CHICAGO (Tuesday, December 23, 2003) - U.S. Men’s National Team manager Bruce Arena has selected 30 players to participate in a training camp beginning January 4 at the National Training Center in Carson, Calif. The camp will culminate in the USA’s first-ever match at The Home Depot Center against 13th-ranked Denmark. Kickoff for the match is set for 12:30 p.m. PT, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN.
The 30-player camp will have a distinct MLS flavor, with 27 of the participants plying their trade in the USA’s top domestic league. Only Wade Barrett (AGF Aarhus, Denmark), Cory Gibbs (FC St. Pauli, Germany) and Robbie Russell (FC Sogndal, Norway) will represent the MNT’s foreign-based contingent.
The Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup champion Chicago Fire send five players to California, the most alongside the Kansas City Wizards. Long time national team stalwart and Fire captain Chris Armas is joined by 2003 MLS MVP finalist Ante Razov. Leading the Wizards contingent is forward Josh Wolff, who has six goals in 20 appearances for the senior national team. Chris Klein had his best year for the MNT in 2003, recording his first three goals, including the game-winning goal in the 2-1 victory in Jamaica on Feb. 12. The Los Angeles Galaxy add local flavor to the camp, contributing Kevin Hartman, Danny Califf, and Chris Albright.
The U.S. has a pair of veterans at either end of the field returning to the fold from injury. MetroStars captain Eddie Pope returns to anchor the backline, the 29-year old defender having last played for the United States in the 0-0 draw with Mexico on May 8 in Houston. Brian McBride makes his return after a cheek injury during the USA’s 2-1 loss to Brazil in the semifinal of the 2003 Gold Cup, ending the tournament in which he tallied three goals and an assist, twice earning Chevrolet Man of the Match honors. The Columbus Crew forward has tallied 23 goals for the MNT, good for third-best on the all-time list, and is one goal shy of catching New England Revolution striker Joe-Max Moore.
In addition to McBride, Pope, and Wolff, two other camp members represented the United States during their quarterfinal run at the 2002 World Cup. Crew defender Frankie Hejduk has 53 appearances for the MNT during a seven-year career, and is one of two players to play every minute of the last two Gold Cups. Colorado Rapids midfielder Pablo Mastroeni played 11 times for the U.S. in 2003, now with 25 international caps to his credit.
Nine players are in search of their debut appearance in a full national team match. The group of neophytes is led by MLS Rookie of the Year finalist Pat Noonan, and Bryan Mullan of the 2003 MLS Cup Champion San Jose Earthquakes. In addition to seeking his first cap, FC Sogndal midfielder Robbie Russell has never been called into a camp with the MNT.
After posting a 10-4-2 record in 2003, which included a third place finish at the CONCACAF Gold Cup, the United States will embark this year on the road to qualification for the 2006 World Cup in Germany. The U.S. begins CONCACAF qualifying June 13, 2004, against the winner of the home-and-away series between Grenada and Guyana, with their first match scheduled to be played in the United States. With the semifinal round slated to begin Aug. 18, the U.S. will play a series of friendlies in preparation throughout the year.
