CHICAGO (Feb, 28, 2015) – The U.S. Under-23 Women’s National Team made it two wins in a row at the Six Nations Tournament in La Manga, Spain, defeating its counterpart from Norway, 2-0, on goals from forward Shea Groom and midfielder Danielle Colaprico.
The USA out-shot Norway 16-2, but didn’t get on the board until a few minutes before halftime. Midfielder Samantha Mewis, the only player on the U.S. roster with senior WNT caps, played a pass into Groom near the left side of the penalty box. Groom took a long touch inside to beat the defender and finished hard inside the near post.
Groom, a second round pick by FC Kansas City in the 2015 NWSL Draft, turned provider on the insurance goal. In the 70th minute she got to the end line and played a pass back across the face of the goal. Boston Breakers fourth-round draft pick Stephanie Verdoia made a perfect dummy run and the ball rolled to Colaprico, a Chicago Red Stars first-round pick, who finished from the top of the six-yard box. Stanford goalkeeper Jane Campbell picked up the shutout for the USA.
The USA was coming off a 1-0 victory against Japan on Feb. 26 and will try to make it a three-game sweep at this friendly tournament against England on March 2. After Mewis captained the side against Japan, defender Emily Sonnet wore the armband against Norway.
The 22-player U.S. squad features 14 professional players, including 13 who were taken in the recent 2015 NWSL Draft. The only one-year pro is Chicago Red Stars midfielder Vanessa DiBernardo.
- U.S. U-23 Women’s National Team Match Report -
Match: U.S. U-23 Women’s National Team vs. Norway U-23 Women’s National Team
Date: February 28, 2015
Competition: Six Nations Tournament
Venue: La Manga Football Centre; La Manga, Spain
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 1 1 2
NOR 0 0 0
USA - Shea Groom (Samantha Mewis) 42nd minute
USA - Danielle Colaprico (Shea Groom) 70
USA: 1-Jane Campbell; 17-Andi Sullivan, 13-Emily Sonnett (capt.), 23-Kristin Grubka, 4-Caprice Dydasco (7-Jaelene Hinkle, 46); 9-Rose Lavelle (16-Daphne Corboz, 78), 21-Lo’eau LoBonta, 14-Samantha Mewis (2-Danielle Colaprico, 46); 6-Shea Groom, 10-Stephanie Verdoia, 5-Makenzy Doniak (19-Cheyna Williams, 65)
Subs not used: 3-Vanessa DiBernardo, 8-Sarah Killion, 11-Stephanie McCaffrey, 15-Cari Roccaro, 18-Abby Smith, 20-Lynn Williams, 25-Abby Dahlkemper
Head Coach: Steve Swanson
NOR: 1-Nora Neset Gjoen, 2-Cecilie Redisch Kvamme, 4-Stine Pettersen Reinas, 15-Maria Thorisdottir, 5-Nora Byon-Nilssen, 17-Maria Dybwad Brochmann (6-Tonje Pedersen, 61), 16-Anja Sonstevold, 10-Andrine Stolsmo Hegerberg, 7-Victoria Ludvigsen, 9-Melissa Bjanesoy, 8-Guro Reiten (19-Lisa Fjellstad Naalsund, 46)
Subs not used: 3-Ane Sund Walsoe, 11-Synne Skinnes Hansen, 12-Hilde Gunn Olsen, 13-Mali Lilleas Naess, 14-Ingrid Ostervold Stenevik, 18-Therese Asland, 12-Anniken Jerre
Stats Summary: USA / NOR
Shots: 16 / 2
Shots on Goal: 11 / 1
Saves: 1 / 9
Corner Kicks: 6 / 0
Fouls: 5 / 10
Offside: 1 / 2
Referee: J. Lavrenovaite
Assistant Referee 1: I. Siliuniene
Assistant Referee 2: V. Skiptitene
2015 CONCACAF U-17 Championship Quote Sheet
USA 5, CUBA 0
Feb. 27, 2015
U-17 MNT head coach RICHIE WILLIAMS
On the 5-0 victory to begin the Under-17 Championship:
"It was a good start for the team. Obviously it was important to come in and start off on the right foot, get three points and score some goals. So I thought it was a solid showing today against a Cuba team that is difficult and makes it hard on you, and I thought at times were physical and defended well. So it was difficult at times but I thought the guys did a great job.”
