Former Flame joins ESPN FC for World Cup broadcasts

Jay DeMerit

Jay DeMerit, Vancouver Whitecaps captain and starting defender in the U.S. team’s 2010 World Cup bid, is an ESPN FC analyst for this year’s games.

UIC is at the World Cup again, but not on the field this year.

Jay DeMerit — UIC grad, former Flames soccer player and Vancouver Whitecaps captain — is an analyst for ESPN FC while he’s on break from Major League Soccer for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

DeMerit was a starting defender for the U.S. men’s national team on its quest for the World Cup in 2010, playing a key role in the Americans’ success at the games in South Africa.

A 1-1 tie against England and a 2-2 draw with Slovenia set the stage for the U.S.’s 1-0 shutout against Algeria. The victory was the first time the U.S. had won its group since 1930 and only the fifth shutout by a U.S. team in World Cup action. The U.S. ultimately fell to Ghana, 2-1, in the round of 16.

DeMerit’s selection to the U.S. national team was in part due to his performance in the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup, when the U.S. advanced to the final with a 2-0 win over top-ranked Spain before falling to Brazil, 3-2.

From 2004-2010, DeMerit made a name for himself on the roster of Watford FC. In the 2006 playoffs, he headed in the first goal of the finals match against Leeds United en route to a 3-0 shutout victory, earning Watford a promotion into the English Premier League.

In the fall 2010, DeMerit returned to North America as the first player for the Whitecaps. Now in his fourth season with the club, he is one of its top defenders, starting 69 of 71 games played.

A four-year letter-winner at UIC from 1998 to 2001, DeMerit played in 80 matches with 73 starts while scoring 11 goals and posting 14 assists.

A three-time NSCAA All-Midwest Region selection, he was instrumental in the Flames’ two conference championships and NCAA tournament runs in 1999 and 2000.

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