U.S. Men's National Team in Training for Final Match of 2002
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Monday, November 11, 2002) - A warm and wet morning greeted the USMNT on the second day of training camp in the nation's capital. Bruce Arena put the side through the paces in a spirited 90-minutes session in sometimes rainy conditions. After a warm up and possession game, the team was divided in two for a five-a-side competition to big goals. While the goalkeeping trio of Adin Brown, Tim Howard and Nick Rimando made several outstanding saves, the play of the day belonged to Kansas City Wizard midfielder Chris Klein. Klein, with the ball at his feet and closely guarded, earned himself a moment of separation from his marker and targeted the top right corner. Howard could only watch as Klein's well-paced curling shot settled in just under the upper 90, leaving several players and coaching staff shaking their heads. The team will resume training Tuesday morning.
T-MINUS SIX: Six days remain before the USA's final match of 2002, in what has been one of the most remarkable in team history. The U.S. has posted an impressive 11-6-2 record in 2002, going unbeaten in the first five matches of the year in capturing the 2002 Gold Cup championship in February. The team’s performance reached a pinnacle during the 2002 FIFA World Cup, as the United States advanced to the quarterfinals for the first time in 72 years. The last match of the year against El Salvador kicks off Sunday, November 17 at 3 p.m. ET at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. The match will be broadcast live on ESPN, and fans can also follow the action live online via ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker, presented by Philips Electronics.
ARENA OFF: Tuesday's training session will be minus its most omnipresent member. Arena travels to Dallas this evening, where he will be the keynote speaker at the SMU Athletic Forum tomorrow morning. The U.S. coach will recount his World Cup experiences to a 1,200 member audience of business and athletic leaders from the Dallas community. World Cup assistant Glenn Myernick, along with former MLS player and D.C. United assistant Curt Onalfo, who is assiting Arena this week, will guide the team in practice for the day.
23 PLUS ONE: The USMNT added a bit of international flavor to Tuesday's session, welcoming D.C. United forward Jaime Moreno into the fold for the morning workout. The blond-streaked Bolivian international has remained in the D.C. area for the offseason, and put his trademark speed and ball control skills on display for the young American hopefuls. Moreno was reunited with his former coach, having collected back-to-back MLS Cup championships with Arena while at United.
EL SALVADOR ANNOUNCES 18-MAN ROSTER: The Football Federation of El Salvador released the 18-man roster that will travel to the United States for the Nov. 17 friendly. El Salvador has not played a competitive match since the 2002 Gold Cup in January, and, like the U.S., will be looking to groom a new team in preparation for World Cup qualifying play in 2004.
Goalkeepers: Juan Gomez, Fidel Mondragon;
Defenders: Ramiro Carballo, Julio Castro, Marvin Gonzlaez, Carlos Menjivar, Jr., Alfredo Pacheco, Mauricio Quintanilla, William Torres, Victor Manuel Velasquez;
Midfielders: Selvin Gonzalez, Gilberto Murgas, Roberto Vasquez;
Forwards: Rudis Corrales, Francisco Fuentes, Josue Galdamez, Diego Mejia, Jose Mejia.
VERSUS EL SALVADOR: The United States holds an 8-1-4 lifetime advantage against El Salvador, and has never lost a meeting on home soil. The teams last met in the 2002 CONCACAF Gold Cup quarterfinal earlier this year, with Brian McBride netting a hat trick en route to a 4-0 U.S. victory on Jan. 27 at the Rose Bowl. The Nov. 17 match will mark the first contest between the CONCACAF nations in Washington, D.C., where the U.S. has collected an 8-3-3 record. RFK last hosted an international friendly May 12 of this year, when the USA beat Uruguay 2-1 during the “Nike Road to Korea.”
CHANGE OF VENUE: Mother Nature forced a change of location of the USMNT training site, as heavy rains in the past three weeks have affected the field conditions at Georgetown University. The team relocated a local college with access to a synthetic turf surface, and will evaluate site conditions on a daily basis.
EIGHT MILE RUN: Many of the players used their down time this afternoon to head to the movies. Clint Mathis took a van load of the new crop to see "Eight Mile", while others hooked up their PlayStation and X-Box's in their hotel rooms. Others simply went to sleep.
THEY SAID IT:
"I haven't seen anyone that it's obvious they don't belong here, so that's a good start. The last two days they have put in a great effort."
- Arena, on his initial impression of the players in camp
TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE: Tickets for the Nov. 17 friendly, which is being presented to fans by LEGO, range in price from $22 to $50 and are available now through all Ticketmaster outlets (D.C. 202-432-7328; Baltimore 410-481-7328; Northern Virginia 703-573-7328; out of state 1-800-551-7328). Fans can also order online at www.ussoccer.com. Discount rates for groups of 20 or more are available by calling the D.C. United ticket offices at 703-478-6600.