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U.S. Women Attempt to Break Algarve Cup Curse; Travel to Portugal for 7th Algarve Cup from March 12-18


CHICAGO (Wednesday, February 16, 2000) - The U.S. Women's National Team will attempt to break a strange and frustrating run of disappointment at the Algarve Cup when new Head Coach April Heinrichs leads the team to Portugal for the USA's sixth attempt at winning the eight-team international tournament. Heinrichs has invited 29 players to a training camp in Orlando, Fla., from March 2-6, from which she will choose her 18-player Algarve Cup roster. The USA will depart for Europe on March 7.

The 2000 Algarve Cup will run from March 12-18 and features four countries that will be participating in the 2000 Olympic Women's Soccer competition this fall. For this year's Algarve Cup, 1999 Women's World Cup participants Canada, China, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the USA join Finland and host Portugal in one of the most competitive international women's soccer events outside of the Women's World Cup and the Olympics. The tournament is played in the Algarve region of Portugal on the southern tip of the country.

The eight teams will be split into two groups of four, with first-round play consisting of round-robin matches within the group. The USA was drawn into Group A with Sweden, host Portugal and 1999 Women's World Cup opener opponent Denmark. Group B consists of China, Norway, Canada and Finland. At the end of round-robin play within the groups, the group winners will play for the championship. The two second-place group finishers will play for third place, the third-place finishers for fifth and the last-place finishers will play for seventh.

The USA will open the Algarve Cup on Sunday, March 12 against Portugal, face Denmark on Tuesday, March 14 and finish first-round play with Sweden on Thursday, March 16. The placement games will take place on Saturday, March 18, making for a grueling schedule of four games in seven days, but also could feature the first meeting between the USA and China since the historic 1999 Women's World Cup Final.

The U.S. team has found little success in its five previous trips to the tournament, which has been held in Portugal in six of its seven years of existence, coming home empty-handed from all five tournaments. At last year's Algarve Cup, the USA came from behind to defeat Norway, 2-1, in group play, but fell to China by the same score in the championship game. At the 1998 Algarve Cup, the USA came into its final first-round game against Norway needing a win, a tie or a loss by less than three goals to make the championship game. Instead, Norway shocked the USA, 4-1, handing the Americans their only loss of the year.

In 1993, the USA finished fourth at a six-team tournament held in Agai, Cyprus, defeating Denmark, but losing to both Germany and Norway by 1-0 scores. In 1994, the Americans took second in the six-team event held for the first time in Portugal, defeating Portugal and Sweden before falling in the championship game to Norway, 1-0. In 1995, the U.S. finished fourth again, this time in an expanded eight-team field, defeating Finland and Portugal, before losing to Denmark 2-0. The U.S. then lost to Norway in a penalty kick shootout, 4-2, after tying 3-3 during regulation time in the match for 3rd place. The USA did not participate in the 1995 and 1996 tournaments due to preparation for the Olympics.

The Americans have a 4-0-0 overall record vs. Portugal, with two wins coming at previous Algarve Cups and two coming in Florida in January of 1999. The USA is 9-1-3 against Sweden, but none of those wins have been by more than three goals, six have been by two goals or less and the last two meetings have ended in draws, including a 1-1 tie at last year's tournament. The USA is 7-3-1 all-time against the Danes, including a rousing 3-0 victory in the opening game of the 1999 Women's World Cup at Giants Stadium.

