Harvey Selected To U.S. Squad For U-20 World Youth Championships

Nov. 14, 2003

Sophomore defender Jordan Harvey (Mission Viejo, CA/Mission Viejo HS) has been chosen to the U.S. Under-20 squad that will compete at the 2003 FIFA World Youth Championships in the United Arab Emirates from Nov. 27-Dec. 19. Harvey's participation in the tournament could keep him out of the entire NCAA post-season.

The U.S. team will travel to UAE on Saturday, Nov. 22 and conduct a week of training before the tournament, which will include a friendly against Panama on Tuesday, Nov. 25 in Abu Dhabi. The U.S. was drawn into Group F and will play all three of its games at Al-Nahyan Stadium in Abu Dhabi. The Under-20s will open the tournament on Nov. 29 against Paraguay, before meeting Germany on Dec. 2, and finishing group play against South Korea on Dec. 5.

'All of these players have worked hard to convince me and the rest of the coaching staff that they are ready to compete at the World Championship,' head coach Thomas Rongen said. 'We've been preparing for two years now, and I believe this team is ready for the challenge they will be faced with in UAE. We have a mix of college and professional players that can hopefully lead us out of our group and towards our ultimate goal of getting to the final.'

Rongen selected a squad with a large amount of professional experience, as eight players are currently playing in Major League Soccer and two players playing professionally in Europe. Additionally, exactly half the squad will bring world championship experience as 10 players on the team participated with the U.S. in the 2001 FIFA Under-17 World Championship in Trinidad and Tobago.

Harvey is one of nine collegiate players on the team. Others are goalkeepers Steve Cronin (Santa Clara) and Ford Williams (North Carolina); defenders Chad Marshall (Stanford), Ryan Cochrane (Santa Clara), C.J. Klaas (Washington) and Drew Moor (Indiana); midfielder Ned Grabavoy (Indiana); and forwards Knox Cameron (Michigan) and Clint Dempsey (Furman).

'Anytime you can represent your country on a national team level, it's a great thing,' said UCLA head coach Tom Fitzgerald. 'We are obviously allowing Jordan to go because it is an honor. Although we'll miss him during the playoffs, I'm confident that the other guys on the team will step up in his place.'

The U.S. qualified for UAE '03 by taking second place in Group B of the CONCACAF Under-20 final qualifying tournament in Charleston, S.C., in November 2002. The U.S. opened the qualifying tournament in Charleston with a 2-0 win against Haiti, and then secured its ticket to their fourth straight World Youth Championship with a 1-0 victory over El Salvador. The U.S. rested five players for their final match against Canada and fell 3-2, allowing Canada to finish as the group winners.

The 24-team field at the FIFA World Youth Championship will be divided into six groups of four, with the top two teams in each group and the four best teams among those ranked third at the end of the first round qualifying for the Round of 16. All of the matches during the tournament will be played in Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Dubai and Al-Ain.

At the most recent World Youth Championship in Argentina '01, the U.S. team advanced out of their group, but eventually fell 2-0 to a tough Egypt side in the Round of 16. The U.S. managed to finish second in Group C play with four points, despite falling to China 1-0 in its opening match of the tournament. Led by DaMarcus Beasley, who notched two goals, the U.S. beat Chile 4-1 in their next match, while Kenny Arena provided the team's lone goal in its 1-1 tie with Ukraine in its final match of group play. The five goals in the final two games pushed the U.S. into the next round as it finished tied for second place with China with four points, moving on with a superior goal differential.

The World Youth Championships had originally been scheduled for last spring but was postponed due to the war in the Middle East.

U.S. U-20 roster World Youth Championships:

Goalkeepers: Steve Cronin (Santa Clara), Ford Williams (North Carolina)

Defenders: Ryan Cochrane (Santa Clara), Jordan Harvey (UCLA), C.J. Klaas (Washington), Chad Marshall (Stanford), Drew Moor (Indiana), Zach Whitbread (Liverpool)

Midfielders: Arturo Alvarez (San Jose Earthquakes - MLS), Ricardo Clark (MetroStars - MLS), Bobby Convey (D.C. United - MLS), Ned Grabavoy (Indiana), David Johnson (Willem II - Holland), Justin Mapp (Chicago Fire - MLS), Jordan Stone (Dallas Burn - MLS)

Forwards: Knox Cameron (Michigan), Clint Dempsey (Furman), Ed Johnson (Dallas Burn - MLS), Mike Magee (MetroStars - MLS), Santino Quaranta (D.C. United - MLS).

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