US gets early taste of Brazil ahead of World Cup

TALES AZZONI (AP Sports Writer)

SAO PAULO (AP) -- Jurgen Klinsmann is giving American players an early chance to get to know Brazil ahead of the World Cup.

The U.S. began a 12-day training camp Tuesday in Sao Paulo, where the Americans will be based during the tournament in June. The Americans, with a roster of 26 players mostly from Major League Soccer, are the first of the 32 World Cup nations to arrive in Brazil this year in an effort to get acquainted to the host country.

The U.S. coach calls it a ''wonderful opportunity'' to ''get a feeling for the country'' before the team returns in June.

The Americans will stay in Brazil until Jan. 25 before returning home for an exhibition against South Korea on Feb. 1 at Carson, Calif.