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U.S. Soccer Wire - Feb. 12, 2007


U.S. CONTINUES DOMINANCE, TOPS MEXICO 2-0 BEFORE SELL OUT CROWD;
RYAN NAMES TRAINING CAMP ROSTER AS WNT PREPS FOR ALGARVE;
BRADLEY SWITCHES HATS, CALLS 23 FOR UNDER-23 MNT TRAINING CAMP

CONRAD, DONOVAN SCORE AS U.S. DOWNS MEXICO 2-0: The U.S. Men’s National Team shutout Mexico for the eighth straight time in the U.S. with a familiar 2-0 scoreline in front of a sold out crowd of 62,462 Wednesday evening at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. The shutout kept Mexico scoreless on American soil in this decade, as the U.S. has outscored their CONCACAF rivals 13-0 since 2000. Jimmy Conrad scored the opening goal in the 52nd minute, stunning a predominantly pro-Mexico crowd with his driven header from a Landon Donovan corner kick. The strike marked the first international goal of Conrad’s career. Donovan’s work-rate throughout the entire 90 minutes was rewarded in the game’s dying moments when he netted his 27th career goal on a spectacular breakaway finish past Oswaldo Sanchez. Donovan has scored in both games this year as the two-time U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year tallied the opening goal vs. Denmark in the USA’s 3-1 win on January 20 in Carson, Calif. With his second-straight victory, head coach Bob Bradley became just the second U.S. coach to win his first two games at the helm of the national team (Robert Millar, 1930). It was also a milestone for Josh Gros, who collected his first cap when he came on for Chris Albright in the 60th minute. The U.S. will return to action with a pair of friendlies against Ecuador (tickets) on March 25 in Tampa and Guatemala (tickets) on March 28 in Frisco, Texas. With the matches falling on international fixture dates, the camp is expected to feature a large number of European-based players. The March matches will serve as preparation for the two major championships the U.S. will compete in this summer, the CONCACAF Gold Cup and Copa America.

RYAN CALLS 28 PLAYERS AS U.S. STARTS ALGARVE CUP PREPARATIONS: The U.S. Women’s National Team returns to training with a 28-player camp running from Feb. 14-21 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., as several veterans including Shannon Boxx rejoin the squad. Following the camp, U.S. head coach Greg Ryan will name 20 players that will travel to Portugal for the 14th annual Algarve Cup from March 7-14, 2007. The U.S. will face China, Finland and Sweden in Group B followed by a placement match. Fans can follow the USA’s grueling schedule of four games in eight days online with ussoccer.com's MatchTracker. Five veterans who did not travel to China in January for the Four Nations Tournament return to the U.S. team for training camp in forwards Kristine Lilly and Abby Wambach, midfielder Aly Wagner, defender Christie Rampone and Boxx, who has been cleared for full participation after not having played for the USA since May 9, 2006, due to knee surgery. Eighteen of the 20 players who won the Four Nations Tournament will be in camp, with the exception of defenders Kate Markgraf (minor injuries) and Stephanie Lopez (college commitments). Ryan also continues to invest in numerous young players, including uncapped defenders Rachel Buehler and Keeley Dowling, and recently capped players including midfielder Yael Averbuch, forward Casey Nogueira and forward Kacey White.
Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (3): Jenni Branam, Briana Scurry, Hope Solo
DEFENDERS (8): Rachel Buehler, Lori Chalupny, Keeley Dowling, Tina Frimpong, Heather Mitts, Christie Rampone, India Trotter, Cat Whitehill
MIDFIELDERS (8): Yael Averbuch, Shannon Boxx, Angela Hucles, Carli Lloyd, Joanna Lohman, Marci Miller, Leslie Osborne, Aly Wagner
FORWARDS (9): Lauren Cheney, Danielle Fotopoulos, Natasha Kai, Kristine Lilly, Casey Nogueira, Heather O’Reilly, Lindsay Tarpley, Abby Wambach, Kacey White
2006 Algarve Cup Schedule – Group B
Date            Opponent                   Kickoff
March 7      China                          4:15 p.m. local / 11:15 a.m. ET
March 9      Finland                       4:15 p.m. local / 11:15 a.m. ET
March 12    Sweden                      4:15 p.m. local / 11:15 a.m. ET
March 14     Placement Match     TBD

