USA WINS FOUR NATIONS TOURNAMENT AS LILLY EARNS 300-PLUS CAPS FOR U.S.: The U.S. Women’s National Team put together a magnificent performance in its final match of the 2006 Four Nations Tournament, defeating host China, 2-0, in front of a crowd of 15,000 to win the title. China finished second, France third and Norway fourth. U.S. captain Kristine Lilly, playing in her 302nd career game, scored both U.S. goals in the first half, pushing her international total to 107 and moving into sole possession of second place on the all-time U.S. goal-scoring list behind Mia Hamm (158 goals). Lilly’s 107 career goals also tie her for second on the world’s all-time international scoring list for women with Italian legend Elisabetta Vignotto. The win marked the second tournament championship for Ryan after also winning the 2005 Algarve Cup. The U.S. has yet to lose a game under Ryan, who has compiled a record of 10-0-2 since beginning as head coach in March of 2005. The U.S. team swept the awards at the 2006 Four Nations Tournament, not only winning the championship, but Lilly was also named Best Player and was the Top Scorer with three goals. Hope Solo was named Best Goalkeeper and Ryan took the honors as Best Coach. This was the fourth time in five trips to the Four Nations Tournament that the USA has taken top honors, also winning in 1998, 2003 and 2004. The next competition for the U.S. Women’s National Team takes place from March 9-15, 2006, at the Algarve Cup in Portugal. The groups, match-ups and U.S. roster will be announced in the near future.
U.S. WNT Four Nations Tournament Results
Date Opponent Result U.S. Goal Scorer(s)
Jan. 18 Norway 3-1 W Lilly, Boxx, Wambach
Jan. 20 France 0-0 T n/a
Jan. 22 China 2-0 W Lilly (2)
2006 Four Nations Tournament Awards
Best Coach: Greg Ryan, USA
Best Player: Kristine Lilly, USA
Top Scorer: Kristine Lilly, USA (3 goals)
Best Goalkeeper: Hope Solo, USA
U.S. MNT TO PLAY POLAND ON MARCH 1 IN GERMANY: The U.S. Men’s National Team has scheduled a game against Poland in Kaiserslautern, Germany, on March 1, 2006, in one of the most unique games in the team’s 90-year history. The game will be televised live in the United States on ESPN2 at 2 p.m. ET from a city that is home to 50,000 U.S. service personnel in the southwestern part of Germany. The match against Poland is being staged by U.S. Soccer at Fritz-Walter-Stadion, the site of the USA’s highly anticipated FIFA World Cup match against Italy on June 17. Tickets for the USA-Poland match ranging in price levels from 15 € to 125 € will go on sale starting Thursday, February 2, at 10 a.m. CET (Central European Time). Tickets will be available on-line via the FC Kaiserslautern website, by phone from Germany at 01 805 3188 00 (Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. CET / .12 € charge per minute), and at FCK Fan Shops and the Fritz-Walter-Stadion Ticket Office (Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. CET, Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. CET). For fans in the United States, log onto ussoccer.com for more information. The match marks the first time in the 472-game history of the U.S. Men’s National Team that the squad will play a stand alone friendly on neutral ground.
