CHICAGO (May 21, 2009) – Tim Howard's performance for both club and country will be in the spotlight this week when ESPN rolls out two separate features on the USA's No. 1 goalkeeper.
The U.S. and Everton goalkeeper will be the subject of the Sunday feature (watch preview here or below) on the May 24 edition of SportsCenter that begins at 10 a.m. ET. ESPN reporter Chris Connelly and a crew traveled to England to sit down with Howard in advance of England's FA Cup final between Everton and Chelsea on May 30 at famed Wembley Stadium. Howard has been spectacular in goal for the Toffees, recording a club record 16 shutouts. After defeating his former club and newly crowned English Premier League champion Manchester United in the semifinal, Everton are within sight of their first trophy since 1995.
The 30-year-old native of North Brunswick, N.J., also goes one-one-one with Kenny Mayne in the Outtakes feature of the June 1 editions of ESPN the Magazine, which hits newsstands Thursday.
Sunday's 10:30 a.m. SportsCenter will also include the announcement of the U.S. roster for the upcoming FIFA World Cup qualifiers. Following the FA Cup final, Howard will join his teammates for the critical pair of qualifiers that begin with a visit to the cauldron of Estadio Ricardo Saprissa. The U.S. will be looking for their first victory ever on Costa Rican soil when they face the Ticos on June 3 in San Jose. Three days later, the City of Chicago will host its first World Cup qualifier when the U.S. takes on Honduras at Soldier Field. More than 40,000 tickets have been sold for the June 6 match, when the U.S. will face the last opponent to defeat them at home in World Cup qualifying nearly eight years ago. Both matches will be shown live on the ESPN Networks, with full details to be finalized shortly.
After the two-game set, the U.S. team departs June 8 for South Africa in advance of the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup. The United States has been drawn into a powerful Group B along with reigning world champions Italy, five-time World Cup winners Brazil, and reigning African Cup of Nations winners Egypt for the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup that will be played from June 14-28, 2009, in South Africa. The U.S. kicks off action against Italy on June 15 at Loftus Versfeld in Tshwane/Pretoria, and then faces Brazil on June 18 in the same venue. The United States finishes group play on June 21 against Egypt at Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg.