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U.S. Men to Begin Final Phase of World Cup Preparation on May 1 at State Capital Soccer Park in North Carolina

CHICAGO (Friday, March 22, 2002) — U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Bruce Arena confirmed today that the U.S. will begin their final preparation for the 2002 FIFA World Cup with a training camp at the State Capital Soccer Park in Cary, N.C. beginning May 1. The 10-day camp will run through May 10, before the U.S. embarks on the Nike Road to Korea with games on May 12, 16 and 19 in Washington, D.C., East Rutherford, N.J., and Foxboro, Mass.

The State Capital Soccer Park will open its doors for the first time in April and is situated on 150-plus acres of land with six large soccer fields (120 x 83 yards).  The U.S. Men will actually train on a double-wide field (120 x 170 yards) during their stay at the complex.

The facility is located just west of the Cary-Raleigh line in North Carolina and is managed by the Capital Area Soccer League (CASL) for Wake County on land leased to those entities by the State of North Carolina.  CASL has more than 12,000 registered players and is among the more respected youth programs in the country.

"Obviously this is going to be an important time for our team as we come together before the World Cup, and we feel Raleigh is going to provide an excellent environment for our preparations," said Arena.  "The facilities at the state capital soccer park are tremendous, and we look forward to a great future relationship as soccer continues to grow in the area."

The State Capital Soccer Park also features a 7,000 seat state-of-the-art soccer stadium which will officially open its doors on May 4 as the home of the Carolina Courage. The facility will also be home to 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.

"CASL is honored to have the U.S. National Team train at our brand new facility,” said CASL CEO Charlie Slagle.  “Raleigh, and the entire Triangle area, is a large and vibrant soccer community which will welcome the team with open arms. We are committed to providing the team with the proper atmosphere and environment for this very important training camp."

The “Nike Road to Korea” will include three games before the U.S. departs for World Cup.  Before playing their World Cup send-off match against Holland in Foxboro, Mass., on May 19, the U.S. will face Uruguay on May 12 at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C and then travel north to face Jamaica on May 16 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.