Landon Donovan set up second-half goals by Jozy Altidore and Clint Dempsey, leading the United States men's soccer team over Turkey, 2-1, on Saturday in Philadelphia in the Americans' last exhibition before leaving for the World Cup in South Africa.
“We’re going to be as good as we want to be,” Donovan said. “And if we play the way we’re capable of playing, we can beat a lot of teams in the world.”
Arda Turan put the Turks ahead in the 27th minute. Altidore tied the score in the 58th minute, and Dempsey put the U.S. ahead in the 75th before an overwhelmingly pro-American crowd of 55,407 fans at Lincoln Financial Field.
The Americans depart today for South Africa and meet Australia in a last friendly on June 5, one week before their World Cup opener against England.
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U.S. coach Bob Bradley used something approaching a first-choice lineup, far different from the backup-filled 11 he put on the field for Tuesday’s 4-2 loss to the Czech Republic in East Hartford, Conn.
Cup tickets go fast
FIFA says 100,000 World Cup tickets have been sold in less than two days as local fans in South Africa make a late push to attend the tournament.
FIFA said Saturday that 14 matches were sold out, including the final, semifinals and South Africa’s group games.
An extra 90,000 tickets, mainly returns from FIFA’s sponsors, were added to the pool on Friday leaving organizers with 160,000 to sell just two weeks ahead of the June 11 kickoff.
Wittels’ hitting streak extended to 53 games
Florida International’s Garrett Wittels pushed his hitting streak to 53 games, five away from Robin Ventura’s NCAA Division I record, with an infield single Saturday in the eighth inning against Florida Atlantic in the Sun Belt Conference tournament at Murfreesboro, Tenn.
FIU wound up getting four runs in the eighth, winning the game 11-9 and clinching a spot in today’s title game with a guaranteed spot in the NCAA tournament at stake.
With FIU trailing, 9-7, Wittels worked a 2-0 count, then lined a fastball off FAU pitcher Taylor Everist’s glove. As the second baseman fielded the ball, Wittels slid headfirst into first base.
“One of the hardest balls I ever hit,” he said.
Vitali Klitschko (40-2, 38 KOs) knocked out Albert Sosnowski in the 10th round to retain the World Boxing Council heavyweight title. … Johann Tschopp of Switzerland won the 20th and penultimate stage of the Giro d’Italia cycling race. Ivan Basso of Italy extended his overall lead. Today’s final stage is a 9-mile time trial in Verona. … Harvard won its third straight Yale-Harvard Regatta, holding on to beat Yale by six seconds in the 145th annual four-mile boat race on the Thames River in Connecticut.
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