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U.S. Under-17 MNT To Face Canada on Sunday, July 13 in Blaine, Minn.


Looking Ahead to Canada
U.S. Under-17 MNT
Blaine, Minnesota
July 12, 2003

BRING ON THE CANADIANS: The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team conducted its final training session this morning as it gets prepared to face its Canada in an exhibition match tomorrow (Sunday, July 13) at 7:30 p.m. CT at the National Sports Center in Blaine. The U-17s trained on the stadium field for about an hour and 15 minutes, with the field players playing a game of possession and practicing finishing on goal. Goalkeepers Phil Marfuggi and Quentin Westberg went through drills with assistant coach Jim Dinoble before getting between the posts as the field players worked on their shooting.

LOOKING FOR A SIMILAR RESULT: On Friday (July 11), the U.S. toppled Canada 2-0 in a closed match at Macalester College in St. Paul, getting goals from Corey Ashe and Brian Grazier to snag the victory. After several good chances on the Canadian goal by the U.S. in the fist 10 minutes of the second half, midfielder John DiRaimondo was able to set-up Ashe’s game winner in the 56th minute. DiRaimondo crossed in a dangerous ball from the right flank, which Guillermo Gonzalez was able to get a foot on at the near post and send it across the goalmouth. Ashe was waiting at the back post and pounced on the loose ball inside the six-yard box and buried it past Canadian goalkeeper Dan Pelc into the back of the net for the 1-0 lead. Midfielder Brian Grazier then slammed the door on any chance Canada had on sneaking out with a tie during extra time of the second half by ripping a left-footed bullet free kick over a five-man wall and into the upper left-hand corner of the goal past a lunging Pelc. The referee blew the final whistle seconds after Canada’s kickoff. The goal was Grazier’s first goal of his career with the U-17 MNT.

U.S. Under-17 MNT vs. Canada
July 11, 2003
U.S. 2 (Corey Ashe 56th, Brian Grazier 90th)
Canada 0

Lineups:

USA – 1-Phil Marfuggi; 3-Jonathan Spector, 5-Brandon Owens, 6-Chris Germani (12-Steve Curfman, 46);, 8-John DiRaimondo, 15-Corey Ashe, 7-Brian Grazier, 10-Guillermo Gonzalez (13-Jamie Watson, 70);11-Freddy Adu (Jose Gomez, 70), 4-Eddie Gaven
Subs not used: 6-Jacob Peterson, 16-Adrian Chevannes, 9-Michael Harrington

CAN – 22-Dan Pelc; 6-Myles Davis, 4-Andrew Hainault, 5-David Edgar, 2-Trevor Delpippo; 11-Marcel DeJong, 7-Tyler Rosenlund (10-Cam Wilson, 89), 13-Gabriel Seguin-Gauthner, 17-Vince Stewart; 16-Michael Luk (9-Derek Rios, 65), 12-Andrea Lombardo (14-Dan Nielson, 81).

PAST RESULTS: Besides the game at Macalester College on Friday, the U.S. U-17 MNT has faced Canada two other times in the past two years. The two teams split a two-game series in late May of 2002 at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. Canada took the first match 1-0 on May 22, while the U.S. bounced back on May 25 to get a 2-1 win as Eddie Gaven and Freddy Adu scored. In each of the three games (in 2002 and 2003) the U.S. has outshot Canada, but has struggled with finishing against their northern neighbors.

FULL ROSTERS: Here are the full rosters for both the U.S. and Canada.
U.S. Under-17 MNT Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Phil Marfuggi (West Windsor, N.J.), Quentin Westberg (Saint Cloud, France); DEFENDERS (6): Adrian Chevannes (Ft. Worth, Texas), Kyle Helton (Alpharetta, Ga.), Brandon Owens (Murrieta, Calif.), Jonathan Spector (Arlington Heights, Ill.), Chris Germani (Yardley, Pa.), Steven Curfman (Raleigh, N.C.); MIDFIELDERS (6): John DiRaimondo (St. Louis, Mo.), Corey Ashe (Virginia Beach, Va.), Eddie Gaven (MetroStars), Jose Gomez (Inglewood, Calif.), Brian Grazier (Edwardsville, Ill.), Guillermo Gonzalez (L.A. Galaxy); FORWARDS (4): Freddy Adu (Potomac, Md.), Michael Harrington (Greenville, S.C.), Jacob Peterson (Portage, Mich.), Jamie Watson (Coppell, Texas).

Canada Under-17 MNT Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Robert Giacomi, Dan Pelc; DEFENDERS (7): Trevor Delpippo, Myles Davis, Andrew Hainault, Vince Stewart, David Edgar, Rob Orefice, Graham Ramalho; MIDFIELDERS (6): Tyler Rosenlund, Derek Rios, Marcel DeJong, Michael Luk, Gabriel Seguin-Gauthier, Daniel Nielson; FORWARDS (3): Andrea Lombardo, Cam Wilson, Brad Peetoom.

JUST MISSED: Canada game within a goal of joining the U.S. as a representative from CONCACAF at the FIFA World Championship in Finland this August. Canada got off to a fast start by beating Cuba and Costa Rica in Group B of the final round of CONCACAF qualifying, but fell to Mexico 2-0 in their final game. Canada, Mexico and Costa Rica all finished atop the group with six points, but Costa Rica and Mexico finished ahead of Canada with a better goal differential. Mexico went on to beat Jamaica (the runner up in Group A behind the U.S.) to take the third and final CONCACAF spot in the World Championship. Midfielder Cam Wilson led the Canadians with three goals in two games during qualifying. Wilson is the all-time goals leader at the Junior U-17 level with eight goals.

THE NSC: The U.S.-Canada game is being played in the stadium field at the National Sports Complex in Blaine, Minn. The stadium is also the home field for the Minnesota Thunder. The complex, known as one of the finest in the nation, has hosted numerous U.S. Men's and Women's National Team games, along with events such as the U.S. Olympic Festival, The International Special Olympics, the U.S. Olympic Cycling Trials, the World Championship Cycling Trials, The North American Indigenous Games, The World Ultimate Disc Championships and the. U.S. Women's Open Bowling Championships. The outdoor stadium has an international regulation size soccer field (75 yards by 115 yards) and a 400 meter, nine-lane performance track built to international specifications.

TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE: The Minnesota Thunder front office has announced that it has sold between 6-7,000 seats for the game on Sunday and expects a walk-up that will fill the 8,500 seat stadium. Tickets are still available for U.S.-Canada U-17 game on Sunday and can be purchased by calling the Minnesota Thunder at 763-785-3668 or by visiting www.mnthunder.com.

THUNDER STAY ON TOP: The A-League Minnesota Thunder beat the Cincinnati Riverhawks 3-0 on Friday night in an important battle for first place in the Central Division. With the win, the Thunder (10-5-0, 30 points) was able to increase their lead over second place Cincinnati (8-10-0, 24).

BY THE NUMBERS:

2 -- Number of losses the U.S. team had in their last 16 matches

7; 1 -- The goals the U.S. scored and conceded at the 2003 Under-17 qualifying tournament in Guatemala

23-5-7 -- U.S. All-time Record in CONCACAF Under-17 Qualifying (prior to 1991, it was an Under-16 event)

22 -- Number of shutouts recorded by the U.S. Team since January 1, 2003

46 -- Number of games the U.S. Under-17s have played since January 1, 2003

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