U.S. Soccer Wire: Jan. 11, 2010
USA BID COMMITTEE TO ANNOUNCE 18 CITIES FOR INCLUSION IN FIFA WORLD CUP BID;
SUNDHAGE NAMES U.S. WNT ROSTER FOR JANUARY TRAINING CAMP IN CARSON, CALIF.;
U.S. MNT CONTINUE CAMP AT THE HOME DEPOT CENTER Â
USA BID COMMITTEE TO NAME 18 CITIES CONFIRMED FOR INCLUSION IN UNITED STATESâ€™ BID TO HOST FIFA WORLD CUP IN 2018 OR 2022: The USA Bid Committee will conclude its eight-month host city selection process by unveiling the list of 18 cities to be included in the official United States bid book due to FIFA, the international governing body of soccer, by May 14, 2010. These 18 cities will represent the United States in the national bid and continue working with the USA Bid Committee on the development and promotion of the local and national campaigns leading up to FIFAâ€™s awarding of the 2018 and 2022 tournaments on Dec. 2, 2010. U.S. Soccer President and USA Bid Committee Chairman Sunil Gulati and USA Bid Committee Executive Director David Downs will hold a press conference at the ESPN Zone on Tues. Jan. 12 in New York, N.Y. The press conference will be televised live on ESPNNews at 3:30 p.m. ET and can also be viewed live via streaming video on ussoccer.com.Â
SUNDHAGE NAMES ROSTER FOR TRAINING CAMP WITH SIGHTS SET ON ALGARVE CUP: U.S. Womenâ€™s National Team head coach Pia Sundhage has called in 26 players for an extended 20-day training camp at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., running from Jan. 17 through Feb. 4. The camp will give Sundhage a final look at the core of her current player pool before selecting an 18-player roster for the annual Algarve Cup in Portugal. The USA has been grouped this year with Iceland, Norway and Sweden in the tournament that will run from Feb. 24 through March 3, a week earlier than it is traditionally staged. Germany, Finland, China and Denmark will also be participating. The matches in Portugal will be the first international games of the year for the U.S. women, who went 7-0-1 in 2009 and currently sit atop the FIFA Womenâ€™s World Rankings. Sundhage used 29 players during the eight matches in 2009.
U.S. Roster By Position Full Roster Listing
GOALKEEPERS (4): Nicole Barnhart (FC Gold Pride), Jillian Loyden (St. Louis Athletica), Alyssa Naeher (Penn State), Hope Solo (St. Louis Athletica)
DEFENDERS (8): Lori Chalupny (St. Louis Athletica), Stephanie Cox (Los Angeles Sol), Amy LePeilbet (Boston Breakers), Heather Mitts (Philadelphia Independence), Meghan Schnur (Sky Blue FC), Brittany Taylor (UConn), Cat Whitehill (Washington Freedom)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Yael Averbuch (Sky Blue FC), Shannon Boxx (Los Angeles Sol), Tobin Heath (UNC), Lori Lindsey (Philadelphia Independence), Carli Lloyd (Sky Blue FC), Heather Oâ€™Reilly (Sky Blue FC), Megan Rapinoe (Chicago Red Stars)
FORWARDS (7): Lauren Cheney (UCLA), Ella Masar (Chicago Red Stars), Alex Morgan (California), Casey Nogueira (UNC), Kelley Oâ€™Hara (Stanford), Amy Rodriguez (Philadelphia Independence), Abby Wambach (Washington Freedom)
U.S. MENâ€™S NATIONAL TEAM CONTINUES JANUARY CAMP AT THE HOME DEPOT CENTER: The annual camp, held in January for players in their offseason, is comprised largely of a domestic-based group that includes 25 players who ply their trade in the United States. Major League Soccer is well represented, with 13 of 16 clubs contributing players to the camp in Carson, Calif. The roster boasts several year-end award winners, including MLS Goalkeeper of the Year (Zach Thornton), Visa Defender of the Year (Chad Marshall), Budweiser Golden Boot Winner (Jeff Cunningham) and Gatorade Rookie of the Year (Omar Gonzalez). U.S. Menâ€™s National Team head coach Bob Bradley is in charge of 30 players on the training camp roster that gathered on Jan. 4 at U.S. Soccer's National Training Center. The group will prepare for the USAâ€™s first match of 2010, a friendly against fellow FIFA World Cup finalists Honduras on Jan. 23 at The Home Depot Center. The match will be broadcast live on Fox Soccer Channel and Galavision beginning at 6 p.m. PT. Â The Honduras match will be followed by a friendly against third-ranked Netherlands on March 3 in Amsterdam which will be broadcast by ESPN2 and Galavision at 2:30 p.m. ET. Fans can follow both games live via ussoccer.comâ€™s MatchTracker and at www.twitter.com/ussoccer.
