CHICAGO (October 9, 2007) — U.S. Men's National Team head coach Bob Bradley has named 21 players to the initial roster that will train in Europe in advance of the team’s international match against Switzerland. Kickoff against the co-hosts of the 2008 European Championship is set for Wednesday, Oct. 17 at 8:30 p.m. local time (2:30 p.m. ET) at St. Jakob's Park in Basel, and the match will be broadcast live on Fox Soccer Channel and Galavision. Fans can also follow the match live on ussoccer.com's MatchTracker.
The U.S. team will begin gathering for training on Wednesday (Oct. 10) in Yverdon-les-Bains, and will move on Oct. 15 to Basel. The final roster for the Switzerland match will be named following next weekend’s league competitions.
"This is a great opportunity to gather many of our European-based players to have some quality time together, with the reward at the end of it being a match against a very good Switzerland team,” said Bradley. “We are continuing to develop our team as World Cup qualifying approaches, and this week gives us another good chance to integrate more players into our system.”
The training camp roster holds eight players from the 2007 Gold Cup championship team this summer, led by team captain Carlos Bocanegra. Glasgow Rangers midfielder DaMarcus Beasley posted three goals in the tournament, and his nine total points are second-highest for the U.S. this year. Bocanegra and his Fulham teammate, Clint Dempsey, scored in the USA’s thrilling 4-2 loss to Brazil last month in Chicago.
Derby County midfielder Eddie Lewis and Reading FC goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann return to the U.S. fold for the first time since the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Lewis is the leading capwinner on the roster with 73 appearances for the United States, including starts in two matches in Germany in the summer of 2006.
While eight players in camp have one cap or less, they boast plenty of experience at the youth international level. Six players were part of the USA’s FIFA U-20 World Cup team that advanced to the quarterfinals in Canada this past summer, with four players – Freddy Adu, Michael Bradley, Danny Szetela and Sal Zizzo – starting all five matches. Both Adu and Szetela had three goals in the tournament, while Bradley scored the game-winner in overtime against Uruguay that put the U.S. through to the quarterfinals.
Switzerland finished in first place in Group G of the 2006 FIFA World Cup, ahead of eventual runners up France. Falling to Ukraine in the Round of 16 in penalties after a 0-0 draw in regulation time, the Swiss became the first team in World Cup history to be eliminated from the tournament without surrendering a single goal.
The U.S. will be searching for their first-ever victory against Switzerland, with a lifetime record of 0-3-3. This is the USA’s third visit to the country, the most recent trip a 2-1 loss on June 2, 1990 in St. Gallen. The most memorable meeting took place in the teams’ opening match of the 1994 World Cup on June 18 in Detroit, when Eric Wynalda’s free kick goal just before halftime secured a crucial point that would eventually allow the U.S. to advance to the knockout phase before being eliminated by Brazil.
The U.S. will complete its 2007 schedule when they make their first-ever trip to South Africa when they take on the 2010 FIFA World Cup hosts on Nov. 17 in Johannesburg as part of the Nelson Mandela Challenge Cup. Kickoff at Ellis Park Stadium, which will host one World Cup semifinal match in 2010, is set for 4 p.m. local time (9 a.m. ET), with the television schedule yet to be determined. Fans can follow the match live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker.
|ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS (3): Marcus Hahnemann (Reading FC), Tally Hall (Esbjerg), Chris Seitz (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (7): Carlos Bocanegra (Fulham FC), Steve Cherundolo (Hannover 96), Dan Califf (Aalborg BK), Jay Demerit (Watford FC), Oguchi Onyewu (Standard de Liege), Heath Pearce (Hansa Rostock), Steve Purdy (1860 Munich)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Freddy Adu (SL Benfica), DaMarcus Beasley (Glasgow Rangers), Michael Bradley (SC Heerenveen), Maurice Edu (Toronto FC), Benny Feilhaber (Derby County), Eddie Lewis (Derby County), Danny Szetela (Racing Santander)
FORWARDS (4): Clint Dempsey (Fulham FC), Robbie Findley (Real Salt Lake), Preston Zimmerman (Hamburger SV), Sal Zizzo (Hannover 96)