CHICAGO (January 24, 2008) – U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team head coach Peter Nowak has named 23 players to participate in the team’s second training camp of 2008 from Jan. 26 – Feb. 2 in at the IMG Academies in Bradenton, Fla.
The week-long camp will be Nowak’s final chance to train and evaluate players before selecting the team that will compete in CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualification from March 11-23, 2008, in Los Angeles, Tampa and Nashville. The U.S. will play their three games of the group stage in Tampa against Cuba on March 11, Panama on March 13 and Honduras on March 15. The eight-team tournament will send the two finalists to the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
“With the qualifying tournament approaching quickly, this is an important camp for us to train and evaluate players,” said Nowak. “Having another chance to train in Bradenton will be valuable as we prepare for very challenging Olympic qualifying games in nearby Tampa.”
Thirteen of the players called in were part of the Under-23s latest camp from Jan. 6-20, and will be returning to Bradenton after a two-week sabbatical. Josmer Altidore, Maurice Edu, Sacha Kljestan and Marvell Wynne will re-join Nowak’s squad after training with the Men’s National Team leading up to their January 19 friendly against Sweden, in which the U.S. picked up a 2-0 win. Two additional players, Adam Cristman and Nathan Sturgis, were part of the U-23’s December training camp, though neither made the trip to China due to injury.
Dominic Cervi will be joining his second-ever National Team camp, while Michael Orozco will be part of his first camp since a trip to Dallas with the Under-20 MNT in April of 2004. Orozco, who plays for San Luis in Mexico, is one of four players who play professionally outside of Major League Soccer, along with Charlie Davies of Hammarby IF (Sweden), Tally Hall of Esbjerg fB (Denmark) and Kamani Hill of Vfl Wolfsburg (Germany).
The U.S. plays in the late game in each of the three doubleheaders at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa (tickets), playing Cuba at 8 p.m. ET on March 11, Panama at 8 p.m. ET on March 13 and finishing the round-robin tournament against Honduras on at 7 p.m. ET Saturday, March 15.
Group B, which will begin on March 12, features Canada, Guatemala, Haiti and Mexico, and will be played at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.
After group play, the top two teams from each group will advance to the semifinals which will be played on March 20 at LP Field in Nashville, Tenn. LP Field will also be the location for the third-place and championship matches on Sunday, March 23. The two finalists will advance to the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
U.S. Under-23 MNT Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (3): Dominic Cervi (Chicago Fire), Tally Hall (Esbjerg fB), Chris Seitz (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS : Kamani Hill (Vfl Wolfsburg), Patrick Ianni (Houston Dynamo), Chance Myers (Kansas City Wizards), Michael Orozco (San Luis), Mike Randolph (LA Galaxy), Nathan Sturgis (Real Salt Lake), Anthony Wallace (FC Dallas), Marvell Wynne (Toronto FC)
MIDFIELDERS :Arturo Alvarez (FC Dallas), Maurice Edu (Toronto FC), Eddie Gaven (Columbus Crew), Stuart Holden (Houston Dynamo), Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA), Dax McCarty (FC Dallas)
FORWARDS: Josmer Altidore (New York Red Bulls), Chad Barrett (Chicago Fire), Adam Cristman (New England Revolution), Charlie Davies (Hammarby IF), Robbie Findley (Real Salt Lake), Robbie Rogers (Columbus Crew)