• Key MLS dates for the Year 2000
    January 1 -- International Discovery Period Commences Early Jan. -- 2000 MLS Schedule unveiled January 24 -- Preseason training begins (conditioning and non-ball workouts) February 3-6 -- Umbro Select College All-Star Weekend at Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. February 5 -- Umbro Select College All-Star Men's Doubleheader February 6 -- 1999 MLS Draft in Ft. Lauderdale February 8 -- Domestic Discovery Period Commences February 7 -20 -- MLS Spring Training 2000 in Ft. Lauderdale (preseason matches take place Feb. 9-18) March 18 -- Fifth Major League Soccer season begins April mid-April -- U.S. Pro-40 squad kicks off 2000 A-League season. May 1 ...
  • Q&A with the SA Editors: Dec. 30, 1999
    Brad Leissa Bethesda, Md. What does the South American confederation acronym CONMEBOL stand for? I've searched extensively and can't find it! Thanks in advance Mike Woitalla: The South American Confederation, in Spanish, is called the Confederacion Sudamericana de Futbol, and is sometimes abbreviated as CSF. But in order to create an acronym, an abbreviation that creates a word, the "CON" comes from CONfederacion, the "ME" from SudaMEricana, and the "BOL" from FutBOL. (If you have a question for a Soccer America Magazine editor, click "Q&A with SA Editors" in the left column of the home page under "Interactive.")
  • American Century: The 1980s
    The NASL dies as indoor rises and falls The NASL had staged several indoor mini-tournaments in the mid-1970s as tune-ups for its outdoor season, but by 1978 a full-fledged rival had emerged. Ed Tepper and Earl Foreman launched the Major Indoor Soccer League with six teams. The MISL played its first match on Dec. 22, 1978, with Cincinnati part-owner Pete Rose kicking out the first ball. Shep Messing, the first player signed by the league, led New York to a 7-2 win. In response, 10 NASL teams played a 12-game schedule during the winter of 1979-80. ...
  • American Century: The 1970s
    New York ruled during the NASL boom years As the 1970s dawned, New York City ruled the worlds of fashion, business and entertainment. In sports, too, the Big Apple swaggered. The decade began with the Mets as the reigning champions of baseball, and in late spring of 1970, the Knicks took the NBA title. All of the city fell before the feet of quarterback Joe Namath, who had slain the NFL goliath in 1969 by leading his Jets to a Super Bowl victory over Baltimore. New York would soon seize dominance of the NASL, too, and would ...
  • U.S. Soccer: Young squad heads to Australia Cup
    U.S. women's assistant coaches Lauren Gregg and Jay Hoffman will lead a young women's national team to the Australia Cup as the veteran players continue to negotiate a contract with U.S. Soccer. Seven players on the 18-player roster will seek their first cap in games against the Czech Republic (Jan. 7), Sweden (Jan. 10) and Australia (Jan. 13). The four-team, six-game tournament will kick off the U.S. team's Olympic preparations with the first games of 2000. Twelve of the players played college soccer last season, three (Nandi Pryce, Aleisha Cramer and Veronica Zepeda) are high school seniors poised to enter ...
  • MLS Beat: Year 4 provided fodder for critics
    New commissioner and Crew stadium yield kernels of hope At some point between March and November, after baseball finished spring training and before the NFL staged its Thanksgiving Day doubleheader, the Year of No Excuses transformed into the Season of Angst. No remark was too snide, no criticism too cutting for MLS. A rash of early-season shootouts, numerous officiating blunders, and a string of lackluster matches prompted media and fans to hammer the league as never before. Badly fluffed shots, clumsily missed traps and fumbled crosses are labeled "MLSque." Potshots are so routinely fired at MLS referees, ...
  • Direct Kick: Well supported MLS holds key to U.S. future
    1999 ends with a well-attended MLS Cup and the name change of an MLS team close to home for Clay Berling, who founded Soccer America Magazine in 1971. You must be feeling a bit of déjà vu - there's a team called the Earthquakes again. ... In the NASL days, I attended about 80 percent of the San Jose Earthquakes games, driving 50 miles to get there. In their first year, 1974, the Earthquakes averaged 15,000. How did they manage that? Their general manager, Dick Berg, was a master at making entertainment. He had red lights ...
  • U.S. Soccer: Women boycott Australia Cup
    The U.S. players who won the Women's World Cup last summer will boycott the Australia Cup next month because contract negotiations with U.S. Soccer have stalled. The Federation, which had anticipated the situation, will send a replacement team Down Under to face the host Matildas, Sweden and the Czech Republic in January. The last long-term contract, which the U.S. team signed in 1996, ended on July 31. The players operated under a series of short-term agreements when they played in five outdoor friendlies this past fall. Since the two sides were not close to signing a new long-term deal, the ...
