U.S. IMPROVE 2002 HOME MARK TO 8-0-1 WITH 2-1 WIN OVER URUGUAY: The U.S. Men’s National Team opened the "Nike Road to Korea" with a 2-1 win over World Cup bound Uruguay on Sunday at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. Tony Sanneh and DaMarcus Beasley each scored their second career goal for the U.S. in the win. The victory was the USA’s fifth of the year against teams that have qualified for the 2002 World Cup (in eight overall matches). Playing in front of a boisterous crowd of 30,413 fans, the U.S. extended its undefeated home record to 8-0-1 in 2002 and will look to continue that streak when they face Jamaica on Thursday at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. Chevrolet Man of the Match Beasley was dangerous all afternoon, recording the game-winning goal in the 40th minute. Beasley helped create the first goal, earning a corner kick with his work on the left flank. Agoos curled the ensuing free kick to the near post, where an onrushing Tony Sanneh nodded the ball just under the bar into the upper left corner of the net.
ARENA EQUALS BORA’S WIN RECORD, CAN SET U.S. MARK WITH WIN VS. JAMAICA: Bruce Arena, who entered 2002 with 22 wins, posted his eighth win of the year against Uruguay on Sunday, equaling Bora Milutinovic’s career mark of 30 wins as head coach of the U.S. MNT. Arena’s all-time record as the U.S. head coach is an impressive 30-15-13. Milutinovic finished coaching the U.S. in 1995 with a 30-35-31 record. Steve Sampson, with a career 26-22-14 record, sits third on the USA’s all-time wins list.
U.S. UNDEFEATED AGAINST JAMAICA: The U.S. has faced Jamaica 11 times in their history, and has posted an undefeated 6-0-5 record, including a 5-0-1 record in the U.S. The USA’s most recent match against Jamaica came on Oct. 7, 2001, as Joe-Max Moore scored two goals to give the U.S. a win and secure the USA’s spot in the 2002 World Cup. The win ended a four-match stretch of draws between the two teams. In all-time matches, the U.S. has outscored Jamaica 16-5.
Date - Result (Location)
July 24, 1988 - 0-0 T* (Kingston, Jamaica)
August 13, 1988 - 5-1 W* (St. Louis, Mo.)
Sept. 14, 1991 - 1-0 W (High Point, N.C.)
July 10, 1993 - 1-0 W (Dallas, Texas)
Nov. 7, 1993 - 1-0 W (Fullerton, Calif.)
Nov. 22, 1994 - 3-0 W (Kingston, Jamaica)
March 2, 1997 - 0-0 T* (Kingston, Jamaica)
October 3, 1997 - 1-1 T* (Washington, D.C.)
Sept. 8, 1999 - 2-2 T (Kingston, Jamaica)
June 16, 2001 - 0-0 T* (Kingston, Jamaica)
October 7, 2001 - 2-1 W* (Foxboro, Mass.)
*- World Cup qualifier
U.S. TOPS JAMAICA 2-1 TO QUALIFY FOR 2002 WORLD CUP: Facing a must-win situation in the final round of CONCACAF qualifying, the U.S. Men’s National Team earned a berth to the 2002 World Cup with a 2-1 win over Jamaica on October 7, 2001, at Foxboro Stadium in Foxboro, Mass. U.S. forward and Chevrolet Man of the Match Joe-Max Moore scored goals in the 4th and 81st minutes to help the U.S. to the win. In his first qualifier after a three-game absence due to suspension and a groin injury, U.S. captain Claudio Reyna sent a free kick to the far post, where Moore dove and flicked a header backwards past Jamaican goalkeeper Aaron Lawrence. Jamaica equalized 10 minutes later on a strike from midfielder James Lawrence, who collected a pass on the left side of the penalty box and beat U.S. goalkeeper Brad Friedel across the goal from 12 yards out in the 14th minute. Needing a win to stay alive in the qualification process, the U.S. got the goal it needed in the 81st minute on a penalty kick from Moore. After active U.S. forward Landon Donovan was tripped in the box by Jamaica defender Tyrone Marshall, the 30-year-old striker stepped up and drilled a low shot just inside the right post past a diving Lawrence for his 24th career international goal (second best in U.S. history). With the victory, combined with a scoreless draw between Costa Rica and Mexico in San Jose, Costa Rica, and an upset 1-0 win by Trinidad & Tobago over Honduras in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, the USA is assured of a spot in the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea with a record of 5-3-1 and 16 points after nine games.