U.S. MNT Training Camp Roster
GOALKEEPERS (4): Kevin Hartman (Kansas City), Troy Perkins (Valerenga), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake), Zach Thornton (Chivas USA)
DEFENDERS (9): Kevin Alston (New England Revolution), Jonathan Bornstein (Chivas USA), Jimmy Conrad (Kansas City Wizards), Omar Gonzalez (Los Angeles Galaxy), Clarence Goodson (IK Start), Chad Marshall (Columbus Crew), Brandon McDonald (San Jose Earthquakes), Heath Pearce (FC Dallas), Marvell Wynne (Toronto FC)
MIDFIELDERS (12): Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Ã–rebro), Geoff Cameron (Houston Dynamo), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Brad Evans (Seattle Sounders), Benny Feilhaber (Aarhus), Eddie Gaven (Columbus Crew), Sacha Kljestan (Chivas USA), Jeff Larentowicz (New England Revolution), Dax McCarty (FC Dallas), Chris Pontius (D.C. United), Robbie Rogers (Columbus Crew)
FORWARDS (5): Justin Braun (Chivas USA), Conor Casey (Colorado Rapids), Jeff Cunningham (FC Dallas), Robbie Findley (Real Salt Lake), Marcus Tracy (Aalborg)
TICKETS FOR U.S. MNT MATCH AGAINST NETHERLANDS ON SALE FOR USA FANS JAN. 12: U.S. supporters tickets for the U.S. Menâ€™s National Teamâ€™s international friendly against the Netherlands on March 3 in Amsterdam will go on sale to the public starting on Tuesday, Jan. 12, at 10 a.m. ET on ussoccer.com. Members of U.S. Soccer SC will have advanced priority to purchase tickets. The game against third-ranked Netherlands will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and Galavision. Fans will also be able to follow the match live via ussoccer.comâ€™s MatchTracker and a twitter.com/ussoccer.
ussoccer.comâ€™s MNT Coverage â€“ Jan. 5 â€“ Jan. 11
- News: U.S. to Face Honduras on Jan. 23 | Friendly Scheduled with Third-Ranked Netherlands in March
- Feature: Comparing Camps: A Look at the 2002, 2006 and 2010 January Camps
- Video: Jan. 5: Camp Begins | Jan. 8: Letâ€™s Get Physicals! | Jan. 11: Training Talk
- MNT Blog | U.S. Soccer on Twitter
DIVISION 2 PROFESSIONAL LEAGUE TO OPERATE IN 2010: The U.S. Soccer Federation, United Soccer Leagues (USL) and the North American Soccer League (NASL) have come to an agreement on the formation and operation of a Division 2 professional soccer league for the 2010 season. Under the agreement, U.S. Soccer will oversee the league for the 2010 season, working with both the USL and NASL on the day-to-day league activities. The agreement pertains only to the 2010 season, and during the next year U.S. Soccer will continue to work with USL and NASL to build a long-term solution for the future. U.S. Soccer will also be developing new standards to govern Division 2 professional league applicants to ensure the long term viability and sustainability of the leagues and teams.
â€“ U.S. YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE â€“
U.S. U-23 WNT TO PLAY KOREA REPUBLIC TWICE IN CARSON, CALIF. AFTER TRAINING CAMP: The U.S. Under-23 Womenâ€™s National Team will come together for its first training camp of 2010 from Jan. 13-20 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. Head coach Bill Irwin has called in 24 players to the camp, which will overlap four days on the front end with the U.S. U-18 WNT training camp and three days on the back end with the U.S. WNT training camp. The week will include two games against the senior Korea Republic Womenâ€™s National Team, which is training in Southern California for three weeks. Irwinâ€™s squad will face the Koreans on Saturday, Jan. 16 and on Monday, Jan. 18. Both games are at 3 p.m. at The Home Depot Center.
