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U.S.-Mexico Countdown to Two Days

U.S. MNT Training Camp Update
Columbus, Ohio
September 1, 2005

COUNTDOWN CONTINUES: The U.S. Men’s National Team continues to close in on their titanic clash with Mexico this Saturday, Sept. 3 on MatchDay 7 of final round qualifying for the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Kickoff at sold-out Columbus Crew Stadium is set for 7:30 p.m. ET, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN Classic (7:25 p.m. ET) and Telemundo.  Fans can also follow the match live on's MatchTracker, presented by Philips Electronics.

HEADING BACK: U.S. Manager Bruce Arena has sent five players back to their clubs to allow them to play with their respective MLS club this weekend. Chad Marshall (Columbus), Justin Mapp (Chicago), Greg Vanney (Dallas), Clint Dempsey (New England) and Matt Reis (New England) will head back tomorrow, but all may still be called back after the game on Saturday for the teams next qualifier against Guatemala in Guatemala City on Wednesday, Sept. 7.

ROTATING VENUES: The U.S. team is getting to experience all that Columbus has to offer for soccer fields this week, as rain and muddy conditions forced the team onto different training sites each of the first four days.  After opening camp at Ohio State University's stadium field, heavy rains sent the team to Obetz, the training site of the Columbus Crew.  A second day of rain pushed the U.S. indoors to the OSU bubble, then clear skies and warm weather allowed the team back outdoors at OSU's training field.  U.S. Soccer thanks Ohio State University Men's Soccer Coach John Bluem and the rest of Athletic Department for their assistance and support all week.

“LA GUERRA FRIA” REMEMBERED: Four-and-a-half years later, “La Guerra Fria” is still one of the most memorable games in U.S. Men’s National Team history. How could it not be? A 2-0 U.S. victory, freezing temperatures, shivering Mexican players, a packed Crew stadium and Josh Wolff’s opening goal past Jorge Campos made it an instant classic. In this exclusive podcast, hear from current U.S. players and staff as they reminisce about where they were and what they remember about the Feb. 28, 2001, qualifier against Mexico at Columbus Crew Stadium.

U.S. central defender Oguchi Onyewu has had Saturday, Sept. 3 circled on his calendar since March 28, the day after the MNT fell to Mexico in Azteca Stadium. In that match five months ago, Gooch got his first helping of the intense rivalry and he was left with a bitter taste in his mouth after watching Mexico score twice, specifically Jared Borgetti’s opening goal. Onyewu, who will have his chance for revenge this weekend, talks about what his first Mexico meeting taught him and how he felt when he left the Azteca field in today's exclusive All_Access Video.

THE TALK BEFORE THE STORM: With the U.S.-Mexico qualifier at Columbus Crew Stadium still two days away, players from both squads have been speaking with the large media contingent that will be covering the match. Click here to read what both sides are saying about the rivalry, each other and the possibility of qualifying for the 2006 World Cup.

There has been much discussion and much reported, but here are the facts on the how's and when's the U.S. Men's National Team can qualify for the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany on Saturday, Sept. 3 when they take on Mexico.

1. WIN: The U.S. advances outright with a win.
2. TIE: Should the U.S. tie, they will need Trinidad & Tobago to win or draw against Guatemala at home AND will need Panama to win or tie at home to Costa Rica.
3. LOSE: Should the U.S. lose, they will need the TRI-GUA game to end in a draw AND will need Panama to beat Costa Rica.

Additionally, it should be noted that neither the USA or Mexico can clinch a spot in the World Cup based solely on the result of the TRI-GUA match which is set to kickoff three hours before USA-Mexico.

DID YOU KNOW?: The U.S. Men’s National Team has only allowed six goals in the 12 qualifying games they’ve played during World Cup semifinal and final round qualifying, and has not allowed a goal in four straight matches. The last goal they gave up was against Mexico in the teams’ first meeting during the final round. is the official site of U.S. Soccer, the governing body of soccer in the United States.