Lineups - U.S. v Jamaica - Oct. 7, 2001
USA: 1-Brad Friedel; 22-Tony Sanneh, 3-Eddie Pope, 12-Jeff Agoos, 6-David Regis 10-Claudio Reyna (capt.), 14-Chris Armas 5-John O’Brien, 8-Earnie Stewart; 9-Joe-Max Moore (13-Cobi Jones, 86), 20-Landon Donovan.
Subs not used: 2-Steve Cherundolo, 4-Robin Fraser, 7-Jovan Kirovski, 18-Kasey Keller, 19-Manny Lagos, 21-Richie Williams.
JAM: 13-Aaron Lawrence; 16-Fabian Davis, 17-Marco McDonald (14-Tyrone Marshall, 63), 4-Linval Dixon (capt.), 24-Robert Scarlett; 6-Fitzroy Simpson, 11-Theodore Whitmore, 8-James Lawrence (12-Jermaine Johnson, 76), 15-Ricardo Gardner, 31-Onandi Lowe (22-Paul Hall, 75), 10-Ricardo Fuller.
Subs not used: 7-Winston Griffiths, 9-Andy Williams, 21-Wolde Harris, 30-Donovan Ricketts.
ARMAS OUT OF WORLD CUP: U.S. midfielder Chris Armas, one of the standout performers for the United States over the last three-and-a-half years, suffered a torn ACL in his right knee during the first half of the USA's 2-1 win against Uruguay at RFK Stadium on Sunday. The injury will force Armas to miss the 2002 FIFA World Cup. "I'm extremely disappointed for Chris," said U.S. head coach Bruce Arena. "Chris has been an outstanding performer with our team and a fine professional. We are indebted to his service to the U.S. National Team. He will certainly serve as an inspiration to his teammates this summer." A decision on a replacement is expected to take place in the next few days. The non-contact injury occurred in the 16th minute, when the Bronx, N.Y. native was tracking down Uruguay's Fabian O'Neill along the right wing. Following the match he was taken to Fair Oaks Hospital in Fairfax, Va., where an MRI revealed the tear. Armas has returned to New York, and surgery has not yet been scheduled. "I'm extremely disappointed," said Armas. "More so for my family, parents and friends who had all booked their tickets to the World Cup. It was a very odd play; a movement that I have made a thousand times. I had just planted on my right foot and I felt the knee go. In life these things happen. Right now I don't think it's fully sunk in, but I will be focusing on supporting my teammates in the World Cup." The untimely injury for one of the USA’s strongest players unbelievably means for the third time in his career, Armas will miss a major international tournament through injury (including the 1999 FIFA Confederations Cup and the 2000 Olympics). Armas led the U.S. in minutes played (1200) in 2000, tied with Jeff Agoos for the team lead in 2001 with 1170 minutes and led the team in minutes played in 2002 prior to the Uruguay match.
AGOOS SETS U.S. SOCCER RECORD WITH 119th START: With his start against Uruguay, Jeff Agoos added to his ever-increasing presence in the U.S. Soccer record book, passing Marcelo Balboa at the top of the Games Started list. Agoos has now started 119 internationals, one more than Balboa. Agoos, who has started all 11 matches he has played in this year, got his 119th start in his 128th appearance - the same number of appearances Balboa made in his legendary career. Coincidentally, Agoos and Balboa made their MNT debut together, as both started in a 1-0 loss to Guatemala on January 10, 1988 in Guatemala City. With his next international appearances, Agoos will pass Balboa to claim second-place in All-Time Games Played. Cobi Jones is the USA’s all-time leader in that category, with 154 caps heading into the match against Jamaica.
AGOOS PASSES 10,000 MINUTE BARRIER: In the 2-1 win against Uruguay, Jeff Agoos played his 10,000th minute with the U.S. Men’s National Team. Agoos became just the third MNT player to hit that mark. Agoos, who enters the match against Jamaica with 10,089 minutes played, sits in third place in all-time minutes played, behind Marcelo Balboa (10,457 minutes) and 2002 World Cup teammate Cobi Jones (10,374).
