AND THEY'RE OFF: The U.S. Men’s National Team hit the ground running at the opening of their first training camp of 2006, with two of the first three sessions devoted to fitness. Frankie Hejduk continues to demonstrate why he is the 'Iron Man' of the full team, once again finishing with the best mark in the grueling "Beep Test" fitness evaluation. The 28-man contingent reached its full complement late Wednesday evening with the arrival of D.C. United midfielder Santino Quaranta. U.S. Manager Bruce Arena has scheduled two sessions for Friday.
ALL_ACCESS VIDEO – MEDIA DAY: A host of reporters were on hand to witness the USA's first full workout of 2006, and they were armed with the usual assortment of questions. Hear Bruce Arena's expectations for the January camp, Landon Donovan describing how he found out about the U.S. draw for the 2006 FIFA World Cup, and find out what Freddy Adu did when he got the news of his first call-up to the senior team. Welcome back to all_access video, the exclusive video content at ussoccer.com. If you missed last year's all_access video, check out the brand new "Journey to Germany" DVD, recapping the U.S. Men's National Team's remarkable run through qualifying.
FORE-TELLING THE FUTURE: With only six months remaining until the opening of the 2006 FIFA World Cup, the group of World Cup hopefuls assembled in Carson embark on a journey remarkably similar to the band that held the same aspirations back in January of 2002. The location, timing, even the number of players nearly mimics the environment those players faced four years ago. What can the fate of the '02 boys reveal about the chances for this year's crop? While the parallels exist, there are some substantial differences that surround the group vying for a spot on the Germany roster. Take a look back to four years ago and measure up the circumstances between the two units in this Center Circle extra report.
CANADA NAMES 19-MAN ROSTER FOR JAN. 22 SHOWDOWN: Canada national team boss Frank Yallop has named a 19-man roster to face the U.S. on Jan. 22 in San Diego. Yallop has recalled eight players who were part of Canada's 1-0 victory against Luxembourg last November. MLS MVP finalist Dwayne de Rosario headlines the group that will train in Carson, Calif., from Jan. 8-20 before heading to San Diego. Kickoff at Torero Stadium is set for 5 p.m. PT. Tickets ranging in price levels from $25 to $90 are currently available at ussoccer.com, at the University of San Diego’s Jenny Craig Pavilion Box Office (Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.), and by phone at 619-260-7550 (Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). Groups of 15 or more can purchase tickets through the University of San Diego by calling 619-260-7550.
Canada Roster v. USA
Goalkeepers (2): Kenny Stamatopoulos, Greg Sutton
Defenders (8): Adam Braz, Gabriel Gervais, Andre Hainault, Ante Jazic, Nevio Pizzolitto, Chris Pozniak, Marco Reda, Adrian Serioux
Midfielders (4): Patrice Bernier, Sandro Grande, Atiba Hutchinson, Patrick Leduc
Forwards (5): Stephen Ademolu, Dwayne de Rosario, Rob Friend, Ali Gerba, Will Johnson
U.S. ROSTER BREAKDOWN: For those keeping score at home, here's a bit of roster trivia:
- MLS players represent 27 of 28 players on the roster
- All 12 MLS teams have at least one player on the roster the Los Angeles Galaxy and New England Revolution each send five players
- Landon Donovan and Eddie Pope are the leading capwinners with 73 appearances each
- Seven players are in search of their first cap, three of which are goalkeepers
- At 32 years old, Eddie Pope is the elder statesman of the group. At 16 years old, Freddy Adu is the youngest
- Frankie Hejduk is the longest serving member of the national team, making his debut on Aug. 30, 1996 against El Salvador
- Heath Pearce is the most recent inductee into the Cap Club, appearing in the USA's 1-1 draw against Scotland last November
- Players from 16 different states are on the roster; California boasts the most representatives with five coming from the Golden State
FAMILY MATTERS: Two players took a walk down a different tunnel in the offseason, with Frankie Hejduk and Santino Quaranta each tying the knot with their long-time girlfriends in December. Frankie married Elissa at a New Year's Eve bash in Cincinatti, while Santino and Petrina wed Dec. 3 in Baltimore. Meantime, Eddie and Corina Pope welcomed their second child into the world on Dec. 17, daughter Viviana becoming the latest addition to the family alongside son Emilio.
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