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Canada Plays U.S. to Scoreless Draw; U.S. Clinches Group D, Face Guatemala in Semis


HERSHEY, Pa. (Tuesday, April 25, 2000) - Despite losing team captain Brian Dunseth to a red card ejection and lacking scoring punch up front, the U.S. Under-23 Men's National Team made it out of Hersheypark Stadium tonight with a hard-fought 0-0 draw, a first place finish in Group D, and a spot in the do-or-die semi-finals this Friday (April 28) versus Group E second place finisher Guatemala.

With tonight's shutout in front of a pro-U.S. crowd of 5,798, the U.S. is the only team that did not yield a goal in opening round competition of the CONCACAF 2000 Olympics Qualifying Tournament.

After their important 3-0 win over Honduras last Friday, the U.S. team came into tonight's game knowing that they could still lose by two goals and win their group.

"We came in here wanting to play in the semi-finals on Friday, and that's exactly where we are," said Coach Charles, of the team's first goal upon arrival in Hershey. "We've never been in a situation where, after one game, we're virtually already in the semi-finals. It's quite possible the team let that affect their play. We weren't as pumped up as we were this past Friday, that's for sure."

The first good scoring chance of the game came when Canadian defender Jeff Clarke laid a ball back across the box to an unmarked Paul Stalteri, who blasted it inches outside the post into the side netting in the 19th minute.

The best U.S. chance came in the 41st minute when forward Chris Albright streaked past a defender in the right side of the box and shot for the far corner. Canada goalkeeper Mike Franks dove to his right and stretched to make the save, but he gave up a short rebound. Albright's running mate Conor Casey pounced on the loose ball at the far post, but knocked it in the side netting wide of the left post under pressure from two Canada defenders.

Controversy capped the first half, when U.S. defender Brian Dunseth was fouled and then involved in a shoving match with Canada's Steve Kindel in the opening seconds of injury time. First Dunseth was given a red card for violent conduct, then Kindel received a delayed red card from El Salvador referee Neftali Recinos. The severity of the ejection means that the U.S. team captain will miss both Friday's match versus Guatemala and the match on Sunday.

"I apologized to them, and everyone on the team said 'Don't worry about it--we have Friday'," said Dunseth. "They already knew I was out for the next game for the yellow card anyway."

Even after what the officials undoubtedly hoped would be a 15-minute "cooling off" period at halftime, the the rough, choppy play picked up where the first half left off and yellow cards continued to fly out of Recinos' chest pocket. Three yellow cards, all given to Canada, were given out in the first four minutes of the second stanza.

The U.S. next faces Guatemala in the marquee match of Friday's doubleheader, and the young hopefuls' lives. Kickoff is again set for 8 p.m. (ET). With a win, the Americans will have earned themselves a trip to the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney and qualified for their sixth consecutive Olympic Games [Note: This includes when Team USA qualified for the 1980 Olympics in Moscow, but did not compete as part of the U.S. boycott]. As with tonight's game, fans can visit the U.S. Soccer website (www.us-soccer.com) to receive to-the-minute live updates of the match.

"As soon as we all got into the locker room, we just kept saying to ourselves 'Friday night, let's get it right'," said defender Chad McCarty, who also carried a yellow card into tonight's match.

In tonight's first match, Mexico left no doubt that they wanted to win Group E and improve on Sunday's draw with Guatemala. Needing to win by two goals to have a superior goal differential over Guatemala, the "Tri Colores" took care of business early, scoring in the 5th and 11th minutes for the required 2-0 advantage. Leaving nothing to chance, Mexico padded their lead with another goal before halftime in the 34th minute. With the desired result in hand, Mexico finished first and will meet Honduras in the first match of Friday's doubleheader at 5:30 p.m. (ET) at Hersheypark Stadium with a spot in Sydney on the line. The last time the two teams met was in the opening game of Preliminary Group B qualifying on April 4 in Guadalajara, in which Honduras surprised Mexico with two counter-attack goals in the first half before the home team rallied and tied the game late at 2-2.

