U.S. wastes chances, ties Macedonia 0-0.
SAN JOSE, Calif. (Saturday, May 16, 1998) -- The United States created a half dozen dangerous scoring opportunities but could not find the mark in a 0-0 tie with former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia in front of 23,861 fans at Spartan Stadium.
The tie extends the U.S.ís record to 8-3-4 in its last 15 games. The Americans played without four potential World Cup starters due to injury: Frankie Hejduk (right hamstring strain), Claudio Reyna (right calf strain), Ernie Stewart (left ankle sprain) and Eric Wynalda (left knee cartilage tear). All four are expected to resume training early next week in Portland where the Americans play Kuwait May 24.
The U.S. narrowly missed on four chances in the first half, all within 10 yards.Three of the four opportunities came from forward Brian McBride, and defender Mike Burns created two of the chances with perfectly-driven crosses.Goalkeeper Kasey Keller was forced to make one save in the first half, a world-class, reaction save on a nine-yard blast from Macedonia star forward Goce Hristov.
In the second half, McBride missed again, this time in the opening moments of the first half on a diving header that missed the near post by less than two feet. In the 82nd minute, second-half substitute Preki Radosavljevic juked his way free along the right wing, springing Cobi Jones into the penalty area. Jones blast from the right side was headed toward the far post, but cleared at the last minute by Macedonian defender Igor Nikolovski.
A last effort by Jones from inside the six-yard box area in the second minute of injury time dribbled just wide after he had again been set up by Radosavljevic, this time by a width of the field cross.
After playing Kuwait, the Americans play Scotland May 30 vs. Scotland in Washington, D.C. before heading to the World Cup in France June 4. There they face three-time champions Germany (June 15 in Paris), Iran (June 21 in Lyon) and Yugoslavia (June 25 in Nantes) in first-round Group F matches.
United States 0, Macedonia 0Lineups: United States - Kasey Keller, Eddie Pope, Thomas Dooley, Mike Burns, Cobi Jones, Brian Maisonneuve, Chad Deering, Joe-Max Moore, Tab Ramos (Preki Radosavljevic 60), Jeff Agoos, Brian McBride (Roy Wegerle 63). Macedonia - Petar Milosevski, Dragan Veselinovski (Srdzan Zaharievski 21), Mitko Stojkovski (Goran Lazarevski, 87), Ljupco Markovski, Igor Nikolovski, Ljubo Milosevic (Igor Gjuzelov 63), Nedzmedin Memedi, Toni Micevski, Goce Hristov, Viktor Trenevski (Vlatko Gosez 90), Artim Sakiri (Dzeko Sainovski 84).
Scoring: none. Shots: United States 9, Macedonia 6. Saves: United States 1, Macedonia 1. Corner kicks: United States 9, Macedonia 6. Fouls: United States 7, Macedonia 15. Offside: United States 2, Macedonia 1. Yellow card cautions: United States - Deering 72, Macedonia - Nedzmedin 51.
Referee: Ronald Cedeno (Costa Rica). Assistant referees: Erick Mora (Costa Rica), Marco Vinicio Brenes (Costa Rica). Attendance: 23,861 at Spartan Stadium in San Jose, Calif. Weather: 54 degrees, breezy.