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Posted April 1, 2003
                              
Venazuela hoping for change of luck in friendly against Jamaica
                      
By The Associated Press

CARACAS, Venezuela, Apr. 1 - Venezuela, which lost its first friendly match this year to the United States, is hoping for a change of luck when it faces Jamaica on Wednesday.

Venezuela lost 2-0 to the United States in a friendly in Seattle, Washington, on Saturday. Jamaica, however, beat Haiti 3-0 on Sunday and qualified for the CONCACAF Gold Cup finals after finishing first in Group A.

The Gold Cup, the championship of the North and Central American and Caribbean region, is slated to take place in the United States and Mexico in July.

"The game against Jamaica won't be easy, they are strong players," Venezuela coach Richard Paez told The Associated Press. "I think its going to be a good show."

Paez downplayed Saturday's loss to the United States.

"Venezuela played well ... against a World Cup level team despite not having played for four months and (having) only four training sessions before the game," he said.

The opportunity to confront the U.S. team in a friendly match came after Japan canceled a tour of the United States and South America due to the war in Iraq (news - web sites). Japan and the United States were slated to play on March 29.

Venezuela and Jamaica play Wednesday in Caracas at 7 p.m. local time (2300 GMT).

___ Likely Lineups:

JAMAICA: Donovan Ricketts, Claude Davis, Ian Goodison, Gerald Neil, Omar Daley, Linval Dixon, Cornel Chin-Sue, Jonathan Williams, Theodore Whitmore and Roen Nelson.

VENEZUELA: Gilberto Angelucci, Leopoldo Jimenez, Wilfredo Alvarado, Jose Vallenilla, Gabriel Urdaneta, Miguel Mea Vitali, Wilfredo Moreno, Juan Arango, Ricardo Paez, Juan Arango and Daniel Noriega.

Copyright 2003 The Associated Press

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