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Arena Returns To D.C. Area, RFK Stadium; "Camp Cary" Closes


ARENA RETURNS TO D.C. AREA, RFK STADIUM: Bruce Arena enjoyed phenomenal success as head coach of D.C. United in the MLS's first three seasons playing home games at RFK Stadium.  Arena coached United for three seasons, posting a 61-35 record, winning two MLS Cups, including the inaugural MLS Cup in 1996, before being named the Men’s National Team head coach in 1998.  As head coach of the Men’s National Team, Arena has posted a 3-1-0 record at RFK Stadium.

"CAMP CARY" CLOSES: After 10 days in North Carolina, the U.S. Men’s National Team wrapped up “Camp Cary” on Friday.  The U.S. trained on Friday morning before departing for Washington, D.C.  The final session was similar to previous sessions at SAS Soccer Park, and included a long warm-up followed by a small-field scrimmage in which each team attacked two small goals.  The team then moved into a scrimmage including goalkeepers in the workout.  A field was set up from 18-yard box to 18-yard box and the team played for 30-minutes on the smaller field. The strikers ended the session by working on finishing, and the U.S. team wrapped up the 90-minute training session – and their time in Cary.

HIGH MARKS FOR SAS SOCCER PARK: After wrapping up their time in North Carolina, the U.S. team had nothing but kind words for the SAS Soccer Park, where the team trained for 10 days in Cary, N.C.  The U.S. Men trained on a double-wide field (120 x 170 yards) during their stay at the complex. The State Capital Soccer Park also features a 7,000 seat state-of-the-art soccer stadium that serves as the home of the WUSA’s Carolina Courage and the Raleigh CASL Elite of the United Soccer Leagues’ Premier Development League (amateur Division IV).  The State Capital Soccer Park is slated to host the 2003 and 2004 NCAA Women's College Cup.  “Being here at this training park has been terrific,” said U.S. MNT assistant coach Dave Sarachan   “When you come into a training facility you have to have a few critical components.  One obviously is the playing surface.  You need the infrastructure, in terms of proximity to hotels, travel, restaurants, etc.  As far as all of that is concerned, things have been really outstanding.”

US MNT AT RFK: RFK Stadium has been kind to the United States – in the stands and on the field. Since 1990, the U.S. has posted a 7-3-3 record at RFK Stadium, including a 2-1-1 record in World Cup qualifiers.  The average attendance in those 13 matches is 33,450, with a high of 54,282 attending the Sept. 1, 2001, match against Honduras.  Five times the crowd has topped 40,000 fans.

Date           Opponent    Result    Attendance
10/19/91 North Korea      1-2 L    16,351
05/30/92 Ireland             3-1 W    35,696
10/13/93 Mexico            1-1 T    23,927
06/18/95 Mexico            4-0 W    38,615
10/08/95 Saudi Arabia     4-3 W    10,216
06/12/96 Bolivia              0-2 L    19,350
11/03/96 Guatemala           2-0 W*    30,082
10/03/97 Jamaica            1-1 T*    51,528
05/30/98 Scotland            0-0 T    46,037
06/13/99 Argentina          1-0 W     40,199
06/03/00 South Africa        4-0 W    16,570
09/03/00 Guatemala         1-0 W*    51,996
09/01/01 Honduras          2-3 L*    54,282

U.S PRACTICE TODAY AT RFK:  The U.S. Men’s National Team will train at 2 p.m. at RFK Stadium today in a session that is open to the media. The session is expected to last one hour, and following the session Bruce Arena and the players will be available to media.

ARENA vs. SOUTH AMERICA:  Eleven times Bruce Arena’s squad has lined up against a South American foe, and the U.S. has come out on top in five of those encounters.  Overall, the U.S. has posted a 5-3-3 record in those matches, including a 5-2-2 record in the U.S.  One of those home wins was a 1-0 win over Argentina at RFK Stadium on June 13, 1999 – still one of Arena’s most impressive wins as U.S. head coach to date.

