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U.S. Soccer Wire: March 9, 2009


U-20 MNT SET FOR SHOWDOWN WITH EL SALVADOR;
WNT TO FACE SWEDEN IN 2009 ALGARVE CUP CHAMPIONSHIP,
MNT VS. HONDURAS TICKETS ON SALE

U.S. U-20 MNT FACES EL SALVADOR FOR SPOT IN U-20 FIFA WORLD CUP: The U.S. Under 20 Men's National Team can book its spot at the 2009 U-20 FIFA World Cup with either a win or a draw against El Salvador in the final game of Group A at the CONCACAF Championship in Trinidad & Tobago. After beating Jamaica 3-0 last Friday, Thomas Rongen's team fought Honduras to a 0-0 tie on Sunday to remain at the top of the group. The U.S. will be looking to secure a berth in a record seventh-straight FIFA Under-20 World Cup. The 2009 edition of that tournament will be held from Sept. 24-Oct.16 in Egypt. Should the U.S. clinch a berth to the semifinal, they will play on March 13 at Marvin Lee Stadium in Macoya, Trinidad, against a Group B opponent to be determined. Group B consists of Canada, Costa Rica, Mexico and Trinidad & Tobago. The third-place game and final will be held on Sunday, March 15. With 11 FIFA U-20 World Cup appearances, the U.S. has qualified more than any other CONCACAF nation, but has never won the regional crown. In 2005 and 2007, when CONCACAF qualifying was held as two groups at two separate venues, the U.S. has won their group. In the previous three editions in 1999, 2001 and 2003, the U.S. qualified for the World Cup as the second-place finisher in their respective group.

U.S. U-20 MNT CONCACAF Championship Schedule
Date Opponent Time / Result U.S. Goal Scorer(s) Venue; City
March 6 Jamaica 3-0 W Marosevic, Duka, Schuler Dwight Yorke Stadium; Bacolet, Tobago 
March 8 Honduras 0-0 T -- Dwight Yorke Stadium; Bacolet, Tobago 
March 10 El Salvador 7 p.m. ET   Dwight Yorke Stadium; Bacolet, Tobago 
March 13 Semifinal TBD   Marvin Lee Stadium; Macoya, Trinidad
March 15 Final / Third Place TBD   Marvin Lee Stadium; Macoya, Trinidad

ussoccer.com U-20 MNT Content
Videos from the 2009 CONCACAF Championship
Get to Know Me: Sam Garza
Anthony Wallace's New Role
YNT Blog

U.S. WNT BEATS NORWAY 1-0, SET FOR CHAMPIONSHIP GAME OF 2009 ALGARVE CUP: The U.S. Women’s National Team beat Norway 1-0 on Monday, ensuring that Pia Sundhage's team advances to the Algarve Cup championship game with a three wins from group play. A goal in the first half by Megan Rapinoe was all the U.S. needed, with the defense holding strong to record its third consecutive clean sheet. Next up for the U.S. is a trip to Faro, Portugal, where a match against Sweden in the Estádio Algarve awaits. The Algarve Cup championship is set for March 11, with kickoff at 4 p.m. GMT (12 p.m. ET). As usual, fans can follow the game live on ussoccer.com's MatchTracker. For complete Algarve Cup results and standings, as well as links to other U.S. content, visit the Algarve Cup competition page.

U.S. WNT Algarve Cup Schedule
Date Opponent Time / Result U.S. Goal Scorer(s) Venue; City
March 4 Denmark 2-0 W Woznuk, DiMartino Estádio Municipal; Lagos
March 6 Iceland  1-0 W Kai Parque Desportiva da Nora; Ferreiras 
March 7 Norway 1-0 W Rapinoe Parque Desportiva da Nora; Ferreiras
March 11 Sweden  4 p.m. / 12 p.m. ET   Estádio Algarve; Faro

ussoccer.com WNT Content
Videos from the 2009 Algarve Cup
Podcast: Rachel Buehler and Kendall Fletcher in Portugal
Megan Rapinoe: Twice Removed, But Never Gone
There's Only One Rachel Buehler
Hope Solo Pop Culture Quiz
Tarp's Training Tips
WNT Blog

