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U.S. Soccer Wire - September 11, 2006


Chicago Fire, Los Angeles Galaxy in Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Final;
U.S. WNT Set For Match Against Mexico on Wednesday, Sept. 13

CHICAGO, LOS ANGELES FACE OFF IN 2006 LAMAR HUNT U.S. OPEN CUP FINAL: The defending Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Champion Los Angeles Galaxy will face the three-time champion Chicago Fire in the 2006 U.S. Open Cup final at 7 p.m. CT on Wednesday, Sept. 27, at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill. Los Angeles defeated the Houston Dynamo, 3-1, on Wednesday night while the Fire posted a 3-0 victory against D.C. United to earn a berth in the tournament final, which will be broadcast live on Fox Soccer Channel. This will mark the first time Chicago and Los Angeles meet in an Open Cup final, although the teams have previously faced each other three times in tournament history, all three times in the semifinals. Each time, the winner of that match went on to win the Open Cup title, with the Fire coming away with wins in 2000 and 2003, while the Galaxy was victorious in 2001. Chicago also had their named etched on the Dewar Cup in 1998 and the Galaxy in 2005. A complete schedule, including semifinals results, is available at ussoccer.com's Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup homepage.

WNT ROSTER SET FOR MEXICO CLASH: U.S. Women’s National Team head coach Greg Ryan has named the 18-player roster that will face long-time rival Mexico on Sept. 13 at PAETEC Park in Rochester, N.Y. The match will kick off in primetime at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2 (tickets) as Rochester native Abby Wambach returns home. Fans can also follow the action on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. This will be the first meeting between the USA and Mexico since October 2005 when the USA won 3-0 in Charleston, S.C. Wambach scored two goals in that game and Kristine Lilly bagged one. The match in Rochester will be the 17th meeting between the teams all-time, but the 13th meeting since 2000. Wambach is tied for the team lead in goals in 2006 with Lilly as both have eight a piece. Hawaiian forward Natasha Kai is the third-leading scorer this year with five goals. Tickets are on sale at all Rochester area Ticketmaster outlets (including Kaufmann’s and Ticket Express), at PAETEC Park’s Main Box Office (Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) and by phone at 585-232-1900. Groups of 12 or more can purchase tickets by calling 312-528-1290 or visiting ussoccer.com.

WNT Roster By Postion - USA vs. Mexico - Sept. 13, 2006
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.), Stephanie Lopez (Elk Grove, Calif.), Heather Mitts (Cincinnati, Ohio), Christie Rampone (Point Pleasant, N.J.);
MIDFIELDERS (5): Angela Hucles (Virginia Beach, Va.), Carli Lloyd (Delran, N.J.), Marci Miller (St. Charles, Ill.), 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.).


– 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 start at $15 and are on sale 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 are available 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 10-0-3 record, including four consecutive victories on domestic soil over Sweden, Ireland, Canada and China by a combined 14-3 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, 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.S. U-17S WIN TWO, DROP ONE AT NIKE NATIONAL TEAM FRIENDLIES: The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team competed in the Nike National Team Friendlies along with Brazil, Mexico and Portugal from Sept. 7-10 on the Nike Campus in Beaverton, Ore. The USA dropped the first match to Brazil, 3-0, but came back strong for a 2-0 win against Mexico. Sheanon Williams scored the first goal for the U.S. in the 21st minute, with Mykell Bates heading home the insurance goal in the 58th minute. Bates would go on to score two more goals in the following match, a 4-2 win against Portugal. Williams also scored against Portugal, converting a penalty kick, and Danny Barrera put home the fourth goal one minute before halftime.

