CHICAGO (Thursday, April 10, 2003) — The 2003 FIFA World Youth Championship has been rescheduled for Nov. 27 – Dec. 19 in the United Arab Emirates. The signature event for the U-20 age group was originally scheduled for March 25-April 16, however, events around the world forced FIFA to postpone the tournament. The final schedule of matches for the tournament will be announced at a later date.
“It is nice to have a target date to start preparing for again,” said U.S. Under-20 head coach Thomas Rongen. "Our team was ready to play this tournament in March, and we will be ready to take the field in November. We are looking forward to the challenge of matching our abilities against the world's best."
The U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team has been drawn into Group F in the tournament with Paraguay, Germany and Korea. The U.S. is one of only five teams to qualify for the last four World Youth Championships, and one of only two teams (Brazil is the other) to finish in the top 15 in each of the last four tournaments.
In making the announcement, FIFA President Sepp Blatter said, “I am delighted that FIFA will be able to hold this major tournament in the UAE as originally planned. The organizing committee has worked so hard to guarantee the success of the event that it would have been unfair to move it elsewhere."