U.S. U-20 WNT LOOKS TO SECURE GROUP B IN CONCACAF QUALIFYING: For the second game in a row, the U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team got goals from four different players as forwards Amy Rodriguez and Kelley O’Hara, and midfielders Allie Long and Amanda Poach each tallied goals in a 4-0 victory over Surinam at the 2006 CONCACAF Women’s Under-20 Final Round Qualification Tournament. The USA now needs a win or a tie in its last Group B match against El Salvador on January 23 to secure the group title. It will be the first-ever match for a U.S. women’s team against El Salvador at any level. The U.S. team has all but mathematically clinched a spot in the next round, as the young Americans would need to lose by a large margin to El Salvador to miss the all-important semifinals. The two semifinal winners and the winner of the third-place match earn CONCACAF’s three berths to the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship in Russia. At the conclusion of the first round, the winners and runners-up in each group will earn a place in the event’s semifinals on January 25 at Veracruz’s Luis Pirata Fuentes Stadium. The third-place play-off game between the two losing semifinalists will also take place at Luis Pirata Fuentes Stadium, on January 27, before the two finalists meet for the CONCACAF Women’s U-20 crown later in the day
U.S. U-20 WNT 2006 CONCACAF Qualifying Schedule/Results
Date Round Matchup/Result Time/U.S. Goal Scorer(s)
Jan. 19 Group B USA 4, Jamaica 1 DiMartino, Rodriguez, Adams, Cheney
Jan. 21 Group B Surinam 0, USA 4 Rodriguez, O'Hara, Long, Poach
Jan. 23 Group B USA vs. El Salvador 3:30 p.m. ET
Jan. 25 Semifinals 1st in A vs. 2nd in B 1 p.m. ET
Semifinals 1st in B vs. 2nd in A 4 p.m. ET
Jan. 27 Third-Place Match TBD 1 p.m. ET
Championship Final TBD 4 p.m. ET
U.S. U-20 WNT CONCACAF Qualifying Group B Standings
Team W L T Pts GF GA GD
USA 2 0 0 6 8 1 +7
SLV 1 1 0 3 4 3 +1
JAM 1 1 0 3 4 5 -1
SUR 0 2 0 0 0 7 -7
– U.S. MEN’S NATIONAL TEAM UPDATE –
U.S. OPENS 2006 WITH SCORELESS DRAW AGAINST CANADA: The U.S. Men’s National Team opened their 2006 campaign with a tough 0-0 draw against Canada on Sunday evening at Torero Stadium on the University of San Diego campus. Preparations for the 2006 FIFA World Cup continue next week when the U.S. takes on Norway at The Home Depot Center on Jan. 29, 2006, at 2 p.m. PT live on ESPN2 and Telemundo (tickets). With the lack of goals for either side, the story line of the match turned to two players – Matt Reis and Freddy Adu – who collected their first-ever caps for the U.S. MNT. Reis was solid in his first appearance in the net with the national team, coming up with two saves on the night to become just the eighth ‘keeper in U.S. history to earn a shutout in his first cap. Adu, who came on for an injured Eddie Johnson in the 81st minute, became the youngest player to ever take the field with the U.S. MNT at 16 years, 234 days. The U.S. and Canada combined for 19 shots on the night, but neither team really tested the opposing goalkeeper as most of the strikes failed to find their target.
U.S. MNT 2006 Schedule
Date Match Venue Kickoff / TV / Result
Jan. 22 USA vs. Canada Torero Stadium (San Diego, Calif.) 0-0 T
Jan. 29 USA vs. Norway Home Depot Center (Carson, Calif.) 2 p.m. PT / ESPN2 & Telemundo (live)
Feb. 10 USA vs. Japan SBC Park (San Francisco, Calif.) 8 p.m. PT / ESPN2 (Telemundo delay)
Feb. 19 USA vs. Guatemala Pizza Hut Park (Frisco, Texas) 1 p.m. CT / ESPN2 & Telemundo (live)
March 1 USA vs. Poland Fritz-Walter-Stadion (Kaiserslautern, Germany) 2 p.m. ET / ESPN2 (Telemundo delay)
March 22 Germany vs. USA Westfalenstadion (Dortmund, Germany) 2 p.m. ET / ESPN2 (Telemundo delay)
April 12 USA vs. TBD TBD (United States) TBD
May Three Homes Games TBD TBD
June 12 USA vs. Czech Republic ** FIFA World Cup Stadium Gelsenkirchen 12 p.m. ET / TBD
June 17 Italy vs. USA ** Fritz-Walter-Stadion (Kaiserslautern) 3 p.m. ET / TBD
June 22 Ghana vs. USA ** Frankenstadion (Nuremberg) 10 a.m. ET / TBD
** 2006 FIFA World Cup
U.S. MNT NAMES CARY, N.C., AS PRE-WORLD CUP TRAINING CAMP SITE: The U.S. Men’s National Team has selected SAS Soccer Park in Cary, N.C., as their base training camp prior to the 2006 FIFA World Cup. The team will begin final preparations for Germany on May 9 in Cary, and will train for approximately two weeks at the facility. The team’s schedule in Cary has not yet been finalized. The U.S. team used Cary as its base of operations prior to the 2002 FIFA World Cup in Korea/Japan, where the team reached the quarterfinals for the first time in 71 years.
