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USA Falls to Brazil in Penalties to Finish Fourth at U-20 Women's World Championship


- U-20s Fall in Shootout Again After Playing Second Consecutive Scoreless Match
- Val Henderson, Amanda Poach and Danesha Adams Named to FIFA All-Star Team
- Adams Wins Bronze Ball as Third Most Valuable Player in the Tournament
- USA Fails to Finish in Top-Three at FIFA Women’s Championship for First Time


MOSCOW, Russia (Sept. 3, 2006) – The U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team suffered its second consecutive penalty kick shootout loss at the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship, falling 0-0 (6-5) in the third-place match three days after dropping a 0-0 (5-4) result to China in the semifinal. The fourth place finish marked the first time a U.S. women’s team had finished out of the top-three in the 10 previously contested FIFA women’s championships.

Amazingly, of the 50 matches the U.S. U-20s had played against women’s teams prior to the World Championship, and in the first four games in Russia, the team had been shutout just three times, all by the full U.S. Women’s National Team. Then the U.S. played two consecutive scoreless matches to end the tournament, and even though it was clearly the superior team in both games, the young Americans could not produce a goal, eventually losing both contests via the shootout.

In the loss to China last Thursday, the shootout went six players deep, but the third-place match, played in horrible, rainy conditions at Lokomotiv Stadium, was not decided until eight kickers had gone. The match went straight to penalties with no overtime after the scoreless 90 minutes, which was probably fortunate for the Brazilians and the pitch, which was torn up and muddied after rain also fell during both semifinals last Thursday.

The shootout was marked by a bizarre incident after the USA’s seventh kick, which was missed by Amy Rodriguez and would have won the match. Swedish referee Jenny Palmqvist, who did the Olympic Final in 2004, somehow got confused on the order or the shooters or perhaps thought that someone had taken a second kick, and whistled the game over, awarding the match to the Brazilians.

As the Brazilians streamed out on the field in celebration, waving Brazilian flags and dog-piling, the U.S. team confronted the referee with howling protests. After consulting with her assistants and 4th official, Palmqvist corrected herself (her paper listing the kickers had become unreadable in the pouring rain) and the shootout continued. Maurine converted on the eighth kick for Brazil and then Amanda Poach saw her attempt to the left corner saved by Brazilian goalkeeper Barbara to end the match.

The USA had not one, but two chances to put Brazil on the ropes during the shootout, including Rodriguez’ chance to win it, but missed both. After Daiane had converted Brazil’s first kick, defender Carrie Dew matched her. Dew, who also had converted on the USA’s first kick against China, had her first attempt saved before the referee ordered a re-kick as Barbara had moved early. Brazilian captain Renata Costa then stepped up to take her team’s second shot and missed it wide right. With a chance to give the USA the lead, midfielder Allie Long missed her chance, shooting it right at Barbara and the shootout remain tied.

Brazil’s sixth kick saw one of the worst penalty kicks attempts imaginable, as Erika slowly rolled the ball to U.S. goalkeeper Val Henderson right up the middle, but then Rodriguez blasted her potential winning shot wide right of the goal. In the semifinal against China, Brittany Bock had a chance to put her team in the final on the USA’s fifth kick, but also missed her shot wide right.

The shots were relatively even in the match with the USA firing 11 and Brazil nine, but the Americans put six on goal to Brazil’s two and clearly were the aggressor. The U.S. team played some quality soccer despite the sloppy conditions and should have put at least one away on Barbara, who played an excellent,, if unorthodox, match for the Brazilians. Brazil allowed only two goals during the entire tournament.

The solo dribbling of Brazilian forward Fabiana produced Brazil’s only real danger during the match, but the U.S. team did a fine job of slowing her down and waiting for cover. In fact, Brazil’s best goal scoring chance came on a penalty kick in the 58th minute when Palmqvist whistled Henderson for taking down Danielle in the penalty area. Replays showed that the U.S. ‘keeper had clearly gotten to the ball first before sweeping through the Brazilians legs, but justice was served when Francielle hit her shot wide right of the goal.

The USA had a golden chance early on in the 12th minute as Tobin Heath found Lauren Cheney in the penalty area with a cross from the left side. The U.S. forward did well to settle the ball, but her left-footed shot from 14 yards out was saved by Barbara with a dive to her right.

