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U.S. WNT ADVANCE TO SEMIFINAL, LOOK AHEAD TO BRAZIL; WOMEN'S NIKE FRIENDLIES WRAP UP AT HOME DEPOT CENTER


USA TOP ENGLAND, ADVANCE TO SEMIFINAL AT 2007 FIFA WOMEN’S WORLD CUP: TIANJIN, China (Sept. 22, 2007) – The U.S. Women’s National Team scored three goals in a 13-minute span early in the second half to defeat England, 3-0, putting on a commanding quarterfinal performance to advance to the semifinals of the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The USA got goals from Abby Wambach in the 48th minute, Shannon Boxx in the 57th and a capper from team captain Kristine Lilly in the 60th minute to effectively put the match out of reach. The USA, which has advanced to the semifinals in all five Women’s World Cups that have been contested, will now face Brazil in a rematch of the 2004 Olympic Gold Medal game. Brazil topped a strong Australian team, 3-2, in their quarterfinal match, with a 75th minute strike from Cristiane put them through to the semis. The USA-Brazil semifinal will be played at Dragon Stadium in Hangzhou on Thursday, Sept. 27, at 8 p.m. local time. The match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 starting at 7:55 a.m. ET.

U.S. 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup Schedule
Date Opponent Venue Kickoff TV
Sept. 11 North Korea Chengdu (Chengdu Sports Center Stadium) 2-2 T
Sept. 14 Sweden Chengdu (Chengdu Sports Center Stadium) 2-0 W
Sept. 18 Nigeria Shanghai (Shanghai Hongkou Football Stadium) 1-0 W
Sept. 22 England Tianjin (Tianjin Olympic Center Stadium) 3-0 W
Sept. 26/27 Semifinals* Hangzhou (Dragon Stadium) 8 p.m. local / 8 a.m. ET ESPN2
Sept. 30 Final* Shanghai (Shanghai Hongkou Football Stadium) 8 p.m. local / 8 a.m. ET ESPN2
* If Necessary
Complete Schedule

STUDIO 90: CHINA ‘07 IS ONLINE: You can check out “Studio 90: China ’07” on ussoccer.com as the popular web show is rolling in China. Check out the latest episode that includes an interview with U.S. forward Abby Wambach and a look ahead to the USA’s semifinal match.

U.S. WNT TO PLAY THREE-GAME SERIES VS. MEXICO AFTER WORLD CUP: Following a previously announced match against Mexico in St. Louis on Oct. 13 (tickets), the U.S. women will play on Oct. 17 in Portland, Ore., with a 7 p.m. PT kickoff at PGE Park before wrapping up the three-game series vs. Mexico in Albuquerque on Oct. 20 at 4:30 p.m. MT. The games will feature the U.S. Women’s World Cup team currently competing in China. For the game in Portland, tickets starting at $20 are now on sale at ussoccer.com, by phone at 503-224-4400, and at all Portland-area Ticketmaster ticket centers (including Fred Meyer and Joe’s Sports, Outdoor & More). For the match in Albuquerque, tickets starting at $18 are now on sale at ussoccer.com, by calling 505-925-5858 or 1-877-664-8661 (toll free), by visiting any University of New Mexico ticket outlet (including select Albertson’s), and at the UNM Ticket Offices at The Pit and the UNM Bookstore. Groups of 20 or more can obtain a group ticket order form for either game at ussoccer.com or call 312-528-1290.

U.S. MNT FRIENDLY AGAINST CATALONIA CANCELLED: The U.S. Men’s National Team’s friendly against Catalonia has been cancelled after the Royal Spanish Football Federation voted not to approve the application to play the match. The teams were to have met on Oct. 14 in Barcelona. No replacement match will be scheduled, and the U.S. will face 2008 European Championship co-host Switzerland on Oct. 17 in Basel. Kickoff at St. Jakob Park is set for 8:30 p.m. local time (2:30 p.m. ET), and the match will be broadcast on Fox Soccer Channel and Galavision.

– YOUTH NATIONAL TEAMS UPDATE –

UNDER-15 GIRL’S NATIONAL TEAM GOES UNDEFEATED AT NIKE FRIENDLIES: The U.S. Under-15 Girl’s National Team went undefeated against competition two years older at the Second Annual Women’s Nike Friendlies at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. The U-15s, led by head coach Tad Bobak, competed against the top club teams from across the country in the Under-17 division, picking up a win and two ties. They opened play with a 3-3 draw with Slammers FC of Newport Beach, Calif., got a scoreless draw against the Dallas Texans and picked up their only win of the weekend against Seattle’s Crossfire Premier. No standings were kept during the tournament, which serves as a showcase for some of the nation’s top Nike club teams.