U.S. TAKES ON NORWAY ON JAN. 29 AT THE HDC: The U.S. will face Norway at The Home Depot Center on Jan. 29, 2006, at 2 p.m. PT live on ESPN2. Tickets begin at $20 and are available at ussoccer.com, all Southern California Ticketmaster ticket centers (including Robinson’s-May, Wherehouse Music and Tower Records), The Home Depot Center ticket office (stadium ticket office is open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), and by phone at 213-480-3232. Groups of 15 or more can purchase discounted tickets starting at $18 by calling U.S. Soccer at 312-528-1290 or downloading a group order form at ussoccer.com.
TICKETS AVAILABLE FOR MNT VS. JAPAN IN SAN FRANCISCO: Tickets are on sale for the U.S. vs. Japan preparation match for the 2006 FIFA World Cup at SBC Park in San Francisco on Feb. 10, 2006, at 8 p.m. PT. Tickets start at $22 and are available online at ussoccer.com, at all San Francisco area Tickets.com outlets (including Giants Dugout Stores, Raley’s, and Sportsmart) and by phone at 800-225-2277. Groups of 20 or more can purchase tickets through SBC Park by calling 415-972-2000 (Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.). A limited number of Ultimate Fan Tickets, which include a VIP experience and a personalized U.S. MNT jersey, will be available for this match. For more information, visit ussoccer.com.
U.S. MNT TO FACE GUATEMALA AT PIZZA HUT PARK: For the first time since 1994, the U.S. Men’s National Team will play a World Cup preparation match in Texas when the U.S. hosts Guatemala on February 19 at 1 p.m. CT at Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Texas. This will be the first U.S. National Team appearance at FC Dallas’ new home, which opened five months ago on Aug. 6, 2005. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and Telemundo, and will be available to fans online via ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. Tickets are available online at ussoccer.com, at all Dallas-Ft. Worth area Ticketmaster outlets (including Foley’s, Fiesta Stores, and Tower Records) and by phone at 214-373-8000. Groups of 15 or more can purchase tickets through FC Dallas by calling 888-FCD-GOAL. A limited number of Ultimate Fan Tickets , which include a VIP experience and a personalized U.S. MNT jersey, will be available for this match. The Feb. 19 match will be the 17th meeting all-time between the U.S. and Guatemala. The last time the U.S. played a World Cup preparation match in Texas was a 2-2 tie with Bolivia on March 26, 1994 at the Cotton Bowl. Overall, the U.S. has a 6-2-5 record in the state and a 5-1-4 mark in the Dallas-Ft. Worth metropolitan area. The U.S. is unbeaten in Texas in their last 11 matches, with the last loss coming to Ecuador on June 10, 1988, in Houston.
USA TO FACE GERMANY IN DORTMUND: The U.S. Men’s National Team continues preparing for the 2006 FIFA World Cup when they meet Germany on March 22, 2006, in Dortmund, Germany, one of 12 cities hosting matches in the tournament next summer. Kickoff at the Westfalenstadion is set for 8 p.m. in Germany (2 p.m. ET), and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN. Fans can follow the match live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker. The U.S. has played Germany seven times dating back to 1993, with the Germans holding a 5-2-0 lifetime advantage. Most recently, Germany ended the USA’s historic run through the 2002 FIFA World Cup with a 1-0 quarterfinal victory on June 21, 2002, in Ulsan, Korea. The teams met once before on German soil, a 4-2 loss for the U.S. on March 27, 2002, in Rostock in the USA’s penultimate match prior to selecting their World Cup roster.
– YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE –
U-20 MNT FORWARD LEE NGUYEN SIGNS WITH PSV EINDHOVEN: Former U-20 MNT forward Lee Nguyen signed a three and a half year contract with Dutch Eredivisie club PSV Eindhoven, leaving Indiana University after his freshman year. Nguyen, who was part of the U.S. team that participated in the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship, will join fellow American DaMarcus Beasley on the Dutch squad.
