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U.S. Star Michelle Akers Suffers Orbital Fracture Against FIFA World Stars

SAN JOSE, Calif. (Monday, February 15, 1999) - U.S. star midfielder Michelle Akers suffered an orbital fracture under her left eye after colliding heads with Norway's Linda Medalen in last night's exhibition match between the FIFA World Stars and the U.S. Women's National Team. The match also featured the 1999 Women's World Cup Final Draw at halftime.

Akers cracked heads with Medalen while both challenged for a corner kick in the 16th minute. After laying for several minutes on the field, she walked off under her own power, but was taken to the San Jose Medical Center for x-rays and received 25 stitches for a gash over her left eye.

Akers, who suffered considerable swelling, broke three small bones on the left side of her face. She fractured the sinus bone, a bone in her cheek and a bone closer to her left ear. She will not require surgery.

With 100 goals in 128 international matches, Akers has the best goals-to-games ratio in U.S. Soccer history. She will be out of action from four-to-six weeks, but should be at full fitness for the final two months of Women's World Cup preparation leading up to the USA's opening game vs. Denmark on June 19 at Giants Stadium.