Roster By Position
GOALKEEPERS (3): Kristin Arnold (Texas A&M; Centennial, Colo.), Kelsey Davis (Portland; Thousand Oaks, Calif.), Natalie Kulla (Marquette; St. Louis, Mo.)
DEFENDERS (8): Lauren Barnes (UCLA; Upland, Calif.), Alison Falk (Philadelphia Independence; Danville, Calif.), Kaley Fountain (Wake Forest; Austin, Texas), Lauren Fowlkes (Notre Dame; Leeâ€™s Summit, Mo.), Nikki Krzysik (Philadelphia Independence; Clifton, N.J.), Kat Reynolds (Santa Clara; Medina, Wash.), Jessica Tsao (Portland; Portland, Ore.) Elise Weber (St. Louis Athletica; Elk Grove Village, Ill.)
MIDFIELDERS (9): Ashley Bowyer (Ohio State; Aliso Viejo, Calif.), Bianca Dâ€™Agostino (Wake Forest; Longmeadow, Mass.), Amanda DaCosta (Florida State; Katonah, N.Y.) Becky Edwards (Florida State; Downington, Pa.), Sinead Farrelly (Virginia; Havertown, Pa.), Allie Long (Washington Freedom; Northport, N.Y.), Taylor Lytle (Texas Tech; Las Cruces, N.M.), Malorie Rutledge (LSU; Sharpsburg, Ga.), Kylie Wright (UCLA; Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.)
FORWARDS (4):Â Kiki Bosio (Santa Clara; Mission Viejo, Calif.), Kristina Larsen (Mission Viejo, Calif.), Alyssa Mautz (Texas A & M; St. Louis, Mo.); Jessica McDonald (UNC; Glendale, Ariz.)
ELLIS NAMES ROSTER FOR CONCACAF U-20 WOMEN'S CHAMPIONSHIP: U.S. Under-20 Womenâ€™s National Team head coach Jillian Ellis has named the 20 players who will attempt to earn a berth to the 2010 FIFA U-20 Womenâ€™s World Cup in Germany through the CONCACAF qualifying tournament being held Jan. 19-30 in Guatemala City, Guatemala. The 2010 CONCACAF Womenâ€™s Under-20 Championship is an eight-team tournament that will send three nations to Germany. The qualifying matches will be played at the 17,000-seat Estadio Cementos Progreso. This is the first time a qualifying tournament for this age group has been held in Central America. The event will consist of two groups of four teams each with the top two finishers after group play crossing over into the semifinals. The reigning U-20 world champion USA is up against Jamaica (Jan. 21), Trinidad & Tobago (Jan. 23) and Mexico (Jan. 25) in Group B.
Roster By Position
GOALKEEPERS (3): Adriana Franch (Oklahoma State; Salina, Kan.), Bianca Henninger (Santa Clara; Los Gatos, Calif.), Taylor Vancil (Louisville; South Elgin, Ill.)
DEFENDERS (6): Vicki DiMartino (Boston College; Massapequa, N.Y.), Crystal Dunn (Albertson SC; Rockville Centre, N.Y.), Kendall Johnson (Portland; Portland, Ore.), Lucretia Lee (UCLA; Bothell, Wash.), Cami Levin (Stanford; Newport Coast, Calif.), Rachel Quon (Stanford; Lake Forrest, Ill.)
MIDFIELDERS (11): Amber Brooks (UNC; New Hope, Pa.), Charney Burk (Portland; North Tuscan, Calif.), Zakiya Bywaters (UCLA; Las Vegas, Nev.), Elizabeth Eddy (So Cal Blues, Costa Mesa, Calif.), Katy Frierson (Auburn; Birmingham, Ala.), Kristie Mewis (Boston College; Hanson, Mass.), Samantha Mewis (Scorpion SC; Hanson, Mass.), Christine Nairn (Penn State; Bowie, Md.), Teresa Noyola (Stanford; Palo Alto, Calif.), Jenna Richmond (McLean SC; Centreville, Va.), Casey Short (Florida State; Naperville, Ill.)
