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Tab Ramos

2013 CONCACAF U-20 Championship Draw Quote Sheet

U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team Quote Sheet
2013 CONCACAF U-20 Championship Draw
Nov. 21, 2012

U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team head coach TAB RAMOS
On being drawn into a group with Costa Rica and Haiti:
“It’s not easy, but it’s never easy. My thought is that we have to prepare well, we have good opponents in our group. Costa Rica has been to the last three U-20 World Cups, so that’s a tough opponent to have. I just went down to scout Haiti in Jamaica, so I know them well and I’ve watched them play. They are very good also, but we will be prepared.”

On what’s ahead on the U-20 MNT schedule:
“We will have a camp Dec. 15-22 and our next camp after that will be in Mexico (in mid-January). We will want to go down to Puebla and experience that a little bit and prepare ourselves to not be surprised by anything when the tournament comes the following month.”

On being an assistant with the last group of U-20 that failed to reach the U-20 World Cup:
“With the last group, it was certainly disappointing. We played a game where we were the better team and were not able to get through the game and win the game. Those always hurt the most. These are all great experiences for the players that they have to move on with. I want to make sure that in particular for this group, we have been and will continue to spell out how important it would be for them to participate in the Under-20 World Cup and to showcase themselves to the world. None of that can happen if we don’t have a great tournament here (in Mexico). We won’t look past what we have in front of us and, as everyone says, we will take it one game at a time.”

On drawing from his own experience as a player with the U-20 MNT:
“The way it helps the most is by knowing that you cannot take any team lightly. In CONCACAF, the competition has always been this way. There have always been surprise teams and there will continue to be. For me, fortunate or unfortunate now that I’m coaching the team, I’ve been fortunate to have the experience of being on a U-20 qualifying team going to the World Cup and on my second cycle on a U-20 team that did not qualify for the World Cup. I know the feeling on both sides. I know that it is always difficult and you have to do the best you can all the way through to the last minute and this is how we’ll approach it. I’m sure the players will be prepared for that.”