URUGUAY DEFEATS AUSTRALIA 3-0 TO WIN PLAYOFF SERIES 3-1: Uruguay became the 32nd and final country to qualify for the World Cup on Sunday as they downed Australia 3-0 in the second leg of their home-and-home playoff. Uruguay's Dario Silva, who dislocated his shoulder just 12 days ago, broke through in the 14th minute. With both sides wasting chances, Richard Morales headed a decisive goal in the 71st minute. Morales added a third from close range in injury time to send the two-time former champions to their first World Cup since 1990. Australia defeated Uruguay 1-0 in the first leg of the playoff series on Nov. 20.
U.S. MNT BEGINS WEEK-LONG TRAINING CAMP FOR DEC. 9 SOUTH KOREA FRIENDLY: The U.S. Men's National Team opened training camp today with a double session at the ARCO Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif. A pool of 27 players ran through the paces under clear skies, with the all-MLS squad beginning eight days of training prior to departure for the Dec. 9 friendly against South Korea. Brian McBride participated in his first live exercises with the national team in five months, as did MetroStars forward Clint Mathis. The opening day had the expectant air of a pre-season training camp, as players demonstrate their ability to contribute to the U.S. team when the final selections are made in the spring of next year. Today's exercises focused on players regaining both fitness and touch after several weeks of inactivity. Chicago Fire midfielder DaMarcus Beasley was forced to withdraw from camp after doctors did not clear him to play following the concussion he received against Trinidad and Tobago on Nov. 11. Head Coach Bruce Arena will depart Wednesday morning for the 2002 FIFA World Cup Draw to be held Dec. 1 (Saturday) in Busan, South Korea. Assistant Coach Dave Sarachan will take over the coaching reigns until the team arrives in Jeju on Dec. 5.
U.S. SOCCER/PHILIPS DrawTracker TO FOLLOW FINAL DRAW LIVE ON ussoccer.com: The U.S. Men's National Team will learn their schedule of opponents at the 2002 FIFA World Cup when the Final Draw is held this Saturday (Dec. 1) at 5 a.m. ET (7 p.m. local) at the Busan Exhibition & Convention Center in the Korean city of Busan. Media and fans can follow the Final Draw as it unfolds by logging on to the U.S. Soccer / Philips DrawTracker (on www.ussoccer.com), which will feature real-time updates of the event (and up-to-date information on each of the 32 finalists).
U.S. MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM UPDATE
DEC. 9 SOUTH KOREA FRIENDLY TO BE BROADCAST ON DEC. 10 AT 1 P.M. ON
ESPN: The U.S. Men's National Team's upcoming international friendly against 2002 World Cup co-host South Korea at Jeju Stadium in Seogwipu, Jeju Province on Dec. 9 will be broadcast via tape delay on ESPN on Dec. 10 at 1 p.m. ET. The USA is coming off a 0-0 draw with Trinidad & Tobago on Nov. 11 after qualifying for its fourth consecutive World Cup finals and earning the U.S. the second of three CONCACAF qualifying berths for 2002 Korea/Japan back on Oct. 7. The United States has never defeated South Korea, holding a 0-2-1 lifetime record in three previous meetings. The teams last met in a prelude to World Cup USA '94, drawing 1-1 in Fullerton, Calif., in March of that year. South Korea will be making its fifth consecutive appearance in the Finals, having qualified for every tournament since 1986 and receiving a berth in next year's tournament as a host country.