On being considered a favorite to win the Championship:
"You’re always happy with a win, no matter what. The objective is to go out and win. Again, we want to take one game at a time. Trinidad is next and we have to focus on Trinidad, who’s going to be a good opponent. Again we take one game at a time. We have to get the results, play well, and then hopefully we’ll continue that one game after another and into the final on the last day of the tournament.”
On how the team dealt with the climate:
“We were fine. We train full time in Florida so we also have a lot of heat in Florida - we trained the last year and half in Florida. We felt fine. The guys came through the game with no issues. We have a strong squad of 20 players that we trust that will be able to come in and play for us at certain times and do well for us if need be.”
On the play of Joe Gallardoin his first major competition after coming back from a broken leg in August 2014:
“It’s great to see Joe back from his injury. Joe’s a good goal scorer – he was proving it up until his injury. Now he’s back, and obviously got three goals tonight. He worked extremely hard, he played well and he was rewarded with his three goals. I believe that he’ll continue to do that throughout the tournament. Again it’s great for him to be able to recover from the injury and to be back with this team.”
On if he expects the coming games will be more difficult:
“Anybody in international soccer can beat anybody. So we’re not going to relax and take any team for granted. We respect all the teams; they’re all competitive and we don’t feel that there’s going to be any easy game. We have to show up and make sure that we play well offensively and defensively and have good team outings.”
U.S. U-17 MNT midfielder CHRISTIAN PULISIC
On starting the tournament with a 5-0 victory:
"It was great. We played really hard right from the start and got that early goal, which really helped us. After that we didn’t hold back. All the guys did their job and played really well. We kept a clean sheet and we’re all happy and looking forward to the next game.”
On turning corner kick drills into an early goal:
“It’s awesome. To practice that with Richie showing us the plays we’d like to do, and just being able to execute is really important. So it was really good to get that first goal like that.”
On having two goals called back early on:
“We weren’t worried. Things like that happen. We just had to keep pushing and we knew they’d (goals) come.”
U.S. U-17 MNT midfielder ALEJANDRO ZENDEJAS
On starting the tournament off with a convincing win:
"It’s definitely exciting. Of course we still want to look at the good things we did and the things we can do better. But I think we’re all very happy to start off with a win. And now we’re just ready for the next game.”
On getting an early goal and being able to add to the lead:
“It was great, but we knew we still had to keep our composure and keep playing, keep scoring. And obviously we were able to do that.”
On how his goal came about:
“Josh (Perez) sent a ball from the left side and Haji (Wright) tried to play it back. It was kind of bouncing around. Joe (Gallardo) laid it off and I just hit it first time. We’ve practiced finishing a lot, and it paid off, so I’m happy.”
U.S. U-17 MNT forward JOE GALLARDO
On scoring three goals in the win to start the tournament:
"I’m happy I got the hat trick, but more happy that we got the win as team. We played really well and I’m just happy for the victory today.”
On how he scored the first goal:
“As coach always tells me, run to the first post, and that’s what I did. I saw a clear path for Christian, he got it across and I was able to tap it in.”
On returning to the form he had prior to his injury:
“I’m just happy that I’m back to how I used to play. I’m thankful to God that he gave me the strength and perfect mindset to come back and play really well.”
Photos from the U-17 MNT's 5-0 win against Cuba in its opening Group A game at the 2015 CONCACAF U-17 Championship, which is being held in Honduras. The U.S. next plays Trinidad & Tobago on Monday at 6 p.m. ET. The match will be broadcast on FOX Sports 2 and Univision Deportes. Fans will also be able to follow all the action on Twitter @ussoccer_ynt and @ussoccer_esp.
