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U.S. Under-17 Men's National Team
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U-17 MNT Wins Third Straight International Tournament

SARAJEVO, Bosnia and Herzegovina (April 6, 2014) – The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team scored a resounding 4-1 win against Bosnia and Herzegovina to win the Josip Katalinski International Tournament on Sunday.

Spurred by the attacking triumvirate of Christian Pulisic (two goals), Haji Wright (two goals) and Joe Gallardo (two assists), the young Americans win in the final captured their third consecutive international tournament title, a run that also includes winning the 2013 Nike International Friendlies in Lakewood Ranch, Fla., last December and capturing the Aegean Cup in Manisa, Turkey in January.

U-17 MNT center back Hugo Arellano won the competition’s Josip Katalinski Award, which recognizes the tournament’s best defender.  The individual award is the latest in an impressive and diverse string of honors players from the U-17 MNT have collected at international tournaments this cycle. Previously, goalkeeper Will Pulisic earned Golden Glove recognition at the Aegean Cup, while cousin Christian was voted MVP of the Nike Friendlies. Also at the Nike Friendlies, Wright won the Golden Boot award with five goals in three matches, and goalkeeper Kevin Silva earned the tournament’s Golden Glove award.  

The U-17 MNT will next travel to Croatia for a pair of friendlies against the Croatia U-17 national team in Zagreb on April 8 and 10.

- U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team Match Report –

Match: U.S. U-17 MNT vs. Bosnia and Herzegovina
Date
: April 6, 2014
Competition
: Josip Katalinski International Tournament; Final
Venue
: Stadium Grbavica; Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Kickoff
: 3 p.m. UTC1 (9 a.m. ET)
Attendance
: 250
Weather
: 53 degrees, cloudy

Scoring Summary:           1              2              F
USA                                   1              3              4
BIH                                    0              1              1

USA - Haji Wright (Joe Gallardo)            37th minute
USA - Christian Pulisic (Joe Gallardo)    56
USA - Christian Pulisic (Edwin Lara)      60
BIH - Amar Suljić                                     65
USA - Haji Wright (Christian Pulisic)      73 

Lineups:
USA
: 1-Kevin Silva; 2-Matthew Olosunde, 6-Eric Calvillo, 5-Hugo Arellano, 3-Edwin Lara; 10-Christian Pulisic, 4-Alexis Velela, 8-Luca De La Torre (16-Thomas McCabe, 61), 11-Pierre Da Silva (20-Alejandro Zendejas, 51); 7-Haji Wright, 9-Joe Gallardo (14-Tyler Adams, 61)
Subs not used: 12-Will Pulisic, 13-John Nelson, 15-Tanner Dietrich, 17-Daniel Barbir, 18-George Braima, 19-Elijah Rice, 21-McKinze Gaines, 23-Weston McKennie

Head coach: Richie Williams

BIH: 12-Jasko Keranović (1-Valentino Jović, 61); 2-Ognjen Davidović (15- Besim Šerbečić, 61), 3-Sandi Husić, 4-Mato Stanić, 5-Mijo Miletić; 6-Toni Nikić, 7-Amar Suljić (20-Alan Delić, 78), 8-Denis Žerić (18-Mak Varešanović, 78), 10-Zinedin Mustedanagić; 11- Ermedin Demirović (19-Ajdin Mujagić, 53), 21-Said Behram (9-Emir Bijelić, 53)
Subs not used: 13-Sandro Hadžiabdić, 14-Savo Đokić, 16-Aras Sadiković, 17-Amir Mašić
Head coach:
Sakib Malkočević

Stats Summary: USA /  BHI
n/a

Misconduct Summary:
BIH – Ajdin Mujagić (caution)                     77th minute
USA – Hugo Arellano (caution)                   77 

Officials:
Referee: Vladimir Bjelica
Assistant Referee 1: Dalibor Drašković
Assistant Referee 2: Haris Baković
Fourth Official: Irfan Peljto

Richie Williams Names 20-Player U-17 MNT Squad for Three-Match Pacific Northwest Tour

CHICAGO (March 6, 2014) – U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team head coach Richie Williams has named a 20-player squad to take part in a three-match tour of the Pacific Northwest that will run from March 7-18. The trip includes games against the Seattle Sounders FC U-17/18s, the University of Portland Pilots and the Portland Timbers Reserves.

The U.S. U-17 MNT begins its tour in Seattle, where the players will train for two days as well as attend the opening kickoff of the 2014 MLS season when Seattle Sounders FC hosts Sporting Kansas City on March 8. Before departing the Emerald City, the U.S. U-17s will face a Sounders squad, featuring a blend of the club’s U-17/18 Academy players and first team Reserves at Starfire Sports Complex, Field 1 on March 10, at 7 p.m. PT. The match is open to the public and free to attend.

