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SOCCERINSIDER | THE AMERICAS

Rhinos Charge to A Title

October 21, 1998|GRAHAME L. JONES

If the United States had a relegation and promotion system similar to the rest of the world's soccer leagues, the Rochester Raging Rhinos would be playing in Major League Soccer next season.

Instead, the Rhinos have to content themselves with simply being the A-League champions for 1998. They won the title by defeating the Minnesota Thunder, 3-1, before a sellout crowd of 13,772 at Rochester's Frontier Field.

Rhino striker Derek Tilley scored all three of his team's goals, two in a six-minute span midway through the first half and the third in the 60th minute.

Rochester, which averaged 11,498 fans a game this season, is one of half a dozen cities being considered for an MLS team.

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United States national team midfielder Claudio Reyna has withdrawn his request to be traded by his German club, VfL Wolfsburg, and will remain with the struggling Bundesliga team until his contract expires at the end of the season. The team is 16th in the 18-team league and Reyna was stripped of his captaincy after demanding to be traded.

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Manuel Lapuente, coach of Mexico's national team, has signed a four-year contract that will keep him in charge of the Tricolor through the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea.

Terms were not revealed, but reports said Lapuente will be paid $1.5 million a year.

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