Sunday, September 13, 2009
Chris Lodgson kisses his medal as the United States finished number 19 after a victory over Hungary in their final match. Lodgson's New York teammate, Dexter Burnett scored a hat trick and added a game winning penalty kick to cap a come from behind victory. Ebony Wright started the match and was afterwards recognized by the announcer as one of only four females to integrate the tournament.
The game followed a frustratingly familiar theme for the United States: Pretty build-up, great hustle, and no ability to put the ball away. Trailing 3-1 at the half, the team still felt confident since it had the better of the play. Dexter took control and defied his 47 years with incredible work rate.
The night before we all sat around the dinner table in a Milan cafe and shared our unforgettable moments of the trip. Some went back to our exhibitions in New York with the Promotion Factory and our ceremony at Cipriani's, some of the players couldn't help but mention the beautiful italian they had met, and everyone agreed our trip to Venice was beyond anything they could have imagined. Still it was the victory over France that most people agreed was the best expression of all we had accomplished and overcome together as a group. That victory against a goliath-like opponent in a must win game after trailing by early goals validated everyone. When we won today, the pride on the our faces, the hugs, and rejoicing evinced the self esteem and sense of accomplishment that this group deservedly feels. Thanks to all of you who made this possible. We look forward to keeping you updated going forward with a few profiles and more photos of our athletes and their rise out of homelessness and poverty.
The final match of the Homeless World Cup 2009 is moments away. Portugal will play the Ukraine in a match televised on Italian TV.
Posted by Lawrence at 7:51 AM