The USA had another great chance that was denied by Barbara in the 16th minute as a corner kick skidded through the area and was miss-cleared right to Dew. The U.S. defender drilled her shot on target, but Barbara scrambled to push it over the top with an excellent reaction save. In the 26th minute, Kelley O’Hara got her head on a free-kick and had Barbara stranded, but her flick was too hard and it sailed over the net. In the 32nd minute, Rodriguez had a chance off a flicked thrown-in, but her half-volley skidded off the chest of Barbara and the ‘keeper recovered to fall on it.

The USA had numerous chances to flight balls into the Brazilian penalty area off free-kicks and corner kicks, but to Brazil’s credit, they did an excellent job of clearing air balls out of danger the entire match. While Brazil’s defense was solid, the U.S. players did get behind them on the flanks a half-dozen times, only to have their crosses blocked or fail to connect with a teammate. Danesha Adams came on at halftime for O’Hara and tried to spark the team, but the USA’s leading scorer in the tournament could not find a way through the inspired Brazilian defense.

In the 70th minute, Heath tried a shot from distance that was skipping into the left corner before Barbara dove to push it around the right post. In the 78th minute, Dew got a good head on a corner kick, but sent it over the goal. In the 83rd minute, Rodriguez rifled a heavy shot from outside the penalty area, but Barbara was up to the task again, pushing it outside the right post.

Dew, Jordan Angeli, Tobin Heath, Adams and Stephanie Lopez all converted in the shootout. Dew, Adams and Lopez made both of their penalty kicks attempts over the semifinal and third-place match.

The 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship All-Star Team was announced before the match and the 21-player list included three U.S. players; Henderson, Poach and Adams, who led the U.S. team in scoring with three goals in Russia. Adams also won the Bronze Ball as the third Most Valuable Player in the Tournament.

In even worse weather than the USA and Brazil encountered, North Korea deservedly won the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship, crushing China in a driving rainstorm, 5-0, as Kim Song Hui notched a hat trick. The Koreans, who shared the FIFA Fair Play Award with Russia, scored all five of their goals before 60 minutes were gone. Six players from North Korea, which not allow even one goal in the tournament, made the FIFA All-Star Team. The USA had the next most players chose with three. The win for Brazil marked the first time they had won the third-place match at a FIFA youth tournament after finishing fourth at both the 2002 and 2004 FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championships.

While the North Koreans took home the title, it was China’s Ma Xiaoxu who got the individual awards. Ma, who came on at halftime of the championship game when it was already, 3-0, won both the Golden Shoe as the tournament’s Top Scorer and the Golden Ball as the Most Valuable Player.

U.S. UNDER-20 WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAM GAME REPORT

Match-up: USA vs. Brazil
Competition: 2006 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Championship – Third-Place Match
Venue: Lokomotiv Stadium – Moscow, Russia
Date: Sept. 3, 2006; Kickoff – 4 p.m. local time / 8 a.m. ET
Attendance: 8,500
Weather: Rain, chilly – 67 degrees

Scoring Summary:
            1      2     F    PK
USA     0     0    0     5
BRA     0     0    0     6

Penalty Summary:
BRA: Daiane (Goal), Renata Costa (Missed), Aliane (Goal), Francielle (Goal), Monica (Goal), Fabiana (Goal), Erika (Saved), Maurine (Goal)
USA: Carrie Dew (Goal), Allie Long (Saved), Jordan Angeli (Goal), Tobin Heath (Goal), Danesha Adams (Goal), Stephanie Lopez (Goal), Amy Rodriugez (Missed), Amanda Poach (Saved)

Lineups:
USA -- 1-Val Henderson; 6-Stephanie Lopez – C, 15-Carrie Dew, 4-Nikki Krzysik, 11-Tobin Heath; 13-Tina DiMartino (2-Jordan Angeli, 85), 7-Amanda Poach, 14-Allie Long, 19-Kelley O’Hara (9-Danesha Adams, 46); 8-Lauren Cheney, 12-Amy Rodriguez.
Subs not used: 3-Stephanie Logterman, 5-Sarah Wagenfuhr, 10-Brittany Bock, 16-Erin Hardy, 17-Jessica Rostedt, 18-Kelsey Davis, 20-Casey Nogueira, 21-Joanna Haig.
Head Coach: Tim Schulz

