of the U.S. penalty area, but his cross on the ground rolled all the way through the goal mouth without a Turkish player anywhere close enough to get a touch on the ball.

Turkey’s final chance of the game came in the 85th minute as Nihat Kahvechi bent a free-kick from near the sideline on the left wing and it sailed enough that Howard had to push it over the top of the goal for a corner kick. Kahvechi then blasted his volley off the ensuing corner kick high and wide and Turkey didn’t have another chance in the remaining five minutes plus stoppage.

The U.S. did, however, as Dempsey hit the outside of the right post in the 87th after running onto a great cut back pass from Bradley, who had darted into the box on the right side. Moments later, Torres came close to sneaking a free-kick from the right wing inside the near post, but it hit the side-netting.

The USA fired eight of its 10 shots in the second half and earned five of its seven corner kicks.

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

Match: United States vs. Turkey
Date: May 29, 2010
Competition: International Friendly
Venue: Lincoln Financial Field; Philadelphia, Pa.
Kickoff: 2 p.m. ET
Attendance: 55,407
Weather: Hot, humid – 77 degrees

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

TUR – Arda Turan (Colin Kazim-Richards)     27th minute
USA – Jozy Altidore (Landon Donovan)         58
USA – Clint Dempsey (Landon Donovan)       75

Lineups:
USA: 1-Tim Howard; 2-Jonathan Spector (6-Steve Cherundolo, 46), 15-Jay Demerit, 21-Clarence Goodson (5-Oguchi Onyewu, 46), 3-Carlos Bocanegra (Capt.) (12-Jonathan Bornstein, 75); 10-Landon Donovan, 4-Michael Bradley, 13-Ricardo Clark (26-José Torres, 46), 16-Benny Feilhaber (27-Robbie Findley, 46); 8-Clint Dempsey, 17-Jozy Altidore (22-Stuart Holden, 81)
Subs not used: 7-DaMarcus Beasley, 18-Brad Guzan, 19-Maurice Edu, 23-Marcus Hahnemann, 29-Edson Buddle, 30-Herculez Gomez
Head Coach: Bob Bradley

TUR: 1-Volkan Demirel; 2-Servet Cetin, 4-Gokhan Zan, 13-Caglar Birinci, 5-Emre Belozoglu (Capt.), 6-Hamit Altintop (9-Semih Senturk, 73), 14-Arda Turan (28-Ozan Ipek, 90), 17-Selcuk Inan (15-Mehmet Topal, 52) 25-Sabri Sarioglu, 10-Tuncay Sanli (8-Nihat Kahvechi, 77), 18-Colin Kazim-Richards (16-Sercan Yildirim, 59)
Subs not used: 12-Onur Recep Kivrak, 19-Ibrahim Toraman, 20-Nuri Sahin, 21-Halil Altintop, 24-Emre Gungor, 31-Ismail Koybasi
Head Coach: Guus Hiddink

Stats Summary: USA / TUR
Shots: 10 / 10
Shots on Goal: 2 / 4
Saves: 3 / 0
Corner Kicks: 7 / 3
Fouls: 5 / 13
Offside: 1 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Ricardo Clark (caution)     42nd minute
TUR – Mehmet Topal (caution)    56
TUR – Gokhan Zan (caution)     90+2 

Officials:
Referee: Silviu Petrescu (Canada)
Assistant Referee 1: Joe Fletcher (Canada)
Assistant Referee 2: David Belleau (Canada)
Fourth Official: Mark Geiger (USA)

ussoccer.com Man of the Match: Clint Dempsey

U.S. Head Coach Bob Bradley Names 23 Players to Represent the United States at the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa

U.S. Opens World Cup Against England Live on ABC on June 12 at 2 p.m. ET


CHICAGO (May 26, 2010) — U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Bob Bradley has named the 23-man roster that will travel to South Africa for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The team departs for South Africa on May 30, and will play its opening match of the tournament against England on June 12 in Rustenburg live on ABC at 2 p.m. ET.

