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U.S. Soccer Wire - November 20, 2006


U.S. WNT to Face Mexico in CONCACAF Women's Gold Cup on Wednesday;
U.S. MNT to Face Denmark on Jan. 20 at The Home Depot Center

WNT PREPARES TO TAKE ON MEXICO IN CONCACAF WOMEN’S GOLD CUP: The U.S. WNT will face Mexico in the CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup semifinals on Wednesday, Nov. 22, at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. Kickoff for USA-Mexico clash is 7 p.m. PT, live on Fox Soccer Channel and ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. The Mexican Women’s National Team defeated Trinidad & Tobago, 3-0, in its quarterfinal match on Sunday, Nov. 19, at Tropical Park in Miami to advance to the semifinals. In the other quarterfinal, also played in Miami, Jamaica defeated Panama, 2-0, and will face Canada in the other Women’s Gold Cup semifinal at 4:30 p.m. PT at The HDC (quarterfinal recap). The winners of the semifinals earn CONCACAF’s two direct berths to the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup, being held Sept. 10-20 in five Chinese cities, and will meet in the Women’s Gold Cup championship game on Nov. 26 at 5:30 p.m. PT at The HDC (tickets). The semifinal losers will play for third place at 3 p.m. with a berth in a two-game playoff against Japan on the line. The winner of that home-and-away series with the Japanese will earn the final berth to the Women’s World Cup. Both semifinals, the third-place match and the championship game will be broadcast live on Fox Soccer Channel. Fans can also follow both U.S. games online, live via ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. The meeting in the Women’s Gold Cup semifinal will mark the second match of the year between the USA and Mexico. The Americans defeated the Tricolor Femenil, 3-1, on Sept. 13 in Rochester, N.Y., as Abby Wambach scored twice and Lindsay Tarpley added the other goal. The USA’s 20-player roster that will compete in the Women’s Gold Cup began training on Nov. 15 at The HDC. For complete coverage of the competition, including results, exclusive player features and all_access videos, visit ussoccer.com's 2006 CONCACAF Women's Gold Cup page.

2006 CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup Schedule
Date        Matchup                               Time/Result       TV
Nov. 19   Panama vs. Jamaica              0-2                    --
Nov. 19   Mexico vs. Trinidad & Tobago   3-0                    --
Nov. 22   Canada vs. Jamaica               4:30 p.m. PT      Fox Soccer Channel
Nov. 22   USA vs. Mexico                      7 p.m. PT          Fox Soccer Channel
Nov. 26   Third Place                             3 p.m. PT          Fox Soccer Channel
Nov. 26   Championship                         5:30 p.m. PT     Fox Soccer Channel

U.S. Women’s National Team Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Briana Scurry (Dayton, Minn.), Hope Solo (Richland, Wash.);
DEFENDERS (7): Lori Chalupny (St. Louis, Mo.), Tina Frimpong (Vancouver, Wash.), Stephanie Lopez (Elk Grove, Calif.), Kate Markgraf (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.), Heather Mitts (Cincinnati, Ohio), Christie Rampone (Point Pleasant, N.J.), Cat Whitehill (Birmingham, Ala.);
MIDFIELDERS (5): Angela Hucles (Virginia Beach, Va.), Carli Lloyd (Delran, N.J.), Marci Miller (St. Charles, Ill.), Leslie Osborne (Brookfield, Wis.), Aly Wagner (San Jose, Calif.);
FORWARDS (6): Danesha Adams (Shaker Heights, Ohio), Natasha Kai (Kahuku, Hawaii), Kristine Lilly (Wilton, Conn.), Heather O’Reilly (East Brunswick, N.J.), Lindsay Tarpley (Kalamazoo, Mich.), Abby Wambach (Rochester, N.Y.).


U.S. MNT TO KICK OFF 2007 AGAINST DENMARK: The U.S. Men’s National Team will play its first match of 2007 against Denmark on Saturday, Jan. 20, at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., at 2 p.m. PT. The match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and tape delayed at 9 p.m. PT (12 a.m. ET) on Galavision. Fans can also follow the game live via ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. Tickets starting at $18 are now on sale at ussoccer.com, all Southern California Ticketmaster outlets (including Macy’s, Wherehouse Music and Ritmo Latino), The Home Depot Center ticket office (open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), and by phone at 213-480-3232. Groups of 15 or more can purchase tickets by calling U.S. Soccer at 312-528-1290 or obtaining a group order form at ussoccer.com. The U.S. and Denmark have met four times in their history, with the United States still in search of their first victory after posting a 0-1-3 record. The teams’ last meeting on Jan. 18, 2004, marked the first-ever visit by the U.S. MNT to The Home Depot Center. Despite out-shooting Denmark 16-4, the U.S. only collected a 1-1 draw after a pair of penalties on either side of halftime delivered each side their only goal of the match. The USA-Denmark clash will serve as the launching point for what promises to be a challenging schedule in 2007, as the USA seeks to defend its Gold Cup title when they join 11 other teams in the 2007 CONCACAF Gold Cup, which will take place from June 6-24 in several cities across the United States. The following week, the U.S. will compete in the 2007 Copa America, the regional championship of South America. The 12-team tournament will run from June 26-July 15 in nine cities in Venezuela.

