USA Glides Past Honduras 3-0, Takes Major Step Toward U-17 World Cup Qualification

Josh Sargent Brace, Ayo Akinola Strike Lead U.S. to Brink of 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup; USA Can Clinch World Cup Berth with Win or Draw Against Cuba on Friday

PANAMA CITY, Panama (May 3, 2017) – The U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team used a brace from Josh Sargent and strike from Ayo Akinola to earn a 3-0 win against Honduras to open the classification stage at the 2017 CONCACAF U-17 Championship. With the result, the U.S. needs just a win, draw or a loss by four or fewer goals in its round-robin finale against Cuba on Friday to qualify for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup in India.

The USA carried the play throughout the first half and knocked on the door early when Chris Goslin put a ninth minute drive just wide of goal. Six minutes later, Ayo Akinola’s blast from distance was turned away by Honduras goalkeeper Carlos Banegas.

The U.S. was finally rewarded for its early efforts in the 26th minute. Sargent drew a foul in the Honduras end and would go on to tally his fourth goal of the tournament when he redirected Andrew Carleton’s free kick from the right.

After early second half pressure from Honduras, the USA regained control of the match and added two more goals after the break. In the 65th minute, Akinola’s pressure on a ball over the top from Blaine Ferri saw the Toronto FC Academy forward finish his fourth of the tourname0nt, before Sargent slotted home his team-leading fifth of the competition in the 82nd minute.

With the result, the U.S. can qualify for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup with a win, draw or loss by four or less goals in Friday’s group finale against Cuba, while a win or draw would also secure the USA’s spot in Sunday’s tournament final. With three points, the U.S. currently sits on top of classification stage Group D, thanks to CONCACAF’s head-to-head tie breaker.

Up Next: The U-17 MNT begins closes out the classification stage of the 2017 CONCACAF U-17 Championship against Cuba on Friday, May 5. Kickoff from Estadio Maracaná in Panama City is set for 6:30 p.m. ET and the match can be seen live on UDN and the CONCACAF YouTube Channel.
Social: Twitter (@ussoccer_ynt; @ussoccer_esp); Facebook; Instagram

2017 CONCACAF U-17 Championship Classification Group D

Team

GP

W

L

D

Pts.

GF

GA

GD

USA

1

1

0

0

3

3

0

+3

Honduras

2

1

1

0

3

7

4

+3

Cuba

1

0

1

0

0

1

7

-6

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Josh Sargent (Andrew Carleton), 26th minute:
Josh Sargent chased down a ball over the top and forced Honduras goalkeeper Carlos Banegas to drag him down outside the area, forcing a dangerous free kick opportunity on the right. On the ensuing take, Andrew Carleton found Sargent open at the six-yard where he redirected past Banega for the game’s opening goal. USA 1, HON 0 [WATCH]

USA – Ayo Akinola (Blaine Ferri), 65th minute: The U.S. increased its lead with an alert play straight off a goal kick. After Banegas put the ball back into play, Chris Durkin headed down in the center circle for Sargent before the U.S. captain laid back to Ferri. The midfielder took the ball off the chest before lobbing forward for Akinola who touched the ball past Banegas at the top of the area before finishing past the sliding attempt from Cristian Moreira at the right post. USA 2, HON 0 [WATCH]

USA – Josh Sargent (George Acosta), 82nd minute: With Honduras sitting back, the U.S. sprung one more goal in the dying moments of the match. George Acosta lobbed the ball forward for Sargent who split through the Honduras back line before slotting his right-footed effort past Banegas and inside the lower left post. USA 3, HON 0 [WATCH] FINAL

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
HON – Carlos Banegas, 15th minute: The U.S. controlled much of the opening quarter-hour and saw their first chance come when Blaine Ferri threaded a ball for Ayo Akinola. Receiving the ball from about 25 yards out, the Toronto FC Academy product turned and hit a dipping effort that gave Banegas trouble, leaving the Honduras ‘keeper to get down quickly before spilling the rebound.

HON – Emilio Campos and Carlos Banegas, 38th minute: Carleton charged through the midfield and utilized a great spin move to get through two Honduras defenders before slipping Chris Durkin into the box on the left. The defender cut back for Carleton, whose left-footed effort from the top of the area was blocked by Campos. A failed clearance fell for Chris Goslin whose first-time hit from the top of the area rebounded off the chest of Banegas, who recovered quickly enough to rush off his line and punch the ball out of danger as Sargent prepared to pounce.

USA – Justin Garces, 46th minute: Early in the second half, Honduras forward Carlos Mejía found space on the left and earned a dangerous free kick when he was fouled by James Sands outside the area. On the following free kick, Luis Palma rifled his take to the left post where Garces stood tall and did well to hold on to the shot.

HON – Emilio Campos, 63rd minute: Following a build-up from Akinola, the ball fell for Chris Gloster on the left. His penetrating cross picked out Andrew Carleton at the right post, whose glancing header was cleared off the line by Campos, before the Honduras defender drilled the ball out of danger. 

NOTES:

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

Match: U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team vs. Honduras
Date: May 3, 2017
Competition: 2017 CONCACAF U-17 Championship – Classification Stage; Group D
Venue: Estadio Maracaná de Panamá; Panamá City, Panamá
Kickoff: 4:30 p.m. ET
Weather: 77 degrees; rain

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

USA – Josh Sargent (Andrew Carleton)    26th minute
USA – Ayo Akinola (Blaine Ferri)             69
USA – Josh Sargent (George Acosta)         82 

Lineups:
USA: 1-Justin Garces; 2-Jaylin Lindsey, 4-James Sands, 5-A.J. Vasquez, 3-Chris Gloster; 6-Chris Durkin (16-Taylor Booth, 87), 14-Chris Goslin (10-George Acosta, 69), 8-Blaine Ferri; 7-Ayo Akinola, 9-Josh Sargent (Capt.), 11-Andrew Carleton (19-Tim Weah, 83)
Subs not used: 12-C.J. Dos Santos, 13-Akil Watts, 15-Zyen Jones, 17-Bryan Reynolds, 18-Indiana Vassilev, 20-Adrian Villegas
Head coach: John Hackworth

HON: 1-Carlos Banegas; 3-Axel Gomez, 4-Cristian Moreira (Capt.), 5-Alexander Bahr, 15-Emilio Campos; 6-David Cardona, 7-Gerson Chavez, 11-Luis Palma, 20-Cristian Madrid; 9-Patrick Palacios (19-Kenneth Martinez, 90), 14-Carlos Mejia 
Subs not used: 12-Jordy Castro, 2-Osbed Perez, 8-Everson Lopez, 10-Joshua Canales, 13-Gustavo Vallecillo, 16-Bayron Varela, 17-Cristian Contreras, 18-Santiago Cabrera
Head coach: Jose Francisco Valladares
 

Stats Summary: USA / HON
Shots: 18 / 6
Shots on Goal: 7 / 4
Saves: 4 / 3
Corner Kicks: 3 / 0
Fouls: 13 / 10
Offside: 6 / 0

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Chris Goslin (caution)                      6th minute
HON – Carlos Banegas (caution)                 24
HON – Patrick Palacios (caution)                84 

Officials: 
Referee: Luis Enrique Santander (MEX)
Assistant Referee 1: Andres Hernandez (MEX)
Assistant Referee 2: Daniel Aki (BLZ)
4th Official: Juan Gabriel Calderon (CRC) 

ussoccer.com Man of the Match: Josh Sargent