PSRA LUNCHEON TO FOLLOW USMNT PRACTICE ON SATURDAY:  The Professional Soccer Reporters Association (PSRA) will be hosting a media luncheon at the Capitol View Grill at RFK Stadium today starting  approximately at 3:30 p.m. ET.  The United States men's national team will practice at RFK that Saturday at 2 p.m. ET with player interviews scheduled after completion. The luncheon will follow at the Capitol View room on the fourth floor, located above the stadium's front entrance. This event is intended to provide an informal, relaxed atmosphere for media members covering the U.S.-Uruguay "Nike Road to Korea" match along with officials from U.S. Soccer, MLS and the Washington-area professional teams who are able to attend.

URUGUAY ROSTER UPDATE: The Uruguayan side has continued to filter in to the nation's capital, with the remaining two players on head coach Victor Pua's roster set to arrive this morning. The team has been training this week at American University.  The Uruguayans will go through their final training session of the week on Saturday afternoon, training from 3:30 - 4:30 p.m. at RFK Stadium.  The training is open to the media.

Goalkeeper: Gustavo Munua (Nacional); Defenders: Joe Bizera (Penarol), Alejandro Lembo (Nacional), Gustavo Mendez (Nacional), Dario Rodriguez (Penarol), Gonzalo Sorondo (Internazionale, Italy); Midfielders: Gonzalo De los Santos (Valencia, Spain), Sebastian Eguren (Montevideo Wanderers), Daniel Fonseca (Nacional), Gianni Guigou (AS Roma, Italy), Fabian O'Neill (Perugia, Italy), Nicolas Olivera (Sevilla, Spain), Ruben Olivera (Danubio), Diego Perez (Defensor Sporting), Alvaro Recoba (Internazionale, Italy), Gustavo Varela (Nacional); Forwards: Sebastian Abreu (Cruz Azul, Mexico), Federico Magallanes (Venezia, Italy), Richard Morales (Nacional), Mario Regueiro (Racing de Santander, Spain)

LIZARAZU SOUNDS OFF ON URUGUAY:  Bayern Munich defender and French international Bixente Lizarazu commented on Uruguay recently, looking ahead to a possible match-up with the South Americans at this summer’s World Cup.  “They have the reputation of being violent and they are very tough in individual challenges," the Bayern Munich player said. "There is only one way to deal with such a behaviour and that is to make them respect us physically. But we will have to be smart to avoid having players sent off ... But what I'm certain of is that playing Uruguay is not going to be a great joy.”

ussoccer.com UNVEILS “WORLD CUP PLUS”:  U.S. Soccer has launched a comprehensive new home page at www.ussoccer.com which will bring fans and media the most detailed information on the U.S. World Cup Team as they travel the "Nike Road to Korea" and then face the world's best at the 2002 FIFA World Cup.  "World Cup Plus" is every fan's source for the USA and the rest of the World Cup.  With several updates a day ranging from notes and quotes to unique features, "World Cup Plus" will be the freshest place for media and fans to stay in tune with everything happening in Korea.  Featuring exclusive on-line chats, player Q&As, and quote sheets from Korea, as well as up-to-date training camp notes and game recaps, "World  Cup Plus" will have it all.  The site will also feature daily historical notes on the history of U.S. Soccer in the World Cup and how the team advanced to Korea.  With features on players and coaches, as well as on past U.S. World Cup exploits, every visit to "World Cup Plus" promises something new.

QUOTE OF THE DAY:  "When you compare us to teams like Portugal on paper, we may not match up against them individually. But we can be a better "team" than the teams we will be playing in June and that is what can make the difference for us. So individually they may have some brilliance, but as a "team" we can be better."

-- Jeff Agoos, in an online chat at www.ussoccerfan.com on Friday

T-MINUS: There are 25 days until the U.S. Men's National Team opens 2002 FIFA World Cup play against Portugal on June 5 in Suwon, which also happens to correspond to the number of goals scored by the U.S. MNT during 2002 CONCACAF World Cup qualifying.  The U.S. scored 14 goals in semifinal round qualifying and 11 times in final round qualifying.

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