SEVEN CURRENT AND FORMER U.S. YOUTH NATIONALS DRAFTED INTO MLS: Former U.S. U-20 Men’s National Team players Marvell Wynne, Sacha Kljestan, Patrick Ianni, Nathan Sturgis and Jacob Peterson, as well as former U-17 Men’s National Team member Blake Wagner and current U-17 MNT Residency member Josmer Altidore, were selected during the 2006 MLS Superdraft. Wynne, who along with Kljestan, Ianni, Sturgis and Peterson, was a member of the U-20 MNT squad that participated in the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championships, was picked first overall by the MetroStars. Kljestan was picked fifth by Chivas USA, Ianni was selected eighth overall by Houston and Sturgis was chosen 12th overall by the Los Angeles Galaxy. Peterson was selected by the Colorado Rapids in the second round. Altidore and Wagner, who were members of the fifth place 2005 FIFA U-17 World Championship squad, were selected in the second round by the MetroStars and FC Dallas, respectively.
U.S. U-16 GIRL’S NATIONAL TEAM HOLDS FIRST CAMP OF ’06: The first camp of 2006 is underway for the U.S. Under-16 Girls’ National Team at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. In his first training camp as head coach, Kazbek Tambi has called in 24 players, many of whom were in training camps with the U.S. U-15 Girl’s National Team last year. The U-16’s camp coincides with the U.S. U-15s, and the two youngest U.S. youth national teams will scrimmage each other on Tuesday morning, January 24 at 9:30 a.m. PT.
U.S. U-16 GNT Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): Victoria Alonzo Lopez (Carrollton, Texas), Catherine Parkhill (Apple Valley, MInn.), Jessica Dulski (Pittsford, N.Y.); DEFENDERS (8): Margueritte Aozasa (Mountain View, Calif.), Jazmyne Avant (Coppell, Texas), Amber Brooks (New Hope, Pa.), Jennifer Laponte (Castro Valley, Calif.), Camille Levin (Newport Beach, Calif.), Michelle Olivier (Rosewell, Georgia), Alyssa Pember (Northport, N.Y.), Elizabeth Wright (Redmond, Wash.); MIDFIELDERS (8): Shira Averbuch (Upper Montclair, N.J.), Julia Bouchelle (Cockeysville, Md.), Chelsea Cline (Des Moines, Iowa), Alexandria Hampton (Redmond, Okla.), Sidney Leroux (Lakewood, Wash.), Katie Nagy (Bellmore, N.Y.), Whitney Sharpe (W. Des Moines, Iowa), Beth West (Centennial, Colo.); FORWARDS (5): Lauren Alwine (Elizabethtown, Pa.), Miriam Azimi (Sacramento, Calif.), Brianna Garcia (Babylon, N.Y.), Maggie Kistner (St. Louis, Mo.), Tiffany McCarty (Laurel, Md.).
– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –
2006 MISL ALL-STAR COACHES, TEAM UNVEILED: U.S. National Futsal Team and Milwaukee Wave head coach Keith Tozer and St. Louis Steamers head coach Omid Namazi have been selected to coach the 2006 MISL All-Stars at the 2006 MISL All-Star Game at Milwaukee's U.S. Cellular Arena on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2006. For the first time, the League's signature mid-season event will feature a collection of MISL All-Stars competing against the Mexican Federation's National Futbol Rapido team. The 16 players included on this year's MISL team were selected exclusively through a voting process that concluded Monday night and polled MISL team officials and members of the media, with ballots equally representing each MISL club. Fans can log onto www.MISL.net now through Feb. 5 and vote for the All-Star Game starters.
