U.S. Men's National Team Training Camp Update
July 6, 2004
THE BOYS ARE BACK IN TOWN: The U.S. Men's National Team returned to Chicago for the first time in 11 years when they rolled the ball out for training Monday evening downtown. Fifteen players went through the paces for the hour-long session, which was followed by an intense 90 minute session under warm and pleasant skies this morning. Hannover 96 forward Clint Mathis was added to the roster over the weekend, increasing the final roster total to 19 players. San Jose Earthquakes midfielder Brian Mullan arrives in Chicago later this afternoon, while teammates Landon Donovan and Brian Ching join Dallas Burn defender Cory Gibbs in traveling Thursday morning. The Polish side lands in Chicago on Thursday afternoon.
FIRE REUNION: Chicago Fire stalwarts Chris Armas and DaMarcus Beasley enjoyed getting the old crew back together, stepping on the training field with former mates Carlos Bocanegra, Zach Thornton and Josh Wolff. All five were members of the 2000 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup winning side. Bocanegra, a two-time MLS Defender of the Year, left the Fire in January to join Fulham of the English Premier League. Thornton, the current MLS all-time leading goalkeeper in victories (91), had a six-month spell at Benfica this past season. Wolff, a member of the Kansas City Wizards since 2003, remains the Fire's second all-time leading scorer (32) behind Ante Razov (76).
SOCCER HOUSE: The visit to Chicago will allow many players their first look at the home of the U.S. Soccer Federation, affectionately known as "Soccer House." The home base of the U.S.S.F. since 1991, Soccer House started as two separate mansions built in the late 1800's in Chicago's historic Prairie District. Many moviegoers have seen the inside of the building, but might not know it. To read about the history of the "home of U.S. Soccer," click here.
CLOSING IN ON 30K: Ticket sales for the USA's first match in Chicago since 1993 surpassed 27,000 as of yesterday, with tickets nearly sold out in the two highest pricing categories. Tickets for the doubleheader, which range from $28-80, can be purchased at all area Ticketmaster outlets including Coconuts stores, Hot Tix, and Tower Records or by calling 312-559-1212. Tickets are also available online at ussoccer.com. For discounted group ticket information, contact U.S. Soccer at 312-528-1290.
FIVE IN A ROW: After an uneven start to the 2004 campaign, the U.S. has been unstoppable since March. Beginning with a 1-0 shutout away to Poland, U.S. Manager Bruce Arena's first win in Europe, the USA has collected five consecutive victories, including four shutouts by four different goalkeepers. Collecting an aggregate goal advantage of 12-2 during the run, the U.S. is led in scoring by DaMarcus Beasley, who picked up three goals in the USA's 6-2 total-goal series win against Grenada in World Cup qualifying play and has four on the year.
For the latest news, updates, and photos from Chicago, log on to www.ussoccer.com