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U.S. Under-18 Men's National Team


U-14 BNT Head Coach Brian Johnson on Identifying and Scouting Players

U.S. Under-14 Boys' National Team head coach Brian Johnson discusses the advantages of being able to scout and develop players in the Development Academy's U-14 division, which is in the midst of its second season.

Photo Gallery: U-18 MNT NTC Training Camp

Photos from the U-18 MNT's training October camp at U.S. Soccer's National Training Center in Carson, California. 

U-20 MNT Draws Group A for 2015 CONCACAF U-20 Championship from Jan. 9-24 in Jamaica

CHICAGO (Oct. 30, 2014) – The U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team has been drawn with Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago, Aruba, Panama and Guatemala in Group A for the 2015 CONCACAF U-20 Championship. The draw took place in Montego Bay, Jamaica, and the qualification tournament for the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup takes place Jan. 9-24 in Kingston and Montego Bay.

In the group stage, the USA opens against Guatemala on Jan. 9, followed by Panama (Jan. 11), Aruba (Jan. 14), Jamaica (Jan. 18) and Trinidad & Tobago (Jan. 21).

The tournament will qualify four teams to the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand.

“It was a difficult draw for many of the teams, including Group A because we will be one of the teams that has to travel from Kingston to Montego Bay during the tournament,” U.S. U-20 MNT head coach Tab Ramos said. “I think getting drawn with Jamaica and Panama in particular, those will be some difficult opponents. At the end of the day, if you want to advance to the World Cup, you need to beat good teams, so we’re looking forward to the tournament.”

2015 CONCACAF U-20 Championship

  • Group A: Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago, Aruba, Panama, USA, Guatemala
  • Group B: Haiti, Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Honduras, El Salvador

USA’s Group A Schedule:

  • Friday, Jan. 9: Guatemala, 6:30 p.m. ET
  • Sunday, Jan. 11: Panama, 6:30 p.m. ET
  • Wednesday, Jan. 14: Aruba, 6:30 p.m. ET
  • Sunday, Jan. 18: Jamaica, 9 p.m. ET
  • Wednesday, Jan. 21: Trinidad & Tobago, 6:30 p.m. ET

Tab Ramos

The CONCACAF U-20 Championship format has changed for 2015 with two groups of six teams. Previous tournaments had featured four groups of three teams.

Under the new setup, the first-place teams in Group A and Group B will automatically qualify for the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup and advance to face each other in the CONCACAF U-20 Championship Final. The second- and third-place teams in each group (four teams) will be reseeded based on group-stage results. In this playoff stage, the top seed will play the No. 4 seed and the second seed will face the No. 3 seed. The two winners from these respective games will also qualify for the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

In preparation for qualifying, the U.S. U-20 MNT is headed to Marbella, Spain, from Nov. 10-19 for three international matches. The USA will face Russia’s U-20 national team on Nov. 12, the Republic of Ireland’s U-21 national team on Nov. 15 and Canada’s U-20s on Nov. 18. The U-20 MNT roster for the Spain trip will be announced in the coming days.

“As we get into Spain, that will be a great opportunity to see some of our European-based players, so I’m excited about finally getting that camp in Europe,” Ramos said. “Come December, when we are putting things together, I believe we will have a group that will help us qualify for the World Cup. It is a deep group, so we will definitely have some difficult decisions to make.”

The U.S. finished runner-up to Mexico at the 2013 CONCACAF U-20 Championship in Puebla, Mexico. That group qualified for the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup, where the team was drawn a difficult Group A that included France, Spain and Ghana. Though the USA did not advance out of the group, it did play eventual champion France to a 1-1 draw.

The USA has earned second place in the qualification tournament six times (1980, 1982, 1986, 1992, 2009, 2013), but has yet to win a CONCACAF U-20 Championship title.

The U.S. has qualified for 13 FIFA World Youth Championships/FIFA U-20 World Cups. The USA’s best World Cup finish was a fourth-place performance at the 1989 FIFA World Youth Championship.

2015 CONCACAF U-20 Championship Draw

Across the Academy – Oct. 29, 2014

Academy Coaches Soak in U-17 MNT Methodology: The Southeast region of the Development Academy had the invaluable opportunity to spend a full day with the U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team and head coach Richie Williams. The connection from the Academy to the Youth National Team system and senior National Team is a continual point of emphasis, and the response for this opportunity was strong. There were 42 coaches and scouts on hand, representing nearly every Academy club in that region.

U-14 Academy Regionals: Central Players Get Taste of Elite Environment: The Development Academy’s U-14 Central Regional event wrapped up Oct. 26 at Grand Sports Park in Westfield, Indiana, providing a highly competitive environment for the players and teams on hand. had the opportunity to speak with Sockers FC’s Tim Bielic and the Chicago Fire’s Nick Fernandez on the event, as well as their experience at the preceding U.S. U-14 Boys’ National Team camp. Two more regional showcases are on the horizon, with the East Regional from Nov. 8-9 in Advance, North Carolina, and the West Regional from Nov. 15-16 at U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center in Carson, California.

