NEW YORK (Thursday, July 4, 2002) - Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber announced today that the 2002 MLS All-Star Game will feature the U.S. Men's National Team against the best of Major League Soccer. The 2002 MLS All-Star Game will be televised nationally from RFK Stadium on Saturday, August 3, 2002 at 3:30 p.m. (ET), live on ABC.
"All of America and a generation of soccer fans have waited a lifetime for a magical World Cup performance like this," said Garber. "This U.S. team achieved great things for our sport during their impressive run in South Korea, and Major League Soccer wants to celebrate this achievement this All-Star weekend."
The United States, which advanced to the quarterfinals of the World Cup for the first time in more than 70 years and captivated a nation in doing so, featured 11 current and five former MLS players. MLS stars Landon Donovan, Brian McBride and Clint Mathis scored five of the six U.S. goals, while DaMarcus Beasley, Pablo Mastroeni, Josh Wolff, Carlos Llamosa and D.C. United's own Eddie Pope played key roles in the team's success. Jeff Agoos, Cobi Jones and Tony Meola also contributed heavily to the team, while head coach Bruce Arena, who guided D.C. United to two MLS Cup championships and three consecutive title games from 1996-1998, became the winningest coach in U.S. National Team history during the tournament.
"We could not have achieved such greatness in Korea without MLS and the players it has helped to develop over the past seven seasons," said U.S. Soccer President Dr. S. Robert Contiguglia. "MLS has contributed mightily to this team, and we hope that on All-Star weekend, the fans will have a chance to celebrate with the stars of Major League Soccer and our National Team."
In addition, the 2002 MLS All-Star festivities will look to honor the accomplishments of players past and present who have contributed to the rise and development of American soccer in the modern era. In addition to the celebratory game between the U.S. National Team and MLS All-Stars as voted by the fans, players, coaches and media, MLS and U.S. Soccer will recognize previous players who have been an integral part of the growth of soccer in the United States.
The 2002 MLS All-Star Game featuring the U.S. National Team offers four levels of ticket pricing, ranging from $27 to $55 for individuals, and $22 to $45 for groups of 20 or more. For Group Sales and Season ticket package information call D.C. United at (703) 478-6600; or go online at www.dcunited.com and at RFK Stadium advance sales during all D.C. United home games. Individual tickets are availble by calling TicketMaster - (202) 432 - SEAT (metro D.C.); (410) 481 - SEAT (Baltimore & MD); (703) 573 - SEAT (Virginia); online at www.ticketmaster.com and at all TicketMaster outlets including Hecht's, Tower Records and at RFK Stadium.
Soccer fans in the nation's capital have proven to be some of the country's most loyal, as United has increased its home attendance during each of the past three seasons, including a League-leading average of 21,518 in 2001. United's passionate and knowledgeable supporters clubs such as the Screaming Eagles and Barra Brava have repeatedly given the Black-and-Red one of the greatest home-field advantages in MLS.
RFK Stadium, the site of two MLS Cup Championship matches, will host its first MLS All-Star Game as the event returns to the East Coast for the first time since 1997. On August 2-3, MLS will host numerous family-oriented events, activities and tournaments at RFK and in the Washington, D.C. area.
At halftime of the All-Star contest, Mexican recording artist Paulina Rubio will perform two songs off her album, Border Girl. The Latin sensation recently saw her debut video, "Don't Say Goodbye," place at No. 8 on MTV's Total Request Live on Tuesday, June 27, the same day that the San Jose Earthquakes' Donovan appeared on the popular show.
Media credential forms for the 2002 Pepsi MLS All-Star Game can be obtained by downloading the document at: www.MLSnet.com/credential.html. The credential form also includes hotel information in the Washington, D.C. area with a special media rate for All-Star Weekend.