CHICAGO (Thursday, April 11, 2002) - United States Men’s National Team head coach Bruce Arena has named his 18-player roster to face Ireland on Wednesday, April 17 in Dublin, Ireland. Kickoff at Lansdowne Road is set for 2:30 p.m. ET (8:30 p.m. local), and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and via tape delay that evening on Telemundo at 11:30 p.m. ET. Fans can also follow the action live from Ireland online via ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker, presented by Philips Electronics, beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET.
U.S. captain Claudio Reyna returns to the U.S. camp after being forced to withdraw from the March 27 match against Germany with a hamstring injury. Reyna, recently scored twice for Sunderland in a 2-1 victory over Leicester City in the English Premier League, has been capped 85 times for the U.S., who were 6-1-2 in World Cup qualifying with the New Jersey native in the line-up.
Arena will also have both Brad Friedel and Kasey Keller in camp for just the second time in 2002. Friedel has earned just one cap for the U.S. in 2002, in a 1-0 road loss to Italy on Feb. 13, while Keller has appeared in seven matches, compiling a 5-1-1 record and five shutouts.
After posting a record of 7-2-1 in 2002, the Ireland match will serve as the final test for Arena before he names the 23-man squad that will travel to Korea/Japan for the 2002 FIFA World Cup.
"The process of selecting a roster capable of competing in the World Cup began four years ago and is finally nearing a conclusion," said Arena, who with a career record of 29-14-13 is just one win from tying Bora Milutinovic for most all-time wins by a U.S. coach (30). "Every match furthers the process for us in becoming a better team, and Ireland is a very strong opponent. We will use this match to help in making some final decisions and to continue to gauge our progress as June 5 approaches."
MetorStars forward Clint Mathis has been in stellar form in 2002, scoring five goals in seven matches, including the lone tally in the USA’s 1-0 win against Mexico on April 3 in Denver. Mathis has now recorded a point in his last seven starts for the United States. Midfielder Landon Donovan is the only player to appear in all 10 matches for the U.S. this year, netting three goals and an assist, upping his consecutive games played streak to 15 games. U.S. defensive stalwart Jeff Agoos returns to the roster, after missing the match against Mexico to rest, and currently stands on 126 caps, two shy of former U.S. defender Marcelo Balboa for second all-time in U.S. Men's National Team history.
Despite a 2-3-2 lifetime record against Ireland, the U.S. are currently enjoying a three-match unbeaten run against the team, posting two wins and a draw. The last meeting came in Nike U.S. Cup 2000, with Ante Razov netting his first goal in a U.S. uniform to give the United States a 1-1 draw on June 6, 2000 in Foxboro, Mass. The match in Ireland takes place just under a decade since the U.S. last took the field at Lansdowne Road, suffering a 4-1 loss on April 29, 1992.
Ireland qualified for the 2002 FIFA World Cup by defeating Iran in a two-legged playoff, after finishing second in UEFA Group 2 ahead of perennial world power Holland. The Irish have been in impressive form this year, posting back-to-back shutout wins against Russia and Denmark. Ireland were drawn into Group D for the 2002 FIFA World Cup, alongside Germany, Cameroon and Saudi Arabia.
After Ireland, the U.S. World Cup team will convene May 1 in Cary, North Carolina for a 10-day training camp before embarking on the Nike Road to Korea.
U.S. Men's National Team Roster
|Agoos, Jeff||D||5'10"||175||05/02/68||126/4||Dallas||San Jose Earthquakes (MLS)|
|Armas, Chris||M||5'7"||150||08/27/72||44/2||Brentwood, N.Y.||Chicago Fire (MLS)|
|Berhalter, Gregg||D||6'1"||175||08/01/73||24/0||Tenafly, N.J.||Crystal Palace (England)|
|Donovan, Landon||F||5'8"||148||03/04/82||19/4||Redlands, Calif.||San Jose Earthquakes (MLS)|
|Friedel, Brad||GK||6'4"||202||05/18/71||73/0||Bay Village, Ohio||Blackburn Rovers (England)|
|Hejduk, Frankie||D/M||5'8"||155||08/05/74||37/5||Cardiff, Calif.||Bayer Leverkusen (Germany)|
|Keller, Kasey||GK||6'2"||190||11/29/69||57/0||Lacey, Wash.||Tottenham Hotspur (England)|
|Lewis, Eddie||M||5'10"||155||05/17/74||37/3||Cerritos, Calif.||Fulham FC (England)|
|Mathis, Clint||M||5'10"||170||11/25/76||18/8||Conyers, Ga.||MetroStars (MLS)|
|McBride, Brian||F||6'1"||170||06/19/72||57/18||Arlington Heights, Ill.||Columbus Crew (MLS)|
|Moore, Joe-Max||F||5'9"||150||02/23/71||94/24||Irvine, Calif.||Everton (England)|
|O'Brien, John||M||5'9"||150||08/29/77||12/1||Playa del Rey, Calif.||Ajax (Holland)|
|Pope, Eddie||D||6'1"||180||12/24/73||47/4||High Point, N.C.||D.C. United (MLS)|
|Regis, David||D||5'11"||160||12/02/68||25/0||Valenciennes, France||F.C. Metz (France)|
|Reyna, Claudio||M||5'9"||160||07/20/73||85/8||Springfield, N.J.||Sunderland (England)|
|Sanneh, Tony||D/M||6'2"||190||06/01/71||28/1||St. Paul, Minn.||F.C. Nürnberg (Germany)|
|Stewart, Earnie||M/F||5'9"||145||03/28/69||76/15||Point Arena, Calif.||NAC Breda (Holland)|
|Wolff, Josh||F||5'8"||160||02/25/77||15/4||Stone Mountain, Ga.||Chicago Fire (MLS)|
|Head Coach||Bruce Arena||Fairfax, Va.|
|Assistant Coach||Dave Sarachan||Ashburn, Va.|
|Assistant Coach||Glenn Myernick||Denver|
|Goalkeeper Coach||Milutin Soskic||Bakersfield, Calif.|
|General Manager||Pam Perkins||Evanston, Ill.|
|Director of Security||Eugene Williams||New York|
|Athletic Trainers||Dave Andrews||Seattle|
|Doctor||Bert Mandelbaum||Los Angeles|
|Chiropractor||George Billauer||Los Angeles|
|Equipment Manager||Aaron Barrett||Chicago|
|Press Officer||Michael Kammarman||Chicago|