BRA -- 1-Barbara; 2-Daiane, 3-Monica, 4-Aliane, 6-Danielle; 5-Erika, 7-Francielle, 8-Renata Costa - C, 20-Stephane (17-Pamela, 62); 9-Fabiana, 11-Maurine.
Subs not used: 12-Thais, 13-Luana, 14-Fernanda, 15-Adriane, 16-Elis, 18-Jocielma, 19-Luana, 21-Luciana.
Head Coach: Jorge Barcelos

Statistical Summary:
USA / BRA
Shots: 11 / 9
Shots on Goal: 6 / 2
Saves: 2 / 5
Corner Kicks: 7 / 4
Fouls: 16 / 12
Offside: 3 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Nikki Krzysik (caution) 20th minute.
USA – Carrie Dew (caution) 46.
USA – Val Henderson (caution) 57.
USA – Stephanie Lopez (caution) 63.
BRA -- Barbara (caution) 87.
BRA – Pamela (caution) 89.

Officials:
Referee: Jenny Palmqvist (SWE)
Asst. Referee: Maria Luisa Villa Gutierrez (AUS)
Asst. Referee: Susanne Borg (SWE)
4th Official: Shane De Silva (TRI)

Sierra Mist Woman of the Match: Stephanie Lopez

2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship
Third Place
Sept. 3 USA 0, Brazil 0 (5-6 PKs) Lokomotiv (Moscow)
Final
Sept. 3 North Korea 5, China 0 Lokomotiv (Moscow)

U.S. head coach Tim Schulz
On rebounding from losing in the semifinal:
“Without question, it is difficult. There are 16 teams that come here to play for first place and anything short of that, I would think that would be a disappointment for any team. I am very pleased with my girls that their eyes were on first place. Yes, they were disappointed (after losing in the semifinal), but after a day or two they were focused and back on track. It’s a very resilient, tough team and I am very proud of them.”

On the tournament:
“Of course, I am disappointed in the results. Like the players, I wanted first place, but with the development of the team, I’m very pleased. We started about seven months ago (and at that time), I have two jobs: one is to win a world championship but the other is to produce players for the senior team. I think several of the players are ready for that jump and that step.”

On the match:
“It was a pretty even match with two skillful teams. It went back and forth. Unfortunately, the rain came and that took away some of the skills.”

On the growth of the women’s game:
“The women’s game has seen tremendous growth and improvement, especially outside of the United States. For me, it’s exciting to see the parity. France and Germany and the United States were favored to win this tournament and then you have North Korea and China playing for the championship. I think it’s tremendous for the women’s game.”

2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship - Top Scorers
Golden Shoe: Ma Xiaoxu (China) 5 goals, 2 assists
Silver Shoe: Kim Song Hui (North Korea) 5 goals, 1 assist
Bronze Shoe: Anna Blaesse (Germany) 4 goals, 2 assists

Most Valuable Players
Golden Ball: Ma Xiaoxu (China)
Silver Ball: Zhang Yanru (China)
Bronze Ball: Danesha Adams (USA)

2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship - All-Star Team

Goalkeepers
CHN #1 ZHANG Yanru
USA #1 Val HENDERSON

Defenders

BRA #2 DAIANE
FRA #5 Coralie DUCHER
GER #5 Babett PETER
PRK #16 HONG Myong Gum
PRK #19 RI Jin Ok
PRK #17 RI Un Hyang

Midfielders
AUS #14 Collette McCALLUM
NGA #18 Cynthia UWAK
GER #10 Celia OKOYINO DA MBABI
PRK #20 KIM Kyong Hwa
PRK #6 KIM Chun Hui
USA #7 Amanda POACH

Forwards
BRA #9 FABIANA
CHN #10 MA Xiaoxu
FRA #20 Amandine HENRY
NGA #2 Rita CHIKWELU
PRK #15 KIL Son Hui
RUS #9 Elena DANILOVA
USA #9 Danesha ADAMS

FIFA Fair Play Award
Tie: North Korea & Russia

2006 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Championship - Final Standings
1 North Korea
2 China
3 Brazil
4 USA
5 Germany
6 Nigeria
7 France
8 Russia
9 Australia
10 Canada
11 Argentina
12 Mexico
13 New Zealand
14 DR Congo
15 Finland
16 Switzerland

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