USA-MEX MATCH HITS HIGH RATINGS NATIONWIDE: Televised soccer hit new rating highs on Wednesday night for the broadcast of the U.S. National Team's 2-0 victory over Mexico on ESPN2 and Univision from University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. For U.S. Soccer, the victory on the field continued the team's dominance of Mexico, but also highlighted the incredible gains the sport is making elsewhere. ESPN2's broadcast was the most-watched U.S. game in the team's history, outside of the World Cup and World Cup qualifiers. The network earned a 0.7 household rating, which translates to 1.1 million viewers and comes on the heels of the network’s impressive 2006 World Cup ratings. Even more impressively, the game averaged a 1.0 rating during the final 15 minutes as the USA iced the victory. On Univision, the match also set records with more than 6 million total viewers. The U.S. victory was the No. 2 most-watched Spanish-language sports cast in history, beating every Super Bowl among Hispanic Adults 18-49, Men 18-49 and Total Viewers.

U.S. WNT TO FACE MEXICO IN 2007 DOMESTIC OPENER: Mexico will be the opponent for the U.S. Women’s National Team in its previously announced 2007 domestic opener on April 14 at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass. The match will serve as the opening game of a doubleheader also featuring the hometown New England Revolution against Major League Soccer’s newest team, Toronto FC. Kickoff for the U.S. match will be at 5 p.m. ET followed by the MLS contest at 7:30 p.m. ET. Fans will be able to follow the U.S. WNT game live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. Tickets start at $32 and go on sale this Thursday (Feb. 15) at 10 a.m. ET online at ussoccer.com, all Massachusetts Ticketmaster outlets (including Macy’s and FYE Stores), the Gillette Stadium Box Office (Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) and by phone at 1-866-448-7849 or 1-617-931-2222. Groups of 20 or more can purchase tickets at discounted prices by calling the New England Revolution at 1-877-GET-REVS (438-7387). The U.S. women will be playing their first match in the Boston area since the historic 1-0 win against Norway on October 1, 2003, during the 2003 FIFA Women’s World Cup quarterfinals at Gillette Stadium.

– YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE –

THREE PLAYERS ADDED TO U-23 MNT TRAINING CAMP ROSTER: Three players were added to the U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team roster for their trip to Japan this week. Goalkeeper Justin Hughes (Colorado Rapids), defender Sean Franklin (Cal State North University) and midfielder Peter Lowry (Santa Clara University) were all invited in by head coach Bob Bradley to bring the roster up to 23 players. On Saturday (Feb. 10), the players arrived into Carson, Calif., where the team will practice at The Home Depot Center before heading to Japan on Friday, Feb. 16 to play two games. A total of 20 players will make the international trip, with Julian Valentin, Stuart Holden and Tally Hall available only for the training camp. During their time in Carson, the U.S. will scrimmage UCLA on Monday and Chivas USA on Thursday. In Japan, the U.S. will face the Japan Under-22 Men’s National Team and a still to be determined J-League team. The U-23 Men’s National Team head coach is Bob Bradley, and his full time assistant is Peter Nowak. For this training camp and part of the trip, Bradley is also assisted by U.S. U-20 MNT head coach Thomas Rongen and U-17 MNT head coach John Hackworth.
U-23 MNT Schedule
Date         Opponent
Feb. 21    Japan U-22s
Feb. 23    TBD (J-League team)
U-23 MNT Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): Tally Hall (Esjberg FB), Chris Seitz (Real Salt Lake), Justin Hughes (Colorado Rapids)
DEFENDERS (9): Adam Cristman (New England Revolution), Sean Franklin (Cal State North University), Hunter Freeman (Colorado Rapids), Michael Harrington (Kansas City Wizards), Patrick Ianni (Houston Dynamo), Nathan Sturgis (Los Angeles Galaxy), Julian Valentin (Wake Forest University), Rob Valentino (University of San Francisco), Tim Ward (Columbus Crew)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Arturo Alvarez (FC Dallas), Nico Colaluca (Colorado Rapids), Stuart Holden (Houston Dynamo), Will John (Kansas City Wizards), Quavas Kirk (Los Angeles Galaxy), Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA), Peter Lowry (Santa Clara University), Ryan Solle (New England Revolution)
FORWARDS (3) - Chad Barrett (Chicago Fire), Jacob Peterson (Colorado Rapids), Jamie Watson (Real Salt Lake)