The U.S. U-17s then travel to Portland, Ore., for a game against the Portland Pilots on March 12. The match, which is set to kick off at 7 p.m. PT, will be played at Merlo Field on the university’s campus and is free to the public.

The team will train in Portland through the weekend, including one day at the Nike Campus in Beaverton, before playing its final match on March 17 against a Portland Timbers squad comprised primarily of the club’s first team Reserves and some players from its U-17/18 Development Academy team. Kickoff for the game is set for 10 a.m. PT at Providence Park and is a Timbers season-ticket holder event.

Seventeen of the 20 players on the U.S. U-17 roster are currently enrolled in U.S. Soccer’s Residency Program in Bradenton, Fla. Two non-Residency players, Edwin Lara and Nicholas Taitague, who are age eligible for the U.S. U-15 Boys’ National Team, continue their run of call-ups for Richie Williams’ side, and the only other player not currently in Residency is New York Red Bulls Academy product Tyler Adams, who recently captained the U-15 BNT for two friendlies against the United Arab Emirates during an international training camp in Abu Dhabi in February.

Including Adams, the New York Red Bulls lead the five MLS Academy teams represented with two players on the roster; Matthew Olosunde is New York’s other Academy product on the roster. The other four MLS Academies are Chivas USA (Hugo Arellano), Crew Soccer Academy (George Braima), FC Dallas (Alejandro Zendejas) and the LA Galaxy Academy (Haji Wright).

U.S. U-17 MNT SCHEDULE:
March 10; 7 p.m. PT
– U-17 MNT vs. Seattle Sounders Reserves/U-17/18’s; Starfire Field #1
March 12; 7 p.m. PT
– U-17 MNT vs. University of Portland Pilots; Merlo Field
March 17; 10 a.m. PT
– U-17 MNT vs. Portland Timbers Reserves/U-17/18s; Providence Park

U.S. U-17 MNT ROSTER BY POSITION
:
GOALKEEPERS (2)
: William Pulisic (Richmond Strikers; Mechanicsville, Va.), Kevin Silva (PDA; Bethlehem, Pa.)
DEFENDERS (7)
: Tyler Adams (New York Red Bulls Academy; Wappingers Falls, N.Y.), Hugo Arellano (Chivas USA Academy; Norwalk, Calif.), Tanner Dieterich (TN Soccer Club; Nashville, Tenn.), Edwin Lara (De Anza Force; San Leandro, Calif.), John Nelson (Internationals; Medina, Ohio), Matthew Olosunde (New York Red Bulls Academy; Trenton, N.J.), Alexis Velela (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (6)
: George Braima (Crew Soccer Academy; Columbus, Ohio), Eric Calvillo (Real So Cal; Palmdale, Calif.), Thomas McCabe (PDA; South Orange, N.J.), Christian Pulisic (PA Classics; Hershey, Pa.), Nicholas Taitague (Richmond Strikers; Midlothian, Va.), Alejandro Zendejas (FC Dallas Academy; El Paso, Texas)
FORWARDS (5)
: Pierre Da Silva (New York Soccer Club; Port Chester, N.Y.), McKinze Gaines (Lonestar SC; Austin, Texas), Eric Matzelevich (Bethesda-Olney; Washington, D.C.), Elijah Rice (Chicago Magic PSG; Highland Park, Ill.), Haji Wright (LA Galaxy Academy; Los Angeles, Calif.)

Williams Names 28 Players to U.S. U-17 Men's National Team 2014 Spring Residency Roster

CHICAGO (Jan. 7, 2014) – U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team head coach Richie Williams has invited 28 players to the 2014 Spring Semester of the U.S. U-17 Residency Program in Bradenton, Fla.

Twenty-one players return from the 2013 Fall Semester Residency roster and are joined by new additions in McKenzie Gaines, Eric Matzelevich, AJ Palazzolo, Raheem Taylor-Parkes and Jaret Townsend, as well as U-15 Boys’ National Team midfielder Jose Carranza and goalkeeper Eric Lopez.

In 2015, the U.S. will be participating in the 2015 CONCACAF U-17 Championship, which serves as the qualifying tournament for the 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup for the CONCACAF region. 

“We are very excited about the group of players that we brought in this semester,” said Williams. “We feel very confident in this group that will provide us with 20 players to go on to World Cup qualifying and hopefully through a successful World Cup qualifying campaign to lead us to next year’s World Cup.”

The players in Bradenton represent 22 U.S. Soccer Development Academy clubs. FC Dallas Academy, LA Galaxy Academy, Players Development Academy and St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri lead the way with two players apiece.

Fifteen players were part of the U-17 MNT that took first place at the recent Nike International Friendlies, including tournament MVP Christian Pulisic, Golden Boot winner Haji Wright and Golden Glove award winner Kevin Silva.