U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION AUCTION TO BENEFIT "MOOCH MYERNICK MEMORIAL FUND": The annual U.S. Soccer Foundation Holiday Auction is underway this year and available now at ussoccerfoundation.org/auction. This year's items include an autographed 2006 Sierra Mist All-Star Jersey, an autographed Dwayne DeRosario jersey, an autographed Manchester United Team jersey and an autographed Kaka jersey from the Brazilian National Team. Along with dozens of other items, the auction runs from now through Friday, Dec. 15. A hundred percent of every dollar contributed to the 2006 Holiday Auction will go to the "Mooch Myernick Memorial Fund" and will be distributed through grants by the Foundation, in partnership with the U.S. Soccer Federation, to soccer clubs and organizations in urban areas to help increase the number of children playing the sport in metropolitan communities nationwide. The auction will also include authentic gear signed by members of the U.S. Men's and Women’s National Teams.

CONCACAF WOMEN’S GOLD CUP GROUP TICKETS NOW AVAILABLE: Two-day packages, group tickets and individual tickets are now on sale for the 2006 CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup semifinals and finals on Wed., Nov. 22 and Sun., Nov. 26, respectively, at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. The third edition of the Women’s Gold Cup will feature the U.S. Women's National Team competing for the CONCACAF title and one of the two guaranteed spots in the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup in China. Two-day packages start at $30 ($15 per ticket) and are available through the L.A. Galaxy (877-3-GALAXY or lagalaxy.com) and Ticketmaster (213-480-3232 / 714-740-2000 or ticketmaster.com). Tickets for groups of 10 or more start at $15 and are available through the L.A. Galaxy (877-3-GALAXY or lagalaxy.com). Individual tickets start at $20 and are also available through the L.A. Galaxy and at ticketmaster.com. In first round action, Mexico defeated Trinidad & Tobago, 3-0, and Panama fell to Jamaica, 2-0, at Tropical Park Stadium in Miami, Fla., on Sunday, Nov. 19. Jamaica advanced to play against Canada in the semifinals while Mexico will meet reigning Women’s Gold Cup Champions, USA, on Nov. 22. Tournament play concludes with the CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup Final and a third-place playoff game on Sunday, Nov. 26, also to be held at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. The champion and runner-up will automatically qualify to the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup in China. The third-place finisher in the CONCACAF event will face Japan in a home-and-away playoff for the right to attend the Women's World Cup.

– YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE –

U.S. U-20 MNT DEFEATS GUATEMALA, FINDS OUT QUALIFYING OPPONENTS FRIDAY: The U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team came back from a goal down with strikes from Freddy Adu and Anthony Wallace in the second half to defeat Guatemala, 2-1, in front of 1,600 fans on Wednesday, Nov. 15 at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Fla. Guatemala took the surprising lead in the 20th minute of the game, turning a goal-line clearance on a U.S. corner kick into a counter-attack that ended with Edward de la Roca finishing past goalkeeper Nicholas Skverer. In the second half, Adu pulled the U.S. even with an impressive header off a cross from Quavas Kirk before Anthony Wallace tallied the game-winner with four minutes remaining with a low drive that Guatemala goalkeeper Carlos Reyes misplayed, allowing the ball to bounce over his outstretched hands and into the back of the net. The U.S. could end up playing Guatemala again during the 2007 CONCACAF Final Round Qualifying Tournament early next year. The U.S. and Guatemala are two of the eight qualified teams that will be split into two groups of four with Group A taking place from Jan. 17-21 in Panama City, Panama, and Group B from Feb. 21-25 in Culiacan, Sinaloa, which is on the west coast of Mexico. The draw to determine which teams will be in Group A and Group B will be held on Nov. 24 during the CONCACAF Executive Committee Meeting in Los Angeles. In preparation for qualifying, the U.S. will be back in camp starting Dec. 12 in Bradenton, Fla. The team will be finish camp on Dec. 23, but return on Dec. 28 and train until Jan. 7. The players and staff will have one week off before getting together once again for a few days in Florida and then head to either Panama or Mexico for qualifying.