CROWDS GATHER AS U.S. MAKES WAY TO WORLD CUP: The U.S. MNT is undefeated on U.S. soil this year, and much of that impressive record is due to the support of the pro-American crowds that have greeted the U.S. throughout their first nine home matches. On Sunday - for the sixth time in 2002 - more than 30,000 fans gathered to watch the MNT play. At RFK Stadium, 30,413 fans turned up to watch Tony Sanneh and DaMarcus Beasley lead the U.S. to a 2-1 win against Uruguay. In nine home matches this year, the attendance has totaled 268,218 fans - an average of of 29,802 fans per match. The highest attendance total came when the U.S. topped Mexico 1-0 in Denver on April 3. In 2001, the U.S. played nine home matches and averaged 28,309 fans.
Date: Opponent - Venue (City, State) - Attendance
Jan. 19: Korea^ - Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.) - 42,117
Jan. 21: Cuba^ - Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.) - 31,244
Jan. 27: El Salvador^ - Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.) - 31,628
Jan. 30: Canada^ - Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.) - 7,241
Feb. 2: Costa Rica^ - Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.) - 14,432
March 2: Honduras - Safeco Field (Seattle, Wash.) - 38,534
March 10: Ecuador - Legion Field (Birmingham, Ala.) - 24,133
April 3: Mexico - Invesco Field at Mile High (Denver, Colo.) - 48,476
May 12: Uruguay - RFK Stadium (Washington, D.C.) - 30,413
^ - CONCACAF Gold Cup
URUGUAY IS USA’s EIGHTH WORLD CUP OPPONENT IN 2002: The USA’s win against Uruguay was the team’s fifth win of 2002 against teams that have qualified for the 2002 World Cup. Overall, the U.S. has posted a 5-3 record against 2002 World Cup teams, including a perfect 5-0 in home matches, where they have allowed only two goals.
Date: Opponent - Result (Location)
Jan. 19, 2002: Korea - 2-1 W (Pasadena, Calif.)
Feb. 2, 2002: Costa Rica - 2-0 W (Pasadena, Calif.)
Feb. 13, 2002: Italy - 0-1 L (Catania, Italy)
March 10, 2002: Ecuador - 1-0 W (Birmingham, Ala.)
March 27, 2002: Germany - 2-4 L (Rostock, Germany)
April 3, 2002: Mexico - 1-0 W (Denver, Colo.)
April 17, 2002: Ireland - 1-2 L (Dublin, Ireland)
May 12, 2002: Uruguay - 2-1 W (Washington, D.C.)
BOUNCING BACK: Under Bruce Arena the U.S. MNT has only lost two games in a row once, falling in three consecutive qualifiers on July 1, Sept. 1 and Sept. 5, 2001. After dropping a 1-0 decision in Mexico City on July 1, the U.S. lost 3-2 to Honduras on Sept. 1 in Washington, D.C., and then were topped by Costa Rica 2-0 in San Jose, Costa Rica, on Sept. 5.
MATHIS, MCBRIDE HIT DOUBLE FIGURES IN POINTS: Just 11 games into 2002 and already Brian McBride and Clint Mathis have hit double figures in points. Mathis has scored five goals to go along with one assist (11 goals), and McBride has recorded four goals to go along with two assists (10 points). Landon Donovan has notched three goals to go with one assist (seven points). In 2001, Earnie Stewart (five goals, 10 points) was the only U.S. player to reach double figures in points. Not since 1993 have three U.S. players reached double figures in points.
DONOVAN MATURING IN A HURRY: A teenager when 2002 began, Landon Donovan had played just nine matches and tallied only one goal before this year. Twelve games into 2002 and Donovan is the only American to play in all 12 games, starting 11, and he has scored three goals to go with one assist. Since making his debut on October 25, 2000, against Mexico, Donovan has tallied four goals and three assists in 20 matches for the MNT. His most valuable contribution to the MNT to date came in the World Cup berth-clinching win against Jamaica on Oct. 7, 2001. Donovan played a nifty one-two with Claudio Reyna and then drew a foul from Tyrone Marshall that set up Joe-Max Moore’s winning penalty kick.