TICKETS FOR MNT QUALIFIER AGAINST HONDURAS ON SALE MARCH 14: Tickets for the U.S. Men’s National Team’s FIFA World Cup qualifier against Honduras on June 6 in Chicago will go on sale beginning March 14 to the general public. Kickoff at Soldier Field is set for 7 p.m. CT, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN Classic and Galavision. Fans can also follow along live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. Advance tickets ranging in price levels from $25 to $150 go on sale to the public Saturday, March 14, at 10 a.m. CT through ussoccer.com, by phone at                1-800-7...        and at all Ticketmaster ticket centers throughout Chicagoland, including Carson Pirie Scott, Hot Tix, FYE and Ritmo Latino stores (Note: Tickets are not sold at Soldier Field except on the day of the event). Groups of 20 or more can obtain an order form at ussoccer.com or call                312...       . Ultimate Fan Tickets (special VIP packages which include a premium ticket, a custom made official U.S. national team jersey with name and number, VIP access to the field before and after the game, and other unique benefits), are also available exclusively through ussoccer.com. As a sponsor of U.S. Soccer, Visa® is pleased to offer all Visa cardholders access to an advance ticket sale for this match before the sale to the general public. This advance sale starts Thursday, March 12, at 10 a.m. CT and runs until Saturday, March 14, at 8 a.m. CT at ussoccer.com. Visa will be the only payment method accepted through the Visa presale and is the preferred card of U.S. Soccer. Terms and conditions apply.

TICKET SALES SURPASS 10,000 MARK FOR QUALIFIER IN NASHVILLE: Ticket sales for the U.S. Men's National Team's FIFA World Cup qualifier against Trinidad & Tobago presented by Dodge on April 1 in Nashville have surpassed 10,000, with fans excited at the prospect of seeing Bob Bradley's team play in Music City for the first time since 2006. Similar to February's qualifier in Columbus, where fans from 43 states took in the USA's 2-0 victory over Mexico, a diverse crowd is set to descend on LP Field: already fans from 40 states and three different countries have purchased tickets for the game. Ticket sales for the match are ongoing, with more information to be found in the Schedule & Tickets section of ussoccer.com.

U.S. Men’s National Team 2009 Schedule
Date Opponent Time / Result TV / U.S. Goal Scorer(s) Venue; City
Jan. 24 Sweden 3-2 W Kljestan (3) The Home Depot Center; Carson, Calif.
Feb. 11 Mexico* 2-0 W Bradley (2) Columbus Crew Stadium; Columbus, Ohio 
March 28 El Salvador* 9 p.m. ET ESPN2/Telefutura Estadio Cuscatlán; San Salvador, El Salvador 
April 1 Trinidad & Tobago* 6:30 p.m. CT ESPN2/Galavision LP Field; Nashville, Tenn.
June 3 Costa Rica* TBD TBD Away (Venue TBD) 
June 6 Honduras* 7 p.m. CT ESPN Classic/Galavision Soldier Field; Chicago, Ill.
June 15 Italy # 8:30 p.m. / 2:30 p.m. ET TBD Loftus Versfeld; Tshwane/Pretoria
June 18 Brazil # 4 p.m. / 10 a.m. ET TBD Loftus Versfeld; Tshwane/Pretoria
June 21 Egypt # 8:30 p.m. / 2:30 p.m. ET TBD Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace; Rustenburg 
July 3-26 CONCACAF Gold Cup TBD TBD 13 cities across the U.S. 
Aug. 12 Mexico* TBD TBD Away (Venue TBD)
Sept. 5 El Salvador* 5:30 p.m. MT ESPN Classic/Galavision Rio Tinto Stadium; Sandy, Utah
Sept. 9 Trinidad & Tobago* 7 p.m. ET ESPN Classic/Galavision Away (Venue TBD)
Oct. 10 Honduras* TBD TBD Away (Venue TBD)
Oct. 14 Costa Rica* TBD ESPN2/Galavision RFK Stadium; Washington, D.C.

