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U.S. under-23 men

Germany slips by short-handed Americans 1-0 on Bugera free kick.

By Robert Wagman

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (Saturday, February 6, 1999) -- Thirteen minutes after the United States was reduced to 10 players, Alexander Bugera scored the game's only goal to give Germany a 1-0 victory in a friendly match between sides comprised of Olympic-eligible players at Alltel Stadium this afternoon.

The match followed the U.S.s shocking 3-0 victory over Germany. This marked the first time the U.S. national and under-23 teams played together in a doubleheader.

Bugera bent a free kick from the top center of the penalty area around a lax American wall, beating goalkeeper Adin Brow, who was otherwise spectacular.

U.S. defender Chad McCarty had been sent off in the 56th minute after receiving his second yellow card. Up to that point the fast-paced match was pretty much even. German then dominated the remainder.

"Our performance today was OK," U.S. coach Clive Charles said. "Weve only been together for four days. Our performance was solid. But the result disappointing. In fact, no one played badly."

Germany almost took a 2-0 lead in the 72nd minute when Timo Rost's diving header banged off the right post. Around the 75th minute, Brown made three point-blank saves in one sequence.

Bob Wagman wrote a nationally syndicated political column for Scripps-Howard for many years. At the same time he has covered soccer in North America for British and South African newspapers since the days of the North American Soccer League. His "Football In America" column now appears regularly in British newspapers. He can be e-mailed at

SoccerTimes managing editor Gary Davidson contributed to this report.

Germany 1, United States 0

Copyright© 1999 Davidson News Group. All Rights Reserved