SAN PEDRO SULA, Honduras (Feb. 27, 2015) – The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team got off to a strong start at the 2015 CONCACAF U-17 Championship, earning a 5-0 victory against Cuba in the Group A opener at Estadio Francisco Morazán.
Joe Gallardo scored three goals, Hugo Arellano and Alejandro Zendejas tallied in the first half, while Christian Pulisic and Luca de la Torre each provided two assists to lead the way for the USA.
With the victory, the U-17 MNT has now won seven straight group openers at this qualifying event, starting with the 2001 edition of the tournament.
It was a dominant performance by the USA, which had ample chances to pad the lead in both halves. Gallardo struck the right post in the 20th minute and Haji Wright had a wide-open scoring opportunity but hit the left of the frame in the 50th minute.
In Friday’s earlier Group A match, Guatemala defeated Trinidad & Tobago 4-1. Jamaica and Honduras kicked off their group opener following USA-Cuba.
The USA next faces Trinidad & Tobago at 6 p.m. ET on Monday, March 2, at Estadio Francisco Morazán (FOX Sports 2, Univision Deportes).
Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Hugo Arellano (Christian Pulisic), 5th minute: Pulisic, who had threatened the net just one minute earlier to earn the corner kick, took the set piece opportunity from the left side, whipping the ball into the box to Arellano. The team captain rose over three Cuba defenders and headed it into the right side of the frame for the early lead. It was Arellano’s first goal of the year and second during his U-17 MNT tenure. USA 1, CUB 0
USA – Joe Gallardo (Christian Pulisic), 40th minute: Pulisic and Alejandro Zendejas played a swift give-and-go down the right side and Pulisic crossed from the edge of the six-yard box. Gallardo tapped it home with ease for his second goal of the year and 11th of his U-17 MNT career. USA 2, CUB 0
USA – Alejandro Zendejas, 43rd minute: Just before halftime, the USA worked the ball in from the left and Cuba’s Felipe Hurtado attempted a header clearance. Zendejas was there to settle the ball and ripped a long distance shot into the left of the frame to push the lead to three goals. Zendejas tallied his first international goal of 2015 and fourth during his U-17 career. USA 3, CUB 0
USA – Joe Gallardo (Luca de la Torre), 65th minute: Just seconds after entering the match, de la Torre took two quick touches in the box and set up Gallardo from 20 yards out. Gallardo fired toward the left of the frame, his shot bouncing once in the six-yard box, slightly deflected by Cuba goalkeeper Jesus Enrique Hernandez and finding its way into the back of the net. USA 4, CUB 0
USA – Joe Gallardo (Luca de la Torre), 88th minute: The USA wrapped up its scoring when de la Torre played a through ball to Gallardo at close range. Gallardo’s shot was stopped briefly by Jesus Enrique Hernandez, but bounced right back to Gallardo who capitalized on the second chance and found the left side of the frame for the hat trick. He now leads the U-17s this year with four goals this year and has 14 career goals. USA 5, CUB 0 (FINAL)
Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
CUB – Jesus Enrique Hernandez, 10th and 13th minutes: The Honduras goalkeeper was challenged early and often, required to limit the damage on a couple occasions. In the 10th minute, Hernandez lunched to his right for a diving save on Josh Perez’s strike. Hernandez allowed a rebound, but Christian Pulisic was offside. Then in the 13th minute, Hernandez again dove to his right to smother another Perez shot.
USA – Will Pulisic, 23rd minute: Cuba’s Eduard Puga drove a free kick into the box that Alejandro Zendejas headed away. But Cuba continued to threaten in the area and had a chance to attack the net again from the left side of the box with much of the back line pushed up. Pulisic alertly darted off of his line and snared the ball at the edge of the box.
CUB – Jesus Enrique Hernandez, 62nd minute: U.S. forward Joe Gallardo found a window to shoot from 21 yards out. Hernandez once again made a diving save to his right, making up for a Cuba back line that allowed plenty of space for the USA to work the ball in.
Next on the Schedule:
The U-17 MNT resumes Group A play against Trinidad & Tobago at 6 p.m. ET on Monday, March 2, at Estadio Francisco Morazán in San Pedro Sula.