U.S. U-15 GNT Women's Nike Friendlies Roster
GOALKEEPERS: Erin Dees (Downers Grove, Ill.), Nichole Downing (Carlsbad, Calif.), Makenna Henry (Fountain Valley, Calif.), Emily Oliver (Flossmoor, Ill.), Anna Sieloff (Troy, Mich.)
DEFENDERS: Mackenzie Akerfelds (Littleton, Colo.), Mia Bruno (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.), Briana Hovington (Lothian, Md.), Megan Oyster (Naperville, Ill.), Mollie Pathman (Durham, N.C.), Catherine Sessions (Woodbury, Minn.), Carrie Whigman (Phoenix, Ariz.)
MIDFIELDERS: Michelle Cruz (Thousand Oaks, Calif.), Kylie Facinelli (Del Mar, Calif.), Kaitlyn Fitzpatrick (Pleasonton, Ore.), Kaitlyn Kerr (Bensalem, Pa.), Natalia Ledezma (La Mirada, Calif.), Samantha Mewis (Hanson, Mass.), Zuri Walker (San Diego, Calif.)
FORWARDS: Kaley Blades (Largo, Fla.), Maya Hayes (West Orange, N.J.), Devin Marshall (Bonita, Calif.), Kealia Ohai (Draper, Utah)

UNDER-14 GIRL’S NATIONAL TEAM PICKS UP TWO WINS AND A TIE AT FRIENDLIES: The Under-14 Girl’s National Developmental Program competed for the first time as a team at the 2007 Women’s Nike Friendlies at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., picking up two wins and a draw against the nation’s top Under-16 club teams. Playing against competition two years older, the U-14s tied the Dallas Texans, 2-2 to open their weekend, and then topped Sereno (Phoenix, Ariz.) 4-3, before picking up an impressive 7-1 victory over the Mustang Soccer Club from Danville, Calif. Leading the USA in scoring over the weekend were midfielders Kristi Abatte from Northport, N.Y. and Olivia Schultz from Hopkins, Minn., who scored three goals each in three games. Alexandra Doll (Bethesda, Md.) and Haley Rosen (Palos Verdes, Calif.) tallied twice during the competition. No standings were kept during the tournament, which serves as a showcase for some of the nation’s top Nike club teams.

U.S. U-14 GNT Women's Nike Friendlies Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): Bryane Heaberlin (St. Petersburg, Fla.), Megan Kufeld (Fremont, Calif.), Molly Polleto (Englewood, Colo.);
DEFENDERS (5): Katy Colas (Vienna, Va.), Haley Cooper (Palatine, Ill.), Michaela Cowgill (Portsmouth, N.H.), Casey Morrison (York, Pa.), Brittany Von Rueden (Mequon, Wis.);
MIDFIELDERS (11): Kristi Abbatte (Northport, N.Y.), Morgan Brian (St. Simons Island, Ga.), Alexandra Doll (Bethesda, Md.), Jennifer Gonzalez (Alta Loma, Calif.), Stephanie Hepfer (Cedar Park, Texas), Lo’eau LaBonta (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.), Indiana Mead (Boulder City, Nev.), Sarah Molina (Rocky River, Ohio), Vania Robles (Arcadia, Calif.), Haley Rosen (Palos Verdes, Calif.), Olivia Schultz (Hopkins, Minn.);
FORWARDS (5): Shea Groom (Liberty, Mo.), Whitney Jaynes (Plano, Tex.), Cate Parchinski (Colorado Springs, Colo.), Shelby Payne (Lutz, Fla.), Sydney Payne (Lutz, Fla.)

U.S. SOCCER DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY INAUGURAL FALL SHOWCASE WEEKEND SET FOR OCT.: U.S. Soccer’s Development Academy, the innovative new program designed to revolutionize elite youth player development, is set to debut competition with the inaugural Fall Showcase Weekend from Oct. 6-8 at the National Training Center in Carson, Calif. Forty teams from 20 elite clubs will participate in the three-day event, which includes teams at the U-16 and U-18 age groups. The premier match takes place the evening of Saturday, Oct. 7, when the U.S. Youth National Team takes on the Chivas USA U-18 Academy Team on the Mooch Myernick Field at The Home Depot Center. A full schedule of matches will be available on ussoccer.com. A total of 40 matches will be played during the weekend showcase, which is expected to draw a host of college coaches and scouts from Southern California and beyond. Additionally, national staff coaches will use the Fall Showcase to identify players for places in upcoming national team camps.

U.S. Soccer Development Academy Fall Showcase Clubs
AFC Lightning (Fayetteville, Ga.), Atlanta Fire United (Duluth, Ga.), Birmingham United (Birmingham, Ala.) Bridge FA (Charleston, S.C.), Chivas USA (Carson, Calif.), Clearwater Chargers (Clearwater, Fla.), Concorde Fire SC (Marietta, Ga.), Crossfire Premier (Redmond, Wash.), De Anza SC (Sunnyvale, Calif.), IMG Soccer Academy (Bradenton, Fla.), Miami FC Kendall (Miami, Fla.), Mustang SC (Danville, Calif.), Nomads SC (San Diego, Calif.), Richmond Strikers (Glen Allen, Va.), Richmond Kickers (Glen Allen), Schulz Academy (Boca Raton, Fla.), Surf SC (Carlsbad, Calif.), U.S. YNT (Bradenton, Fla.), Virginia Rush (Virginia Beach, Va.), Washington Premier (Tacoma, Wash.)