UPDATE ON MNT PLAYERS IN EUROPE: Earnie Stewart continued his scoring tear, finding the net again as NAC Breda hammered FC Groningen 5-0. Stewart, who has seven goals this season, has scored four goals in the last four games – all NAC wins. Breda has climbed into the fifth spot, just four points behind leaders Feyenoord. Brad Friedel recorded a shutout as Blackburn drew 0-0 at Chelsea. With the draw, Blackburn maintain their spot in the top half of the table and currently sit 10th. Friedel has only allowed two goals in the last four matches and Blackburn is undefeated in their last five matches. Claudio Reyna went all 90 minutes as Rangers lost to bitter rivals Celtic in the Old Firm. With the win, Celtic now enjoys a 10-point lead at the top of the Scottish League. Jovan Kirovski started and played all 90 minutes as Palace lost 1-2 to Preston North End. Palace now readies for a clash with league leaders Burnley on Dec. 1. David Regis returned to the Metz line-up and shutout Monaco 1-0 to help Metz climb up to 15th in the league. John O'Brien played all 90 minutes for sliding Ajax, who lost 3-1 to PSV. Ajax have now fallen to second in the league and have not won since Oct. 28. In Germany, Tony Sanneh played 90 minutes and helped FC Nurnberg hold German power Bayern Munich to a 0-0 draw in Munich. Cory Gibbs scored his first Bundesliga goal and played all 90 minutes, but St.Pauli fell 1-2 to FC Koln. Steve Cherundolo played all 90 minutes in a 1-1 draw with former Bundesliga squad Eintracht Frankfurt. Joe Enochs played all 90 minutes as Osnabruck topped SC Paderborn 07 2-0.
U.S. YOUTH NATIONAL TEAM UPDATE
U.S. U-16s, U-17s GO UNDEFEATED IN ODP EVENT IN COCOA BEACH: The U.S. Under-17 Men's National Team and Under-16 Men's National Team both went undefeated in an ODP Interregional Event in Cocoa Beach, Fla., over the weekend. Playing against older teams, the group John Ellinger is preparing for the 2003 World Championship won two games and drew one game in their first full games together as the U.S. Under-17 Men's National Team. Corey Ashe and Michael Harrington each scored a goal and an assist, and Freddy Adu scored the game winner in the 2-1 win against Region II that capped their three-game stint. The U.S. Under-16s faced same-age squads, and dominated all three matches. The U-16's shut out all three opponents, recording a 4-0 win against Region IV, following up the next day with a 2-0 win against Region I and closing things out today with a 2-0 win over Region III.
U.S. Under-16 MNT
Date - Opponent - Result
Nov. 24 - Reg. IV ‘87s - 4-0 W
Nov. 25 - Reg. I ‘87s - 2-0 W
Nov. 26 - Reg. III ‘87s - 2-0 W
U.S. Under-17 MNT
Date - Opponent - Result (Scorers)
Nov. 24 - Reg. III ‘85s - 1-0 W (Ashe)
Nov. 25 - Reg. IV ‘85s - 2-2 T (Gonzalez, Harrington)
Nov. 26 - Region II ‘85s - 2-1 W (Gaven, Adu)
AROUND THE SOCCER NATION
U.S. SOCCER FANS HAVE HIGH EXPECTATIONS FOR WORLD CUP ROOKIE ECUADOR: In a poll last week on www.ussoccer.com, fans voiced their opinions in response to the question "Which first-time participant will do the best at the World Cup next summer?" Among the four first-time participants, Ecuador (47.2%) earned nearly half of all votes after advancing from a tough CONMEBOL qualifying process. Ecuador finished second in CONMEBOL, behind only Argentina and ahead of four-time World Champion Brazil, over whom they posted an historic 1-0 victory on March 28. Ecuador's winning tally in the ussoccer.com poll was nearly twice that of second-place China's total (24.9%), despite the fact that China head coach Bora Milutinovic helped the U.S. advance to the second round in the 1994 World Cup. Expectations for the Republic of Slovenia (formerly a part of Yugoslavia) were relatively low (18.1 %), despite their preventing Romania from qualifying for its fifth-straight World Cup. Senegal (9.7%) is a relative unknown from Africa, but defeated Egypt and Morocco to qualify for the finals.
