U.S. Draws 0-0 Against Holland In Toulon Festival
May 28, 2001
Aubagne, France - Needing a win to secure a place in the Toulon Festival semifinals, the U.S. Under-20s knocked on the door several times in the second half, but in the end had to settle for a 0-0 draw against Holland at the Stade de Lettre. Bruin freshman DJ Countess recorded his third international shutout of the year.
'It is frustrating because we definitely had chances to put them away, and we easily could have come out of here with a better result,' said Countess. 'But we didn't, and we will use the game as a great learning experience for us. We are lucky in that we have a greater challenge ahead of us now, and hopefully we can use what we learned here to become a better team in Argentina at the World Youth Championship.'
Knowing that a goal would give them the game and a spot in the semifinals for just the second time in U.S. Soccer history, the U.S. put the Dutch under extreme pressure in the second half. But despite producing the majority of the scoring chances, the Under-20s were shutout in an international for the first time since 1999. The Dutch ended the first round with the tournament's top defense, allowing only one goal in three games.
Countess wrapped up a solid tournament in goal for the USA with four saves and his third international shutout of the year in just seven appearances. Countess' best save came in the 31st minute when Dutch captain Heitinga's blast from 20 yards forced Countess to make a brilliant save, diving to his right and pushing the ball over the crossbar. Heitinga's shot represented the best scoring opportunity of the night for Holland.
As they pounded the Holland end in the second half, the U.S. did not help their cause with a combination of 20 fouls and 12 offside calls that slowed down their attack. The USA had two other quality opportunities in the second half, but were unable to put a shot on target.
The U.S. is using the Toulon Festival as a final warm-up before to the FIFA World Youth Championship in Argentina. The World Youth Championship will run from June 17 - July 8, and the U.S. will begin the tournament in Group C in Mendoza, Argentina. The U.S. opens against China PR on June 17, before playing Chile on June 20 and Ukraine on June 23.
2001 U.S. UNDER-20 MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM GAME REPORT
United States -- 0-0-0
Holland -- 0-0-0
USA - 1-D.J. Countess, 8-Seth Trembly (2-Phillip Salyer, 50), 4-Nelson Akwari (capt.), 5-Alex Yi, 3-Oguchi Onyewu, 9-Brad Davis, 10-Kyle Martino, 14-Kenny Arena (16-Jose Burciaga, 59), 6-Kelly Gray, 12-Alecko Eskandarian, 17-Conor Casey (15-Brian Carroll, 65).
HOL - 1-Maarten Stekenlenburg, 11-Boutahar, 15-Huntelaar (19-Marnix Kolder, 76), 13- Mathijssen, 4-Heitinga, 17-Jeffrey De Visscher, 5-Jeffrey Leiwakabessy, 14-Santi Kolk (10- Youssouf Hersi, 59), 2-Juergen Colin, 9-Rogier Molhoek, 3-Sprockel.