AYIA NAPA, Cyprus -- With the country in turmoil, Ukraines national football team says it is a symbol of the countrys unity. The Ukrainians are scheduled to face the United States in a friendly on Wednesday in Cyprus, a match moved from Kharkiv to Larnaca for security reasons. "The national team is a symbol of unity because players come from all over Ukraine," said its captain Anatoliy Tymoshchuk on a wind-swept practice pitch behind the teams hotel in the coastal resort of Ayia Napa. "Were all one big family, were all united." Speaking ahead of the teams training session on Tuesday, Tymoshchuk said the troubles at home do weigh on players minds. "Its a dangerous situation," he said. "We have our families, we worry but we hope that we can keep the peace in Ukraine as quickly as possible." Team spokesman Alexander Glyvynskyy said Wednesdays match is dedicated to the people of Ukraine under the slogan "Peace for Ukraine." "We are not ready for war," Glyvynskyy said. "We hope that we can be good neighbours (with Russia) in the future." Ukraine coach Mykhailo Fomenko said he wanted his teams performance to send a message of unity back home. "Most important is unity and concentration, its important for all Ukrainians," Fomenko said. "I told the players to play like one unit." Despite threats to cancel the match, Ukraine football association president Anatoliy Konkov said Tuesday the game would go ahead. "(We) reached a consensus to play the USA after all," Konkov said in a statement that also praised the American team. "(They) stood behind us to protect the national interests and territorial integrity of Ukraine." The match, which will be played at Antonis Papadopoulos Stadium, is a key warm-up for the United States ahead of this years World Cup. But for Ukraine, which failed to qualify for the tournament in Brazil, it will serve as preparation for the qualifying tournament for the 2016 European Championship. "This game is a huge opportunity, mainly for our European-based players, for those guys to prove to us that they are eager and hungry to jump on the train to the FIFA World Cup," U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann said. Fomenko said earlier in Kyiv that he expects Wednesdays game to be similar in style to a Premier League match, since many of the American players play for English clubs. Glyvynskyy said he expects the Americans to play an attacking game, but that Ukraine is injury-free and has all its best players available. "The players want to play on an official level and want to test their level of play after a two-month winter break," he said. He added that Cyprus was an ideal location for the match because it was relatively simple to organize at short notice and there are no problems with visa issues. Antonis Papadopoulos Stadium has hosted many of Cyprus international matches, but its not the Mediterranean islands top football venue. The GSP Stadium in Nicosia, however, is unavailable because Cyprus is hosting Northern Ireland in another friendly. Its the second time in recent weeks that Cyprus has been selected as an alternate venue for a match involving a Ukrainian team. Last month, a Europa League match between Dynamo Kyiv and Valencia was moved to the Cypriot capital. SAN ANTONIO - The Portland Trail Blazers know firsthand how cold and methodical the veteran San Antonio Spurs can be when they have a team in trouble.So when the defending champions failed to close out the Blazers in the first two overtimes, Portland point guard Damian Lillard had a simple message for his teammates.Step on them, Lillard said.Lillard provided the boot, scoring a career-high 43 points, including 16 after regulation, as the Trail Blazers handed the Spurs their second straight defeat in triple overtime by rallying for a 129-119 victory Friday night.LaMarcus Aldridge had 32 points and 16 rebounds, and Wesley Matthews added 16 points as Portland (21-6) extended its winning streak to four games.The Spurs overwhelmed the young Trail Blazers in the Western Conference semifinals last season, winning three games at home in rolling to a 4-1 series victory en route to their fifth NBA title.So, winning in San Antonio in the manner it did was particularly special for Portland.This was a big win for us, probably our best win of the season, Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts said.The Spurs have lost three straight overtime games at home, including a 117-116 defeat in three OTs to Memphis on Wednesday.It was the first time a team has played consecutive triple-overtime games since the Baltimore Bullets did so in December 1951.San Antonio failed to take advantage of another stellar performance by veteran Tim Duncan, who had 32 points and 10 rebounds.Timmy in particular was a Back to the Future type of deal, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. He was amazing.Danny Green had 27 points and Tiago Splitter scored 14 for San Antonio (17-10).Just as they did against Memphis, the Spurs had plenty of opportunities to beat the Trail Blazers.San Antonio scored the initial six points in each of the first two overtimes, but failed to hold the lead.They had two opportunities to step on us, Lillard said. The door was left open a little bit and we forced another overtime two times, which is not what people do to them. They usually finish you off. We got in a situation that they got in the first two overtimes and I wanted us to know that we just did it to them two times so dont get excited and dont think that what we did was easy, weve got to be better. We did that.Lillard decimated San Antonios hopes almost singlehandedly, scoring the first nine points in the third OTT, including crossing up Green for a 20-foot jumper and a 120-112 lead with 3:04 remaining.ddddddddddddLillards ensuing 3-pointer gave Portland a 123-112 advantage, prompting Popovich to empty his bench.Hes a special player, Green said. That last OT he just took over pretty much. It didnt matter what we threw at him, he attacked the rim well for them.Lillard had help.Steve Blakes 3-pointer with 30.2 seconds left in the second overtime gave Portland a 112-110 lead and Cory Joseph tied the game 7 seconds later on a floating jumper.Duncan hit consecutive turnaround jumpers early in the first overtime, but Aldridge grabbed a missed 3 by Matthews that didnt touch the rim and fed Lillard, who drained a tying 3-pointer with 13.6 seconds remaining.That led to another tough loss for the Spurs, who play in Dallas on Saturday.Im proud of the whole team and what they have done, Popovich said. Its a different group every night. It would almost be better if you had two guys injured, and you knew it for three months. It is different every night, and it keeps them out of rhythm. We are wearing some guys down, though. Timmy is a big worry in that respect and so is Manu (Ginobili). (But) Im really proud of them, and they did a great job under tough circumstances.___TIP-INSTrail Blazers: Lillards previous career high was 41 points on Jan. 7, 2014, against Sacramento. ... Portland F Nicholas Batum (right wrist and left knee contusion) missed his fifth game this season.Spurs: Duncan is one game shy of tying former Lakers forward A.C. Green for 19th in career games played. Duncan, in his 18th season, has played in 1,277 games.LINE CHANGEPopovich subbed his entire starting lineup once in each quarter, doing so at the 6:41, 9:39, 7:18 and 9:06 marks of each respective period. Popovich said he did the mass substitutions to keep his team fresh after the long game Wednesday.First time experiencing that here, and anywhere, honestly, Green said. I think it was good to keep our energy up and to keep us fresh. It was 5 minutes at a time, about. Were low on energy right now. Were low on bodies.UP NEXTTrail Blazers: Visit New Orleans on Saturday.Spurs: Visit Dallas on Saturday.SAME PLANWhen the Spurs play Dallas on Saturday, it will be Rajon Rondos first game since being traded by the Boston Celtics to the Mavericks. It doesnt change what we do, Popovich said. Wholesale Throwback Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Throwback Cheap Jerseys Wholesale Cheap NFL Gear Jerseys From China Youth NFL Jerseys Cheap Cheap Jerseys From China ' ' '