DeROSARIO GOAL IN OVERTIME HELPS SAN JOSE TO FIRST MLS TITLE IN COLUMBUS: A sudden-death overtime goal from forward Dwayne DeRosario gave the San Jose Earthquakes their first Major League Soccer championship in team history after they defeated the Los Angeles Galaxy 2-1 in MLS Cup 2001 on Sunday afternoon at Columbus Crew Stadium. The 2-1 comeback win was the first time the Earthquakes had come from behind in a match all season, having previously gone 0-8-2 in matches in which they allowed the first goal (including the post-season). It was the second time in MLS Cup history that the title game needed an overtime session to decide the winner. D.C. United won the inaugural MLS championship in 1996 with a "Golden Goal" from defender Eddie Pope at Foxboro Stadium. The goal was scored by DeRosario in the sixth minute of overtime (96th minute). With the overtime proceeding at a cautious pace with neither team over-committing in attack due to the high stakes, the game-winning goal came off a brilliant individual effort from the Canadian international and first-year player in MLS. DeRosario, who entered the match with five minutes remaining in regulation after coming on for starting forward Ronald Cerritos, controlled the ball at the left corner of the Galaxy box. With Los Angeles defender Danny Califf facing him, DeRosario sidestepped his opponent and converged toward the center of the box, curling a right-footed shot from the top of the box which hit the far right post and entered the net, beating outstretched Galaxy goalkeeper Kevin Hartman.
L.A. LOOKING FOR REDEMPTION IN OPEN CUP FINAL SAT. LIVE ON FOX SPORTS WORLD: Fresh off their third defeat in as many MLS Cup games, the Los Angeles Galaxy will be searching extra hard to win that elusive first domestic championship when they meet the New England Revolution on Saturday (Oct. 27) in the 2001 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Final. The Oct. 27 championship match will be played at Titan Stadium, on the campus of Cal State Fullerton, in Fullerton, Calif., and will be televised live at 2 p.m. PT (5 p.m. ET) on Fox Sports World and Fox Sports World Español. The Galaxy-Revs showdown will crown a new Open Cup Champion as both MLS squads are making their first appearance in the tournament final. Los Angeles earned their berth to the 2001 final after battling to a hard fought 1-0 semifinal victory in sudden-death overtime over last year's Open Cup Champion Chicago Fire on August 22 in Fullerton, Calif. In the other semifinal, the surprising New England Revolution blanked the 1996 U.S. Open Cup champion D.C. United 2-0 at Foxboro Stadium on Aug. 22, where the team played four straight matches en route to the final. Tickets for the 2001 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Final are priced at $30 for VIP Midfield, $20 for West Sideline Bleachers and $15 East Sidelines and are available through the Cal State Fullerton Athletic Department at 714-CSU-CSUF (714-278-2783). New England fans can also purchase tickets through the Revolution by calling 508-384-9143.
SIGN UP AT WWW.USSOCCERFAN.COM FOR PRIORITY WORLD CUP 2002 TICKET LIST: As a member of ussoccerfan.com, soccer fans can receive exclusive information and other offers available only to U.S. Soccer's registered on-line fan base. For the first time ever, FIFA has complete control over ticketing and has not delegated the ticket sales to an international Tour Operator Program, instead opting to supply the maximum number of tickets to the domestic and international public. The ticket number for fans in the United States has not yet been determined. FIFA has stated there will be approximately 3.2 million tickets available for sale, with those numbers being broken down as follows: a) 1.5 million tickets to be sold in Korea and Japan; b) 1.5 million tickets to be sold internationally (with 880,000 being distributed to the public), with a majority of those going to the 30 finalists; c) 620,000 to be distributed to FIFA partners and Host Broadcast Services;
and d) 200,000 tickets to be distributed to FIFA Executives, officials, media personnel and other guests.
U.S. MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM UPDATE
UPDATE ON U.S. MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM PLAYERS IN THE UK: U.S. goalkeeper Brad Friedel earned high praise in Blackburn's 3-3 draw away to Arsenal. Friedel has started all 10 league matches for Blackburn, posting a 1.40 goals against average. Both Kasey Keller and Joe-Max Moore watched from the bench as their sides picked up victories against Newcastle and Aston Villa respectively. In the First Division, Jovan Kirovski scored his second goal in four games, netting the game-winner in the 79th minute to lead Crystal Palace to their third straight shutout victory. Kirovski now has three goals on the year in 11 appearances for Palace. Fellow American international Gregg Berhalter did not appear in the match. To the north, U.S. captain Claudio Reyna started his fourth straight match for Rangers since returning from injury, playing the first 45 minutes in the Light Blues 2-0 victory against St. Johnstone. Rangers remain seven points behind league leaders Celtic in the SPL table.