* FIFA World Cup Qualifier
# FIFA Confederations Cup

– U.S. YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE –

U.S. U-20 WOMEN OPEN 10 NATIONS TOURNAMENT WITH WIN IN LA MANGA, SPAIN: The U.S. U-20 Women's National Team opened the 10 Nations Tournament with a 3-2 victory over Norway on Monday, with goals from Kristie Mewis, Maya Hayes and Sydney Leroux helping the Jillian Ellis' team to victory. The U-20 WNT faces France on March 11 before rounding out the tournament against Germany on March 13. The roster features six players from the USA’s 2008 U-17 Women’s National Team that finished second at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in New Zealand, including the Mewis sisters, Samantha and Kristie, the latter of whom won the Bronze Ball as the third best player of the tournament, and Vicki DiMartino, who won the Silver Shoe as the second highest scorer. The roster also features two players from the USA’s 2008 U-20 Women’s National Team that won the U-20 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Chile, including Golden Ball and Golden Shoe winner Sydney Leroux, who scored five times in Chile to lead the Americans to victory. Ellis is preparing the USA to qualify for the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup that will be held in Germany.

U.S. U-20 WNT 10 Nations Tournament Roster
GOALKEEPERS (2): Bianca Henniger (Santa Clara; Los Gatos, Calif.), Cat Parkhill (Minnesota; Apple Valley, Minn.)
DEFENDERS (5): Cloee Colohan (Black Diamond Park City SC; West Point, Utah), Camille Levin (Stanford; Newport Coast, Calif.), Kristie Mewis (SC Scorpions; Hanson, Mass.), Whitney Sharpe (UCLA; West Des Moines, Iowa), Brianne Young (Texas A&M; Castle Pines North, Colo.)
MIDFIELDERS (5): Zakiya Bywaters (Neusport SC; Las Vegas, Nev.), Alexis Harris (Dallas Texans; Plano, Texas), Mandy Laddish (Blue Valley Stars; Lee’s Summit, Mo.), Samantha Mewis (SC Scorpions; Hanson, Mass.), Casey Short (Florida State; Naperville, Ill.)
FORWARDS (6): Vicki DiMartino (Albertson Fury; Massapequa, N.Y.), Maya Hayes (Aristics Club; West Orange, N.J.), Sydney Leroux (UCLA; Phoenix, Ariz.), Tiffany McCarty (Florida State; Laurel, Md.), Kealia Ohai (Utah Avalanche; Draper, Utah), Toni Pressley (Florida State; Melbourne, Fla.)

Date Opponent Time / Result U.S. Goal Scorer(s) Venue; City
March 9 Norway 3-2 W Mewis, Hayes, Leroux La Manga Club; La Manga, Spain
March 11 France 12 p.m. local / 7 a.m. ET   La Manga Club; La Manga, Spain
March 13 Norway 2:30 p.m. local / 9:30 a.m. ET   La Manga Club; La Manga, Spain

– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –

JOSH BLUE TO APPEAR ON COMEDY CENTRAL MARCH 27: U.S. Paralympian Josh Blue, who three years ago was the winner of Season Four of Comedy Central’s Last Comic Standing, will once again bring his standup to the network as Comedy Central presents Josh Blue, at 10 p.m. ET on Friday, March 29. In 2006, Blue was selected over hundreds of comics to make the show and joined 11 other comedians to live on the cruise ship Queen Mary, where they competed in various contests to determine the top six. Once he made his way to the final six, the public voted to see who would stay and who would go home and Blue won over his audience to win the fourth season of the NBC comedy competition. Fans can check out more about Blue at www.joshblue.com.

USL'S PUERTO RICO ISLANDERS SET FOR CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE SEMIFINALS: USL First Division club Puerto Rico Islanders has advanced to the CONCACAF Champions League semifinals with a 1-0 (3-1 aggregate) score against Marathon. They will face Cruz Azul in the semifinals of the regional tournament. Meanwhile, Santos Laguna rallied to defeat Montreal Impact 5-2 (5-4 aggregate) for a place in the semifinals, ending the USL club’s impressive run in the tournament. Complete results and schedule are available at www.concacaf.com.

