CARY, N.C. (Thursday, May 2, 2002) - The second session of the U.S. training camp in Cary picked up where the first left off. The nearly two-hour session opened with the famed "beep" test, a fitness exam designed to measure an athlete's oxygen-carrying capability. Once again, Frankie Hejduk and Chris Armas finished number one and two, respectively, in the testing. Clint Mathis returned to the fold to participate in training, while Carlos Llamosa and Joe-Max Moore worked on individual fitness exercises with trainer Jim Hashimoto. After a brief possession game, the attacking players focused on crossing and finishing exercises. The goalposts proved to be the keeper's best friend, with shots ringing off the crossbar and posts the order of the day. The focus turned to a spirited 8 v. 7 half-field scrimmage, the players clearly pushing through warm conditions and the effects of training and travel. With the afternoon session canceled, training concluded with a final fitness exercise, a series of sprints led by goalkeepers Brad Friedel and Kasey Keller.
ONE SHY: Literally. U.S. defender Jeff Agoos, a 12-year veteran of the U.S. Men's National Team, has recorded exactly 9,999 minutes of playing time since earning his first cap on Jan. 10, 1988 against Guatemala. Agoos, who turns 34 years old today, has amassed 127 international appearances, one behind Marcelo Balboa for second place all-time on the U.S. list. Only Balboa and Cobi Jones have recorded more caps and minutes played for the USA. Agoos was one of two players to play every minute of final round qualifying for the 2002 World Cup (Earnie Stewart) and is second all-time in World Cup qualifying appearances with 26.
STILL NO WORD: The status of Eddie Lewis remained a question mark today, as U.S. head coach Bruce Arena is still unable to determine exactly when the Fulham-based midfielder would join the U.S. camp. Fulham have one match remaining in the EPL season, against Blackburn on May 11. Meanwhile, defender David Regis is expected to arrive in Cary this Sunday.
THEY SAID IT:
"I think it's wrong to assume that four guys are going to make the difference on defense. It's going to be the case where if we don't have the team behind us on both sides of the ball we're going to suffer a little bit. Playing defense means eight to eleven guys being in tune with each other. The World Cup is definitely going to be a team achievement one way or the other."
- U.S. defender Jeff Agoos, on how the defense needs to improve prior to the FIFA World Cup.