U.S. ROSTER BY POSITION (All-Time World Cup Roster Appearances)
GOALKEEPERS (3): Brad Guzan (2010), Marcus Hahnemann (2006, 2010), Tim Howard (2006, 2010)
DEFENDERS (7): Carlos Bocanegra (2006, 2010), Jonathan Bornstein (2010), Steve Cherundolo (2002, 2006, 2010), Jay DeMerit (2010), Clarence Goodson (2010), Oguchi Onyewu (2006, 2010), Jonathan Spector (2010)
MIDFIELDERS (9): DaMarcus Beasley (2002, 2006, 2010), Michael Bradley (2010), Ricardo Clark (2010), Clint Dempsey (2006, 2010), Landon Donovan (2002, 2006, 2010), Maurice Edu (2010), Benny Feilhaber (2010), Stuart Holden (2010), José Torres (2010)
FORWARDS (4): Jozy Altidore (2010), Edson Buddle (2010), Robbie Findley (2010), Herculez Gomez (2010)
Detailed Roster

“We have been working for almost four years to reach this point, and we are grateful to all the players who have been part of the process. There is a tremendous amount of respect for the efforts and professionalism that everyone has put into building this team,” said Bradley. “It’s important in any team building process to get to the final 23, and clearly there were some tough decisions to make. We are confident that this is a group of players that will work together and be committed to doing whatever it takes to be successful. We feel the roster has a good balance of players who have been a part of previous World Cups, those who have gained great experience in qualifying and Confederations Cup and some newer faces that have proved they belong. We are extremely excited to play the final Send-Off match in Philadelphia and then begin the great challenge of playing in the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.”

The U.S. squad carries a variety of World Cup experience into South Africa, as fifteen players have been named to their first World Cup roster. Meantime, six players have played in a World Cup game, with midfielder Landon Donovan leading the team with eight appearances – all as a starter – while DaMarcus Beasley has six World Cup caps to his credit. That duo and Steve Cherundolo are earning a place in their third World Cup.

A total of 92 players received at least one cap under Bradley during the four-year cycle as the team compiled a 35-19-6 record. Additionally, 43 players were used during the 2010 qualifying campaign, 19 of whom made the final roster. Those players accounted for 29 of 42 goals scored in qualifying, including Jozy Altidore’s team-leading six goals.

Donovan is the leading capwinner on the roster with 121 international appearances. The USA’s all-time leader in goals (42) and assists (42) is one of two players with a World Cup goal in the books, along with Clint Dempsey. The Bronze Ball winner from the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup is coming off a banner year, having become the first American player to reach the final of a European cup competition.

The defense is backstopped by goalkeeper Tim Howard, the Golden Glove winner from the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup who allowed less than a goal per game in 13 appearances in 2010 World Cup qualifying. Team captain Carlos Bocanegra – whose 12 career goals give him second place on the all-time scoring chart for U.S. defenders – is the third most capped player on the roster with 77 appearances. Oguchi Onyewu has made his return to action following a seven-month recovery from a ruptured patellar tendon suffered last October in the team’s final qualifier, a 2-2 draw with Costa Rica. Jonathan Bornstein, whose stoppage-time goal in that game gave the U.S. first place in CONCACAF qualifying, along with Jay DeMerit, Clarence Goodson and Jonathan Spector, have the chance to appear in their first World Cup.

In the midfield, Donovan’s dominance shone in the final round of qualifying, where he contributed to 12 of the 19 goals scored. His five goals overall tied for second place along with Dempsey and Michael Bradley, who also shared the most appearances in qualifying with Donovan (15). Bradley is joined in the center of the park by fellow 2008 Olympians Maurice Edu, Benny Feilhaber and Stuart Holden. Edu and Beasley earned a Scottish Premier League title with Rangers in 2010, while Feilhaber earned his place in U.S. Soccer lore by scoring the goal in the 2007 Gold Cup final against Mexico that gave the U.S. a chance to shine in the Confederations Cup in South Africa. Holden made his first appearance for the national team less than a year ago, scoring a goal in his debut against Grenada in the opening match of the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup. Ricardo Clark scored the lone goal in the 1-0 win away to Trinidad & Tobago in qualifying, while José Torres is one of two players on the roster to ply his trade in Mexico.