Window Closing for Full-Time Player Adds: A reminder to all Academy clubs: This Friday, Oct. 31, is the last day to add any full-time players before this first window ends. Please send all requests to Nery Amaya at

For the latest Development Academy news, follow us on Twitter @ussoccer_acad and Instagram, or like us on Facebook. Share your Academy news, comments, photos, links and more using the #OpportunityKnocks hashtag.

Development Academy

ACADEMY QUICK HITS (Weekend of Oct. 25-26):

  • West Conference: The San Jose Earthquakes swept its set against Northwest Division rival Seattle Sounders FC on Sunday. San Jose’s Theo Huxham scored two goals – one in each half – to lead the U-16 team to a 2-0 victory to help the team improve to 5-1-1 on the season. The Earthquakes U-18s moved to 6-0-1 with a 2-1 win against Seattle. Yousef Diyab scored two goals in the opening 20 minutes and held on for the win despite a 90th-minute Sounders goal from Sean Bowman.
  • Central Conference: In the Frontier Division, the Dallas Texans U-16 team moved into second place with a 1-0 victory against the third-place Colorado Rush on Sunday. Malik Key scored the game’s only goal in the fifth minute. He now has four goals this season, tying for the team lead with Jesus Varela. Both plays scored a goal during Saturday’s 3-2 win against Real Colorado. The Texans have now won three straight to move to 6-1-0 (2.57 points per game).
  • East Conference: In a crossover matchup, the Northeast Division’s Oakwood Soccer Club had a standout performance at both the U-16 and U-18 age groups, earning identical 3-1 victories against Atlantic Division side D.C. United on Sunday. Brandon Garland recorded a brace and Simon Becher added a goal to lead the U-16s, who have now won back-to-back games after recording one win in its first seven matches. DeAndre Brown’s two second-half goals led Oakwood’s U-18s past D.C. United. Danny Griffin contributed a first-half tally for the U-18 team (5-2-2, 1.89 points per game).

Stat of the Week: The Academy U-14 Central Regional event included 39 games and featured 97 goals and 10 draws.

Academy Honors:

  • Academy Player of the Week: Oakwood’s Brandon Garland earned Academy Player of the Week after posting two goals in each of his team’s victories against Richmond United and D.C. United over the Oct. 25-26 weekend. He now leads Oakwood’s U-16 squad with five goals this season.
  • Academy Referee of the Week: Matt Printup, a Grade 7 referee from Minnesota, was named Referee of the Week for his work during the U-18 match between the Minnesota Thunder Academy and Crew Soccer Academy. Printup has been working Academy matches since 2012, and also has experience in the North American Soccer League and PDL.

For all Development Academy results, standings and more, visit or click on the following links:

Academy Alumni: Pfeffer Notches First MLS Goal: Philadelphia Union midfielder and FC DELCO alum Zach Pfeffer scored his first Major League Soccer goal during the Union’s finale on Sunday against the Columbus Crew. Pfeffer, the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team’s leading goal scorer in international competition, made five MLS appearances after spending 2013 on loan at Hoffenheim. Elsewhere, Internationals alum and Portland Timbers midfielder Darlington Nagbe scored his first goal of the 2014 season to lead Portland to a 2-0 win against FC Dallas.


  • The Nov. 1-2 Academy weekend, the ninth of the 2014-15 season, features 123 games – 47 at the U-14 age group and a combined 76 games at the U-16 and U-18 age groups.
  • 2014-15 Academy Schedule page


Development Academy U-14 Central Regional Showcase Highlights

Watch highlights from the first of three regional showcases in the Development Academy’s U-14 age group. Teams from the central region showcased their talents Oct. 25-26 at Grand Park in Westfield, Indiana.

Academy Coaches Soak in U-17 MNT Program’s Methodology

The Southeast region of the Development Academy has the advantage of being located close to the U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team’s Residency Program in Bradenton, Florida.

The connection from the Academy to the Youth National Team system and senior National Team is a continual point of emphasis, so for Academy coaches and scouts, it was an invaluable opportunity to spend a full day recently with the U-17 MNT and head coach Richie Williams. They had the chance to see firsthand how their program works.

U.S. Soccer Technical Advisor Juan Carlos Michia, who regularly scouts players and teams in the Academy’s Southeast Division, invited a group of coaches and scouts to take part in the event, and the response was strong. There were 42 coaches on hand from the Southeast, with nearly every Academy club represented.

The morning included a meeting with Michia, an introduction by Williams, and then the opportunity to watch a full training session, from the warm-up process to specific goalkeeping session work led by U-17 assistant coach Anthony Latronica.

The coaches had multiple meetings, including an afternoon presentation by Williams focusing on style of play, training sessions and scheduling.

Academy coaches and scouts also had an open conversation about systems and high-level training environments, as well as video analysis from previous U-17 MNT games.

