CALIFF, L.A. GET REDEMPTION WITH "GOLDEN GOAL" HEADER: The Los Angeles Galaxy used a "Golden Goal" header from blue-haired defender Danny Califf in the 92nd minute to defeat the New England Revolution 2-1 in overtime last weekend in front of 4,195 fans at the 2001 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Final at Titan Stadium in Fullerton, Calif. The victory gave the Galaxy their elusive first domestic championship, having been defeated in three previous attempts, most recently on Oct. 21 when they fell 2-1 in overtime to the San Jose Earthquakes in the 2001 MLS Cup in Columbus, Ohio. In two previous MLS championship games, L.A. fell to D.C. United in 1996 and again in 1999. "The game last week was pretty emotional...it took us a while to get over that," said L.A. head coach Sigi Schmid, who won the prestigious CONCACAF Champions Cup on January 21. "But to be in three finals this year and win two of them is a great season for us." Califf's dramatic goal came just two minutes into the first 15-minute overtime period, as the 21- year-old former Olympian leaped to head home a perfectly-placed corner kick from forward Cobi Jones. "I couldn't ask for anything better," said Califf, who got redemption after getting beat on the overtime goal in the 2001 MLS Cup less than a week ago. "Obviously last Sunday was a big disappointment, we just tried to grieve the first couple days. But after today, I'm just really happy." Revolution forward Wolde Harris opened the scoring on a free kick that deflected of a Galaxy defender in the 30th minute, but L.A. defender Ezra Henrickson equalized in the 70th minute on an impressive individual effort.
CALIGIURI CLOSES OUT PLAYING CAREER IN CHAMPIONSHIP STYLE: L.A. defender and U.S. Soccer legend Paul Caligiuri retired a champion this weekend, as the 2001 U.S. Open Cup Final marked his last professional soccer match. Caligiuri, a 12-year veteran of the U.S. Men's National Team, is best known for the "Shot Heard Round the World", his game-winning goal versus Trinidad & Tobago in 1989 that helped the USA earn a spot in the 1990 World Cup. The 37-year-old native of Walnut, Calif., finished his international career in 1997 with 110 caps, five goals and four assists. Caligiuri, who competed professionally in MLS since its inception in 1996 (first for the Columbus Crew in Year One, then for the Galaxy), now begins a different career as the Men's and Women's head soccer coach at Division II Cal-Poly Pomona.
ARENA TO ANNOUNCE ROSTER ONLINE ON WEDNESDAY AT
www.ussoccer.com: With a pass to the 2002 World Cup in Korea/Japan already secured, Bruce Arena will gather his team for their final World Cup qualifier on Nov. 11 in Port of Spain, Trinidad. Arena will announce his training camp roster for the match on Wednesday (Oct. 31) at 12 p.m. ET live on www.ussoccer.com. Fans and media can log on to the new and improved U.S. Soccer site to learn what players will be brought into camp ahead of the clash in Trinidad & Tobago, which will be the first final round World Cup qualifier for the U.S. in Trinidad since Paul Caliguiri's famous "Shot Heard Round the World" on Nov. 19, 1989 that sent the U.S. to its first World Cup in 40 years.
LLAMOSA PK HELPS D.C. TIE METROSTARS, POWER WIN IN FIRST OF "UNITY GAMES": A crowd of 9,417 soccer fans were at Giants Stadium this weekend to honor those affected by the terrorist attacks of September 11 at the first of two "Unity Games" doubleheaders. In the marquee match, U.S. MNT defender Carlos Llamosa converted a penalty kick in the 87th minute to help D.C. United salvage a 2-2 tie against the NY/NJ MetroStars. For Llamosa, a former anchor in the United back line, the goal had a special meaning, as he once worked in the World Trade Center and lost many friends during the attacks. In the preliminary match, the WUSA's New York Power defeated the Washington Freedom, 3-2. U.S. WNT star and 2001 WUSA MVP continued to dominate even in the off-season, scoring two goals and then assisting on the game winner. The second day of the Unity Games will be hosted at RFK Stadium on Saturday (Nov. 3) at 5:00 p.m. ET.