US YOUTH SOCCER HOLDS AWARDS GALA TO HONOR WINNERS ACROSS THE NATION: US Youth Soccer held its annual Awards Gala over the weekend, honoring winners across the nation for categories ranging from US Youth Soccer Goal of the Year to the Dr. Thomas Fleck Award for Excellence in Coaching Education. The gala culminated in the Class of 2008 induction into the US Youth Soccer Hall of Fame, with honorees including former national team players Michelle Akers, John Harkes, Kristine Lilly and Tab Ramos. A full list of nominees and winners is available at www.usyouthsoccer.org.

US CLUB SOCCER EXPANDS STAFF WITH CHARLESTON OFFICE: US Club Soccer has opened an additional office in South Carolina, with additional staffing moving in to a new office in downtown Charleston. The new office will accommodate the operations, marketing and communications staff. US Club Soccer is a non-profit organization whose mission is to develop competitive club soccer in the United States. It has been a member of the United States Soccer Federation since July 2001 and has grown to over 2,300 member clubs and leagues in 49 states. More information on US Club Soccer as well as more details about the organization's expansion to Charleston can be found the US Club Soccer website.

THIRTEEN VENUES SET TO HOST 2009 CONCACAF GOLD CUP: CONCACAF has announced the venues for the 2009 Gold Cup, with thirteen stadiums across the Untied States set to play a part in the biennial continental championship. Giants Stadium is slated to host the final on July 26, with Chicago's Soldier Field, site of 2007 final, lined up for the semifinals. The U.S. is looking to defend its title in the competition, having memorably defeated Mexico 2-1 in the finals of the previous edition of the tournament. While the dates and venues have been determined, the draw has yet to take place.

Venue list for 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup
First Round
The Home Depot Center; Carson, Calif.
Qwest Field; Seattle, Wash.
Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum; Oakland, Calif.
Columbus Crew Stadium; Columbus, Ohio
Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium; Washington, D.C.
Reliant Stadium; Houston, Texas
Florida International University Stadium; Miami, Fla.
Gillette Stadium; Foxboro, Mass.
University of Phoenix Stadium; Glendale, Ariz.
Quarterfinals
Lincoln Financial Field; Philadelphia, Pa.
Dallas Cowboys New Stadium; Dallas, Texas
Semifinals
Soldier Field; Chicago, Ill.
Final
Giants Stadium; East Rutherford, N.J.

*** CENTER CIRCLE SPOTLIGHT ***

PEAK PERFORMER: MNT captain Carlos Bocanegra completed an excellent double this week, scoring the winning goal in Rennes victory over Auxerre on Sunday after earlier being named Rennes' sexiest player in a poll on the club's official web site. Rennes, who are just three points out of a Champions League spot in Ligue 1, have rebounded to win three games out of four and are mounting a serious challenge for Europe as the season reaches the business end in Europe. Follow all the action of MNT players abroad or track how other players fare in their respective bids to be named sexiest player on the Global Blog.

MARQUEE MATCHUP: After the U.S. WNT swept through Group B with three wins, all thoughts shift to the Championship of the 2009 Algarve Cup. Pia Sundhage's team, which has not yet conceded a goal in the tournament, will face Sweden with the title on the line on Wednesday, March 11, at a 12 p.m. ET. Fans can follow along on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker.

SOCCER SHOCKER: This week, the ironic soccer shocker: Ronaldo scores a goal. O Fenômeno opened his account for Coninthians this weekend, popping up in injury time to head home the tying goal of a game against Palmeiras. Shocking? Not so much. The three time FIFA World Player of the Year is just coming back to full fitness but with big games and international qualifiers coming up, what would be shocking is if this is the last goal Ronaldo scores for his club (or country).

QUOTABLE: "I have an option to own a franchise as soon as I finish playing and I will start that immediately. It is something I’m really excited about."
- David Beckham, who extended his loan stay at AC Milan this weekend talks to Gazzetta dello Sport about his future ambitions in MLS.

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