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U.S. Soccer Coach and Player Head to El Salvador as International Sports Envoy Program Continues

CHICAGO (May 12, 2008) – Former U.S. Women’s National Team forward Cindy Parlow and U.S. Soccer Women’s National Staff Coach Jeff Pill head to El Salvador on Monday, May 12, as International Sports Envoys. Parlow and Pill will conduct clinics on four days during the trip, which lasts until May 17, reaching out to as many as 800 children in rural and urban areas.

U.S. Soccer, in conjunction with the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, participates in the international sports initiative as a way to promote sports and spark dialogue with children from around the world.

“Anytime they have a sports envoy, I volunteer for it,” said Parlow, who traveled to Bahrain in September 2006 as a Sports Envoy, along with U.S. WNT assistant coach Phil Wheddon. “I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to Bahrain. It was a very rewarding to be able to reach so many girls and boys that never would have had this experience before and to teach them about diversity and acceptance and how, through sports, and specifically soccer, we can transcend all cultural differences and ethnic, race differences.”

During the six-day excursion, Parlow and Pill will meet with girls and boys from San Luis del Carmen, Soyapango, Texistepeque and San Salvador. During the week, they will conduct eight different clinics with 100 participants at each.

At the clinics, Parlow and Pill will not only discuss soccer, specifically, but also how playing sports can help the participants stay active and healthy throughout their life. Sports Envoys also stress the importance of hard work as it relates to soccer, as well as success and achievement in the classroom and other areas of life.

Parlow earned 158 caps for the U.S. Women’s National Team from 1996-2004, scoring 75 goals. During that time, she helped the team to win a FIFA Women’s World Cup and two Olympic gold medals.

Pill has served as U.S. Soccer’s Women’s National Staff Coach for Region I since 1999. He has been a part of U.S. Soccer since 1994 as a National Staff Instructor.

U.S. Soccer has participated in the Sports Envoy program since 2006. In that time, players and coaches traveled to Bahrain, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda. In 2007, Tiffany Roberts and Linda Hamilton traveled to the Philippines and earlier this year, Lorrie Fair and Jay Miller traveled to Morocco. Other past participants in the program include Marcelo Balboa, Glenn “Mooch” Myernick and Shannon MacMillan.