Some very entertaining highlights for you from Sunday's international friendly against Leon FC. Lots of goals and a wild set of penalty kicks to watch:
Seventy-five years of futility are now officially in the past.
The US national team made history at Mexico City’s Estadio Azteca on Wednesday night, stunning Mexico 1-0 thanks to a late goal by substitute defender Michael Orozco Fiscal.
The victory marks the United States’ first-ever win on Mexican soil, ending a long, painful winless streak and handing Jurgen Klinsmann’s side a massive confidence boost as they prepare to resume World Cup qualifying next month. And it arrived in the most unlikely scenario imaginable, delivered by a hybrid roster shorn of top contributors like Clint Dempsey, Jozy Altidore and Carlos Bocanegra.
The Yanks’ forward forays were few and far between but Brek Shea made the most of his first such opportunity after entering the game for Herculez Gomez in the 78th minute. The FC Dallas winger slashed into the Mexican penalty area barely two minutes later and centered to Terrence Boyd, whose improvised back heel skipped into the path of Orozco Fiscal for a short-range finish past Guillermo Ochoa to stun the Azteca crowd.
CHICAGO — FC Dallas' Brek Shea is among the group of players U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has called in to train for the upcoming friendly against Mexico on Aug. 15 at the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City, Mexico. Kickoff for the USA’s first friendly against Mexico on Mexican soil since 1984 is set for 7 p.m. CT, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, ESPN3 and Univision. Fans can follow on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and Twitter @ussoccer.
The players are reporting to Mexico City beginning Sunday, and will train for two days prior to the mid-week fixture.
“We’re excited about the opportunity to bring this group together and challenge Mexico for a win,” said Klinsmann. “For every game, we always look at who is in the best form, who is fit and who is ready to go. We have a lot of veteran players and also some new, hungry guys who deserve a chance. Every player in the pool looks forward to an amazing opportunity like this, the chance to take on Mexico in such an historic stadium like Estadio Azteca. With the World Cup qualifiers coming up next month, we can start preparing these players mentally and physically for Jamaica.”
A little more than a year into his tenure, Klinsmann seeks to lead the U.S. team to its first ever victory against Mexico in their own country. Several U.S. regulars will get their first experience at Azteca, as only three players on the roster have ever played against Mexico on Mexican soil. The match is the first for the U.S. since the 1-1 draw on June 12 in Guatemala, and represents another opportunity to prepare for the critical set of impending World Cup qualifiers against Jamaica next month.
U.S. TRAVEL ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS (3): Tim Howard (Everton), Sean Johnson (Chicago Fire), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEFENDERS (6): Steven Beitashour (San Jose Earthquakes), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Edgar Castillo (Club Tijuana), Michael Orozco Fiscal (San Luis), Fabian Johnson (Hoffenheim)
MIDFIELDERS (9): DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Maurice Edu (Rangers), Jermaine Jones (Schalke 04), Jose Torres (Pachuca), Brek Shea (FC Dallas), Danny Williams (Hoffenheim), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FORWARDS (4): Terrence Boyd (Rapid Vienna), Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy), Herculez Gomez (Santos), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
ADDITIONAL ROSTER NOTES
· Six players on the roster play professionally in Liga MX in Mexico: DaMarcus Beasley, Edgar Castillo, Corona, Herculez Gomez, Michael Orozco Fiscal and Jose Torres.
· MLS contributes the most players of any league, sending nine to Mexico City: Kyle Beckerman, Steve Beitashour, Matt Besler, Landon Donovan, Sean Johnson, Nick Rimando, Brek Shea, Chris Wondolowski and Graham Zusi.
· Eight players on the roster appeared in the last meeting between the teams, a 1-1 draw on Aug. 10, 2011, in Philadelphia (starters in bold): Beckerman, Castillo, Donovan, Tim Howard, Jermaine Jones, Orozco Fiscal, Shea and Torres.
· Four players will arrive Monday after competing in matches on Sunday: Terrence Boyd, Donovan, S. Johnson and Jones.
After two matches, the U.S. leads Group A in the Semifinal Round of CONCACAF Qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The U.S. resumes qualifying action with back-to-back matches against Jamaica on Sept. 7 and 11. Jamaica hosts the Sept. 7 match in Kingston, and then four days later the U.S. will welcome the Caribbean nation to Columbus Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. That match will be broadcast live at 8 p.m. on ESPN2, ESPN3 and the Univision family. Fans can follow the match live on ussoccer.com’s MatchTracker and via Twitter @ussoccer.
Blas Perez is away from FC Dallas right now to play in World Cup qualifying matches for Panama. Blas scored a nifty goal in the final warm-up match for Panama this past weekend against Jamaica. We've cued the video below to show you the entire sequence of Blas' goal.
After the match, which Panama won 2-1, Blas tweeted this to FC Dallas fans:
— Blas Pérez (@superraton7) June 2, 2012
NEW YORK – Organizers of the Mexican National Team 2012 U.S. Tour announced today that Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, TX has been sold out for the international soccer match between Mexico and Brazil on June 3. In addition, organizers announced the Mexico vs. Bosnia-Herzegovina game on May 31 at Chicago’s Soldier Field is approaching capacity. Limited tickets for that match are still available via Ticketmaster, by calling 1-800-745-3000 and other Ticketmaster locations.
Fans attending both matches are urged to arrive early to avoid traffic and long waits, as well as enjoy Fútbol Fiesta, a 120,000 square-feet interactive soccer fan zone which opens four hours before kickoff just outside the stadium and features live entertainment, sponsor exhibits, celebrities and interactive games.
The game at Cowboys Stadium, presented by Degree Men, will close-out Mexico’s 2012 five-game U.S. Tour. This will mark the third time Mexico plays, and sells out, the state-of-the-art Texas venue since its 2009 inauguration.
Big day for the national team as the U.S. defeated Italy 1-0 for its first-ever victory over Azzurri. The important details from MLSSoccer.com:
The pivotal moment came in the 55th minute when Fabian Johnson whipped in a teasing ball that Jozy Altidore laid off superbly for the on-rushing Dempsey, who drilled his shot hard and low past the despairing dive of Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon.
The win marks the first time the US have defeated Italy in 11 attempts since the nations first met 82 years ago. It also marks the first time Italy have lost in Genoa since 1924.
Facing the three-time World Cup champions was clearly the biggest test yet for US manager Jurgen Klinsmann, and his side passed with flying colors, earning a fourth straight victory. The USMNT's record under Klinsmann is now 5-4-1.
FC Dallas' Brek Shea started the match for the USMNT. It was his 10th appearance for Klinsmann and the only player to play in all matches for the manager. Shea was subbed out in the 73rd minute.