U.S. U-17 MNT Nike National Team Friendlies Results
Date       Opponent    Result    U.S. Goal Scorer (s)
Sept. 7    Brazil            0-3 L     --
Sept. 8    Mexico         2-0 W    Sheanon Williams, Mykell Bates
Sept. 10  Portugal       4-2 W     Mykell Bates (2), Sheanon Williams, Danny Barrera


– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –

U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION OPENS 2007 GRANTS PROGRAM APPLICATION PROCESS: The grant application process for the U.S. Soccer Foundation's 2007 Annual Grants Program is open from now until Nov. 22 at ussoccerfoundation.org. With the exception of its All Conditions Fields Grants, the Foundation’s 2007 Grants will be focused exclusively on projects and programs that develop players, referees, and coaches in economically disadvantaged urban areas. The Foundation’s All Conditions Fields Grants will continue to be available to projects serving all types of communities, with priority given to those All Conditions Fields projects serving players in economically disadvantaged urban areas. More information about the grants is available at ussoccerfoundation.org/grants.

U.S. Soccer Foundation Important Dates
Sept. 8 2007 Annual Grants Program Online Registration Commences
Nov. 22 Deadline to Submit Completed Application by 5 p.m. ET


USL FIRST DIVISION PLAYOFFS KICK OFF FRIDAY: The Charleston Battery will face the Puerto Rico Islanders while the Vancouver Whitecaps take on Miami FC in the first round of the USL First Division playoffs on Friday, Sept. 15. The Rochester Raging Rhinos and Montreal Impact each earned a bye and will face the first-round winners in the semifinals the following week. Montreal's bye stemmed from winning the regular season title with 51 points, one point ahead of second-place Rochester.

CONCACAF BEACH SOCCER CHAMPIONSHIP KICKS OFF WEDNESDAY: The 2006 CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship kicks off Wednesday, Sept. 13, at Punta Leona in Puntarenas, Costa Rica. The tournament will last through Sept. 17, serving as qualification for the 2006 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup which takes place on Nov. 2-12 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The top two finishers will earn a berth at the Beach Soccer World Cup. U.S. Beach Soccer head coach Roberto Cecilian has named a 12-man roster for the five-team tournament, which includes Canada, Costa Rica, Jamaica and Mexico. The roster includes defender Zak Ibsen, who earned 15 caps for the full U.S. Men's National Team from 1992-1998.

U.S. Beach Soccer Roster - CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship
Goalkeepers (2): Bayard Elfvin, Luis Montanez;
Defenders: Francis Farberoff, Joshua Hill, Zak Ibsen, Austin Roman, Brendon Taguinod;
Attackers: Benyam Astorga, Anthony Chimienti, Yuri Morales, Ronald Silva, Raphael Xexeo.


*** “CENTER CIRCLE” SPOTLIGHT ***

PEAK PERFORMER: Fulham's first three road points of the year were colored in red, white and blue as former U.S. international Brian McBride provided a goal and an assist in the Cottagers 2-1 come-from-behind win away to Newcastle. McBride knotted the score in the 82nd minute, getting on the end of a Wayne Routledge cross to fire one home past Ireland international Shay Given. Just two more minutes before full time it was another Routledge-McBride combo that set up the game-winner when the American striker's header off a well delivered corner would be denied by Given, only to see the rebound fall to the feet of U.S. international defender Carlos Bocanegra. The second-half substitute made no mistake, extending Fulham's unbeaten run at St. James Park to three matches in as many years.

MARQUEE MATCHUP: The U.S. Women’s National Team heads to the brand new PAETEC Park in Rochester, N.Y., on Wednesday to face long-time rival Mexico at 8 p.m. ET, live on ESPN2. It will be the fifth home game of the year for the U.S. WNT as they prepare for the 2006 CONCACAF Gold Cup in November, which will serve as qualification for the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup in China.

SOCCER SHOCKER: The Colorado Rapids have given substance to the idiom 'when it rains it pours,' establishing a lead in one of least desirable categories on the stats sheet. The 4-1 loss to Kansas City this past weekend marked the fifth time Colorado has surrendered four goals or more this season, by far the most in the league. Despite surrendering a league-high 41 goals thus far, the Rapids still hold onto the fourth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference with six games remaining in their regular season schedule.

QUOTABLE: “He should stop in Las Vegas on the way home...It just rolled into his path, and he finished it well."
-- U.S. MNT and Los Angeles Galaxy forward Landon Donovan on Houston Dynamo forward Dwayne DeRosario’s game-winning goal in Houston’s 2-1 win against the Galaxy on Sunday, Sept. 10.

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