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Americans Abroad

Lewis excels in opener for Fulham but Sanneh is off form for Hertha.

By Robert Wagman (in Washington, D.C.)
and Christopher Courtney (in Wuerzburg, Germany)
and Willy Calderon (in Bristol, England)

Tony Sanneh
Tony Sanneh is in the doghouse at Hertha Berlin after making a misguided back pass that gave Bayern Munich a gift goal in a 4-1 victory.
(Monday, August 14, 2000) -- It was a good season opener for United States midfielder Eddie Lewis at Fulham, but American defender\midfielder Tony Sanneh had some problems at Hertha Berlin that has apparently landed him in the coach's doghouse.

In England, Fulham opened the first division season with a convincing 2-0 victory over Crewe Alexandra. Lewis played a strong match and was unlucky not to score. His curling free kick in the 32nd minute was heading for the top corner before being deflected at the last second by Crewe keeper Jason Kearton with a magnificent save.

In Germany, Sanneh continued his up and down preseason at Hertha, coming on in the 70th minute Saturday night in a 4-1 loss to Bayern Munich, and committing a serious blunder. In the 88th minute, he misplayed asquare pass in his own penalty area, allowing a Bayern player to pounce on it and make the score 4-0.

After the game Berlin coach Jurgen Roeber was visibly upset with Sanneh who tried to explain himself as they left the field. In a postgame interview, Roeber called it an "amateur-like mistake."

This was Sanneh’s second straight poor performance and it will take some time to earn his way back into Roeber's scheme.

In its final warmup before the English Premier League season, Everton easily handled Manchester City 3-1. U.S. striker Joe-Max Moore came on at halftime to replace Mark Hughes and turned in his second solid performance of the week for Everton. Last Monday night, he scored twice in Everton's 5-0 demolition of Plymouth.

His preseason showing had seemed to assure Moore a start in this weekend's season opener at Leeds United. Unfortunately, his call-up for the U.S.-Barbados World Cup qualifier will likely impede his role as a starter in place of the injured Kevin Campbell.

"I know it sounds corny, but my country calls," he said in an interview with SkySports, "It is frustrating. I wanted to be here and I wanted to be ready for such an important game for Everton, but it's going to mean a lot of traveling in a short space of time.

"It is a World Cup qualifying game and the U.S. is in last place of the four teams right now. I have talked to the coach and (Bruce Arena) has said 'Come on, we need you' so,’ it's out of my hands really, but I'm sure the traveling will come into Walter Smith's thinking when he chooses his team for Leeds."

Moore could find himself falling down in the pecking order at Goodison Park as Everton appears close to bringing back fan favorite, Duncan Ferguson from Newcastle. The Scottish striker has struggled to regain his form since his controversial transfer two years ago.

In a surprise, it appears that Greg Berhalter failed to make the squad at Huddersfield, which fell 2-1 to Watford on opening day without the American defender on the roster.

In another opening day match, Sheffield United defeated Portsmouth 2-0. American Stefani Miglioranzi was not on the bench for the match.

Wimbledon and Tranmere drew 0-0 with American keeper Ian Feuer on the bench for Wimbledon as Kelvin Davis got the start in goal.

In Spain, U.S. goalkeeper Kasey Keller had an uneventful evening for Rayo Vallecano which opened its UEFA Cup 1ualifying round by demolishing semi-professional Constellació Esportiva 10-0 in an away match at Comunal Stadium, in Andorra. New signing Elvir Bolic scored four, with two each from Michel and Bolo and single tallies from Cembranos and Pablo Sanz. Rayo made it into the qualifying as a UEFA "fair-play" representative after the team’s name was drawn out of the hat.

In the Netherlands, American midfielder John O'Brien got the day off as Ajax used mostly reserves to defeat Lask Linz 1-0 in preseason action. O’Brien then played the strong 90 minutes in the final preseason tune-up, a 3-1 triumph over Coventry of England.

Also in the Netherlands, American attacker Earnie Stewart warmed up for Wednesday’s U.S.-Barbados match by scoring a goal in NAC Breda's 3-1 win over Barendrecht in preseason play.

It was a slow weekend in Germany. American Joe Enochs had a strong performance for VFL Osnabruck which defeated Arminia Bielefeld. Enochs, playing defensive midfield, shut down the Bielefeld's playmaker, the Brazilian Everson.

At Bayer Leverkusn, U.S. midfielder Frankie Hejduk was listed as a sub in a 2-0 win over Wolfsburg, but did not play. American striker Landon Donovan did not dress for the match.

In Scotland, midfielder Claudio Reyna was released to join the U.S. for the Barbados match near Boston before Rangers’ easy 3-1 victory over lowly St. Mirren.

In France, it seems as if David Regis is still with Metz and getting playing time after a long absence. In this weekend's Metz-Lyon match, Regis entered as a reserve in a 0-0 draw.

According to the Italian media, Lazio Roma camp is about to sign 18-year-old American Cody Anderson of St. Louis to an amateur contract. He has been working out with their youth\reserve side.

Senior correspondent Robert Wagman can be e-mailed at bobwagman@soccertimes.com. Christopher Courtney is an American living in Wuerzburg, Germany where he follows the fortunes of American players in Europe. He can be contacted at yanksgermany@yahoo.com. Willy Calderon, an American living in Bristol, England, writes about soccer for various publications and netzines and can be contacted at willy@netcity.co.uk.

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