GERMANY UPDATE: In Germany, the continuing story in the Bundesliga is the surprising play of defender Cory Gibbs. Gibbs has earned a regular place in the first team, starting and going the full 90 in the last five matches for FC St. Pauli. The side were 4-0 winners against Energie Cottbus on the weekend, their first victory in the 2001-02 campaign. Tony Sanneh came off injured after 27 minutes, as FC Nurnberg dropped their eighth match of the season, falling 2-1 to Borussia MG. Frankie Hejduk remained off the Bayer Leverkusen team sheet, failing to make an appearance thus far this season. In the Second Bundesliga, Steve Cherundolo has started every match for Hannover 96, his side unbeaten in 11 matches in all competitions this year. Cherundolo manned the right back position this weekend as Hannover drew 2-2 away to SSV Reutlingen.
THE REST OF EUROPE: In the Dutch Eridevisie, John O'Brien started his fourth straight match for Ajax as the Amsterdam club drew 0-0 away to FC Copenhagen midweek in the second round of UEFA Cup. Ajax have put together a 12-match unbeaten run in all competitions, their only loss of the season coming at the hands of Celtic in Champions League qualifying play Aug. 7. Earnie Stewart returned to the starting lineup for NAC Breda, his side falling 1-0 to Vitesse. Stewart has appeared in all nine of NAC Breda's matches this season, seven times as a starter. And in France, U.S. defender David Regis was sent off in the 90th minute as FC Metz was held scoreless for the eight time this season, falling 1-0 away to Bordeaux.
CASEY LOANED TO SECOND DIVISION HANNOVER FOR REMAINDER OF SEASON: Borussia Dortmund has loaned out Conor Casey to second-division Hannover for the remainder of the 2001-02 season. Casey signed with the Bundesliga power following his performance at the 2000 Olympics, where he started all six matches for the U.S. team that finished fourth. The 20-year-old Denver, Colo., native has yet to crack the full-side for Dortmund, although he was on the substitutes bench for Dortmund's midweek Champions League match. While playing for Dortmund's amateur team in the German Oberliga (Fourth Division), Casey has already tallied an amazing 12 goals. Hannover also features U.S. National Team member Steve Cherundolo, who was a teammate of Casey's on the U.S. Under-23 team that qualified for the Sydney Olympics. Hannover is fighting for promotion to the Bundesliga and currently sits in second place in the Bundesliga 2.
U.S. WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAM UPDATE
DEFENDER AUGUSTYNIAK REPLACES MITTS ON WNT TRAINING CAMP ROSTER: Atlanta Beat defender Nancy Augustyniak has been added to the U.S. Women's National Team's 20-player roster for the training camp that begins tomorrow (Oct. 23) and runs through Oct. 31 at Arco Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif. Augustyniak replaces Philadelphia Charge defender Heather Mitts, who was ruled out of the camp due to a knee injury. This marks the first national team call-up for Augustyniak, who played in 21 of the Beat's 23 matches this season. She started 17 of those matches and notched three assists in the regular season.
AROUND THE U.S. SOCCER NATION
SAUDIS EARN THIRD TRIP TO WORLD CUP FINALS: Saudi Arabia qualified for their third consecutive World Cup finals when they topped visiting Thailand 2-1 in Riyadh and Iran dropped a 3-1 decision to Bahrain on Sunday. The Saudis, who finished first in the Group A Asian Zone ahead of Iran by two points, become the 22nd team to advance to the 2002 World Cup in Japan/Korea. Iran must now play off over two legs against group B runners-up United Arab Emirates and the winners will go through to another playoff against the Republic of Ireland for a berth in the finals. Group B Asian Zone winners China secured a place in their first finals two weeks ago.