The strike force is led by Altidore, who has eight career goals in 24 appearances and is the youngest U.S. player in modern history to score a hat trick. A trio of forwards – Edson Buddle, Robbie Findley and Herculez Gomez – did not appear in World Cup qualifying for the United States. Buddle, who had not appeared for the national team since 2003, became the 92nd player to collect a cap under Bradley when he assisted on the first goal against the Czech Republic on May 25 in East Hartford. Gomez, who entered camp after becoming the first American player to lead a foreign league in scoring when he scored 10 goals for Puebla in Mexico, recorded his first goal for the full team against the Czechs.

Overall, players representing clubs from 10 different countries will be heading to South Africa. A record 19 players on the roster play professionally for clubs outside the United States. The average number of caps earned is 34, compared to 44 in 2006. Likewise, the team is slightly younger than four years earlier, the average age slightly under 27 years old while in 2006 that number was closer to 28.5 years of age.

The U.S. will play their final home match before departing for South Africa when they face Turkey on May 29 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia (tickets), where more than 45,000 tickets have already been sold. ESPN2 and Galavision will broadcast the match live beginning at 2 p.m. ET. ESPN will have a 30-minute pregame show beginning at 1:30 p.m. ET. The United States will play one final friendly before the tournament begins, this time on South African soil when they face Australia on June 5 at Ruimsig Stadium in Roodepoort. Kickoff is set for 2:30 p.m. local time (8:30 a.m. ET), and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2.

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 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.

A determined central midfielder, Clark’s tenacious style has provided sound cover for the national team. He possesses great range and the willingness to shoot from distance. A veteran of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Clark made his first goal in World Cup qualifying a big one, netting the game-winner in the 1-0 win in Trinidad & Tobago. A two-time MLS Cup champion and three-time MLS All-Star for the Houston Dynamo, he took his talents overseas to Eintracht Frankfurt in the German Bundesliga.