  • Kasey Keller enjoys a change of scenery
    U.S. goalkeeper wins hearts of Rayo Vallecano fans and takes on the language barrier During his first game for Rayo Vallecano, Kasey Keller urged his defense to push forward, shouting, "Arriba, arriba!" A lagging striker on the opposing team, Atletico Madrid, turned to Keller and corrected his pronunciation, trilling his tongue on the roof of his mouth. Thus, Keller received his unofficial welcome to La Primera, the Spanish First Division. Rayo followers, however, were withholding a greeting and did not care whether or not Keller could roll a double-r. They wanted to know why Julen Lopetegui, one ...
  • International: Kasey Keller enjoys a change of scenery
    U.S. goalkeeper wins hearts of Rayo Vallecano fans and takes on the language barrier During his first game for Rayo Vallecano, Kasey Keller urged his defense to push forward, shouting, "Arriba, arriba!" A lagging striker on the opposing team, Atletico Madrid, turned to Keller and corrected his pronunciation, trilling his tongue on the roof of his mouth. Thus, Keller received his unofficial welcome to La Primera, the Spanish First Division. Rayo followers, however, were withholding a greeting and did not care whether or not Keller could roll a double-r. They wanted to know why Julen Lopetegui, one ...
  • U.S. Soccer: Search for women's coach is down to six
    DiCicco backs Lauren Gregg over Hoffman, Charles, Heinrichs, Ellinger and Howe Six weeks after Tony DiCicco resigned, U.S. Soccer is still without a women's national team coach, and DiCicco's successor may not named until the New Year. U.S. Soccer will choose from six candidates to replace Tony DiCicco: U.S. women's assistant coaches Lauren Gregg and Jay Hoffman, Portland men's and women's coach Clive Charles, Virginia women's coach April Heinrichs, U.S. under-17 boys coach John Ellinger and U.S. Soccer director of coaching education Bobby Howe. North Carolina's Anson Dorrance was briefly considered. But since he stepped away from ...
  • College: Fan Shortage Clouds Charlotte
    Organizers search for answers to low turnout As Chad Kupreanik, the tournament director for the Men's College Cup, scanned the expanse of mostly empty seats just before kickoff of the Dec. 12 final, he maintained that his goal was to sell out the 33,000 seats in the lower bowl at Ericsson Stadium. "Anywhere between 15 and 20 [thousand] would be pretty solid," Kupreanik said, yet he stopped short of calling the two crowds - 13,231 for the semifinals Dec. 10 and 15,439 for the final - failures. The final figure was up slightly from last year's 15,202 but ...
  • U.S. Soccer: Search for women's coach is down to six
    DiCicco backs Lauren Gregg over Hoffman, Charles, Heinrichs, Ellinger and Howe Six weeks after Tony DiCicco resigned, U.S. Soccer is still without a women's national team coach, and DiCicco's successor may not named until the New Year. U.S. Soccer will choose from six candidates to replace Tony DiCicco: U.S. women's assistant coaches Lauren Gregg and Jay Hoffman, Portland men's and women's coach Clive Charles, Virginia women's coach April Heinrichs, U.S. under-17 boys coach John Ellinger and U.S. Soccer director of coaching education Bobby Howe. North Carolina's Anson Dorrance was briefly considered. But since he stepped away from ...
  • College '99: Fan shortage clouds Charlotte
    Organizers search for answers to low turnout As Chad Kupreanik, the tournament director for the Men's College Cup, scanned the expanse of mostly empty seats just before kickoff of the Dec. 12 final, he maintained that his goal was to sell out the 33,000 seats in the lower bowl at Ericsson Stadium. "Anywhere between 15 and 20 [thousand] would be pretty solid," Kupreanik said, yet he stopped short of calling the two crowds - 13,231 for the semifinals Dec. 10 and 15,439 for the final - failures. The final figure was up slightly from last year's 15,202 but ...
  • PAUL KENNEDY: The best year ever?
    The '90s, which we will cover in our last installment of our "American Century" in the first issue of the New Year, will go down as the greatest decade in the history of American soccer, and 1999 may go down as the best year of the lot. A case can be made that 1991 was the greatest year in American history, featuring three international titles (Gold Cup, Pan-American Games and Women's World Cup). The United States took only two international titles this year. Both were on the women's side: a second Women's World Cup crown and a gold ...