THREE U.S. WORLD CUP TEAM MEMBERS WRAP UP EPL SEASONS: U.S. goalkeeper Kasey Keller lost 2-1 to his old club Leicester City on Saturday. Former Tottenham first choice Neil Sullivan was on the subs bench as Keller played all 90 minutes in his seventh straight match for Tottenham. In the last seven games, Keller posted a 2-2-3 record with a GAA of 1.14. Eddie Lewis returned to the field for Fulham, earning a start and going all 90 minutes on the left wing in Fulham’s 3-0 loss to Blackburn. The action was the first of the season with Fulham’s first team for Lewis. Claudio Reyna helped Sunderland to a 1-1 draw with Derby, and the result secured Sunderland’s spot in the Premiership in the 2002-03 season. Reyna went the entire match for Sunderland.
MEOLA APPROACHING CENTURY MARK: Tony Meola, with 98 caps, is the USA’s all-time leader in appearances for a goalkeeper and is just two appearances away from the magic century mark. Only five U.S. players have ever played in 100 international matches, and Meola would be the only U.S. goalkeeper in that exclusive club. Brad Friedel is second all-time in appearances among U.S. goalkeepers, earning 74 caps with the U.S. In addition to being the all-time goalkeeper leader in appearances, Meola is the USA’s all-time leader in wins (36) and shutouts (31). Meola shutout Mexico 1-0 on April 3 in his only appearance of 2002.
YOUNG BEASLEY: U.S. midfielder DaMarcus Beasley is the youngest player on the U.S. World Cup Team, and will still be 19 years old through the entire “Nike Road to Korea”. When the U.S. kicks off the World Cup on June 5, Beasley, will be 20 years and 12 days old. Beasley will turn 20 on May 24, the day the U.S. squad is scheduled to land in Korea. Beasley is not the youngest player to make a U.S. World Cup roster, that honor belongs to Joseph Martinelli, who was 17 years, 279 days old at the 1934 World Cup. James Brown was the youngest U.S. player ever to play in a World Cup match at 19 years, 194 days old at the 1930 World Cup in Uruguay. Brown was on the field all 270 minutes that the U.S. played in the tournament, where they reached the semifinals. Brown scored the lone goal for the U.S. in a 1-6 loss to Argentina in the semifinal.
BIRTHDAY BOYS: U.S. midfielder Eddie Lewis and goalkeeper Brad Friedel will both celebrate birthdays during the “Nike Road to Korea.” Lewis will turn 28 on May 17, and Friedel will turn 31 years old on May 18. Both birthdays fall between the match against Jamaica and the World Cup send-off match against Holland on May 19.
HOLLAND ANNOUNCES STRONG TEAM FOR U.S. WORLD CUP SEND-OFF: Holland has announced an impressive squad to face the U.S. Men’s National Team in the USA’s World Cup send-off match on May 19 at CMGI Field in Foxboro, Mass., and live on ABC at 2 p.m. ET. The Netherlands are currently ranked 9th in the FIFA world rankings and lost in penalty kicks in the semifinals of the 2000 European Championship and the 1998 World Cup. Holland failed to qualify for the 2002 FIFA World Cup after finishing in third place in a group that included Portugal and Ireland. However, the Holland team does not lack talent, and the team announced for the May 19 friendly includes Edgar Davids (Juventus), Jaap Stam (Lazio Roma) and a trio of Barcelona stars: Michael Reiziger, Philip Cocu and Frank de Boer. John O’Brien’s Ajax of Amsterdam teammate Andy van der Meyde was also named to the Holland team. Dutch strikers Patrick Kluivert (Barcelona) and Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United) were named to the original team, but have since withdrawn with injuries.
Holland's Full Men's National Team Roster - U.S. vs. Holland - May 19, 2002
Goalkeepers: Ronald Waterreus (PSV Eindhoven- Holland), Sander Westerveld (Real Sociedad - Spain);
Defenders: Frank de Boer (Barcelona - Spain), Arthur Numan (Rangers FC -Scotland), André Ooijer (PSV Eindhoven - Holland), Michael Reiziger (Barcelona - Spain), Fernando Ricksen (Rangers FC - Scotland), Jaap Stam (Lazio - Italy);
Midfielders: Phillip Cocu (Barcelona - Spain), Edgar Davids (Juventus - Italy), Denny Landzaat (Willem II - Holland), Boudewijn Zenden (Chelsea - England);
Forwards: Pierre van Hooijdonk (Feyenoord - Holland), Roy Makaay (Deportivo la Coruna - Spain), Andy van der Meyde (Ajax - Holland), Victor Sikora (Vitesse - Holland).
