U.S. Men’s First Ever International Match at SAS Soccer Park;
USA to Use Facility as Base Training Camp Prior to 2006 World Cup
CHICAGO (February 21, 2006) – The U.S. Men’s National Team will continue its 2006 World Cup preparations with a match against Jamaica on Tuesday, April 11, at SAS Park in Cary, N.C. Kickoff for the game is at 7 p.m. ET and will be broadcast live on ESPN2. Fans can also follow the match at ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker.
The match will occur just under a month before the team begins to use the Cary facility as their base training camp prior to the 2006 FIFA World Cup. The team will begin final preparations for Germany on May 9 in Cary, and will train for approximately two weeks at the facility.
"The match in Cary is our last game before we make our final decisions on the World Cup roster, so it is obviously an important one for us," said U.S. Manager Bruce Arena. "With our World Cup training camp scheduled here in May and the great success that we had in Cary in advance of the 2002 World Cup, it is great to schedule an actual international game for the fans in the area. We are very comfortable with facilities at SAS Soccer Park and are looking forward to the match."
Tickets for the game go on sale starting Friday, March 3, at 10 a.m. ET on-line at ussoccer.com, at all Cary and Raleigh Ticketmaster outlets (including Hechts, FYE, and Publix Stores) and by phone at 919-834-4000. Groups of 15 or more can purchase tickets by calling 312-528-1290 beginning Friday, March 3, at 10 a.m. ET.
The U.S. MNT has played five games in three different locations in North Carolina, amassing a 3-1-1 record (all between 1990-94), but has never played an international match at SAS Soccer Park. However, Arena and the players are familiar with the facility at Cary, as it was the USA’s base of operations prior to the 2002 FIFA World Cup in Korea/Japan when the team played a friendly at SAS Soccer Park against the Richmond Kickers.
The U.S. is undefeated in 15 meetings with Jamaica, holding an 8-0-7 record against the Reggae Boyz. Most recently, the U.S. defeated Jamaica 3-1 in the 2005 CONCACAF Gold Cup. The teams also met during the semifinal round of World Cup qualifying in 2004 with matches ending in 1-1 draws. While never dropping a match to Jamaica, there have been a number of close match-ups with five of the eight victories coming by just one goal.
Currently ranked sixth in the FIFA World Rankings, the U.S. opened their 2006 campaign with a 0-0 draw against Canada in San Diego, before snagging victories over Norway (5-0) in Carson, Japan (3-2) in San Francisco and Guatemala (4-0) in Frisco, Texas.
Before their meeting with Jamaica, the U.S. will venture to Germany for their next two matches. The U.S. will face Poland on Wednesday, March 1, at Fritz-Walter-Stadion in Kaiserslautern (tickets), the site of the USA’s highly anticipated FIFA World Cup match against Italy on June 17. Kickoff for the match is at 2 p.m. ET and will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and delayed on Telemundo.
The U.S. will return three weeks later to face Germany on Wednesday, March 22, at Westfalenstadion in Dortmund. Kickoff for the match is at 2:25 p.m. ET and will be televised live on ESPN2 and delayed on Telemundo. Fans can also follow both matches in Germany live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker.
The USA was drawn into Group E for the 2006 FIFA World Cup along with the Czech Republic, Ghana, and Italy. The U.S. plays their opening match against the Czechs on June 12 in Gelsenkirchen before meeting Italy and then finishing off group play against Ghana on June 22 in Nuremberg. The U.S. has chosen the northern port city of Hamburg as their base of operations throughout the tournament.
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