U-20 MNT Defeats Mexico 1-0 to Open Classification Stage of 2017 U-20 Championship

Captain Erik Palmer-Brown’s 29th Minute Header Lifts USA Past El Trí; USA Can Guarantee FIFA U-20 World Cup Berth with Win or Draw against El Salvador on Friday

TIBÁS, Costa Rica (Feb. 27, 2017) – The U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team rode a 29th minute header from captain Erik Palmer-Brown and a solid defensive effort to shut out Mexico 1-0 in the opening match of the Classification Stage at the 2017 CONCACAF U-20 Championship. The win broke Mexico's 20-match unbeaten streak at the CONCACAF U-20 Championship, a run that dates back to the 2009 edition of the tournament. 

Applying high pressure throughout the match, the U.S. frustrated Mexico from the first whistle and went ahead just before the half-hour mark when Brooks Lennon’s corner kick from the left found Palmer-Brown for his first goal of the competition. The goal was also the first conceded by El Trí in its four tournament matches.

Later chances from Lennon, Jeremy Ebobisse, Justen Glad, Coy Craft and Jonathan Lewis were denied by Mexico goalkeeper Jose Hernández, while a swarming U.S. midfield and suffocating play from the back line limited El Trí to just three shots, none of which were on target. 

With the victory, the U.S. can advance to the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Korea Republic should Mexico either draw or lose against El Salvador on Wednesday. If Mexico wins, the U-20 MNT can punch their ticket to both the World Cup and Sunday’s CONCACAF U-20 Championship match with a draw or win against El Salvador when the two sides meet in the Group D Classification Stage finale on Friday (6:30 p.m. ET; UDN, Facebook Live).

Up Next: The U-20 MNT closes out the Classification Stage of the 2017 CONCACAF U-20 Championship on Friday, March 3 against El Salvador. Kickoff from Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica in San Jose is set for 6:30 p.m. ET and the match can be seen live on Univision Deportes Network and the CONCACAF Facebook Page.
U.S. U-20 MNT Social: Twitter (@ussoccer_ynt; @ussoccer_esp); Facebook; Instagram

2017 CONCACAF U-20 Classification Group D Standings

Team

GP

W

L

D

Pts.

GF

GA

GD

USA

1

1

0

0

3

1

0

+1

El Salvador

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Mexico

1

0

1

0

0

0

1

-1

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Erik Palmer-Brown (Brooks Lennon), 29th minute:
After much of the first half was battled in and around midfield, Mexico conceded its first goal of the tournament just before the half-hour mark. Brooks Lennon’s in-swinging corner from the left picked out Erik Palmer-Brown, who rose above Jose de Dios Aguyao at the six-yard box and headed his effort to the lower left corner where Diego Cortes’ attempted clearance ended up in the back of the net. USA 1, MEX 0 [WATCH] FINAL

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
MEX – Jose Hernández, 39th minute:  
The U.S. caught Mexico on a quick counter attack as Luca de la Torre quickly pushed up the left before swinging a ball to Eryk Williamson at the top of the penalty area. Williamson laid a quick pass into Lennon’s path, who fired a blistering, low effort that Hernández smothered.

MEX – Jose Hernández, 44th minute: After de la Torre forced a Mexico turnover at midfield, the U.S. again quickly transitioned towards goal, with Tyler Adams pushing forward for Williamson. The University of Maryland midfielder slid the ball into the stride of Jeremy Ebobisse, who entered the box on the left before firing a tight-angled effort that Hernández kept out at the near post.

MEX – Jose Hernández, 63rd minute: After a foul about 40 yards from goal on the right, Lennon looped in a dangerous free kick for Justen Glad, whose glancing header was well held by Hernández. 

MEX – Jose Hernández, 90+1 minute: With Mexico pushing numbers forward on a last-minute free kick, the U.S. turned the opportunity away and began a quick counter through Jonathan Lewis. The second-half substitute barreled forward into the box, but saw his attempt denied with a kick save by Hernández.

NOTES:

- U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. U-20 Men’s National Team vs. Mexico
Date: Feb. 27, 2017
Competition: 2017 CONCACAF U-20 Championship – Classification Stage
Venue: Estadio Ricardo Saprissa; Tibas, Costa Rica
Kickoff: 5 p.m. ET
Attendance: TBD
Weather: 72 degrees; mostly sunny

Scoring Summary:    1          2          F
USA                             1          0          1
MEX                            0          0          0

USA – Erik Palmer-Brown (Brooks Lennon)              29th minute 

Lineups:
USA: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann; 2-Marlon Fossey, 4-Tommy Redding, 6-Justen Glad, 3-Danny Acosta; 8-Tyler Adams, 5-Erik Palmer-Brown (Capt.), 7-Eryk Williamson (20-Jonathan Lewis, 80); 17-Brooks Lennon, 9-Jeremy Ebobisse (19-Coy Craft, 57), 10-Luca De La Torre (16-Jeremiah Gutjahr, 90+2)
Subs not used: 12-JT Marcinkowski, 11-Sebastian Saucedo, 13-Auston Trusty, 15-Jonathan González, 18-Emmanuel Sabbi
Head coach: Tab Ramos

MEX: 12-Jose Hernández; 2-Diego Cortés, 3-Edson Álvarez, 14-Juan de Dios Aguayo, 5-Ulises Torres; 7-Uriel Antuna, 6-Alan Cervantes (Capt.), 16-Sebastian Cordova (17-Kevin Lara, 55), 11-Kevin Magaña (8-Pablo Lopez, 45); 9-Ronaldo Cisneros, 10-Eduardo Aguirre (18-Claudio Zamudio, 78)
Subs not used: 1-Fernando Hernández, 4-Joaquin Esquivel, 13-Brayton Vázquez, 15-Alejandro Mayorga, 19-Paolo Yrizar, 20-Diego Aguilar
Head coach: Marco Antonio Ruiz
 

Stats Summary: USA / MEX
Shots: 8 / 3
Shots on Goal: 4 / 0
Saves: 0 / 3
Corner Kicks: 5 / 6
Fouls: 22 / 14
Offside: 1 / 4

Misconduct Summary:
MEX – Edson Álvarez (caution)                    61st minute
USA – Erik Palmer Brown (caution)               90+1 

Officials:
Referee: Melvin Matamoros (HON)
Assistant Referee 1: Melvyn Cruz (HON)
Assistant Referee 2: Hermenerito Leal (GUA)
4th Official: Kevin Morrisson (JAM) 

ussoccer.com Man of the Match: Erik Palmer-Brown