U.S. MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM UPDATE
UPDATE ON MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM PLAYERS IN EUROPE: U.S. players posted impressive numbers this weekend across Europe. U.S. captain Claudio Reyna netted his first and second goals of the season in Rangers 2-0 dismantling of Livingston, keeping the Light Blues seven points back of Celtic and earning the American chants of 'USA, USA' from the Glasgow faithful. Meantime, midfielder John O'Brien opened his scoring account this season for Ajax, netting the eventual game-winner in the 72nd minute to push Ajax past Willem II 4-1 and keeping the top spot in the Dutch Eredivisie. Earnie Stewart resumed his place in the starting team for NAC Breda after entering the last two matches from the reserves bench, but his presence wasn't enough as his side fell 1-0 away to Vitesse. In France, David Regis served a one-match suspension after seeing red last week, watching as FC Metz dropped their third straight, falling 2-0 at Lille. Metz have now been held scoreless in their last four matches. In England, Brad Friedel got the start today as Blackburn Rovers met Kasey Keller's former club, Leicester City. John Thorrington scored on a penalty kick in the 29th minute as Huddersfield Town walloped Wrexham 5-1, moving up to sixth place in the Division Two table. Thorrington's goal total jumped to four for the season. Crystal Palace moved into second place in the English first division, knocking off Norwich Town 3-2, as Jovan Kirvoski started his 11th match for the Eagles and went the distance, while fellow U.S. international Gregg Berhalter made his return to the substitute's bench despite his continued recovery from a broken jaw. In Germany, Tony Sanneh sat out through injury as FC Nurnberg continued their nightmare season, losing for the third straight match, this time at the hands of Sanneh's former side Hertha Berlin. Cory Gibbs continued his solid form for FC St. Pauli, starting his sixth consecutive match. St. Pauli fell 2-0 away to VfB Stuttgart. And in the second Bundesliga, Steve Cherundolo took the field today as Hannover 96 hosted Waldhof Mannheim, but recently-acquired forward Conor Casey did not appear.
AROUND THE U.S. SOCCER NATION
NIKE PROJECT-40 SQUAD IN EUROPE FOR THREE-GAME TOUR: The Nike Project-40 squad is in England this week to compete in three matches in the next 10 days. The team arrived in England last week and have trained for four days in Northern England. The 18-man roster includes 2001 MLS number-one draft pick Chris Carrieri, as well as two goalkeepers with an Olympic past that will be playing with the Pro-40 squad as guest players. Adin Brown was the starting goalkeeper when the U.S. Under-23 MNT qualified for the 2000 Olympics but was injured before the Sydney Games, while Jeff Cassar was an alternate on the 1996 Olympic Team. The following is the roster for the Pro-40 tour:
Goalkeepers: Adin Brown (Tampa Bay Mutiny), Jeff Cassar (Miami Fusion);
Defenders: Jose Burciaga (Kansas City Wizards), Eric Denton (Tampa Bay Mutiny), Seth Trembly (Colorado Rapids), Micah Cooks (D.C. United), Michael Green (Kansas City Wizards);
Midfielders: Marvin Quijano (Los Angeles Galaxy), Mario Longo (Columbus Crew), Martin Klinger (MetroStars), Kyle Beckerman (Miami Fusion), Shaker Asad (Miami Fusion), Nick Downing (New England Revolution);
Forwards: Chris Carrieri (Colorado Rapids), Edson Buddle (Columbus Crew), Scott Bower (San Jose Earthquakes), Devin Barclay (Tampa Bay Mutiny), Isaias Bardales, Jr. (Los Angeles Galaxy).
CREW SIGNS ANDRULIS TO TWO-YEAR HEAD COACH CONTRACT: The Columbus Crew announced last week that the club and head coach Greg Andrulis have agreed to terms on a new two-year contract, that will keep him at the Crew's helm through the 2003 Major League Soccer season. Andrulis, 43, who joined the Crew during its inaugural 1996 season and served as Tom Fitzgerald's top assistant for more than four years, was promoted to interim head coach on May 17. Andrulis went on to guide Columbus to a 12-4-4 record (40 pts.), which included a club-record nine-game unbeaten streak (7-0-2) between July 4-Aug. 19, and the No. 4 seed in the 2001 MLS Cup Playoffs, where it was defeated by the San Jose Earthquakes in the quarterfinal round. His composite 2001 record, including U.S. Open Cup and playoff matches, was 14-7-4.