  • Started two matches at the 2010 FIFA World Cup, including the important opening game 1-1 draw against England
  • Appeared in half of the USA’s final round qualifiers, and seven total in the 2010 qualifying cycle
  • An integral player for the U-20 MNT’s great run to the quarterfinals of the 2003 FIFA World Youth Championship in the United Arab Emirates, starting all five games and playing all but 10 minutes
  • A two-time MLS Cup winner with Houston, collecting back-to-back trophies in 2006 and 2007
2010: Started in the 1-1 draw against England on June 12 and the 2-1 overtime loss to Ghana on June 26 in the Round of 16 … Making four starts total for the year, he appeared in the final two tune-up matches for the World Cup on May 29 against Turkey and June 5 against Australia … 2009: Made a career-high 11 appearances, including 10 starts … After playing in the first two matches of the year, including the 2-0 win against Mexico on Feb. 11 in Columbus, injuries hampered his availability until the summer … Part of the U.S. squad that reached the final of the Confederations Cup … His long-range blast in the 62nd minute handed the U.S. a 1-0 win on Sept. 9 in Port of Spain and a critical three points in qualifying … Clark’s Trinidadian-born father was in the stands to witness the goal … Earned ussoccer.com Man of the Match honors in the USA’s final match of 2009, a 3-1 loss to Denmark … 2008: Made six appearances for Bob Bradley’s team, including five starts … Began his second World Cup qualifying cycle, though his first one in earnest, and appeared in two semifinal round games against T&T on Oct. 15 and Guatemala on Nov. 19 in Commerce City, Colo. … Kept his unbeaten streak against Mexico intact by starting in the 2-2 draw against El Tri on Feb. 6 in Houston … 2007: Called in to Bob Bradley’s first camp as head coach in 2007 and got his first career MNT start against Denmark in January … Reprised his role in center of midfield for the 2-0 U.S. win against Mexico in February … Named to the 2007 Gold Cup roster, he appeared in four games for the U.S. in the tournament … Also a member of the 2007 Copa America squad … He started all three games in Venezuela … Scored his first MNT goal when he slotted home a Taylor Twellman pass against Paraguay on July 2 in Barinas … 2006: Did not appear in any U.S. games … 2005: Earned his first international cap when he came on for Kyle Martino in the final qualifying match against Panama on Oct. 12 … Under-23s: Was called up in November 2003 for the teams second round Olympic qualifying matches against St. Kitts & Nevis … Started in first leg of qualifying in St. Kitts, playing all 90 minutes in a 6-0 win … Under-20s: Helped the U.S. secure three shutouts in the 2003 L’Alcudia International Tournament in August … Started the first two qualifying matches in Charleston, S.C., helping the U.S. post consecutive shutouts to qualify for the 2003 World Youth Championship … Started four of five matches at the prestigious 2002 C.O.T.I.F. XIX Torneig Internacional in Spain, where the U.S. finished second … Scored the USA’s only goal in a 2-1 loss to Canada at the U.S. Soccer Festival on Aug. 1, 2002 …  A member of the 2003 World Championship squad … Under-18s: Was one of only three U-18s to start all six internationals in 2000-2001 … Started all three matches as the U.S. won the 2001 International Tournament of Lisbon … Scored three goals with the U-18s in two years … Scored against the Under-20s in a 2-1 loss and scored the game-winner against the U.S. Under-17s on Feb. 10, 2001 ... First Appearance: Oct. 12, 2005, vs. Panama … First Goal: July 2, 2007, vs. Paraguay.
2010: Used in midfield and central defensive in the first half of the 2010-11 season … A fractured cheekbone at the start of 2011 sidelined Clark for several weeks …2009-10: The three-time MLS All-Star moved to Eintracht Frankfurt of the German Bundesliga in January and saw scattered minutes before the World Cup as he worked his way into the lineup … 2009: Had one goal and one assist in 22 games for Houston… Named to his third MLS All-Star team … 2008: Played 25 games for Houston to take his career MLS appearance total to more than 150 games … Was substituted only once … Captained the team for the first time on June 12 against New England … Scored two goals and added one assist for the Dynamo, who finished the season with the best record in the Western Conference ... 2007: Split significant time between the U.S. team and the Dynamo … Selected for the All-Star team in July, his second consecutive appearance at the game … His season will be remembered for a nine-game suspension late in the regular season (that last through the playoffs and into 2008) for kicking Carlos Ruiz … Had two goals and three assists in 19 games before the suspension … 2006: Started 31 times for the relocated Houston Dynamo … Widely acknowledged as one of the premier defensive midfielders in the league, he made his first All-Star appearance in the summer … His two goals and three assists on the season were topped off by an MLS Cup victory for his club, though he was in fact ineligible for that game … 2005: With his new team, the San Jose Earthquakes, he started 28 games … Scored a career-high three times and added two assists … Earned both Earthquakes and MLS player of the month honors for July … 2004: Followed up his rookie season with a solid sophomore campaign for the MetroStars, further bolstering his reputation as one of the leagues most promising players … Made 26 appearances in total, including 19 starts … Played in both of the MetroStars’ playoff games … 2003: Drafted second overall in the first round by the MetroStars … Went on to make 28 starts for the club, tallying three goals and one assist … A finalist for 2003 Rookie of the Year honors.

Full name is Ricardo Anthony Clark ... Parents are Lancelot and Norma Clark ... Father, Lancelot, is originally from Trinidad played soccer at Polytechnic University (N.Y.) in 1977-78 … Married to wife Martha and has two kids, Mateo and Amaya … Lists Pele as the player he most admires … Favorite musical artists include Outkast, TI, and Bob Marley … Brother Richonne played at Clayton State … Enjoys hip hop and reggae music.

Attended Furman where he was a teammate of Clint Dempsey … One of the team’s leaders and a huge reason they were among the nation’s elite teams during his time there … During 2002, he was a key component of the defense that posted 15 shutouts during their 23-game season, which included an 11-game shutout streak.

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