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U.S. Soccer Wire - August 21, 2006



Greg Ryan Announces WNT Roster For Aug. 27 Match Against China;
U.S. U-20 WNT Wins First Two Matches, Set For Final Group D Match
vs. France on Thursday, Aug. 24, at 11 a.m. ET

RYAN NAMES ROSTER FOR MATCH AGAINST CHINA IN CHICAGO: U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Greg Ryan has named the 18-player roster that will face long-time nemesis China on Aug. 27 at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill. The clash between the USA, which is second in the current FIFA world rankings, and China, which is ranked eighth, will be broadcast live on ESPN2 at noon CT / 1 p.m. ET. The match marks the 35th all-time meeting between the teams and the third game this year between the two long time women’s soccer powers. Tickets starting at $16 are on sale through ussoccer.com, by phone at 312-559-1212 and at all Ticketmaster outlets throughout Chicagoland (including Carson Pirie Scott, Coconuts, Hot Tix, FYE, Tower Records, and Ritmo Latino stores). Groups of 15 or more can call U.S. Soccer at 312-528-1290 or obtain a group order form at ussoccer.com. A detailed roster is available at ussoccer.com.

U.S. Women's National Team Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Briana Scurry (Dayton, Minn.), Hope Solo (Richland, Wash.);
DEFENDERS (6): Lori Chalupny (St. Louis, Mo.), Tina Frimpong (Vancouver, Wash.), Amy LePeilbet (Crystal Lake, Ill.), Heather Mitts (Cincinnati, Ohio), Christie Rampone (Point Pleasant, N.J.), Cat Whitehill (Birmingham, Ala.);
MIDFIELDERS (5): Angela Hucles (Virginia Beach, Va.), Carli Lloyd (Delran, N.J.), Joanna Lohman (Silver Spring, Md.), Leslie Osborne (Brookfield, Wis.), Aly Wagner (San Jose, Calif.);
FORWARDS (5): Natasha Kai (Kahuku, Hawaii), Kristine Lilly (Wilton, Conn.), Heather O’Reilly (East Brunswick, N.J.), Lindsay Tarpley (Kalamazoo, Mich.), Abby Wambach (Rochester, N.Y.)


U-20 WNT KICKS OFF WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP WITH WINS: The U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team kicked off the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship on the right foot, starting the tournament with two wins. The U.S. U-20 women opened up their world championship run with a 2-1 win against DR Congo, followed by a 4-1 win against Argentina. The U.S. will next face France in their final group match on Thursday, Aug. 24, at 11 a.m. ET to determine who will win Group D. The U.S. needs a victory to finish first in the group. Follow the action live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. The 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship is taking place at four stadiums in Moscow (Dynamo, Podmoskovie, Lokomotiv and Torpedo) and at one in St. Petersburg (Petrovsky). Fans can follow all the action from Russia on ussoccer.com’s special U-20 Women’s World Championship competition page, with game stories, a blog, features, interviews, podcasts and all_access video.

U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team – First Round Schedule
2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship
Match No.  Date        Teams                      Stadium (Venue)      Result/ Kickoff Local / ET
7               Aug. 18    USA vs. DR Congo   Torpedo (Moscow)     2-1
15             Aug. 21    USA vs. Argentina     Torpedo (Moscow)     4-1
24             Aug. 24    USA vs. France        Dynamo (Moscow)     7 p.m. / 11 a.m.


U.S. REFEREES IN RUSSIA: U.S. Soccer Referees once again have representation at a FIFA World Championship as former U.S. Soccer and FIFA referee, and U.S. Soccer National Instructor and National Assessor, Sandra Hunt is one of two FIFA Instructors at the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship in Russia. U.S. Soccer referee Jennifer Bennett and assistant referee Kim Oberle join Hunt in Russia, officiating matches at the tournament as one of 15 referees and 23 assistant referees, respectively. Bennett was in the middle for the Australia-Brazil match in Group A on Aug. 20, her first match of the tournament. She called a penalty kick in the 42nd minute that Francielle converted for Brazil in their 2-0 victory.

– WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM UPDATE –

U.S. WNT TO FACE CHINESE TAIPEI IN HISTORIC WEEKEND AT HDC: The U.S. Women’s National Team will face Chinese Taipei at 1 p.m. PT on Oct. 1 in Carson, Calif., to close out a first-of-its-kind weekend of women’s soccer at The Home Depot Center as U.S. Soccer hosts the first Women’s Nike Friendlies, a youth event featuring 30 premier club teams. Tickets for the U.S. WNT match starting at $15 go on sale Monday, Aug. 21, at 10 a.m. PT at ussoccer.com, all Southern California Ticketmaster outlets (including Robinson’s-May, Wherehouse Music and Tower Records), The Home Depot Center ticket office (stadium ticket office is open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), and by phone at 213- 480-3232. Groups of 15 or more can purchase tickets by calling U.S. Soccer at 312-528-1290 or obtaining a group order form at ussoccer.com

U.S. WOMEN TO FACE ICELAND IN RICHMOND, VA.: The U.S. Women’s National Team will face Iceland at 2 p.m. ET on Sunday, October 8, at the University of Richmond Stadium in Richmond, Va. The match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, and fans can follow online via ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. Tickets starting at $16 will go on sale beginning Wednesday, August 23, at 10 a.m. ET through ussoccer.com, all Richmond Ticketmaster outlets (including Hecht’s, Tower Records, and Ukrop’s Supermarket), and by phone at (804) 262-8100. Groups of 15 or more can purchase tickets by calling U.S. Soccer at 312-528-1290 or obtaining a group order form at ussoccer.com. The match will serve as the final domestic contest before the U.S. women enter competition at the 2006 CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup, which will serve as the qualifying tournament for the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup in China. In 2006, the U.S. WNT has a 9-0-3 record, including three consecutive victories on domestic soil over Sweden, Ireland and Canada by a combined 10-2 margin.

WNT TO COMPETE IN 2006 PEACE CUP IN SOUTH KOREA: The U.S. Women’s National Team will travel to South Korea in October to take part in the Peace Cup that will be staged from Oct. 28 to Nov. 4, in six Korean cities. These will be the final matches for the USA before it enters the 2006 CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup where the U.S. women will attempt to earn one of the region’s direct berths to the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The Peace Cup, which previously featured men’s club teams in the first two editions, will feature eight women’s national teams. The tournament is staged in a similar format to the annual Algarve Cup in Portugal, with the teams playing a round-robin format in group play and the group winners meeting for the title. The USA opens Group B play against Denmark on Oct. 29 in Kimhae in the southeastern part of South Korea. The USA will then face recent 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifiers Australia on Oct. 31 in Cheonan, outside of Seoul, before finishing group play against North Korea on Nov. 2 in Suwon, also outside of Seoul. The championship match is on Nov. 4 in Seoul. Group A features South Korea, Brazil, Italy and Nigeria. The stadiums in Seoul and Suwon were used for the 2002 FIFA World Cup.

– YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE –

U-20 MNT FACE ARGENTINA, SLOVAKIA AND SOUTH KOREA IN BUSAN: The U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team will travel to Busan, South Korea, on Saturday, Aug. 26 to compete in the Busan International U-20 Four Nations Tournament. The U.S. will kick off the four-team tournament on Tuesday, Aug. 29 against South Korea, before taking on Slovakia on Thursday, Aug. 31 and then finishing round-robin play on Saturday, Sept. 2, against Argentina. U.S. Under-20 head coach Thomas Rongen’s roster for the tournament will be announced later this week and will be posted on ussoccer.com.

FALL SEMESTER OF U.S. SOCCER’S UNDER-17 RESIDENCY PROGRAM KICKS OFF: U.S. Soccer’s Under-17 Residency Program’s fall semester kicked off on Monday, Aug. 21 when the players conducted their first training session at IMG Academies in Bradenton, Fla. The 40-player roster consists of players born in 1990 and 1991. The entire roster will be released and posted on ussoccer.com on Tuesday. Started in 1999, the U.S. Soccer full-time residency program has become a symbol of U.S. Soccer’s dedication to producing development opportunities for players and the success of the Youth National Teams. The 40 U.S. players live on campus at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., and train in the morning before attending classes at nearby Edison Academy. Players train daily under the guidance of Hackworth and assistant coaches Keith Fulk, Raul Diaz Arce, Tim Mulqueen and Brian Maisonneuve.

U-17 ’90 MNT WILL COMPETE IN THE PEPSI INTERNATIONAL TOURNAMENT IN ENGLAND: The U.S. Under-17 ’90 Men’s National Team will compete in the Pepsi International Tournament in England from Aug. 30 to Sept. 3, going up against Portugal, England and Turkey. The U.S. will travel to England on Sunday, Aug. 27 and conduct two days of training before taking on Portugal in Yeading to open the round-robin tournament. Two days later, the U.S. will take on the host in Aldershot Town before finishing up play against Turkey on Sept. 3 in Staines Town. A complete roster and schedule will be released and posted on ussoccer.com in the coming week.

– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –

HALL OF FAME WEEKEND SET FOR AUG. 26-28 IN ONEONTA, N.Y.: Tickets for the 2006 Hall of Fame Game between the Columbus Crew and the New York Red Bulls at 1 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 28, in Oneonta, N.Y., are now on sale through Ticketmaster, including online at Ticketmaster.com, by phone at (607) 722-7272 and at all Ticketmaster outlets throughout upstate New York, including Kaufmann’s Department Stores. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 on the day of the event. The Hall of Fame Game is the final event of the 2006 Induction Weekend on Aug. 26-28. Former MNT defender Alexi Lalas and former WNT captain Carla Overbeck will be inducted into the U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame, along with veteran Al Trost and builder Philip Anschutz, at 10 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 28. The Induction Ceremony takes place in the HOF museum and is open to the public free of charge. The Hall of Fame Game follows the Induction Ceremony on At-A-Glance Field on the Hall of Fame campus.

FORMER U.S. MANAGER BRUCE ARENA RETURNS TO OPEN CUP FRAY: After an intense fourth round that saw one match postponed due to inclement weather and two amateur teams square off against Major League Soccer squads, eight MLS teams prepare for an all-MLS quarterfinal round on Wednesday, August 23. This is the second time in U.S. Open Cup history that the quarterfinals will have all eight teams coming from MLS, and the first time since 2000. The quarterfinal winners will face off on Sept. 6 in the semifinal round of the tournament. It will be Bruce Arena’s first trip back to RFK Stadium as an MLS coach, where he will face the side that he led to a 1996 Open Cup Championship. A complete schedule and semifinal round fixtures is available at ussoccer.com's Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup homepage.

USL SECOND DIVISION CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH TO AIR LIVE ON FOX SOCCER CHANNEL: The defending USL Second Division champion Charlotte Eagles took advantage of a 4-0 first-leg lead on the road to win their semifinal series 6-1, advancing to their third straight championship match. USL First Division finalists a year ago, the USL-2 regular season champion Richmond Kickers took a 2-1 first-leg lead on the road and advanced with a scoreless draw. The pair will meet in Richmond on Saturday, Aug. 26, live on Fox Soccer Channel at 7 p.m. ET.

ussoccer.com’s CENTER CIRCLE ONLINE ALL YEAR LONG: It’s been a while since ussoccer.com’s “Center Circle” reached your inbox, bringing an ear-to-ear smile to your face and distracting you from work until you read the latest Armchair Midfielder and In 3’s, topping off your reading with some U.S. National Team trivia. The bad news is, you won’t be receiving a monthly “Center Circle” in your inbox anymore. But the good news is, you don’t have to wait a whole month to get your “Center Circle” fix! Check out “Center Circle” daily at centercircle.ussoccer.com to read the latest Armchair Midfielder, hear from fan favorites in the “Off the Ball” section as the Valentin Chronicles and Manya’s Musings return or meet new players in the new “Hello My Name is…” and “YNT Spotlight” sections. Catch all the action at centercircle.ussoccer.com!

*** “CENTER CIRCLE” SPOTLIGHT ***

PEAK PERFORMER: Forward Jeff Cunningham had a hand in all three of Real Salt Lake’s goals in the 3-1 win against the Houston Dynamo, assisting on two and tallying one. The goal and two assists put Cunningham at the top of the Major League Soccer goal scoring chart with 14 goals. Cunningham is also second in the league in assists with nine.

MARQUEE MATCHUP: The U.S. Women’s National Team will return to Chicago for the first time since 2004 when they face China at the brand new home of the Chicago Fire in Bridgeview, Ill. Kickoff is set for 12 p.m. CT and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2.

SOCCER SHOCKER: In the first Group C match of the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship, North Korea stunned the defending champions Germany in a 2-0 win. It wasn’t hard to guess what whoever came up against Germany next would have a formidable task at hand, as it was unlikely the Germans would be surprised twice. Sure enough, in the next match, Germany thrashed Mexico, 9-1, producing the greatest margin of victory in the tournament’s history.

QUOTABLE: “We had the entire Empire State Building on our backs, with King Kong on top of it."
-- Columbus Crew head coach Sigi Schmid on the Crew ending their 13-game winless streak with a 1-0 victory against the New York Red Bulls.

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