Participants:United States Under-23 Men's National Team vs. Canada
Competition:Group D * CONCACAF 2000 Olympics Qualifying Tournament
Venue:Hersheypark Stadium (Hershey, Pa.)
Date:Tuesday, April 25, 2000 * kickoff 8 p.m. (ET)
Attendance:5,798
Weather:60 degrees - Cool, Crisp

Scoring Summary:1st2ndFinal
United States
000
Canada
000

Lineups:
USA - 18-Tim Howard; 12-Ramiro Corrales, 2-Brian Dunseth (capt.; ejected, 45), 3-Chad McCarty (4- Danny Califf, 72), 6-Steve Cherundolo; 8-John Thorrington, 5-John O'Brien, 14-Ben Olsen, 10-Peter Vagenas (15-Brian Winters, 64); 17-Conor Casey, 11-Chris Albright (16-Josh Wolff, 64).

CAN - 1-Mike Franks; 5-Steve McCauley (16-Kevan Cameron, 65), 3-Richard Hastings, 4-Kevin McKenna; 2-Jeff Clarke, 8-Robbie Aristodemo (14-Patrice Bernier, 88), 13-Jeff Skinner, 6-Jason Bent, 7-Paul Stalteri; 17-Dwayne DeRosario, 9-Steve Kindel (ejected, 45).

Statistical Summary:USACAN
Shots . . . . . . . . . .
117
Saves . . . . . . . . . .
23
Corner Kicks . . . . .
33
Fouls . . . . . . . . . .
1725
Offside . . . . . . . . .
34

Misconduct Summary:
USA
Chris Albright (caution)25,
USA
Brian Dunseth (caution)33,
USA
Brian Dunseth (ejection)46+,
CAN
Steve Kindel (ejection)46_+,
CAN
Richard Hastings (caution)46,
CAN
Jeff Clarke (caution)47,
CAN
Paul Stalteri (caution)49,
CAN
Patrice Bernier (caution)92+.


Participants:Panama Under-23 Men's National Team vs. Mexico
Competition:Group E * CONCACAF 2000 Olympics Qualifying Tournament
Venue:Hersheypark Stadium (Hershey, Pa.)
Date:Tuesday, April 25, 2000 * kickoff 5:30 p.m. (ET)
Attendance:5,798
Weather:65 degrees - Cool, Brisk

Scoring Summary:1st2ndFinal
Panama
000
Mexico
303

MEX - Rafael Marquez, (Juan Pablo Rodriguez), 5,
MEX - Alejandro Nava, (Daniel Osorno), 11,
MEX - Emilio Mora, (Daniel Osorno), 34.

Lineups:
PAN - 1-Oscar MacFarlane; 3-Luis Moreno, 4-Ubaldo Guardia, 5-Ricardo Paschal (Capt.), 6-Clovis Vergara (7-Mario Mendez, 46) ; 7-Mario Mendez (17-Anel Canales, 46), 8-Alberto Blanco, 9-Roberto Brown, 10-Alberto Zapata; 11-Victor Piggott Herrera, 14-Antonio Ortega (12-Manuel Torres, 83).

MEX - 12-Adrian Zermeno; 2-Edgar Solano, 3-Joaquin Beltran, 4-Rafeal Marquez (Capt.), 5-Gerardo Torrado; 6-Ignacio Hierro, 7-Luis Perez, 9-Alejandro Nava (15-Jesus Mendoza, 58), 10-Juan Pablo Rodriguez; 11-Daniel Osorno (13-Hector Altamirano, 46), 17-Emilio Mora (18-Cesareo Victorino, 68).

Statistical Summary:PANMEX
Shots . . . . . . . . . .
814
Saves . . . . . . . . . .
51
Corner Kicks . . . . .
64
Fouls . . . . . . . . . .
1318
Offside . . . . . . . . .
31

PAN
Luis Moreno (caution) 12,
PAN
Antonio Ortega (caution) 17,
PAN
Oscar MacFarlane (caution) 32.