2006 MISL All-Star Team
GOALKEEPERS (2): Brett Phillips (Saint Louis Steamers), Nick Vorberg (Milwaukee Wave); DEFENDERS (6): Pat Morris (Philadelphia Kixx), Matt Schmidt (Milwaukee Wave), Troy Dusosky (Milwaukee Wave), P.J. Wakefield (Baltimore Blast), Danny Kelly (Baltimore Blast), Lazo Alavanja (Chicago Storm); MIDFIELDERS/FORWARDS (8): Greg Howes (Milwaukee Wave), Adauto Neto (Baltimore Blast), Giuliano Celenza (Baltimore Blast), Todd Dusosky (Milwaukee Wave), Shaun David (Saint Louis Steamers), Ronnie Ekelund (California Cougars), Jamar Beasley (Saint Louis Steamers), Novi Marojevic (Chicago Storm)
WASHINGTON FREEDOM SC TO PLAY IN W-LEAGUE: United Soccer Leagues announced Thursday (Jan. 19) at the NSCAA Convention that the Washington Freedom Soccer Club, which evolved from the Women’s United Soccer Association’s Washington Freedom will participate in the 2006 W-League season as an Associate Member of the league. The Freedom SC will play a 14-game W-League schedule, seven home and seven away, against eight W-League teams. As an associate member of the league, the matches will not count toward the standings and the Freedom SC will not be eligible for the postseason. The Washington Freedom SC schedule will be announced in the coming weeks. For more information about the Washington Freedom Soccer Club go to: www.washingtonfreedomsoccerclub.com
2006 PDL SCHEDULE ANNOUNCED: United Soccer Leagues announced the 2006 Premier Development League regular season schedule on Wednesday (Jan. 18). The 472-game, 59-team schedule opens Saturday, April 29 in Laredo, Texas and Fresno, Calif. The 2006 PDL Opening Night will feature the Austin Lightning visiting the Laredo Heat in Mid South Division action and the Fresno Fuego playing host to the San Diego Gauchos in the Southwest Division opener. Defending champions Des Moines Menace and 2005 finalists El Paso Patriots will also play games before the season begins in earnest the first weekend of May with 13 matches. The season concludes Sunday, July 23. The playoffs will follow the same format as 2005 and begin the following weekend with the four-team conference championship tournaments, each hosted by one of its four participants. The league semifinals will take place the weekend of July 30 with the PDL Championship game set for Saturday, Aug. 5.
*** “CENTER CIRCLE” SPOTLIGHT ***
PEAK PERFORMER: U.S. WNT captain Kristine Lilly has long been known as the USA’s “Iron Woman” and on Wednesday (Jan. 18) earned her 300th cap against Norway in the USA’s opening match of the Four Nations Tournament. Lilly topped off her 300th performance by scoring the team’s first of three goals against the Norwegians and assisting on the second. She also led the team to their fourth Four Nations Tournament title on Sunday (Jan. 22), scoring both goals in the 2-0 win against China. For her efforts, Lilly was named Player of the Tournament and her three goals earned her Top Scorer honors.
MARQUEE MATCHUP: It was exciting to see the U.S. MNT shake off the cobwebs and play their first match of 2006 on Sunday (Jan. 22), but it’s not over yet. On Sunday, Jan. 29, the U.S. continues their 2006 FIFA World Cup preparations with an international friendly against Norway at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. Kickoff is slated for 2 p.m. PT and the match will be televised live on ESPN2 and Telemundo. Fans will also be able to follow along on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker.
SOCCER SHOCKER: Africa surprised the planet during World Cup qualifying as four new nations made it to the World Cup Finals for the first time ever. But the year appears to be starting out on a tough note, as three of those four countries – Angola, Togo and Ghana – kicked off the 2006 African Cup of Nations with losses. Only Ivory Coast managed to win their opener, beating Morocco, 1-0, on Saturday (Jan. 21). Angola fell to Cameroon, 3-1, Togo lost, 2-0, to the Democratic Republic of the Congo on Saturday (Jan. 21) and Ghana lost 1-0 against Nigeria on Monday (Jan. 23). Tunisia, the fifth African country participating in the 2006 World Cup, defeated Zambia, 4-1, on Sunday (Jan. 22).
QUOTABLE: “She’s superhuman. She goes above and beyond anything you can ask of a player on the field, but off the field, she’s always making sure that everyone is doing okay and still having fun. I’ve admired her from such a young age, so to have the opportunity to play with her and learn from and just watch her has been something I will always cherish.”
-- U.S. WNT midfielder Lindsay Tarpley on captain Kristine Lilly, who earned her 300th cap and 105th goal in a 3-1 win against Norway on Jan. 18, 2006.