FORWARDS (5): Maya Hayes (Aristics Club; West Orange, N.J.), Sydney Leroux (UCLA; Pheonix, Ariz.), Morgan Marlborough (Nebraska; Raymore, Mo.), Tiffany McCarty (Florida State; Laurel, Md.), Toni Pressley (Florida State; Melbourne, Fla.)
U.S. U-20 WNT CONCACAF U-20 Womenâ€™s Championship Schedule
DateÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â OpponentÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Time (ET)Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â TVÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Venue
Jan. 21Â Â Â Â Â Â JamaicaÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 5:30 p.m.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Fox Soccer ChannelÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Estadio Cementos Progreso
Jan. 23Â Â Â Â Â Â Trinidad & TobagoÂ Â Â Â Â Â 5:30 p.m.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â --Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Estadio Cementos Progreso
Jan. 25Â Â Â Â Â Â MexicoÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 5:30 p.m.Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â --Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Estadio Cementos Progreso
U.S. U-18 WOMEN CAMP UNDERWAY AT THE HOME DEPOT CENTER: The U.S. Under-18 Womenâ€™s National Team has begun its first training camp of 2010 from Jan. 10-17 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. U.S. head coach Dave Chesler has called up 24 players. The majority of the players in camp were born in 1992, the age group for this yearâ€™s U-18s, but a few 1991s were called in for further evaluation for the U-20 player pool. All players called into the U-18 WNT are always under evaluation for possible inclusion in U-20 WNT events. Chesler also called in one 1993 in forward Courtney Proctor.
Roster by Position
GOALKEEPERS (3): Aubrey Bledso (Kings Soccer Academy; Cincinnati, Ohio), Anna Sieloff (Vardar; Troy, Mich.), Abby Steele (Mustang Soccer; Santa Rosa, Calif.)
DEFENDERS (6): Torri Allen (Mclean Dragons; Stafford, Va.), Julie Johnston (Sereno SC; Mesa, Ariz.), Meagan Morris (Montclair Aristocrats; Montclair, N.J.), Mollie Pathman (Triangle Futbol Club; Durham, N.C.), Kendall Romine (So Cal Blues; Coto de Caza, Calif.), Carrie Whigham (Sereno SC; Phoenix, Ariz.)
MIDFIELDERS (9): Alex Crown (Space Coast United; Orlando, Fla.), Lindsay Elston (Crossfire Premier; Sammamish, Wash.), Kaitlyn Fitzpatrick (Sam Ramon; Pleasanton, Calif.), Juliann Jeffrey (Texans; Richardson, Texas), Sarah Killion (Fort Wayne Fever; Fort Wayne, In), Mandy Laddish (Blue Valley Stars; Leeâ€™s Summit, Mo.), Lauren Matheson (So Cal Blues; Mission Viejo, Calif.), Tiffini Smith (Polaris SC; Fort Worth, Texas), Chioma Ubogagu (Dâ€™Feeters; Coppel, Texas)Â
FORWARDS (5):Â Kelly Cobb (Cook Inlet SC; Chugiak, Alaska), Michelle Cruz (Slammers; Thousand Oaks, Calif.), Natalia Ledezma (Blue Valley Stars; Leeâ€™s Summit, Mo.), Ariana Martinez (Real So Cal; Moorpark, Calif.), Courtney Proctor (Slammers; Santa Clarita, Calif.)
U.S. U-17 WNT HEADS TO FLORIDA TO PLAY THREE MATCHES AGAINST GERMANY: The U.S. Under-17 Womenâ€™s National Team opens its World Cup year with a training camp in Sunrise, Fla., from Jan. 27-Feb. 6. U.S. head coach Kaz Tambi will bring 24 players to FloridaÂ for three matches against the German U-17s. The U.S. U-17s played Germany three times in January of 2009, losing two and tying one, but that German team was a year older than the USA. The upcoming games pit players in the same age group, born mostly in 1993 and 1994, that hope to be representing their countries at the 2010 FIFA U-17 Womenâ€™s World Cup in Trinidad & Tobago.