Broadcast information: FOX Sports 2, Univision Deportes
Social: Twitter (@ussoccer_ynt; @ussoccer_esp)
- The U-17 MNT is now 4-1-0 in international play this year.
- The USA moved to 6-0-2 all-time against Cuba in this tournament’s history.
- Head coach Richie Williams’ starting lineup featured a 4-3-3 formation, with Will Pulisic in net and a defensive line that included John Nelson at left back, Matthew Olosunde at right back and a center back duo of team captain Hugo Arellano and Alexis Velela.
- The midfield trio comprised of Alejandro Zendejas, Eric Calvillo and Christian Pulisic in an attacking role.
- The front line featured Josh Perez on the left, Haji Wright on the right and Joe Gallardo in the middle.
- Christian Pulisic and Wright earned their 30th international caps in this age group, tying for the most by any player in this cycle.
- Every starter – other than Gallardo who was injured for much of 2014 with a leg injury – has earned 19 or more caps in this age group.
- The USA was forced to burn an early substitution in the 28th minute when Tyler Adams entered for Calvillo, who suffered a lower leg injury.
- Midfielder Luca de la Torre made his first appearance of the year when he entered for Zendejas in the 64th minute.
- In the 84th minute, McKinze Gaines entered the game for Wright. Gaines is the only USA player to appear in all five international matches this year.
- U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team Match Report -
Match: U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team vs. Cuba U-17 Men’s National Team
Date: Feb. 27, 2015
Competition: 2015 CONCACAF U-17 Championship
Venue: Estadio Francisco Morazán; San Pedro Sula, Honduras
Kickoff: 6 p.m. ET (5 p.m. local)
Weather: 86 degrees; clear
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 3 2 5
CUB 0 0 0
USA – Hugo Arellano (Christian Pulisic) 5th minute
USA – Joe Gallardo (Christian Pulisic) 40
USA – Alejandro Zendejas 43
USA – Joe Gallardo (Luca de le Torre) 65
USA – Joe Gallardo (Luca de la Torre) 88
USA: 1-Will Pulisic; 2-Matthew Olosunde, 4-Alexis Velela, 5-Hugo Arellano (capt.), 3-John Nelson; 6-Eric Calvillo (18-Tyler Adams, 28), 20-Alejandro Zendejas (8-Luca de la Torre, 64), 10-Christian Pulisic; 7-Haji Wright (13-McKinze Gaines, 86), 9-Joe Gallardo, 11-Josh Perez
Subs Not Used: 12-Kevin Silva, 14-Tanner Dieterich, 16-Thomas McCabe, 17-Pierre da Silva, 19-Brandon Vazquez
Head coach: Richie Williams
CUB: 12-Enrique Hernandez; 2-Felipe Hurtado (18-Neisser Sando, 54), 3-Dariel Morejon, 4-Carlos Borromeo (capt.), 15-Jeffrey Delgado; 5-Jansiel Blanco, 6-Jonathan Ramirez (17-Yordan Alonso, 66), 7-Raycharles Herrera (16-Brian Savigne, 87), 10-Eduard Puga, 13-Serguey Campillo; 8-Yosniel Gonzalez
Subs Not Used: 1-Lazaro Garcia; 9-Carlos Sebrango, 11-Nelson Betancourt, 14-Yon Hernandez, 19-Omar Romero, 20-Yordanis Barreto
Head coach: Fidel Salazar
Stats Summary: USA / CUB
Shots: 21 / 6
Shots on Goal: 13 / 0
Saves: 0 / 8
Corner Kicks: 4 / 2
Fouls: 11 / 14
Offside: 4 / 1
CUB – Felipe Hurtado (caution) 39th minute
USA – Alejandro Zendejas (caution) 51
USA – Haji Wright (caution) 69
Referee: Mathieu Boudeau (CAN)
Assistant Referee 1: Kenroy Willis (CAY)
Assistant Referee 2: Zachari Zeegelar
Fourth Official: Drew Fisher (CAN)
ussoccer.com Man of the Match: Joe Gallardo