U.S. U-21 WOMEN BRING 24 PLAYERS TO HDC TRAINING CAMP: U.S. Under-21 Women’s National Team head coach Bill Irwin will bring 24 players to a training camp at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., running from February 17-23. Among several scrimmages, the U-21s will play a pair of games against WNT head coach Greg Ryan’s senior side on Sunday, Feb. 18, at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Seven of the players on the U-21 roster were members of the U.S. team that participated in the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship. Irwin will use this camp in part to formulate a roster that will travel to England from March 9-18 where the U-21s will play several top English women’s clubs.
Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (2): Joanna Haig (Louisville), Dianne Pfenniger (Texas)
DEFENDERS (7): Marissa Abegg (Stanford), Erin Hardy (UCLA), Nikki Krzysik (Virginia), Stephanie Logterman (Texas), Kasey Moore (Texas), Hillary Schwarzbach (Santa Clara), Sue Weber (Hofstra)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Brittany Bock (Notre Dame), Tina DiMartino (UCLA), Carly Dobratz (Washington State), Kara Kabellis (Wisconsin), Ali Krieger (Penn State), Lisa Sari (Portland), Meghan Schnur (UConn), Laura Robinson (Texas A&M)
FORWARDS (7): Kiki Bosio (Santa Clara), Kylie Rossi (Tennessee), Ella Masar (Illinois), Jessica Okorafo (Purdue), Rachel Rapinoe (Portland), Jessica Rostedt (Virginia), Michele Weissenhofer (Notre Dame)

U-18 MNT EARN TWO VICTORIES DURING 2007 COPA CHIVAS TOURNAMENT: The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team finished the 2007 Copa Chivas Tournament with a 2-3-0 record, playing all five games in a four-day span. The U.S. dropped their first two matches against Atlas (2-0) and Estudiantes de la Plata (2-0) before defeating Necaxa (2-0) in their first of two games on Feb. 5. Matt Kassel and Bobby Warshaw scored for the U.S. in the win. In their second match of the day, Bob Jenkins’ squad fell to Saprissa (1-0), but a day later the U.S. bounced back to defeat Santos (1-0) behind a goal from Greg Eckhardt in their final match of the tournament. Before returning to the U.S., the U-18s also faced Once Caldas, drawing 1-1 with the Colombian team on a goal by Cesar Romero.
U-18 MNT Results
Date         Opponent                              Result      U.S. Goal Scorers
Feb. 3       Atlas*                                        0-2 L      --
Feb. 4       Estudiantes de la Plata*       0-2 L      --
Feb. 5       Necaxa*                                   2-0 W     Kassel, Warshaw
Feb. 5       Saprissa*                                 0-1 L     --
Feb. 6       Santos*                                    1-0 W    Eckhardt
Feb. 9       Once Caldas                           1-1 T     Romero
*2007 Copa Chivas Tournament