U.S. U-15 AND U-16 GNTs OPEN USYS ODP GIRLS THANKSGIVING INTERREGIONAL: The U.S. Under-15 and Under-16 Girl’s National Teams will play three matches each against Regional ODP teams at the 2006 U.S. Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program Thanksgiving Interregional, starting Monday, Nov. 20, in Coral Springs, Florida. Both teams will play matches on Monday, Nov. 20, Wednesday, Nov 22, and Friday, Nov 24. It will be the last action of the year for both teams. Both the U-15s and U-16s will be playing Regional Teams one year older in age group. U.S. head coaches Tad Bobak (U-15s) and Kazbek Tambi (U-16s) have each brought 18 players to the competition, almost all of whom also participated with their respective youth national team squads at the inaugural 2006 Women’s Nike Friendlies at the end of September.

U.S. U-15 GNT Schedule – USYSA ODP Thanksgiving Interregionals
Date         Matchup
Nov. 20    U.S. U-15 GNT vs. 1990 Region II
Nov. 22    U.S. U-15 GNT vs. 1990 Region III
Nov. 24    U.S. U-15 GNT vs. 1990 Region I

U.S. U-15 GNT Roster – USYSA ODP Thanksgiving Interregionals
GOALKEEPERS (2): Lindsay Dickerson (Los Gatos, Calif.), Anna Sieloff (Troy, Mich.);
DEFENDERS (8): Mia Bruno (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.), Zakiya Bywaters (Las Vegas, Nev.), Alina Garciamendez (Fairview, Texas), Alexandria Hall (Hawthorn Woods, Ill.), Annick McBryar (Indialantic, Fla.), Fatima Nasser (Dearborn, Mich.), Rachel Quon (Lake Forest, Ill.), Jenna Richmond (Centreville, Va.);
MIDFIELDERS (4): Lauren Matheson (Mission Viejo, Calif.), Mariah Nogueira (Westminster, Calif.), Olivia Klei (Pleasanton, Calif.), Brianne Rodriguez (Aurora, Ill.);
FORWARDS (4): Victoria DiMartino (Massapequa Park, N.Y.), Samantha Johnson (Palmdale, Calif.), Devin Marshall (Bonita, Calif.), Alyssa Rich (Cincinnati, Ohio).

U.S. U-16 GNT Schedule – USYSA ODP Thanksgiving Interregionals
Date         Matchup
Nov. 20    U.S. U-16 GNT vs. 1989 Region I
Nov. 22    U.S. U-16 GNT vs. 1989 Region IV
Nov. 24    U.S. U-16 GNT vs. 1989 Region II

U.S. U-16 GNT Roster – USYS ODP Thanksgiving Interregionals
GOALKEEPERS (2): Bianca Henninger (Saratoga, Calif.), Catherine Parkhill (Apple Valley, Minn.),
DEFENDERS (6): Amber Brooks (New Hope, Pa.), Kylie Doniak (Chino Hills, Calif.), Amanda Fancher (The Colony, Texas), Camille Levin (Newport Coast, Calif.), Kristen Mewis (Hanson, Mass.), Alyssa Pember (Northport, N.Y.) ;
MIDFIELDERS (6): Shira Averbuch (Upper Montclair, N.J.), Julia Bouchelle (Cockeysville, Md.), Jennifer Laponte (Castro Valley, Calif.), Christine Nairn (Bowie, Md.), Teresa Noyola (Palo Alto, Calif.), Beth West (Centennial, Colo.);
FORWARDS (4): Brittani Bartok (Union, N.J.), Merritt Mathias (Birmingham, Ala.), Tiffany McCarty (Laurel, Md.), Casey Short (Naperville, Ill.).


U-14 BNT TO PARTICIPATE IN US YOUTH SOCCER ODP THANKSGIVING INTERREGIONAL: The U.S. Under-14 Boys’ National Team will participate in the US Youth Soccer ODP Thanksgiving Interregional from Nov. 23-27 at Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. U.S. head coach Manny Schellscheidt and his five assistant coaches will split the 36 players on the roster into two teams – USA Grey and USA Blue – that will compete against the four regional teams at the event. The players and staff will arrive on Wednesday, Nov. 22 and train for two days before kicking off the event with their first games on Saturday, Nov. 25, when USA Blue will take on Region I and USA Grey will face Region IV. The following day, USA Blue will go up against Region II and USA Grey will meet Region III. On Monday, Nov. 27 the two U.S. squads will face off against each other.