“It was a very good experience, and I received some great response from many of the coaches who spent the day with the U-17 National Team,” Michia said. “Richie Williams and his staff did a tremendous job and were open with sharing the U-17 program’s system and methodology. It’s something that many of the coaches want to be a part of again in the future.”

Juan Carlos Michia

U-14 Academy Regionals: Central Players Get Taste of Elite Environment

The first of three regional showcases in the Development Academy’s U-14 age group wrapped up Oct. 26 at Grand Sports Park in Westfield, Indiana.

Among the Academy’s Central region teams, Chicago-area Sockers FC and Michigan-based Vardar each had a perfect 3-0-0 showing.

Sockers FC had a 3-0-0 showing at the showcase. On Saturday, Sockers opened with a 3-2 win against Solar Chelsea and a 1-0 win against the Houston Dynamo. Sockers FC capped off the regional with a 6-3 victory against Sporting Kansas City.

Jurgen Klinsmann and Abby Wambach up for FIFA Year-End Awards

CHICAGO (Oct. 28, 2014) – U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has been named to the 10-man shortlist for FIFA World Coach of the Year.

The three finalists for the award will be announced on Dec. 1, and the winner will be revealed at the FIFA Ballon d’Or in Zurich on Jan. 12, 2015.

Klinsmann led the USA through the “Group of Death” at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. The USA earned a victory against Ghana and a draw against Portugal to join fellow Group G side Germany in the Round of 16. Germany went on to win the tournament.

Overall, Klinsmann has a 33-13-11 record since becoming the 35th coach in the history of the U.S. MNT on July 29, 2011. Klinsmann is third on the U.S. MNT’s all-time coaching wins list. This year, Klinsmann and the USA have posted a 6-3-4 record.

Klinsmann has guided the USA to a current 17-game home unbeaten streak (16-0-1) and also led the team to a record-setting 13 straight wins at home from June 2, 2013, to Feb. 1, 2014.

As a player, the former Germany striker was voted third for FIFA World Player of the Year in 1995.

Abby Wambach

On Friday, FIFA announced its shortlist for FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year. USA forward Abby Wambach, the 2012 FIFA Women’s Player of the Year, is one of 10 players in contention for this year’s honor.

FIFA World Coach of the Year Shortlist:
Carlo Ancelotti (Italy/Real Madrid), Antonio Conte (Italy/Juventus/Italy national team), Pep Guardiola (Spain/Bayern Munich), Jurgen Klinsmann (Germany/USA national team), Joachim Loew (Germany/Germany national team), Jose Mourinho (Portugal/Chelsea), Manuel Pellegrini (Chile/Manchester City), Alejandro Sabella (Argentina/Argentina national team), Diego Simeone (Argentina/Atletico Madrid), Louis van Gaal (Netherlands/Netherlands national team/Manchester United)

FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year Shortlist:
Nadine Angerer (Germany), Veronica Boquete (Spain), Nilla Fischer (Sweden), Nahomi Kawasumi (Japan), Nadine Kessler (Germany), Marta (Brazil), Aya Miyama (Japan), Louisa Necib (France), Lotta Schelin (Sweden), Abby Wambach (USA)

Photo Gallery: U-14 Academy Regional in Indiana - Oct. 25-26, 2014

Photos from the Development Academy's U-14 Central Regional event from Oct. 25-26 at Grand Sports Park in Westfield, Indiana

Academy Alumni: Pfeffer Notches First MLS Goal in Finale

Philadelphia Union midfielder and FC DELCO alum Zach Pfeffer scored his first Major League Soccer goal during the Union’s finale on Sunday in a 2-1 loss to the Columbus Crew. The 19-year-old Pfeffer tallied an equalizer in the 85th minute off of a pass from Amobi Okugo.

Pfeffer made five appearances, one start and logged 98 minutes this season after spending 2013 on loan at Hoffenheim. Pfeffer is the U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team’s leading goal scorer this year with three tallies in international competition.

In that Crew-Union game, Crew Soccer Academy alum Wil Trapp recorded his second assist of the season, helping set up Jairo Arrieta’s 13th-minute goal.

Wil Trapp

Portland Timbers midfielder and Internationals alum Darlington Nagbe tallied his first goal of the 2014 MLS season to lead the Timbers to a 2-0 victory against FC Dallas on Saturday. Nagbe’s 43rd-minute strike turned out to be the game-winner. Though Nagbe did not replicate the nine-goal outburst he had a year ago, he had an active 2014 campaign with seven assists, which ranked second on the Timbers.

In CONCACAF Champions League play last week, D.C. United homegrown Conor Shanosky tallied his first professional goal in the 24th minute during D.C. United’s 1-0 victory against Tauro last Tuesday in Panama City. New York Red Bulls homegrown Connor Lade did the same for his side as the Red Bulls rallied for a 1-1 draw against the Montreal Impact on Wednesday. Lade’s equalizer came in the 85th minute.

D.C. United Academy alum Andy Najar scored his first UEFA Champions League goal during Anderlecht’s 2-1 loss to Arsenal last Wednesday. Najar also becomes the first Development Academy alum to tally in the Champions League.