Washington, D.C. - D.C. United announced today Santino Quaranta has been named to the U.S. National team roster, in preparation for the team's August 17 World Cup qualifier versus Trinidad & Tobago at Rentschler Field.
"Santino continues to be in great form ad he is very deserving of the opportunity to represent the US in the upcoming qualifier," said United Technical Director, Dave Kasper. "We wish him and the US team the best of luck."
Kickoff at Rentschler Field is set for 8 p.m. ET, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and delayed on Telemundo at 12:30 a.m. ET/PT. Fans can follow all the U.S. matches live on ussoccer.com's MatchTracker, presented by Phillips Electronics.
Quaranta helped the US team to the CONCACAF Gold Cup championship in July, seeing time in three games, including 58 minutes in the team's double overtime, penalty kick win over Panama. Following 120 minutes of scoreless soccer, Quaranta stepped up and converted the first penalty kick, as the US went on to win 3-1 and capture the Gold Cup title. The Baltimore native also notched an assist in the opening game of the tournament, a 4-1 over Cuba, earning his first cap with the full men's team.
For D.C. United in 2005, Quaranta has seen time in 11 games (seven starts) and notched two goals and three assists, while playing both at forward and outside midfield.
The U.S. sits in second place in the final round hexagonal with a 4-1-0 record, while Trinidad is desperate for a victory with only four points from five matches. While the U.S. team cannot qualify for the 2006 FIFA World Cup with a win on Aug. 17, the picture will become a lot clearer after the evening's matches are completed.
The U.S. and Trinidad & Tobago have played nine times in World Cup qualifying, with the U.S. compiling an undefeated record of seven wins and two ties. The U.S. has not surrendered a goal to Trinidad & Tobago in a home qualifier since a 1-1 tie in Torrance, CA on May 13, 1989, and has recorded a shutout in six of their nine overall qualifying matches.
After Hartford, the USA's next qualifier is a marquee match-up with Mexico on Sep. 3 in Columbus, OH. A sold-out crowd at Crew Stadium will witness the teams' first meeting in qualifying on U.S. soil since the U.S. downed the Mexicans 2-0 on Feb. 28, 2001, in the very same venue.
To date, the U.S. is halfway through the 10-match schedule in the final round of qualifying for the 2006 FIFA World Cup. The USA, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama and Trinidad & Tobago are competing for three automatic berths to the World Cup finals in Germany. The fourth-place finisher will face the fifth-place team from the Asian Football Confederation in a home-and-home series to determine the last entrant into the tournament.