– AROUND THE SOCCER NATION –

NOMINATIONS BEING ACCEPTED FOR U.S. SOCCER’S PRESTIGIOUS 2008 WERNER FRICKER BUILDER AWARD: Nominations are now being accepted for the 2008 U.S. Soccer Werner Fricker Builder Award, which is presented annually to an individual or individuals who have worked tirelessly in furthering the interest of the sport of soccer, without regard to personal recognition or advancement. The award was created in 2002 and is the greatest recognition bestowed by U.S. Soccer on its membership. “To receive the Werner Fricker Builder Award is truly a prestigious honor. It is a distinction that helps personify a man whose dedication to the growth of soccer in the United States was unrivaled,” said U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati, the 2003 recipient of the award. The award is designed to honor those who have created or fostered programs that will outlast their own active involvement in the sport and that establish a lasting legacy in the history and structure of soccer in the United States. Interested persons can nominate individuals for the annual Werner Fricker Builder Award by downloading the form at ussoccer.com and mailing it to U.S. Soccer, c/o the Werner Fricker Builder Award Committee, 1801 S. Prairie Avenue, Chicago, IL 60616 or emailing it to wernerfrickeraward@ussoccer.org. This form is also available at ussoccer.com, and applications must be postmarked or sent by January 1, 2008. Download the Application

U.S. SOCCER'S REFEREE BLOG OFFERS FIRST-HAND ACCOUNT OF REFEREE PREPARATION: "Official Take," the official blog of U.S. Soccer's referees, is currently in China at the FIFA Women's World Cup, where U.S. referees Kari Seitz and Jennifer Bennett are on assignment and reporting on all the latest activity. Seitz and Bennett are keeping both the referee community and soccer fans up-to-date on all the preparations for the FIFA Women's World Cup. From fitness testing to the emotion of learning their assignments, the "Official Take" referee blog is a unique look at officiating from an inside perspective. "Official Take" also highlights the latest information on position papers, bulletins and other information coming from the U.S. Soccer Referee Department. Fans are also encouraged to offer feedback and comment at "Official Take."

REGION II C LICENSE RETESTING SET FOR NOVEMBER: Candidates who received a “Not Ready” in a previously completed “C” License Course have the opportunity to retest their “Not-Ready” component at a U.S. Soccer hosted regional test site. Once a “Pass” grade is received for each component, then the candidate will receive a U.S. Soccer National “C” License. Retesting will take place on Nov. 9-10 at the Mockingbird Soccer Club in Louisville, Ky. Interested coaches should send their completed forms via email to coaches@ussoccer.org or via fax to 312-808-9708.

U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION GRANTS PROGRAM OPEN FOR 2008: The 2008 Annual Grants Program for the U.S. Soccer Foundation, the major charitable arm of soccer in the United States, is now available online at ussoccerfoundation.org. Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. ET on Monday, October 15. Applications can be submitted for: a Program Grant to support the development of players, coaches or referees; a Field Enhancement Grant to improve a field with new goals, irrigation or lighting; or an All Conditions Fields Grant to help build a synthetic grass field. More information about the grant making program, as well as Frequently Asked Questions are available at www.ussoccerfoundation.org.

*** “CENTER CIRCLE” SPOTLIGHT ***

PEAK PERFORMER: The U.S. defense, led by midfielder Leslie Osborne, held England forward and international superstar Kelly Smith to just one long-range shot in the quarterfinal match, with the U.S. already ahead 3-0. The shutout was the third consecutive for the U.S. defense, who hasn’t given up a goal since the 62nd minute of their opening game against North Korea, a span of 208 minutes. The only two goals against the U.S. in the tournament were scored by North Korea while the U.S. had just 10 players on the field.

SOCCER SHOCKER: After 30 appearances for Heerenveen without a goal, U.S. midfielder Michael Bradley has put away four goals in the last three matches, including two against Helsingborg in the UEFA Cup. The 20-year-old also tallied in a win against Excelsior on Sept. 15 and in a 3-2 loss at FC Utrecht.

MARQUEE MATCHUP: The U.S. Women’s National Team continues their 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup campaign against Brazil in the semifinals on Thursday, Sept. 27 at 7:55 a.m. ET (8 p.m. local time) live on ESPN2. The U.S. has advanced to the semifinals of all five FIFA Women’s World Cups.

QUOTABLE: “If I had missed it I just would have gone right home from there. It was great. It was tapping it in. It felt good. To win a decisive game 3-0 was really good for this group.”
--U.S. forward and captain Kristine Lilly, on scoring her first goal of the tournament


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