Roster By Position:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Bryane Heaberline (Clearwater Chargers; St. Petersburgh, Fla.), Abby Smith (Dallas Texans; Dallas, Texas), Caroline Stanley (KCFC Alliance; Kansas City, Mo.)
DEFENDERS (8): Olivia Brannon (Michigan Jags; Troy, Mich.), Abby Dahlkemper (MVLA Avalanche; Menlo Park, Calif.), Jaelene Hinkle (Real Colorado; Denver, Colo.), Laura Liedle (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.), Sarah Molina (Cleveland FC; Rocky River, Ohio), Katie Naughton (Sockers FC; Arlington Heights, Ill.), Carson Pickett (Ponte Vedra Storm; Spartanburg, S.C.), Cari Roccaro (Albertson SC; East Islip, N.Y.)
MIDFIELDERS (10): Morgan Brian (Ponte Vedra Storm; Saint Simons Island, Ga.), Kaysie Clark (KC Select Scream; Liberty, Mo.), Alexandra Doll (Bethesda SC; Bethesda, Md.), Isabel Farrell (Crossfire; Bellevue, Wash.), Lindsey Horan (Colorado Rush; Golden, Colo.), Ashley Meier (Cleveland Whitecaps; Strongsville, Ohio), Cassandra Pecht (Baltimore Bays; Mechanicsburg, Pa.), Havana Salaun (KYX Kicks Elite; Gainseville, Fla.), Kaili Torres (Ponte Vedra Storm; Orange Park, Fla.), Clarissa Wedemeyer (Dallas Texans; Colleyville, Texas)
FORWARDS (3): Annie Kunz (Colorado Rush; Golden, Colo.), Kylie McCarthy (San Diego Surf; Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.), Ashley Spivey (Baltimore Soccer Bays; Baltimore, Md.)
U-14 BNT HEAD TO GUADALAJARA FOR LONE INTERNATIONAL TRIP OF 2010:Â U.S. Under-14 Boyâ€™s National Team head coach Manny Schellscheidt will lead 36 players to Guadalajara, Mexico, on Jan. 17-24 for the teamâ€™s only international trip of 2010. The roster is made up exclusively of players born in 1996, an age group that began training with Schellscheidt in November last year. Returning from the teamâ€™s trip to Disney World last fall are 28 players who competed at a U.S. Youth Soccer event. In Guadalajara, Schellscheidt will split the team in two to compete against local youth sides and train every day. The roster includes 14 players who play for Development Academy clubs, but only three players are part of the Development Academy system, playing against older players born mostly in 1994: Vernon Bailey (FC Dallas Juniors), Emerson Hyndman (FC Dallas Juniors) and Elijah Martin (Cal Odyssey).
Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (4): Gianni Carillo (FC Westchester; Pine Bush, N.Y.), Paul Christensen (Washington Premier FC; Woodinville, Wash.)Â Andrew Epstein (Fort Collins; Fort Collins, Colo.), Andrew Ferber (Mustang SC; Danville, Calif.)
DEFENDERS (8): Vernon Bailey (FC Dallas Juniors; Duncanville, Texas), Omar Castro (Plant City Area Soccer Club; Plant City, Fla.), Fischer Gallinger (Washington Premier FC; Gig Harbor, Wash.), Eric Holt (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.), Carter Manley (Bethesda SC; Elkridge, Md.), Jack Menard (Bavarian SC, Milwaukee, Wis.), Esteban Reyes (San Juan Lightning; San Marcos, Calif.), Jeffrey Rhodes (Westside United SC; Brownsburg, Ind.)
MIDFIELDERS (13): Ivan Alvarado (Dallas Texans; Ft. Worth, Texas), Corey Baird (San Diego Surf; Escondido, Calif.), Samuel Brown (Derby County Wolves; Ann Arbor, Mich.), Michael Clemmons (CASL Chelsea FC; Raleigh, N.C.), Emerson Hyndman (FC Dallas Juniors; Plano, Texas), Patrick Khouri (Daniel Island; Charleston, S.C.), Elijah Martin (Cal Odyssey; Fresno, Calif.), Declan McCabe (Mass Premier Soccer; Weston, Mass.), Kevin Paz (West Pines United SC; Miami Gardens, Fla.), Ricardo Ruiz (Fullerton Rangers; Lake Elsinore, Calif.), Joab Santoyo (Arsenal FC; Fontana, Calif.), William Stevens (HBC; New Hyde Park, N.Y.), Brandon Tetro (PDA; Marlboro, N.J.)