MISSOURI ATHLETIC CLUB NAMES CANDIDATES FOR 2001 PLAYER OF THE YEAR AWARDS: The Missouri Athletic Club announced the 30 finalists for the men's and women's Collegiate Soccer Players of the Year awards. Two of the top three vote-getters in 2000 headline the 2001 male finalists, as UConn's Chris Gbandi, the 2000 runner-up, and Stanford's Lee Morrison, the 2000 third-place finisher, return for their senior seasons. On the women's side, three of the top four finishers from 2000 headline the 15 finalists for this year's award. Christie Welsh (Penn State) finished second in 2000, followed by Mary Frances Monroe (UCLA) and Danielle Slaton (Santa Clara). One of the most prestigious honors in all of college soccer, the MAC Player of the Year is awarded to a male and a female player of the year based on voting by Division I coaches and is announced in early December. Following is a complete list of the 2001 candidates for the Men's and Women's MAC Collegiate Player of the Year:
MAC Men's Collegiate Player of the Year: Brad Davis (Saint Louis), Alecko Eskandarian (Virginia), Mohamed Fahim (SMU), Chris Gbandi (Connecticut), Gavin Clinton (Bradley), Luchi Gonzalez (SMU), Kyle Martino (Virginia), Lee Morrison (Stanford), Pat Noonan (Indiana), John Barry Nusum (Furman), Oguchi Onyewu (Clemson), Dipsy Selowane (Saint Louis), Mike Tranchilla (Creighton), Ricardo Villar (Penn State), Alex Yi (UCLA).
MAC Women's Collegiate Player of the Year: Meghan Anderson (Nebraska), Danielle Borgman (North Carolina), Lindsay Browne (Clemson), Aleisha Cramer (BYU), Jena Kluegel (North Carolina), Christine Latham (Nebraska), Lori Lindsey (Virginia), Mary-Frances Monroe (UCLA), Vanessa Pruzinsky (Notre Dame), Laura Schott (California), Danielle Slaton (Santa Clara), Hope Solo (Washington), Aly Wagner (Santa Clara), Abby Wambach (Florida), Christie Welsh (Penn State).
U.S. SOCCER SPOTLIGHT
PEAK PERFORMANCE: U.S. MNT captain Claudio Reyna scored his first two goals of the year for Rangers, helping them to a 2-0 victory and then dedicating his performance to the victims of the Sept. 11 tragedy. After the match, Reyna offered, "I grew up in the area where the tragedy occurred and my family and that of my wife come from within a 10-20 mile radius. I haven't been back to New York since it happened, but it has touched so many of the people I grew up with and went to school with. I have had a lot of letters and cards of support from Rangers fans and people throughout Scotland and its nice that so many have shown their support in this way."
MARQUEE MATCH-UP: Liverpool stares ahead to one of its most difficult weeks of the year, facing two of Europe's powerhouses at home in a five-day period. The Reds need at least one point on Tuesday against Borussia Dortmund to secure qualification into the next round of UEFA Champions League. The teams drew 0-0 in their first encounter in Germany. Then, on Sunday (Nov. 4), Liverpool takes on Manchester United at Anfield in one of soccer's greatest rivalries. Liverpool (19 points) sits in fourth place in the Premiership, just one point ahead of Sir Alex Ferguson's Red Devils (18 points), and within striking distance of league-leading Aston Villa (21 points).
SOCCER SHOCKER: Promoted Chievo Verona is causing quite a ruckus in its Serie A debut, sitting alone at the top of the table after just eight games. Chievo stormed past newly promoted Torino 3-0 this weekend to up their record to 6-1-1 and open up a four-point cushion at the top of the Italian table. Chievo is also the only team in Serie A to have won more than half its games.
"At the end of the day, we won two championships and I get to walk out of here with a medal around my neck. Not many athletes get to finish their careers that way."
- Newly-retired L.A. Galaxy and former U.S. MNT defender Paul Caligiuri, after winning the 2001 U.S. Open Cup this weekend to add to the CONCACAF Champions Cup won back in January.