U-14 BNT Roster – Thanksgiving Interregional
GOALKEEPERS (4): Devin Cook (Round Rock, Texas), Jack Falle (Lilburn, Ga.), Max Kurtzman (Haveford, Pa.), Ian O’Brien (Cardinal, Va.)
DEFENDERS (10): David Caban (Kenosha, Wis.), Roy Cabrera (Wilingboro, N.J.), George Fradenburg (Belden, Miss.), Alfred Koroma (Euless, Texas), Boyd Okwuonu (Edmond, Okla.), Timothy Parker (Hicksville, N.Y.), Matthias Scheeleigh (Mendham, N.J.), Scott Thompson (Brick, N.J.), Zachery Wenger (Baltimore, Md.), Walker Zimmerman (Lawrenceville, Ga.)
MIDFIELDERS (14): Angel Ayala (Long Beach, Calif.), Samuel Coleman (Norman, Okla.), Nathanael Eggleston (Chevy Chase, Md.), Christian Johnson (New York, N.Y.), Luis Medina (Waukegan, Ill.), William Packwood (Concord, Mass.), Kevin Pahl (Lakeland, Fla.), Victor Pineda (Bolingbrook, Ill.), Jonathan Ray (Durham, N.C.), Joe Shinsky (York, Pa.), Sekani Sinclair (Coral Springs, Fla.), Caleb Stanko (Holly, Mich.), Tyler Thompson (Loomis, Calif.), William Trapp (Gahanna, Ohio)
FORWARDS (8): Samuel Adjei (Newark, N.J.), Dominic Bonilla (Norman, Okla.), Scott Cohen (Studio City, Calif.), Joaquin Del Rosario (Durham, N.C.)., Kevin Hoyos (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.), Tommy Jaeger (Centennial, Colo.), Gabriel Rivera (La Mirada, Calif.), Melvin Snoh (Downingtown, Pa.)

U-14 BNT Schedule – USYS Thanksgiving Interregional
Date         Matchup
Nov. 25    USA Blue vs. Region I
Nov. 25    USA Grey vs. Region IV
Nov. 26    USA Blue vs. Region II
Nov. 26    USA Grey vs. Region III
Nov. 27    USA Blue vs. USA Grey


– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –

NIGERIA AND GHANA IN, JUST SIX OF 16 BERTHS LEFT FOR CHINA ’07: Perennial African champions Nigeria and Ghana have earned Africa’s two berths to the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup as the very long African qualifying tournament finally came to a close at the 5th African Championship for Women’s Football, held Oct. 28-Nov. 11 in Nigeria. Group A featured host Nigeria, South Africa, Equatorial Guinea and Algeria, while Group B featured Ghana, Cameroon, Mali and DR Congo. Nigeria topped its group with a 3-0-0 record while scoring 12 goals and conceding just two, both in a 4-2 win against Equatorial Guinea. South Africa finished second to earn a berth into the semifinals, winning two group games, but losing to Nigeria, 2-0, in the final group match. In Group B, Ghana took full points from its three games, but scored just six times while allowing two goals. Cameroon finished group play at 1-1-1, edging Mali for second place. In the semifinals, Nigeria blasted Cameroon, 5-0, to earn its berth to China while Ghana edged hard-luck South Africa, 1-0, to earn a berth to their third consecutive Women’s World Cup. Nigeria has participated in all four FIFA Women’s World Cup tournaments contested so far. In the championship game for the continental title, Nigeria edged Ghana, 1-0, on a goal from star forward Perpetua Nkwocha. The Super Falcons and the Black Queens join Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Germany and England from Europe, host China and Australia and North Korea from Asia at the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

SOUTH AMERICAN QUALIFYING NEARS COMPLETION: Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay have advanced to the CONMEBOL Women’s Championships quadrangular final round-robin in Mar del Plata, Argentina, with the top two finishers qualifying for the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Argentina and Uruguay came out of Group A that also included Ecuador, Colombia and Chile. Brazil and Paraguay finished first and second respectively in Group B that also included Venezuela, Peru and Bolivia. The six-game quadrangular round-robin will see two matches a day on Nov. 22, 24 and 26. Both Argentina and Brazil took the full 12 points from their four first-round matches, with Argentina piling up a 17-1 goal difference while Brazil scored 18 goals and allowed just two. Argentina and Brazil will play on Nov. 26 in the final game of the quadrangular.

2007 FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP BERTHS BY CONFEDERATION
Host: China
Asia: Australia, North Korea, (Japan)*
Africa: Nigeria, Ghana
South America: 2 Berths
CONCACAF: 2.5 Berths
Oceania: 1 Berth
Europe: Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, England

*Japan will face third-place finisher in CONCACAF for final berth to WWC ’07.