U.S. Men’s National Team Roster
|Albright, Chris||M||6'1"||185||01/14/79||7/1||Philadelphia, Pa.||Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS)|
|Armas, Chris||M||5'7"||150||08/27/72||50/2||Brentwood, N.Y.||Chicago Fire (MLS)|
|Barrett, Wade||D||5'8"||150||06/23/76||1/0||Virginia Beach, Va.||AGF Aarhus (Denmark)|
|Califf, Dan||D||6'1"||175||03/17/80||11/0||Orange, Calif.||Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS)|
|Cannon, Joe||GK||6'2"||190||01/01/75||1/0||Los Altos Hills, Calif.||Colorado Rapids (MLS)|
|Cunningham, Jeff||F||5'8"||155||08/21/76||8/0||Crystal River, Fla.||Columbus Crew (MLS)|
|Curtin, Jim||D||6'4"||205||06/23/79||0/0||Oreland, Pa.||Chicago Fire (MLS)|
|Garcia, Nick||D||5'10"||160||04/09/79||5/0||Plano, Texas||Kansas City Wizards (MLS)|
|Gibbs, Cory||D||6'3"||178||01/14/80||7/0||Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.||FC St. Pauli (Germany)|
|Hartman, Kevin||GK||6'1"||174||05/24/74||1/0||Palos Verdes, Calif.||Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS)|
|Hejduk, Frankie||D/M||5'8"||155||08/05/74||53/5||Cardiff, Calif.||Columbus Crew (MLS)|
|Klein, Chris||M||6'1"||180||01/04/76||14/3||St. Louis, Mo.||Kansas City Wizards (MLS)|
|Kotschau, Ritchie||D||5'10"||175||11/22/75||0/0||Levittown, N.Y.||Colorado Rapids (MLS)|
|Mastroeni, Pablo||D/M||5'10"||170||08/26/76||25/0||Phoenix, Ariz.||Colorado Rapids (MLS)|
|McBride, Brian||F||6'1"||170||06/19/72||72/23||Arlington Heights, Ill.||Columbus Crew (MLS)|
|Mulrooney, Richard||M/D||5'9"||160||11/03/76||12/0||Memphis, Tenn.||San Jose Earthquakes (MLS)|
|Mullan, Brian||M||5'8"||150||04/23/78||0/0||Mineola, N.Y.||San Jose Earthquakes (MLS)|
|Noonan, Pat||F||6'0"||170||08/02/80||0/0||Baldwin, Mo.||New England Revolution (MLS)|
|Olsen, Ben||M||5'8"||140||05/03/77||22/4||Middletown, Pa.||D.C. United (MLS)|
|Perez, Orlando||D||6'2"||165||07/12/77||0/0||Los Angeles, Calif.||Chicago Fire (MLS)|
|Pope, Eddie||D||6'1"||180||12/24/73||57/5||High Point, N.C.||MetroStars (MLS)|
|Ralston, Steve||M||5’9”||160||06/14/74||14/2||St. Louis, Mo.||New England Revolution (MLS)|
|Razov, Ante||F||6'1"||175||03/02/74||22/6||Whittier, Calif.||Chicago Fire (MLS)|
|Russell, Robbie||D||6'0"||180||07/16/79||0/0||Amherst, Mass.||Sogndal (Norway)|
|Talley, Carey||D||6'2"||180||08/08/76||0/0||Cordova, Tenn.||Kansas City Wizards (MLS)|
|Thornton, Zach||GK||6'3"||210||10/10/73||8/0||Edgewood, Md.||Chicago Fire (MLS)|
|Walker, Jonny||GK||6'3"||180||07/12/78||0/0||Memphis, Tenn.||MetroStars (MLS)|
|Wolff, Josh||F||5'8"||160||02/25/77||20/6||Stone Mountain, Ga.||Kansas City Wizards (MLS)|
|Wolyniec, John||F||6'1"||172||01/24/77||0/0||Staten Island, N.Y.||MetroStars (MLS)|
|Zavagnin, Kerry||M||5'10"||170||07/02/74||2/0||Plymouth, Mich.||Kansas City Wizards (MLS)|
- U.S. Men’s National Team Staff -
Head Coach: Bruce Arena (Fairfax, Va.)
Assistant Coach: Curt Onalfo (Oak Hill, Va.)
Goalkeeper Coach: Milutin Soskic (Bakersfield, Calif.)
Fitness Coach: Pierre Barrieu (Charlottesville, Va.)
General Manager: Pam Perkins (Los Angeles)
Trainers: Rick Guter (Fairfax, Va.)
Ivan Pierra (Los Angeles)
Chiropractor: George Billauer (Los Angeles)
Equipment Manager: TBD
Press Officer: Michael Kammarman (Chicago)