The U.S. players live on campus at the IMG Academies in Bradenton and train in the morning under the guidance of Williams and his coaching staff. In the afternoon, the players attend classes at St. Stephen’s Episcopal School.

While in the full-time Residency Program, the U.S. team not only trains daily, but also has access to the IMG Academies facilities. The team regularly uses the state-of-the-art strength-training facilities, as well as brand new dormitories and meal rooms.

Beginning in 1999, the Residency Program has given players the opportunity to move up the ladder in the world of soccer where many have become professionals in Major League Soccer or with some of the biggest clubs in Europe. Players such as Jozy Altidore, Michael Bradley, Landon Donovan and Eddie Johnson have gone on to carve out careers with the full U.S. Men’s National Team. The program in Bradenton provides players with an environment where they can prosper as individual players and come together as a team ahead of regional and world competition.

U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team Roster by Position: Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3): Eric Lopez (LA Galaxy Academy; Westminster, Calif.), Will Pulisic (Richmond Strikers; Mechanicsville, Va.), Kevin Silva (PDA; Bethlehem, Pa.)
DEFENDERS (8): Hugo Arellano (Chivas USA Academy; Norwalk, Calif.), George Braima (Crew Soccer Academy; Columbus, Ohio), Nikkye De Point (Revolution Empire; Rochester, N.Y.), Tanner Dieterich (TN Soccer Club; Nashville, Tenn.), John Nelson (Internationals; Medina, Ohio), Matthew Olosunde (New York Red Bulls Academy; Trenton, N.J.), AJ Palazzolo (St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri; O’Fallon, Mo.), Alexis Velela (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (10): Eric Calvillo (Real So Cal; Palmdale, Calif.), Jose Carranza (D.C. United Academy; Manassas, Va.), Kyle Gurrieri (NJSA 04; Totowa, N.J.), Thomas McCabe (PDA; South Orange, N.J.), Weston McKennie (FC Dallas Academy; Little Elm, Texas), Logan Panchot (St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri; St. Louis, Mo.), Jaret Townsend (Real Colorado; Highlands Park, Colo.), Devin Vega (San Antonio Scorpions; San Antonio, Texas), Brian Zelaya (De Anza Force; San Mateo, Calif.), Alejandro Zendejas (FC Dallas Academy; El Paso, Texas)
FORWARDS (7): Pierre Da Silva (New York Soccer Club; Port Chester, N.Y.), McKenzie Gaines (Lonestar SC; Austin, Texas), Christian Pulisic (PA Classics; Hershey, Pa.), Eric Matzelevich (Bethesda-Olney; Washington; D.C.), Elijah Rice (Chicago Magic PSG; Highland Park, Ill.), Raheem Taylor-Parkes (Philadelphia Union Academy; Wesley Chapel, Fla.), Haji Wright (LA Galaxy Academy; Los Angeles, Calif.)

High-Flying USA Wins 2013 Nike International Friendlies

LAKEWOOD RANCH, Fla. (Dec. 13, 2013) – The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team won the 11th edition of the Nike International Friendlies with an impressive display of offensive soccer that yielded a 4-1 win against Brazil in the tournament’s final match.

The USA (2-1-0; 6 points) claimed its second Nike International Friendlies title in three years thanks to goals from Joe Gallardo, tournament MVP Christian Pulisic and Golden Boot winner Haji Wright, who notched a brace. Kevin Silva, who earned the tournament Golden Glove award, had another strong performance in goal for the USA, making five saves to go along with excellent work snuffing out numerous other chances and distributing the ball well from the back.

Brazil (1-1-1; 4 points), which could have won the competition with a win or draw, lost its composure in a fast-paced, high-intensity match as two players, Evander da Silva and Jordan William were shown straight red cards for reckless challenges in the final five minutes of each half. Marcelo da Souza scored Brazil’s lone goal in the first half.

In the opening five minutes, Brazil carved out the first couple opportunities of the match. Da Souza got the better of Edwin Lara down the USA’s left flank to swing in a cross that da Silva headed over the bar before center back Gustavo Martini also sent a free header well over top the net on Brazil’s next possession.

In response, the USA scored on its first concerted attack. Right back Matthew Olosunde spun away from two Brazil players and slipped the ball to Wright near midfield. The lanky striker sped forward, shrugging off the challenge of one defender before waltzing past another and firing a shot that deflected past a sprawling Bruno Oliveira in the Brazil goal.

Silva then came up strong for the USA as the Brazil attack put the young Americans on their heels. With the USA looking dangerous on the counter, Brazil’s high pressure finally broke through as Gustavo Xavier caused a turnover in the USA’s defensive half and played the ball through for da Souza. He beat Silva in a foot race to the ball, tucking it beneath the USA goalkeeper before walking it into the net to tie the score at 1-1 in the 16th minute.

