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Global Mar 20, 2012

Freddy Adu named captain of U.S. Men’s Olympic squad

By Charles Boehm

U.S. Soccer announced on Monday that Potomac, Md. product Freddy Adu has been named captain of the U.S. Under-23 Men’s team, which kicks off the CONCACAF Olympic qualifying tournament in Nashville, Tenn. on Thursday night.

Brian Sciaretta of yanks-abroad.com reports that Adu was voted on by his teammates for the honor.

“It’s a different role,” Adu told ussoccer.com last week. “I’ve always been one of the youngest guys on the team. But now I’m one of the older guys, one of the more experienced guys, and I have to be more of a leader. The guys are looking up to me, asking me questions and looking at me to step up.”

The 22-year-old midfielder previously served as captain of the U-20 National Team and is the only member of the current U-23 squad who has previous Olympic experience, having played a central role on the group which showed well in Beijing four years ago.

Adu presently plays his club soccer for the Philadelphia Union, coached by Peter Nowak, his previous boss at D.C. United.

Adu and the rest of the U-23s begin qualifying on Thursday night against Cuba at LP Field (9 p.m. ET, broadcast on Universal Sports Network), where they will also face Canada on Saturday and El Salvador on Monday in Group A play.

The top two finishers from that group advance to the semifinals against the top two teams from Group B (Mexico, Honduras, Trinidad & Tobago and Panama), set for March 31 at LIVESTRONG Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kan. The two CONCACAF finalists will qualify for the London Olympics this summer.

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