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Americans put streak on the line
by Paul Kennedy, November 16th, 2010 11:46PM

TAGS:  men's national team


[SOUTH AFRICA-USA] The U.S. national team is back in South Africa for the fourth time in the last  three years, but Wednesday's match against Bafana Bafana will be its first in Cape Town, where a sellout crowd is expected for the Nelson Mandela Challenge at Green Point Stadium (TV: ESPN2 and Galavision, live, 2:30 pm ET).

The match will be significant as U.S. coach Bob Bradley could give as many as six players their first cap and the USA needs to win to avoid finishing with a losing record for the first time since 1997.

Just two players who played at the 2010 World Cup -- Robbie Findley and Jonathan Bornstein -- are in the U.S. squad.

Absent are first-team regulars on European teams still in season and players from the four MLS semifinalists.

The squad includes four players who have yet to start a league game for their European clubs: goalies Dominic Cervi (Celtic), Brad Guzan (Aston Villa) and defenders Gale Agbossoumonde (Estoril) and Eric Lichaj (Aston Villa).

Two newcomers represented other countries previously: Mikkel Diskerud (Norway) and Teal Bunbury (Canada).

The two teenagers in the team are both foreign-born: Agbossoumonde (Togo) and Juan Agudelo (Colombia)

The USA enters the final game of the year with four wins, five losses and four ties.

The last time the USA finished with a losing record was in 1997. The last time it had fewer than five wins in a year was in 1988, the national team's first year as a full-time operation.

U.S. roster:
Goalkeepers: Dominic Cervi (Celtic, Scotland), Brad Guzan (Aston Villa, England)
Defenders: Gale Agbossoumonde (Estoril, Portugal), Nat Borchers (Real Salt Lake), Jonathan Bornstein (Chivas USA), Clarence Goodson (IK Start, Norway), Eric Lichaj (Aston Villa, England), Tim Ream (New York Red Bulls), Jonathan Spector (West Ham United)
Midfielders:  Alejandro Bedoya (Orebro, Sweden), Brian Carroll (Columbus Crew), Mikkel Diskerud (Stabaek, Norway), Eddie Gaven (Columbus Crew), Logan Pause (Chicago Fire), Robbie Rogers (Columbus Crew)
Strikers: Juan Agudelo (New York Red Bulls), Teal Bunbury (Kansas City Wizards), Robbie Findley (Real Salt Lake)

South Africa roster:
Goalkeepers: Itumeleng Khune (Kaizer Chiefs), Moeneeb Josephs (Orlando Pirates).
Defenders: Morgan Gould (SuperSport United), Siboniso Gaxa (Lierse, Belgium), Tsepo Masilela (Maccabi Haifa, Israel), Siyabonga Sangweni (Golden Arrows), Anele Ngconca (Racing Genk, Belgium), Bevan Fransman (Hapoel Tel Aviv, Israel), Siyanda Xulu (Mamelodi Sundowns), Keegan Ritchie (Moroka Swallows).
Midfielders: Teko Modise (Orlando Pirates), Andile Jali (Orlando Pirates), Siphiwe Tshabalala (Kaizer Chiefs), Reneilwe Letsholonyane (Kaizer Chiefs), Steven Pienaar (Everton, England), Thanduyise Khuboni (Golden Arrows), Daylon Claasen (Lierse, Belgium), Matthew Pattison (Mamelodi Sundowns), Kagisho Dikgacoi (Fulham, England).
Strikers: Sthembiso Ngcobo (Orlando Pirates), Katlego Mphela Kermit Erasmus (SuperSport United), Davide Somma (Leeds United, England), Bernard Parker (FC Twente, Netherlands).

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