United States vs. Canada
CONCACAF 2000 Olympics Qualifying Tournament * Group D

Team 1 2 Total
United States 0 0 0
Canada 0 0 0

United States

Probable Starters:
G: 18--Tim Howard
D: 12--Ramiro Corrales*
D: 2--Brian Dunseth (Capt.)* (Red card, 45')
D: 3--Chad McCarty* (-72')
D: 6--Steve Cherundolo
M: 8--John Thorrington
M: 5--John O'Brien
M: 10--Peter Vagenas (-64')
M: 14--Ben Olsen
F: 17--Conor Casey
F: 11--Chris Albright (-64')

Available Reserves:
G: 1--Adin Brown
D: 4--Danny Califf (+72')
D: 7--Eric Denton
M: 9--DaMarcus Beasley
M: 15--Brian Winters (+64')
M/F: 13--Landon Donovan
F: 16--Josh Wolff (+64')

* Player is carrying a yellow card going into match.

Canada

Probable Starters:
G: 1--Mike Franks
D: 5--Steve McCauley (-65')
D: 2--Jeff Clarke (Capt.)
D: 4--Kevin McKenna
D: 13--Jeff Skinner
M: 3--Richard Hastings
M: 8--Robbie Aristodemo (-88')
M: 6--Jason Bent*
M: 9--Steve Kindel (Red card, 45')
F: 17--Dwayne DeRosario
F: 7--Paul Stalteri*

Available Reserves:
G: 22--Lars Hirschfeld
M: 14--Patrice Bernier (+88')
F: 12--Alfredo Valente
D: 15--Marco Reda
D: 16--Kevan Cameron (+65')

Reserve (Unavailable):
M: 11--Jason Mathot (Red Card Suspension)
F: 10--Jim Brennan (Injury - Hernia)

* Player is carrying a yellow card going into match.

Match Highlights:


1st Minute: Canada kicks off.
1st Minute: Canada twice called for fouls in the left side of midfield.
4th Minute: Canada's Kindel offsides, attacking up the left wing.
5th Minute: Canada called for foul in the midfield.
Note: Neither team has had a dangerous scoring opportunity in the opening minutes of the match. Both sides are playing in the midfield and have been slow to organize their attacks.
8th Minute: Left wing, O'Brien frees Olsen, cross from endline to far side of penalty area. Casey cannot get a shot, sends the ball back into penalty area, but is cleared.
8th Minute: U.S. called for foul on right side of defense, 30 yards from goal.
10th Minute: Olsen long ball to Thorrington, keeper comes out of box and the ball bounces over him, Thorrington is pressured by defender goes to right wing, lays ball back to Vagenas whose shot from 20 yards sails wide left.
11th Minute: Dunseth to Albright, 45 yard ball on the ground. Albright sprint down right wing, disposessed in corner of box. Albright's speed is looking dangerous.
12th Minute: A Canadian attack ends when they are whistled for a foul in the box.
13th Minute: Corrales out of the back sends long ball to Casey, who goes up over defender to flick onto Albright, but keeper beats him to ball in box. Most U.S. attack is up left wing utilizing Albright.
14th Minute: Sustained attack from U.S., sparked by creative Ben Olsen play up left sideline, eventually leads to a goal kick without a shot.
16th Minute: Albright whistled offsides on right side.
17th Minute: U.S. foul on right side of midfield gives Hastings a free kick from long range. He puts the ball into the far side of the box where McKenna's header on goal is saved by Howard.
19th Minute: DeRosario on left side of Canadian midfield switches fields to Clarke on right side of box. He heads down to unmarked Stalteri, who faces no pressure and shoots from ten yards, going near post and wide right, putting the ball in the side netting. The best scoring opportunity so far.
20th Minute: U.S. gets free kick from extreme right side, about 20 yards from endline. Eventually the attack is thwarted by an offsides call in the box.
22nd Minute: Olsen takes the first corner of the game from the right side. Ball is controlled by keeper after a cross from right side that posed little threat.
24th Minute: Hastings steps forward to catch Casey offsides on nice pass from Vagenas.
25th Minute: Albright cautioned for physical play on Hastings.
25th Minute: Stalteri shot from 21 yards just wide right.
26th Minute: O'Brien's ambitious attempt from 35 yards is wide left.
26th Minute: U.S. foul in the midfield.
27th Minute: Offensive effort by Canada is ended with a foul call.
28th Minute: Combination play in midfield between Olsen and Thorrington results in Thorrington shot, well high, from 24 yards.
29th Minute: Canada called for foul on left side of midfield.
31st Minute: Though both teams have shown creative plays and penetrated the other's defense, there has yet to be a shot on goal.
32nd Minute: Dunseth cautioned for tackle about 30 yards from goal. His second card of the competition means he will not be eligible for the semifinal, should the U.S. advance. Shot off free kick is high over crossbar.
35th Minute: Consecutive passes between several U.S. players leads to U.S. corner. Vagenas's shot from 25 yards in the midfield off corner is high.
37th Minute: Corrales foul deep in right corner gives Canada a free kick. They earn a corner on the left side off U.S. clearance of resulting cross. Canada whistled for foul in box off their first corner.
41st Minute: Casey leaves ball for Albright, attacking on right side of midfield. Albright carries, gets around defender and into the box. His shot is saved, rebounded to Casey, whose first touch is a shot to near post, barely wide left under heavy pressure from the alert Canadian defender.
46th Minute: Captain Dunseth, is given a red card for getting tangled up in box and scuffling with Canada's Steve Kindel, who is also ejected. The remainder of the match will be played with ten men on each side.