U-17 MNT TO PLAY MATCH IN JAMAICA, PRACTICE IN QUALIFYING STADIUM: On Wed., Feb. 14, the U-17 ’90 Men’s National Team will travel to Kinston, Jamaica, where they will play one match against the Jamaica All-Stars (Feb. 16). Along with the match, the four-day trip will be beneficial for the U-17s as they will have the chance to practice in the National Stadium, the location for all the Group B games of the CONCACAF Under-17 Final Round Qualifying Tournament, which will take place from April 28-May 6. Alongside the U.S. and Jamaica in Group B are Canada, Costa Rica and Trinidad & Tobago. The top three finishers in the round-robin tournament will advance to the 2007 FIFA U-17 World Cup in South Korea. This past week, the U-17s fell to three MLS teams – Chicago Fire, D.C. United and the N.Y. Red Bulls – currently holding their pre-season in Bradenton, Fla. One additional player will be added to the roster prior to departure.
U-17 MNT Results/Schedule
Date        Opponent                   Result
Feb. 7      D.C. United                 0-2 L
Feb. 10   Chicago Fire                0-2 L
Feb. 10    N.Y. Red Bulls            0-4 L
Feb. 16    Jamaica All-Stars
U-17 MNT Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Josh Lambo (Middleton, Wis.), Zac MacMath (St. Petersburg, Fla.);
DEFENDERS (5): Mykell Bates (Roseville, Calif.), Howard Turk (Fairfax, Va.), Matthew Uy (New Hyde Park, N.Y.), Sheanon Williams (Boston, Mass.)
MIDFIELDERS (9): Alex Dixon (Humble, Texas), Jared Jeffrey (Dallas, Texas), Greg Garza (Grapevine, Texas), Ryan Gracia (Rockville, Md.), Axel Levry (Fort Washington, Md.), Jesse Paredes (Los Angeles, Calif.), Dane Shea (College Station, Texas), Kirk Urso (Lombard, Ill.), Daniel Wenzel (Federal Way, Wash.)
FORWARDS (4): Bryan Dominguez (Atlanta, Ga.), Ellis McLoughlin (Seattle, Wash.), Alex Nimo (Portland, Ore.), Billy Schuler (Allentown, N.J.)

U-15 BNT TO CONDUCT CAMP AT THE HOME DEPOT CENTER: The U.S. Under-15 Boys’ National Team will be starting a weeklong training camp on Feb. 17 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. The U-15 BNT will have three games through the course of the week, on Feb. 19, 21, and 23, with opponents yet to be decided. The camp will run through Sat., Feb. 24 with head coach Jim Barlow leading the 24 players.
U-15 BNT Schedule
Date          Opponent
Feb. 19     TBD
Feb. 21     TBD
Feb. 23     TBD
U-15 BNT Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): Samir Badr (Fairfax, Va.), Earl Edwards (San Diego, Calif.), Eric Reyes (Pembroke Pines, Fla.)
DEFENDERS (6): Estanilao Arevalo (Oxnard, Calif.), Bryan Duran (Duncanville, Texas), Joe Garcia (Niderwald, Texas), Chase Miller (Duncannon, Pa.), Tyler Polak (Lincoln, Neb.), Joshua Sylva (Las Vegas, Nev.)
MIDFIELDERS (11): Zachery Barnes (Flower Mound, Texas), Alex Bramall (Newburgh, N.Y.), Zachary Herold (Port Saint Lucie, Fla.), Sebastien Ibeagha (Edmond, Okla.), Stefan Jerome (Davie, Fla.), Perry Kitchen (Indianapolis, Ind.), Sebastian Lletget (San Francisco, Calif.), Carlos Martinez (Las Vegas, Nev.), George Pantelic (Northridge, Calif.), Ross Tomaselli (Wilmington, N.C.), Jared Watts (Statesville, N.C.)
FORWARDS (4): Andrew Craven (St. Simons Island, Ga.), Donovan Henry (Lakeworth, Fla.), Jack McInerney (Alpharetta, Ga.), Charles Renken (Edwardsville, Ill.)

– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –

FIELD NEARLY COMPLETE FOR 2007 CONCACAF GOLD CUP: Guatemala, El Salvador and Costa Rica have all qualified for the 2007 CONCACAF Gold Cup and two spots remain as the Copa de Naciones Digicel 2007 de UNCAF (Central American Qualification) continues this week in El Salvador. Belize, Nicaragua, Panama and Honduras are all still alive, seeking the final two berths to the Gold Cup from the seven-team tournament. Panama or Honduras will advance in second place of the three-team Group 2 based on Tuesday's (Feb. 13) result of Panama vs. Costa Rica. Nicaragua faces Belize on Monday (Feb. 12) for third place in the four-team Group 1 and a chance to face the third place team from Group 2 for the fifth and final position in a fifth-place match to be played on Thursday (Feb. 15). Canada, Mexico and the United States qualify as past champions, and Cuba, Guadeloupe, Haiti and Trinidad & Tobago qualified via The Digicel Caribbean Cup in mid-January. The CONCACAF Gold Cup will be played across six venues in the United States from June 6-24. The semifinals and finals will be played in Chicago at Soldier Field.
2007 CONCACAF Gold Cup Teams
Canada
Costa Rica
Cuba
El Salvador
Guadeloupe
Guatemala
Haiti
Mexico
Trinidad & Tobago
United States

