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U.S. Paralympic Soccer Team to Hold Open Tryouts

Squad Looking to Expand Player Pool for
ParaPanAmerican Games and World Championship

CHICAGO (Jan. 24, 2007) – The U.S. National Paralympic Soccer Team will host an open tryout on Feb. 16-18 at U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.

The three-day tryout will precede the team’s first camp of the year. The upcoming year is shaping up to be a busy one for the team, with the squad competing in the ParaPanAmerican Games and the World Championship in 2007.

The tryout will serve to identify a larger player pool for the two upcoming competitions, as the ParaPanAmerican Games will take place in August, following the PanAmerican games in Rio de Janeiro. The World Championship will take place in November.

Interested athletes should email team manager Dana Schoenwetter at to receive necessary paperwork and logistical information.

To be eligible for Paralympic soccer, athletes must be ambulatory and have a diagnosis of non-progressive brain damage that is associated with motor control dysfunction such as Cerebral Palsy, traumatic brain Injury or stroke. More information about eligibility and the classification of athletes is available at

At the 2005 World Championship in Connecticut, the U.S. team finished in seventh place, qualifying them for the 2007 competition. Their ranking at the 2007 World Championship may influence the team’s qualification for the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games in China.

Paralympic soccer is played seven-a-side on a smaller field and with smaller goals than non-disabled soccer. Each team plays with seven men using the International Federation of Associated Football (FIFA) rules which have been slightly modified to accommodate the disabilities of the athletes.