FORWARDS (11): Adonis Amaya (West Coast FC, Westminster, Calif.), Jorge Calix (Team America; Alexandria, Va.), James Ellis, Jr. (United Junkyard Dogs, Chesapeake, Va.), Oscar Martinez (FC Golden State; South Gate, Calif.), John Requejo Jr. (Santa Barbara SC; Carpinteria, Calif.), DeAndre Robinson (Gwinnet SA; Lawrenceville, Ga.), Rubio Rubin (Westside Metros; Beaverton, Ore.), Bruno Scodari (Olney Boys and Girls Club; Silver Springs Md.), Alejandro Segovia (Westside Metros; Beaverton, Ore.), Austin Stamey (Highland FC; Arden, N.C.), Rolando Velazquez (Eugene Metro FC; Junction, Ore.)
â€“ AROUND THE SOCCER NATION â€“
U.S. SOCCER NATIONAL GOALKEEPING LICENSE COURSE ANNOUNCED: U.S. Soccerâ€™s Coaching Department will conduct its National Goalkeeping License course Jan. 24-31, 2010, in Carson, Calif. at The Home Depot Center.
COACHESNET OFFERS INTERNATIONAL TRIPS IN 2010: U.S. Soccerâ€™s CoachesNet is offering educational trips to both Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Madrid, Spain, in 2010. The announcement comes six months after the inaugural and successful coaching education trip that took place in Buenos Aires.
USA BID COMMITTEE GIVES FANS THE CHANCE TO â€œSUPPORT YOUR CITYâ€: The USA Bid Committee has added a â€œSupport Your Cityâ€ section to goUSAbid.com, the online home for the United Statesâ€™ bid to host the FIFA World Cupâ„¢ in 2018 or 2022. The new â€œSupport Your Cityâ€ section of the Web site features city-specific pages for each of the 27 cities currently being considered as potential host cities to be included in the U.S. bid that will be submitted to FIFA in May 2010. The new pages provide valuable city-specific information and photos while giving fans another opportunity to put their support behind the candidate city of their choice by signing the online petition at goUSAbid.com.
ID2 NATIONAL SELECTION INTERNATIONAL TOUR ROSTER FINALIZED: The roster of 18 players for US Club Soccerâ€™s id2 National Selection International Tour has been finalized in advance of the Feb. 5-14, 2010, journey to the Netherlands and Germany. A total of 11 states are represented on the 18-player roster, which is comprised of a team of the best male players born in 1996 and 1997 from the fall 2009 id2 Regional Training Camps. The squad will play three games while overseas in addition to conducting daily training sessions and experiencing the day-to-day culture of some of the worldâ€™s most well-known professional clubs.
*** CENTER CIRCLE SPOTLIGHT ***
PEAK PERFORMER: Earning his first English Premier League start and appearance on Saturday afternoon, Landon Donovan tallied an assist in 68 minutes of action for Everton as he put in a solid performance on the right flank for the Toffees.
MARQUEE MATCHUP: With a full slate of group games in the African Cup of Nations scheduled, the week will be punctuated by a clash of two of Africaâ€™s premier teams as Cote dâ€™Ivoire and Ghana meet on Friday. Both of the sides, who have qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, will be looking to take control of their group in order to make it to the quarterfinals of the 16 team tournament.
SOCCER SHOCKER: After a 74th minute penalty by Manucho to make the score 4-0, African Cup of Nations hosts Angola seemed to be making a dream start in the opening match of the continental championship. However, that dream would soon turn a nightmare as Mali turned around the four goal deficit in the final 11 minutes, including two goals after 92 minutes, to knot the score at 4-4.
QUOTABLE: "I thought Donovan did very well. He cramped up, so we had to take him off and the cold probably didn't help him. Landon was a threat to Arsenal all day and he did a great job out on the right. Landon offers us plenty of options and that is why we are delighted to have him." â€“Everton manager David Moyes on U.S. Menâ€™s National Team midfielder Landon Donovanâ€™s debut with the Liverpool club