06.06.2000 at 00:00 Foxboro Stadium, Boston
1 - 1
Republic of Ireland
Referee: Armando Archundia (Mexico)
US Nike Cup-match
Alan Kelly Jnr
Stephen Mc Phail
Tuesday, 6th June, 2000
International Tournament - US Nike Cup
The lights were still on when Ante Razov scored to lift the United States to a 1-1 tie against Ireland on Tuesday night.
So linesman Jose Ramos Rizo couldn't use the darkness as an excuse for not seeing that Razov was clearly offsides.
"I saw a replay and it looks that way," U.S. coach Bruce Arena admitted after the Americans survived a nor'easter, a 22-minute power outage and an early Irish goal to escape with a tie.
Asked if he was offsides, Razov said, "The game ended 1-1, so apparently not."
Winds whipped at up to 35 mph and a rainstorm drenched the crowd, but the field remained clean, the footing sure and the teams seemed to be coping in spite of the wintry weather. In the 71st minute, though, the Foxboro Stadium lights went out, sending the field into darkness.
Power was restored about 10 minutes later, but the lights needed time to warm up and the game resumed at 9:53 p.m. Organizers blamed the interruption on power problems affecting Massachusetts Electric customers in the area, but a Massachusetts Electric spokeswoman said it was a problem at the stadium.
A blown transformer near the stadium delayed the NFL's 1997 AFC Championship game between the New England Patriots and Jacksonville Jaguars.
"I think when the power went out, that hurt us a little bit because I think we had the momentum," Arena said. "It was certainly a strange game."
Arena witnessed a similar storm in the inaugural MLS Cup when he was coaching D.C. United.
Of course, that was in late October.
"Those conditions were as difficult as I've seen since '96, when I was here," he said. "Little did I know that we would come to New England and it would be the middle of the winter."
Arena had wanted to use the U.S. Cup to pick the squad that will compete in World Cup qualifying starting next month.
"I think it would be real unfair to use this game as a means of evaluating players," he said. "It was just a lot of players out there with a lot of heart."
Ireland (0-0-2 in the tournament) took a 1-0 lead when Domonic Foley converted a bicycle-kick pass from Stephen McPhail in the 31st minute. Foley also scored in Ireland's first game, a 2-2 tie with Mexico on Sunday.
Razov then got behind the defense -- too far, probably -- and bounced a pass from Earnie Stewart into the net to tie it for the United States (1-0-1 in the cup, 4-2-3 this year). Rizo, part of an all-Mexican officiating crew, was silent.
"I think a lousy decision took the momentum away from us," Irish coach Mick McCarthy said. "It was quite blatantly offsides. It was a terrible decision."
A crowd of 16,319 braved the storm and 45-degree temperatures to see the Americans avoid the first shutout in seven games between the United States and Ireland. The home team has never lost in the series.
The U.S. team, which beat South Africa 4-0 on Saturday, will play Mexico at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., on Sunday. Ireland plays South Africa at Giants Stadium on Sunday in the second half of a doubleheader.
Despite heading into the wind, Ireland was able to capitalize in the first half. McPhail got the ball in a crowd about 30 yards out and wheeled it to Foley, who sneaked behind U.S. defender C.J. Brown 10 yards from the goal and booted it past goalkeeper Brad Friedel.
Cobi Jones entered the game as a substitute in the 65th minute, tying him with Marcelo Balboa for the U.S. record of 128 international appearances.
USA 1 (Razov)
Republic of Ireland 1 (Foley)
Ireland: Alan Kelly (Blackburn), Stephen Carr (Tottenham), Terry Phelan (Fulham), Phil Babb (Liverpool), Gary Breen (Coventry), Matt Holland (Ipswich), Gareth Farrelly (Bolton), Stephen McPhail (Leeds Utd), Kevin Kilbane (Sunderland), Gary Doherty (Tottenham), Dominic Foley (Watford)
Subs: Jason McAteer (Blackburn) for McPhail 37 mins, Mark Kennedy (Manchester City) for Farrelly 72 mins, Niall Quinn (Sunderland) for Doherty 72 mins, Barry Quinn (Coventry) for Foley 88 mins
Manager: Mick McCarthy
USA: Brad Friedel, Frankie Hejduk, CJ Brown, Gregg Berhalter, Greg Vanney, Steve Ralston, John O'Brien, Jovan Kirovski, Ben Olsen, Jason Kreis, Ante Razov
Subs: Ernie Stewart for Ralston 46 mins, Claudio Reyna for O'Brien 60, Cobi Jones for Kreis 65, Tony Sanneh for Olsen 75, Brian McBride for Razov 88