CHACON NAMED MVP AS MLS ANNOUNCES YEAR-END AWARDS FOR 2001 SEASON: Miami midfielder and Honduran international Alex Pineda Chacon led the year-end 2001 MLS awards that were announced last week, earning MVP honors as the driving force that led the Fusion to the best season in their four-year history. The 31-year-old Honduran international was the league scoring champion, leading MLS in goals (19) and points (47), while also breaking many Fusion team records. His seven game-winning goals led MLS and he was named MLS Player of the Week four times in 2001, the most of any MLS player this season. The San Jose Earthquakes and MetroStars each picked up a trio of top awards for 2001. First-year coach Frank Yallop was honored as MLS Coach of the Year for leading the Earthquakes from worst to first, while Jeff Agoos was tabbed as Defender of the Year for his role in the team's surprising 13-7-6 record and fellow defender Troy Dayak was cited as Comeback Player of the Year after his recovery from a serious neck injury. The young guns of the MetroStars were also recognized, as 22-year-old goalkeeper Tim Howard won Goalkeeper of the Year, 24- year-old forward Rodrigo Faria edging Santino Quaranta for Rookie of the Year, and 24-year-old U.S. Men's National Team midfielder Clint Mathis easily claimed Goal of the Year for his brilliant individual effort against the Burn on April 28. Colorado Rapids defender Marcelo Balboa was honored with the Individual Fair Play Award. The list of 2001 MLS end-of-season player awards are listed below:
Most Valuable Player
Alex Pineda Chacon - M (Miami Fusion)
MLS Defender of the Year
Jeff Agoos (S.J. Earthquakes)
Goalkeeper of the Year
Tim Howard (MetroStars)
Coach of the Year
Frank Yallop (S.J. Earthquakes)
Rookie of the Year
Rodrigo Faria - F (MetroStars)
Goal of the Year
Clint Mathis - M (MetroStars)
Comeback Player of the Year
Troy Dayak - D (S.J. Earthquakes)
MLS Fair Play Award (Individual)
Marcelo Balboa - D (Colorado Rapids)
FIVE FUSION PLAYERS NAMED TO MLS BEST XI: MLS announced its Best XI, led by five players from the league-leading Miami Fusion squad, at its Gala Awards Ceremony in Columbus, Ohio, this weekend. The Best XI features the top players from each position, compiling a lineup of 11 players from the league's three divisions based on a 4-4-2 alignment. MLS coaches, general managers, players and members of the Professional Soccer Reporters Association (PSRA) voted to determine this star-studded lineup.
2001 MLS Best XI
GK - Tim Howard MetroStars
D - Pablo Mastroeni Miami Fusion
D - Carlos Llamosa Miami Fusion
D - Jeff Agoos S.J. Earthquakes
D - Greg Vanney Los Angeles Galaxy
M - Chris Armas Chicago Fire
M - Alex Pineda Chacon Miami Fusion
M - Peter Nowak Chicago Fire
M - Preki Miami Fusion
F - Diego Serna Miami Fusion
F - John Spencer Colorado Rapids
"UNITY GAMES" BENEFIT SERIES KICKS OFF SUNDAY AT GIANTS STADIUM: The four Division I professional soccer teams in the New York/New Jersey and Washington D.C. areas, the MetroStars and D.C. United of MLS along with the New York Power and Washington Freedom of the WUSA, will join together to raise funds for those affected by the Sept. 11 tragedy by hosting the "Unity Games," to be held on Oct. 28 at Giants Stadium in New Jersey and on Nov. 3 at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. Tickets for both double-headers will be $20, with all proceeds going to the relief and recovery effort from the tragedies in New York City and Washington, D.C. Tickets are on sale now at all Ticketmaster outlets in the New York/New Jersey and Washington, D.C. areas. Tickets will also be available in New York by calling the MetroStars ticket office at 1-888-4-METROTIX, the New York Power ticket office at 1-866-POWRTIX, or by visiting www.metrostars.com or www.nypower.com.
U.S. SOCCER SPOTLIGHT
PEAK PERFORMANCE: There's a reason first-year coach Frank Yallop was named MLS Coach of the Year. Not only did the 36-year-old former player turn San Jose from worst to first with a 13-7-6 record in 2001, but he made all the right moves with second-half substitutions to help the Earthquakes grab their first MLS Cup. Yallop's replacement of Ronald Cerritos with Canadian international Dwayne DeRosario in the 85th minute paid almost immediate dividends, as the fresh-legged forward scored the "Golden Goal" game winner in the sixth minute of overtime.
MARQUEE MATCH-UP: It's redemption time for the Galaxy. Three championship games in six years, and no rings or trophies to show for it. L.A. is hoping all of that will change when they host the over-achieving New England Revolution on their home turf in Orange County on Saturday (Oct. 27) for the 2001 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Final. The title match, which will be televised live at 2 p.m. PT on Fox Sports World and FSW Espanol, gives the Galaxy a chance to win that elusive hardware and put to rest talk that they are the Atlanta Braves of professional soccer.
SOCCER SHOCKER: Despite seeing their team eliminated from MLS Cup competition in a hard-to-swallow Game Three defeat at home on Oct. 17, the BarnBurners, a vocal Chicago Fire supporters club, showed up in full force at Crew Stadium for the league's championship match between the San Jose Earthquakes and the Los Angeles Galaxy on Sunday. With a number of colorful and creative chants, the BarnBurners made their presence known, especially with their signature cheer of: "Who's the best? ... Fire! ... Who? ... Fire!"
QUOTABLE: "Everybody loves to beat Los Angeles. It's the national pastime in every sport. That's just something we have to live with. This one hurts."
- L.A. head coach Sigi Schmid, after the Galaxy's third loss in as many MLS Cup games.