1) Ecuador - 47.2%
2) China - 24.9%
3) Slovenia - 18.1%
4) Senegal - 9.7%
FIVE OF TOP EIGHT TEAMS ADVANCE TO WOMEN'S COLLEGE CUP QUARTERFINALS: Five of the top eight seeds in Divison I women's collegiate soccer advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Women's College Cup this weekend. Rutgers gave top-seeded and defending champion UNC all it could handle, but the Tar Heels fought back for two goals in the final 27 minutes for a 2-1 win. The Tar Heels have now won 31 straight games across the last two years. In other third round games, 2000 NCAA finalist UCLA advanced with a 3-1 win, knocking out Dayton, while sophomore Heidi Drummond scored two goals in the second half to lead Penn State to a 2-0 victory over eighth-seeded Connecticut. Four different Pilots scored as fourth-seeded Portland hammered Nebraska 4-0. Virginia shutout Cincinnati 4-0 on Saturday night, while Santa Clara advanced with a 2-0 win over Dartmouth. Florida beat Clemson 3-1 and Texas A & M pulled the women's stunner of the weekend, knocking off fifth-seeded Stanford 1-0 on the Cardinal's home turf. UCLA and Santa Clara will both host quarterfinal matches, with the winners facing off for a spot in the National Championship game. UCLA takes on Florida, teams that have both advanced to the final four in recent years, in one quarterfinal, and Jerry Smith's Santa Clara faces Steve Swanson's Virginia in a battle of U.S. Youth National Team coaches. On the other side of the bracket, Texas A&M travels to Portland, while Penn State will face the defending champion Tar Heels in Chapel Hill, N.C. The quarterfinals will take place between Friday (Nov. 30) and Sunday (Dec. 2).
DEFENDING CHAMP UCONN, #2 SEED VIRGINIA FALL AS MEN'S NCAA FIELD PARED
TO 16: A weekend of upsets in the NCAA Men's College Cup tournament included defending champions UConn falling 2-1 to Rutgers in triple overtime at home. The second-seeded Virginia Cavaliers were shocked at home by Seton Hall, 1-0, in the second round of the tournament. Seton Hall scored in the seventh minute and hung on to hand Virginia just their second loss of the season. Other highlights from the first two rounds include a 4-0 UCLA win over their Southern California rival San Diego. USD had topped the Bruins 3-0 earlier in the season. Clemson needed a 124th minute game winner to escape with a 1-0 win against Kentucky. Alabama-Birmingham pulled an impressive South Carolina double, topping Furman 1-0 and then upsetting South Carolina 3-2 in overtime in Columbia, S.C. Fairleigh-Dickinson upset the 12th-ranked Princeton Tigers, 2-1, also in the second round. Brad Davis rallied Saint Louis with an assist on the equalizer and then scored the game winner himself as the Billikens topped UMKC, 2-1. Portland beat northwestern rivals Washington 1-0 in Seattle. Number 1-seeded SMU will host UCLA this week to highlight the Round of 16 games that must be completed by Sunday (Dec. 2).
U.S. SOCCER SPOTLIGHT
PEAK PERFORMANCE: Uruguay came through when they needed to, putting three goals on Oceania winner Australia to claim the last of 32 berths in the 2002 World Cup. After a 1-0 defeat in Australia, the 5th place CONMEBOL finishers leveled the aggregate score in the 14th minute.
Richard Morales would put the South American side in their first World Cup since 1990 with goals in the 71st minute and in injury time.
MARQUEE MATCH-UP: Not so much a "marquee match-up" as it is "the most anticipated non-game soccer event of the year", the 2002 FIFA World Cup Final Draw will spell out the next seven months for all 32 countries leading up to and including the actual tournament next summer. In under two hours, the Draw will answer the important questions -- Who, Where and When -- of the first round of the World Cup and beyond. To follow along live at 5 a.m. ET, visit ussoccer.com and the special U.S. Soccer/Philips DrawTracker.
SOCCER SHOCKER: It was "Upset Sunday" in the NCAA Men's College Cup yesterday as #2-seeded Virginia and defending champs UConn, as well as Washington, Wake Forest, Princeton and San Diego, all fell in the second round to open the tournament up for the likes of underdogs like Fairleigh Dickinson.
"We've been working on penalty kicks for the last two weeks. I think it has taken me about five years to get one of those."
- Indiana senior forward Tyler Hawley, whose penalty kick goal in the 12th minute helped the Hoosiers defeat Michigan State in second round Men's College Cup action.