Eby, United States Into Semi-Finals
US to Play Turkey for Spot in World Deaf Football Championships Final
Real Maryland defender Matthew Eby and the US Men’s Deaf National team stormed into the semi-finals of the World Deaf Football Championships in Patras, Greece.
Following a 2-0 win over the Netherlands and a 3-0 loss to France, the US needed a win in its final group match with China to advance to the quarter-finals. The Stars and Stripes took a 14th minute lead through Mike Lawson, but were pegged back on a 56th minute strike by Chen. The US would prevail, however, securing their passage into the last eight in extraordinary fashion, as Bobby Michel struck two minutes into stoppage time for a 2-1 victory.
Eby played the full 90 minutes plus the five minutes of added time in the game.
Eby takes in the sites: Courtesy of Michael Kennedy
In the group’s other match, France and the Netherlands drew 1-1 meaning France topped Group D with 7 points. The US finished one point behind them with 6, while the Dutch exited the tournament with 4 points while China had nothing to show from their three matches.
Next, the USA faced Italy in a thrilling quarter-final in which the teams could only be separated by the lottery of a penalty shoot-out. Eby played the full 120 minutes as the US took the lead on a 56th minute goal by Trip Neil. The US looked set for the quarter finals, but Luppi conjured up a last minute equalizer for the Italians to send the game into extra time. Italy then took the lead through Convito five minutes into extra time, but Gabriel Lopez put the States back on level terms three minutes later.
The US prevailed 4-2 on penalties to book a date with Turkey in the last four- the shooters names were not posted in the match report, but Eby scored for the US in the shootout..
Eby has played every minute of the US’s four games in the tournament.
The US will play Turkey tomorrow at 6:30 (12:30 EST) at the Pan-Pelopon pitch. Results can be found at http://www.wdfc2008.gr.
The winner will take on either Germany or France in the final.
Realmaryland.us wishes Matthew Eby and the rest of the US Men’s Deaf National Team all the best against Turkey.
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