BALTIMORE, CHICAGO ON TOP AS MISL SEASON HITS STRIDE: The Baltimore Blast and Chicago Storm find themselves tied atop the table as the MISL completed its third weekend. With three games in the books for defending champion Baltimore and Chicago, each club has a 2-1 record. The California Storm and Detroit Ignition have each played four games and sit at .500, while the Milwaukee Wave and Philadelphia KiXX are underway with a 1-2 record. The six-team, single-table league's regular season continues through early April as each team plays a 30-game schedule. The season will be a battle of experienced franchises vs. young franchises as Milwaukee, Balitmore and Philadephia have combined for approximately 1,000 total wins, while California, Chicago and expansion Detroit have combined for less than 50 all-time wins.

TORONTO CHOOSES 10 IN MLS EXPANSION DRAFT: Major League Soccer expansion team Toronto FC selected 10 players in an expansion draft on Friday, Nov. 17, from the six Eastern Conference Teams and four of the Western Conference teams. Players selected included Adrian Serioux from the 2006 MLS champion Houston Dynamo and Nate Jaqua of the 2006 U.S. Open Cup champion Chicago Fire. Toronto was able to select one player from each franchise up to 10 players, and did not select players from FC Dallas or the Colorado Rapids. With the transfer window open immediately following the draft, Toronto and other MLS clubs made several trades, with some players going to new clubs and some going back to their original club.

2006 MLS Expansion Draft Selections
Paulo Nagamura (Los Angeles Galaxy)
Danny O’Rourke (New York Red Bulls) – traded to Columbus Crew
Jose Cancela (New England Revolution)
Adrian Serioux (Houston Dynamo) – traded to FC Dallas
Nate Jaqua (Chicago Fire)
Rod Dyachenko (D.C. United)
Jason Kreis (Real Salt Lake) – traded back to Real Salt Lake
Tim Regan (Chivas USA)
Ritchie Kotschau (Columbus Crew)
Will Hesmer (Kansas City Wizards) – traded to Columbus Crew


U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION GRANTS PROGRAM APPLICATION DEADLINE IS WEDNESDAY: The final day to submit grant application for the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s 2007 Annual Grants Program is Wednesday, Nov. 22, at ussoccerfoundation.org. With the exception of its All Conditions Fields Grants, the Foundation’s 2007 Grants will be focused exclusively on projects and programs that develop players, referees and coaches in economically disadvantaged urban areas. The Foundation’s All Conditions Fields Grants will continue to be available to projects serving all types of communities, with priority given to those All Conditions Fields projects serving players in economically disadvantaged urban areas. More information about the grants is available at ussoccerfoundation.org/grants.

U.S. Soccer Foundation Important Dates
Sept. 8 2007 Annual Grants Program Online Registration Commences
Nov. 22 Deadline to Submit Completed Application by 5 p.m. ET


*** “CENTER CIRCLE” SPOTLIGHT ***

PEAK PERFORMER: Former U.S. MNT captain Claudio Reyna took the field for his 100th English Premier League match on Saturday, Nov. 18, as Manchester City defeated Fulham, 3-0, at Eastlands. Reyna, who recently sat down with ussoccer.com’s Center Circle for an edition of ’12 Yards Out,’ played the full 90 minutes for City, starting the play that led to the second goal after winning the ball at midfield.

MARQUEE MATCHUP(S): The U.S. WNT will attempt to qualify for the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup on Wednesday, Nov. 22, in a CONCACAF Women’s Gold Cup semifinal match against Mexico at 7 p.m. PT at The Home Depot Center. If the U.S. wins, they will earn one of CONCACAF’s two automatic berths to the World Cup in China in September. The loser from the semifinals will face off for third place in the Gold Cup and a chance for a home-and-away playoff series against Japan for a spot in the Women’s World Cup.

SOCCER SHOCKER: Former Brazilian captain Romario is determined to score 1,000 career goals before his retirement. So determined that the Miami FC (USL First Division) forward has signed on as a guest player for a four-match stint with Australian A-League club Adelaide United. Romario has scored 984 goals, according to his calculations, and arrived at the club ready to score goals and help close the 12-point gap between Adelaide and league leaders Melbourne Victory.

QUOTABLE: “He taught me that none of his passion was worth anything alone. Sharing your passion with the people in your life is what gives it value and beauty. He was so generous with his experiences.”
-- Kelly Myernick, daughter of late U.S. MNT assistant coach Glenn “Mooch” Myernick, during a celebration honoring the life of the former MNT captain.

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