Sunday, February 1, 2009

US-Mexico countdown: No. 11

11. International friendly; Los Angeles; Oct. 25, 2000: US 2, Mexico 0

This game ultimately meant little in terms of the result; it was a friendly after all. However, it sort of led to a separation between the two teams as young talent was on display in Los Angeles that night, talent that developed far better for the U.S. than it did for Mexico. And it was also a night of firsts for Bruce Arena and Landon Donovan. Having beaten a Mexico team that was comprised mostly of Pumas players earlier in the summer, Arena now had to face a Tri side that featured both promising youngsters and experienced players. Meanwhile, the U.S. also had several of its own domestic prospects, including an 18-year-old Donovan. The match was spirited early on but featured no goals. Donovan eventually came into the game as he replaced an injured Chris Henderson midway through the first half. Early in the second half, Clint Mathis dribbled through the Mexican defense and slipped a pass to Donovan, who eluded Adrian Martinez and knocked in his first-ever goal for the full national team. Donovan then set up Josh Wolff with a cross from the left side, and Wolff buried an attempt from distance. This match was meaningful for the Americans as Donovan played his first US-Mexico match and first US match ever, Wolff played in his third US game - and each played instrumental roles in the run-up to the 2002 World Cup and in the tournament itself - while six others were capped for the first time as well. Also, some of Mexico coach Enrique Meza's call-ups did not develop well at all, such as Luis Ignacio Gonzalez, Jesus Olalde, Adrian Martinez and Victor Ruiz.


United States: Tony Meola; Carlos Llamosa, Jeff Agoos, Greg Vanney, Chris Klein; Kerry Zavagnin, Richie Williams (Peter Vagenas, 86), Chris Henderson (Landon Donovan, 32, Bobby Convey 90+), Clint Mathis; Josh Wolff (Sasha Victorine, 89), Chris Albright (Joe Franchino, 77).

Mexico: Adrian Martinez; Sergio Almaguer, Omar Blanco, Duilio Davino; Pavel Pardo (Johan Rodriguez, 46), Ramon Morales (Juan Pablo Rodriguez, 58), German Villa, Victor Ruiz (Gilberto Adame, 74); Daniel Osorno (Luis Ignacio Gonzalez, 69), Jesus Olalde, Jared Borgetti (Cesareo Victorino, 46).

United States - Donovan 50
United States - Wolff 79

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