HALFTIME


46th Minute: Canada's Hastings is yellow-carded for a challenge on McCarty.
47th Minute: Canada's Clarke is yellow-carded in the midfield.
48th Minute: DeRosario, carries the ball into the box and unleashes a shot from 13 yards that Howard spears. U.S. defense clears the rebound.
49th Minute: Canada's Stalteri is yellow-carded for a challenge on McCarty. This is Stalteri's second yellow of the tournament.
Note: Ben Olsen is wearing the captain's armband for the U.S. in the absense of the ejected Dunseth.
54th Minute: Chip from Albright on left side of midfield finds Casey loosely marked in box, plays the ball to himself off his chest. Hesitates before shooting low, which Mike Franks goes down and saves well.
55th Minute: Albright draws a foul just outside of penalty area. Shot is wide right.
58th Minute: DeRosario shoots from right corner of six-yard box, shot high.
60th Minute: Albright from O'Brien shoots from just inside penalty area. The low shot is saved by Franks.
63th Minute: Casey receives pass from O'Brien and carries under pressure into right corner of penalty area, but is called for a foul, ending the U.S. attack.
64th Minute: U.S. Substitutions: Wolff replaces Albright, Winters replaces Vagenas.
65th Minute: Canada Substitution: Cameron replaces McCauley.
68th Minute: Jeff Skinner, alone in the left side of the penalty area, shoot the ball right at Howard, who easily catches it.
69th Minute: This physical match has seen 21 fouls from Canada and 13 on the U.S., in addition to seven cards (two of them red).
71st Minute: Olsen gets some free space, about 25 yards from goal, and cracks a shot high, over the crossbar.
72nd Minute: U.S. Substitution: Califf replaces McCarty.
75th Minute: Neither team has put together a sustained attack in recent minutes.
80th Minute: Josh Wolff gets the ball about 9 yards from endline, inside box and his left footed shot is wide left.
84th Minute: Wolff carries from about twenty yards to the endline under pressure from defender, but cannot get a cross from the endline past the goalkeeper.
87th Minute: Olsen springs Corrales down left wing. Well-placed cross is headed out by Canada, where Olsen collects, sets-up Winters for shot from 22 yards that is deflected out of danger.
88th Minute: Canada Substitution: Bernier for Aristodemo.
92nd Minute: Bernier given yellow card for foul on Olsen.

Last Updated: End of Match.

The U.S. wins Group D with four points, Honduras advances as the second place team with three points. Canada is eliminated with one point. In Friday's semifinals, Honduras faces Group E-winner, Mexico at 5:30 p.m. ET. The U.S. faces Guatemala, the runners-up in Group E, at 8 p.m. ET. The winners of each match qualify for Sydney and face one another in Sunday's final.

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