HOST THE JR. OLYMPIC SKILLS COMPETITION IN YOUR COMMUNITY: U.S. Soccer and the United States Olympic Committee invite you to host the soccer portion of the Jr. Olympic Skills Competition. This is the second year of the program, and in its inaugural year in 2006 the program drew more than 1.5 million participants (of which 25 percent were soccer participants). The program is designed to provide 8 to 13-year-old boys and girls in your community with an opportunity to get involved in a soccer skills competition. For more information contact the Jr. Olympic Skills National Headquarters at joskills@usoc.org.

2007 LAMAR HUNT U.S. OPEN CUP STRUCTURE FINALIZED: A total of 40 teams, including 24 professional and 16 amateur clubs, will compete in the 2007 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup when it kicks off in June for the 94th consecutive year. Due to the busy summer soccer schedule for both professional clubs and the U.S. National Teams, the number of Major League Soccer teams that will enter the tournament proper has been reduced to eight teams. However, every U.S.-based MLS squad will participate in the tournament either in qualifying rounds or in the tournament proper. The United Soccer Leagues First Division will have 10 teams participating in 2007, up from eight in 2006. Qualifying for the first round of the tournament is slated to be completed by May 28. The defending champion Chicago Fire and the other seven MLS teams enter the tournament on July 10 in the third round. The quarterfinals will be played on Aug. 7, the semifinals will be played on Sept. 4, and the final will be played on Oct. 2. In a change from recent years, the fixture dates in 2007 have been scheduled for Tuesday instead of Wednesday.

2007 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Schedule
May 28     Qualifying Deadline
May 29     First Round Pairings Announced
June 12   First Round - All 32 lower division teams enter tournament
June 26   Second Round - Round 1 winners face off
July 10     Third Round - Round 2 winners face eight MLS teams
Aug. 7      Quarterfinals - Round 3 winners
Sept. 4     Semifinals - Quarterfinal winners
Oct. 2       Final - Semifinal winners

*** “CENTER CIRCLE” SPOTLIGHT ***

PEAK PERFORMER: Jimmy Conrad scored the game winner vs. Mexico with his precision header in the 52nd minute. In his first appearance in this rivalry match, Conrad locked down a Mexico attack that has not found the combination to score on American soil vs. the U.S. since 1999, a span of 753 minutes.

SOCCER SHOCKER: In Los Angeles, KMEX-TV's broadcast of last Wednesday's USA vs. Mexico clash was the highest rated program in the market, beating out popular programing including "American Idol," "Lost" and "CSI: New York." In total 1.2 million viewers saw the 2-0 U.S. victory in the entertainment capital.

MARQUEE MATCHUP: A pair of semifinalists from the 2005 CONCACAF Gold Cup, Panama and Honduras, came ever so close to ruining the U.S. MNT’s glory two years ago. Now, the Central Americans are clinging to their qualification hopes for the 2007 tournament. Depending on Monday’s Panama vs. Costa Rica result, either Panama or Honduras will try to be the last team to qualify for the 2007 Gold Cup when they take on either Belize or Nicaragua in the fifth-place game at the UNCAF Copa de Naciones this Thursday at 8:30 p.m. ET live on Galavision.

QUOTABLE: “Absolutely. It is Hugo Sanchez’s first game and he brought his ‘A’ team and we came with our young guys to do the right thing and to make sure that our young guys got the experience of playing in this atmosphere. And I’m just happy we came away with the result.”
-- U.S. MNT defender Jimmy Conrad about the rivalry making the win vs. Mexico a little more special.


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