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U.S. Players & Coaches Bringing Outreach Program to the Philippines

CHICAGO (May 17, 2007) — After successfully launching the program last year, U.S. Soccer is continuing to work with the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs on a sports initiative that sends players and coaches from U.S. Soccer’s National Teams out as State Department Sports Envoys traveling abroad to conduct clinics and spark a dialogue with children from around the world.

The latest U.S. Soccer Sports Envoy team features two FIFA Women’s World Cup champions from the U.S. Women’s National Team. Tiffany Roberts earned 110 caps in a career that spanned 10 years from 1994 to 2004, earning a Women’s World Cup crown in 1999, while Linda Hamilton was a pioneer on the WNT, earning 71 from 1987 to 1995 and winning inaugural Women’s World Cup in 1991.

The two athletes will visit the Philippines from May 19-25 conducting eight different clinics for boys and girls in Manila and Iloilo.

The Department of State, in partnership with US Soccer’s International Relations Program, launched the World Cup Sports Initiative which brought 30 young soccer players from 13 countries to participate in a soccer program in Washington, DC, New York City, and Germany, June 10-24, 2006.   The International Relations Program created by U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati  helps strengthen the organization’s ties within the worldwide soccer community.

Last year, players and coaches from U.S. Soccer’s National Team program traveled to the countries of Bahrain, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda. In the program, the U.S. players and coaches conduct clinics that go beyond simple soccer drills, taking the time to showcase team-building activities that give the youth participants an opportunity to engage in dialogue with the American players and coaches. One of the important platforms of the program has seen the U.S. coaches and players emphasizing the values of teamwork, respect and leadership.

The schedule for U.S. Soccer’s representatives in the “Sports Envoy” program follows:

Dates                Country                         Participants                                         
Sept. 2006       South Africa                Glenn Myernick, Shannon MacMillan
Sept. 2006       Bahrain                        Phil Wheddon, Cindy Parlow
Oct. 2006         Nigeria                         Marcelo Balboa, Lauren Gregg
Oct. 2006         Uganda                       Curt Onalfo, Tiffany Roberts