MEDIA BLITZ: During the "Nike Road to Korea", the U.S. Men’s Team is getting an early taste of the non-stop media focus which will greet them when they arrive in Korea next week. During the team’s 10-day training Camp in North Carolina, more than two dozen media outlets made special arrangements to cover the team and obtain advance interviews for use during the run-up to the World Cup. In addition to a media contingent in excess of 150 at RFK Stadium in D.C., more than 350 total media are expected to cover the USA’s final two matches in NY/NJ and Boston. The team appeared on Wednesday on the outdoor set of "The Today Show" with wacky weatherman Al Roker. In addition, an upcoming episode of ESPN’s "The Life" will feature Landon Donovan and the crew for E’s "Wild On..." was on-hand covering the team’s Washington, D.C. appearance for a "Wild On D.C." episode.
USMNT IN STYLE: While in Cary, N.C., members of the U.S. team posed for an upcoming fashion essay in The New York Times Sunday Magazine. Clint Mathis, Brian McBride, Brad Friedel, Kasey Keller, Landon Donovan, DaMarcus Beasley and Pablo Mastroeni were all photographed for the spread that will appear in the May 26 issue.
RAVE REVIEWS FOR SAS SOCCER PARK: After 10 days in Cary, North Carolina, the U.S. Men’s National Team wrapped up "Camp Cary" on Friday. The U.S. trained on Friday morning before departing for Washington, D.C that afternoon. Upon wrapping up their time in North Carolina, the U.S. team had nothing but kind words for the SAS Soccer Park, where the team trained for 10 days in Cary, N.C. The U.S. Men trained on a double-wide field (120 x 170 yards) during their stay at the complex. The State Capital Soccer Park also features a 7,000 seat state-of-the-art soccer stadium that serves as the home of the WUSA’s Carolina Courage and the Raleigh CASL Elite of the United Soccer Leagues’ Premier Development League (amateur Division IV). The State Capital Soccer Park is slated to host the 2003 and 2004 NCAA Women's College Cup. "Being here at this training park has been terrific," said U.S. MNT assistant coach Dave Sarachan. "When you come into a training facility you have to have a few critical components. One obviously is the playing surface. You need the infrastructure, in terms of proximity to hotels, travel, restaurants, etc. As far as all of that is concerned, things have been really outstanding."
QUOTES OF THE WEEK:
"There is no training ground in the world for this job. You can be the best club coach in the world,but you start from the ground up when you take the national team."
- Bruce Arena, on serving as a national team coach.
"When you compare us to teams like Portugal on paper, we may not match up against them individually. But we can be a better "team" than the teams we will be playing in June and that is what can make the difference for us. So individually they may have some brilliance, but as a "team" we can be better."
- Jeff Agoos, on the team’s first round chances.
"I'm extremely disappointed for Chris (Armas). Chris has been an outstanding performer with our team and a fine professional. We are indebted to his service to the U.S. national team. He will certainly serve as an inspiration to his teammates this summer."
- Bruce Arena, on the knee injury that will keep Chris Armas out of the World Cup.
"I'm extremely disappointed. More so for my family, parents and friends who had all booked their tickets to the World Cup. It was a very odd play; a movement that I have made a thousand times. I had just planted on my right foot and I felt the knee go. In life these things happen. Right now I don't think it's fully sunk in, but I will be focusing on supporting my teammates in the World Cup."
- Chris Armas, on being forced to miss the World Cup with a serious knee injury.
"I hope all of (the things he does) are obvious, because he does so much. But a person who just watches the team once or twice doesn’t understand how much work he does to shape our posture in the back. In every game people get an understanding of how many balls he wins and how easy he makes it look. He has such a high work rate. I still don’t see how people can say he’s an average player. You never have to worry with Chris. He’s as solid a player as there is. Your defensive midfielder is rarely a player who’s going to win games for you, but he can have a huge positive impact. He always seems to get it right. Personally, there’s not a better person on the team. He always has an interest in what you’re going, and if there’s something he can do for you, he’ll do it. He’s a very selfless person. We are fortunate to have some very good players on our team, and we just need to come together somehow."
- Brian McBride, on Chris Armas.
"He was one of the pioneers of the sport in this country. While I didn't get to work with him as much as I would have liked, when I asked him to help out the national team during World Cup qualifying, he made a personal sacrifice and answered the call. It was an honor to work with him."
- Bruce Arena, on former U.S. Men's National Team star Tab Ramos, who announced his retirement this week.