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U.S. U-17 MNT Eliminated from Qualification for FIFA U-17 World Cup with 3-1 Loss to Honduras at CONCACAF Championship in Panama


  • Joel Soñora Scores USA Goal at Estadio Rommel Fernandez in Panama City
  • U-17s Eliminated from CONCACAF Championship and FIFA U-17 World Cup in UAE

PANAMA CITY, Panama (April 14, 2013) – The U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team lost 3-1 to Honduras in the quarterfinals of the 2013 CONCACAF U-17 Championship on Sunday. The loss eliminated the USA from qualifying for the FIFA U-17 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.

The U-17 MNT nearly took the lead in the third minute on a corner kick from midfielder Joel Soñora. Defender Shaquell Moore rose above everybody and his downward header was on target, but cleared off the line by a Honduras defender.

The USA fashioned another superb chance in the 13th minute, with Soñora dancing into the area after a flowing move. He sidestepped his man before trying to poke a shot past onrushing goalkeeper Christian Hernandez, who did well to block the effort.

Honduras grew into the game and generated their first dangerous chance in the 26th minute. Brayan Velazquez latched onto a ball over the top, holding off defender John Requejo, Jr. to get into the area. U.S. goalkeeper Jeff Caldwell came up big with a brave and vital save, springing off his line to smother the shot.

In the 42nd minute, Honduras took the lead. Alvaro Romero collected the ball from a throw in before squaring it for Christopher Alegria, who wound up a full 30 yards from goal to hit a sizzling drive that Caldwell got a hand to, but failed to keep out of the net.

The USA's response was instant, however, with Soñora grabbing the equalizer. Fed by midfielder Christopher Lema, Soñora dribbled and cut in from the left, where he let fly with a shot that flew past Hernandez to tie the score at 1-1 heading into the break.

Honduras reclaimed the lead early in the second half as goalscorer Velazquez turned provider, threading a beautiful pass that deceived the U.S. defense. Alberto Elis timed his run to perfection at the far post to latch on to the ball and poke it past a stranded Caldwell from five yards out in the 57th minute.

Eleven minutes later Honduras doubled their lead off a free kick. Kevin Alvarez struck his shot perfectly, curling the ball over the wall from 23 yards and past Caldwell who was helpless to keep out the world-class effort.

The USA tried to get back into the match, and generated a few chances against an increasingly defensive Honduras side but was unable to pull one back.

The best effort came in the 86th minute when Moore put a shot just wide after a goalmouth scramble. In extra time, Conor Donovan rolled his shot wide of the mark as well.

Additional Notes:

  • 2013 will mark the first time the USA has not competed in the U-17 FIFA World Cup. The USA had qualified for 14 consecutive tournaments before missing out as a result of Sunday’s loss vs. Honduras.
  • U-17 MNT head coach Richie Williams made one starting lineup change from the group finale against Guatemala, a 1-0 victory on April 11 to win Group C. Tyler Turner made his first start of the tournament in the midfield. Turner came off the bench as a second-half sub in the first two games of the CONCACAF U-17 Championship.
  • Corey Baird pushed up from the midfield to forward against Honduras while Junior Flores was moved to a substitute role after starting the previous match against Guatemala.
  • Seven players on the USA’s starting lineup Sunday have ties to the Development Academy, including six players who are currently registered with Academy clubs.
  • The USA fell to 7-1-0 against Honduras in CONCACAF Youth Tournaments and Championships in this age group. The U.S. has outscored Honduras 24-8.
  • On Saturday, two teams clinched a spot in the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup out of the CONCACAF tournament. Canada rallied twice from single-goal deficits to beat Jamaica 4-2 in the quarterfinals of the CONCACAF U-17 Championship, qualifying for its second straight U-17 World Cup and sixth overall. Host Panama also clinched a World Cup berth with a 4-2 victory against Trinidad & Tobago, overcoming a first-half deficit. This marks Panama’s second-straight U-17 World Cup appearance.

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

Match: U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team vs. Honduras
Date: April 14, 2013
Competition: 2013 CONCACAF U-17 Championship; Quarterfinals
Venue: Estadio Rommel Fernández; Panama City, Panama
Kickoff: 6 p.m. ET
Attendance: --
Weather: 89 degrees, cloudy

Scoring Summary:   1         2          F
USA                          1          0          1
HON                         1          2          3 

HON – Christopher Alegria (Alvaro Romero)                        42nd minute
USA – Joel Soñora (Christopher Lema)                                45
HON – Alberto Elis (Brayan Velasquez)                                57
HON – Kevin Alvarez                                                         68

Lineups:
USA: 1-Jeff Caldwell; 2-Shaquell Moore (capt.), 4-Tommy Redding, 5-Conor Donovan, 3-John Requejo Jr.; 6-Tyler Turner (14-Justen Glad,46), 8-Christopher Lema (17-Sebastian Elney,70), 19-Joel Soñora (11-Alan Winn, 77); 7-Rubio Rubin, 9-Ahinga Selemani, 10-Corey Baird
Subs Not Used: 12-Evan Louro, 13-Peter Schropp,15-Mukwelle Akale, 16-Elijah Martin, 18-Angel Heredia, 20-Junior Flores
Head Coach: Richie Williams

HON: 1-Cristian Hernandez; 2-Kevin Alvarez, 3-Alvaro Romero, 4-Luis Santos (capt.), 5-Javier Hernandez, 6-Devron Garcia, 7-Brayan Velasquez (18-Darwin Arita, 90+2), 8-Christopher Alegria, 9-Alberto Elis (20-Jorge Bodden, 88), 10-Isaac Borjas (15-Deybi Flores,74), 11-Rembrandt Flores
Subs Not Used: 12-Fernando Cabrera, 13-Jose Murillo, 14-Jose Fiallos, 16-Erik Gallegos, 17-Steven Ramos, 19-Cristian Argueta,
Head Coach: Jose Francisco Valladares 

Stats Summary: USA / HON
Shots: 15 / 14
Shots on Goal: 7 / 6
Saves: 3 / 6
Corner Kicks: 7 / 3
Fouls: 12 / 8
Offside: 3 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
HON – Alberto Elis (caution)                          57th minute
HON – Kevin Alvarez (caution)                      68
HON – Luis Santos (caution)                          70 
USA – Justen Glad (caution)                          80

Officials:
Referee: Henry Bejarano (CRC)
Assistant Referee 1: Geovany Garcia (SLV)
Assistant Referee 2: Kedlee Powell (JAM)
Fourth Official: William Anderson (PUR)

ussoccer.com Man of the Match: Joel Soñora


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