7th Algarve Cup Tournament Schedule -- 2000
TeamsVenueLocal TimeET
Sunday, March 12
USA vs. PortugalSilves2:00 p.m.9:00 a.m.
Sweden vs. DenmarkSilves4:30 p.m.11:30 a.m.
China vs. CanadaLagoa2:00 p.m.9:00 a.m.
Norway vs. FinlandLagoa4:30 p.m.11:30 a.m.
Tuesday, March 14
USA vs. DenmarkFaro6:30 p.m.1:30 p.m.
Sweden vs. PortugalFaro9:00 p.m.4:00 p.m.
China vs. FinlandAlbufeira2:00 p.m.9:00 a.m.
Norway vs. CanadaAlbufeira4:30 p.m.11:30 a.m.
Thursday, March 16
USA vs. SwedenLagos2:00 p.m.9:00 a.m.
Denmark vs. PortugalLagos4:30 p.m.11:30 a.m.
China vs. NorwayPortimao2:00 p.m.9:00 a.m.
Canada vs. FinlandPortimao4:30 p.m.11:30 a.m.
Saturday, March 18
7th Place: 4th Group A vs. 4th Group BTBD10:30 a.m.5:30 a.m.
5th Place: 3rd Group A vs. 3rd Group BOlhao10:30 a.m.5:30 a.m.
3rd Place: 2nd Group A vs. 2nd Group BQuarteira10:30 a.m.5:30 a.m.
Championship: 1st Group A vs. 1st Group BLoulé4:00 p.m.11:00 a.m.

U.S Women's National Team Roster 
Pre-Algarve Cup Training Camp, Orlando, Florida
PlayerPos.Ht.Wt.D.O.B.HometownCollegeCaps/Goals
Akers, MichelleM5-101502/1/66Orlando, Fla.Central Florida147/104
Beene, LakeysiaGK5-81353/9/78Gold River, Calif.Notre Dame3/0
Branam, JenGK5-715510/08/80Placentia, Calif.North Carolina0/0
Bush, SusanF5-412011/10/80Houston, Tex.North Carolina7/1
Chastain, BrandiD5-71357/21/68San Jose, Calif.Santa Clara107/21
Fair, LorrieD5-31308/5/78Los Altos, Calif.North Carolina53/1
Fawcett, JoyD5-51302/8/68Hunt. Beach, Calif.UC Berkeley154/21
French, MichelleD5-41351/27/77Kent, Wash.Portland7/0
Foudy, JulieM5-61301/23/71Mission Viejo, Calif.Stanford167/32
Hamm, MiaF5-51303/17/72Chapel Hill, N.C.North Carolina184/115
Kluegal, JenaM5-312511/2/79Mahtomedi, Minn.North Carolina1/0
Lilly, KristineM5-41257/22/71Wilton, Conn.North Carolina192/82
MacMillan, ShannonF5-513510/7/74Escondido, Calif.Portland91/22
Milbrett, TiffenyF5-212510/23/72Portland, Ore.Portland129/68
Mullinix, SiriGK5-81455/22/78Greensboro, N.C.North Carolina2/0
Oleksiuk, EmilyGK5-1015512/10/80Willow Grove, Pa.Penn State0/0
Overbeck, CarlaD5-71255/9/68Chapel Hill, N.C.North Carolina157/7
Parlow, CindyF5-111455/08/78Memphis, Tenn.North Carolina67/26
Pearce, ChristieD5-61406/24/75Point Pleasant, N.J.Monmouth55/2
Scurry, BrianaGK5-81459/7/71Dayton, Minn.UMass99/0
Serlenga, NikkiM5-41206/20/78San Diego, Calif.Santa Clara2/1
Slaton, DanielleD5-61356/10/80San Jose, Calif.Santa Clara5/0
Sobrero, KateD5-91408/23/76Bloomfield Hills, Mich.Notre Dame34/0
Solo, HopeGK5-91407/30/81Richland, Wash.Washington0/0
Venturini, TishaM5-61253/3/73Modesto, Calif.North Carolina129/43
Wagner, AlyM5-51208/10/80San Jose, Calif.Santa Clara11/2
Webber, SaskiaGK5-91456/13/71Princeton, N.J.Rutgers29/0
Welsh, ChristieF5-101552/27/81Massapequa Park, N.Y.Penn State4/2
Whalen, SaraD5-51304/28/76Greenlawn, N.Y.UConn43/3

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