Olympic Games Qualifying Round Host Decided
OLYMPIC GAMES QUALIFYING ROUND HOSTS DECIDED - PANAMA, MEXICO AND TRINIDAD/TOBAGO WILL BE THE VENUES FOR THE NEXT STAGE EN ROUTE TO SYDNEY The next round of Football Confederation qualifying games for the Sydney Olympic Games of 2000 will take place in Panama, Mexico and Trinidad and Tobago next March and April. Five teams will emerge from Group A in Panama, Group B in Mexico and Group C in Trinidad and Tobago to join the United States in the final qualifying group, which will be played in the USA from April 21 to April 30, 2000. From that final group, the two FC qualifiers for Sydney will be determined. The qualifying games will begin in Panama on March 8 and conclude in Mexico on April 9, with the full schedule and groupings announced from the Confederation offices in New York today. They are: Group A. Panama (host), Cuba, Bermuda, USA (bye to the final group) - March 8 to 12, 2000. March 8 - Panama vs Bermuda March 10 - Cuba vs Bermuda March 12 - Panama vs Cuba One team to advance to the final group, to join the USA. Group B. Mexico (host), Costa Rica, Jamaica, Honduras - April 5 to 9, 2000. April 5 - Mexico vs Honduras; Jamaica vs Costa Rica April 7 - Mexico vs Jamaica; Costa Rica vs Honduras April 9 - Mexico vs Costa Rica; Jamaica vs Honduras Two teams to advance to the final group. Group C. Trinidad and Tobago (host), Canada, Guatemala, Netherlands Antilles - March 22 to 26, 2000 March 22 - T/T vs Netherlands Antilles; Canada vs Guatemala March 24 - T/T vs Guatemala; Canada vs Netherlands Antilles March 26 - T/T vs Canada; Guatemala vs Netherlands Antilles Two teams to advance to the final group. Kick off times and venues are to be determined. THE FIFA UNDER 17 WORLD CUP Mexico and the United States Advance in the FIFA Under 17s: Will meet in the quarter finals on Saturday Mexico and the United States each won their final group games in the FIFA Under 17 World Championship in New Zealand and will now meet each other in the quarter finals in Auckland on Saturday. While both Football Confederation teams won their games 1-0, Mexico's was the harder and more vital task. Mexico had to beat Spain in Napier to qualify while by the time the USA and Uruguay took the field in Auckland, they knew they had both qualified already by virtue of New Zealand's surprise 2-1 win over Poland. Thus, the USA were playing for group leadership and a quarter final game in their base of Auckland, while Mexico were playing to avoid an early trip home. It took a 38th minute goal by Hector Vallejo and magnificent defense - especially by goalkeeper Adolfo Cabrera and back Mario Perez - to keep Spain in check. As Spain threw everything into the attack in the second half, Mexico held on in a nail-biting finish. The finish of the US-Uruguay game was different but equally dramatic. With Uruguay needing only a draw to win the group, they remained mainly on the defensive and the US only broke through twice with real chances. From the first, Landon Donovan hit the crossbar in the 76th minute and then with time almost gone, Oguchi Onyewu scored with a header in the 90th minute to win the game for the USA. Thus those traditional Confederation rivals will now meet again on Saturday with one advancing to the semi finals. Ghana and Uruguay will meet in the other quarter final and pairing which has been decided so far and the remaining places will be determined by the games in Groups C and D tonight. ROAD TO THE GOLD CUP - THE NATIONS PREPARE With the Gold Cup now less than three months away, the competing nations are now starting serious preparation for the Football Confederation's premier event for national teams. Tomorrow (November 17), the United States takes a strong team to Marrakech for a game against Morocco, with both teams taking advantage of the lull in European league schedules caused by Euro 2000 qualifying games. The USA has called in Claudio Reyna (Glasgow Rangers), Kasey Keller (Rayo Vallecano) and Frankie Hejduk (Bayer Leverkusen) while Morocco will include Mustapha Hadji and Youssef Chippo (both Coventry City) and Abdeljahil Hadda (Sporting Gijon). Also tomorrow, Trinidad and Tobago will play in Honduras and next month will face Paraguay in Asuncion and Bolivia in Santa Cruz. MATHAUS JOINS THE METROSTARS - AND AN EXCLUSIVE CLUB OF TWO MEMBERS Lothar Mathaus concluded a contract with the New York/New Jersey MetroStars of the USA's Major League Soccer and then went back to Europe to play his 143rd international "A" team game for Germany. Thus Mathaus joins Sweden's goalkeeper Thomas Ravelli at the top of the list of players who have played 100 times or more for their countries and, being still active, has the chance to exceed that total . Mathaus is scheduled to join the MetroStars for the 2000 season. Players from within the Confederation who are on the 100-plus club are: Claudio Suarez (Mexico) 134 caps Marcelo Balboa (USA) 127 caps Cobi Jones (USA) 119 caps Paul Caligiuri (USA) 110 caps Jorge Campos (Mexico) 109 caps Ramon Ramirez (Mexico) 106 caps Eric Wynalda (USA) 102 caps THE CARIBBEAN FOOTBALL UNION UNDER-15 COMPETITION PARTICIPANTS: GROUP 1: Cayman Islands, Dominican Republic, Bermuda, Bahamas, Anguilla, U.S.V.I GROUP 2: Barbados, Guyana, B.V.I., Antigua/Barbuda, St. Kitts/Nevis GROUP 3: St. Lucia, Martinique, Dominica, Trinidad & Tobago (I), St. Vincent & Grenadines GROUP 4: Haiti, Trinidad & Tobago (II), Aruba, Netherlands Antilles, Grenada Past Results and Upcoming games in the Caribbean Football Union Under-15 Competition are: Nov 7 Results: Cayman Islands vs. Dominican Republic, 2:2 B.V.I. vs. Antigua/Barbuda Dominica vs. Martinique, 1:0 Aruba vs. Netherlands Antilles, 2:0 Anguilla vs. U.S.V.I., 1:1 Nov 14 Results: Dominican Republic vs. Cayman Islands, 2:3 Upcoming Matches: Nov 21 U.S.V.I. vs. Anguilla Antigua/Barbuda vs. B.V.I. Martinique vs. Dominica Netherlands Antilles vs. Aruba Dec 5 Winner Cayman Islands/Dominican Republic vs. Bahamas Barbados vs. Guyana Winner B.V.I. /Antigua/Barbuda vs. St. Kitts/Nevis Winner Dominica / Martinique vs. St. Lucia Trinidad and Tobago (I) vs. St. Vincent and The Grenadines Trinidad and Tobago (II) vs. Haiti Dec 12 Guyana vs. Barbados St. Kitts/Nevis vs. Winner B.V.I. / Antigua/Barbuda St. Lucia vs. Winner Dominican Republic / Martinique St. Vincent and The Grenadines vs. Trinidad and Tobago(I) Grenada vs. Winner Aruba / Netherlands Antilles Dec 19 Bermuda vs. Winner Cayman Islands/Dominican Republic Bahamas vs. Winner Anguilla / U.S.V.I.