Soon after, the USA nearly pulled ahead again. Winger Josh Perez dribbled out of a tight space and received it again after Pulisic and Wright kept the move going. Wright’s touch sent Perez free into the box but after rounding the goalkeeper, he saw his shot cleared off the line by Xavier.

Gallardo converted the resulting corner kick, lifting the ball into the roof of the net with his second bite at the apple as the balled pinged around the six-yard box in the 22nd minute.

With the USA’s lead restored at 2-1, the already physical game began to take on an even tougher tone, with heavy tackles flying in from both sides. Brazil’s da Souza was the first to be cautioned in the 28th minute shortly before the first of a few large scrums that broke out during the game coalesced in front of the Brazil bench.

Tempers settled momentarily, until a late sliding tackle from da Silva on Olosunde in the 40th minute saw the Brazil midfielder handed a straight red card and another flair-up between the sides.

Halftime arrived not a moment too soon, but the teams were soon trading tackles and chances again after the restart.

A good spell of USA possession in the Brazil half, led to the USA’s third goal. A deflected Olosunde cross nearly fell for Gallardo to strike in the box, but the USA forward was able to collect the ball and recycle the opportunity. From Brazil’s right flank, he beat a pair of defenders to center for a wide open Pulisic, who only needed to tap the ball in to put the USA up 3-1.

From there, the Americans tried to take the energy out of the match, but Brazil kept pushing with 10 men and would have pulled to within a goal if not for a fine save from Silva on a glancing header in the 65th minute.

Wright finally put the Americans out of sight with 20 minutes left. Leaving a defender in his wake, the LA Galaxy Academy product ripped a bullet into the far, right-hand side netting to give the USA a 4-1 lead and decide the Golden Boot race.

A final flair-up occurred with only five minutes left to play when William committed an off-the-ball foul on Pulisic that left the tournament MVP prone on the turf while both teams swirled around him in a scene that threatened to boil over. Once order was restored, William was ejected, Pulisic returned to the field and the USA stood on the ball as both teams watched the final minutes of regulation tick away, as Brazil’s front line refused to venture past midfield.

-U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team Match Report-

Match: U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team vs. Brazil U-17 Men’s National Team
Date: Dec. 13, 2013
Competition: 2013 Nike International Friendlies
Venue: Premier Sports Campus; Lakewood Ranch, Fla.
Kickoff: 5 p.m. ET
Attendance: 1,750
Weather: 77 degrees, sunny

Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA                         2 2 4
BRA                         1 0 1

USA – Haji Wright 8th minute
BRA – Marcelo de Souza (Gustavo Xavier) 16
USA – Joe Gallardo (Christian Pulisic) 22
USA – Christian Pulisic (Joe Gallardo) 56
USA – Haji Wright (Joe Gallardo ) 68

Lineups:
USA: 1-Kevin Silva; 2-Matthew Olosunde, 4-Daniel Barbir, 6-Eric Calvillo, 7-Christian Pulisic, 8-Luca da la Torre (10-Alejandro Zendejas, 79), 9-Haji Wright, 11-Josh Perez (20-Pierre Da Silva, 79), 13-Edwin Lara, 15-Alexis Velela (capt.), 19-Joe Gallardo
Subs not used: 3-John Nelson, 5-George Braima, 12-Will Pulisic, 14-Hugo Arellano, 16-Logan Panchot, 17-Brian Zelaya, 18-Thomas McCabe
Head Coach: Richie Williams

BRA: 1-Bruno Oliveira, 2-Anderson Sousa (17-Patrick Valverde, 61), 3-Gustavo Xavier, 5-Riuler de Oliveira, 6-Jordan William, 8-Matheus Pereira (capt.) (7-Mateus da Silva, 61), 9-Marcelo de Souza, 13-Gustavo Martini, 14-Kleber Augusto (4-Rafael Santos, 71), 15-Mauro Jaqueson (18-Pablo Vinicius, 46), 16-Evander da Silva
Subs not used: 10-Robson Rodrigo, 12-Anderson Silva
Not available: 11-Caique da Silva
Head Coach: Alexandre Gallo

Stats Summary: USA / BRA
Shots: 9 / 12
Shots on Goal: 6 / 6
Saves: 5 / 2
Corner Kicks: 3 / 8
Fouls: 16 / 16
Offside: 1 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
BRA – Marcelo de Souza (caution) 28th minute
BRA – Evander da Silva (ejection) 40
USA – Josh Perez (caution) 76
USA – Joe Gallardo (caution) 81
BRA – Jordan William (ejection) 86

Officials:
Referee: Elie Aguilar
Assistant Referee 1: Eduardo Mariscal
Assistant Referee 2: Apolinar Mariscal
Fourth Official: Cedric Adams

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