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U-18 MNT Camp Gives Opportunity for New Players to Break into Team

U.S. Under-18 Men's National Team head coach Javier Perez called 36 players into an October camp at the National Training Center in Carson, California, for a chance to integrate talented players who hadn't previously been part of the U-18 MNT. The camp featured numerous Development Academy players who hope to be part of the corps U-20 group moving forward.

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. 

Javier Perez Names 36-Player Roster for U-18 MNT Camp Oct. 23-31 at NTC

CHICAGO (Oct. 22, 2014) – U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team head coach Javier Perez has named a 36-player roster for the team’s training camp from Oct. 23-31 at U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center in Carson, California.

The majority of the roster features players who are involved in their first camp at this age group. Every player is born in 1997, so this cycle is geared toward the group that would be involved in the qualification process toward the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

The nine-day camp will include an intrasquad match on Sunday, Oct. 26.

Update: The U-18 MNT has also scheduled two games during the camp this Thursday. The U-18s face a pair of USL PRO sides with LA Galaxy II in the morning and Orange County Blues FC in the evening.

Among this roster, 35 of the 36 players are currently registered with Development Academy clubs, and everyone has a tie-in with an Academy club. Midfielder James Murphy was a member of Players Development Academy’s national champion U-17/18 team this past summer, as well as a member of the U.S. Futsal National Team during its trip to Argentina. Bennett Sneddon was the winning goalkeeper and defender Michael Lopez and forward Adrian Vera played the full 90 minutes during the LA Galaxy U-15/16 Academy team’s 2-0 win against Real Salt Lake AZ in its national title game on July 19.

Five players have youth ties with the LA Galaxy, and four with Real Salt Lake AZ and Chicago Magic PSG.

Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (4): Konrad Dziedzic (Chicago Magic PSG; Schiller Park, Ill.), Parker Siegfried (Columbus Crew; Granville, Ohio), Bennett Sneddon (LA Galaxy; Encino, Calif.), Mason Stajduhar (Orlando City SC; Lithia, Fla.)
DEFENDERS (13): Gavin Barger (Baltimore Celtic SC; Fallston, Md.), Nigel Blackwood (Georgia United; Marietta, Ga.), Alessandro Campoy (Weston FC; Miami, Fla.), Sean Dedrick (BSC CT; Wilton, Conn.), Aaron Hererra (Real Salt Lake AZ; Las Cruces, N.M.), Nicholas Hinds (Kendall SC; Plantation, Fla.), Elan Koenig (LA Galaxy; Los Angeles, Calif.), Andrew Lombard (New York Red Bulls; Montclair, N.J.), Michael Lopez (LA Galaxy; Cypress, Calif.), Donald Mason (CASL; Raleigh, N.C.), Diego Silva (Real Salt Lake AZ; Layton, Utah), Alex Vigliotti (Oakwood SC; Branford, Conn.), Aidan Wixted (Orlando City SC; Melbourne, Fla.)
MIDFIELDERS (12): Danilo Acosta (Real Salt Lake AZ; Sandy, Utah), Amir Bashti (San Jose Earthquakes; Cupertino, Calif.), Michael Boakye (Oakwood Soccer Club; East Hartford, Conn.), Juan Gamino Jr. (Kendall SC; Homestead, Fla.), Jeremiah Gutjahr (Indiana Fire; Bloomington, Ind.), Jack Miler (Minnesota Thunder; Lakeville, Minn.), James Murphy (PDA; Scotch Plains, N.J.), Stephen Payne (Chicago Magic PSG; Birmingham, Ala.), Jesus Perez Jr. (Chicago Magic PSG; Waukegan, Ill.), Grzegorz Solawa (Chicago Magic PSG; Niles, Ill.), Evan Waldrep (Real Salt Lake AZ; Peoria, Ariz.), Eryk Williamson (D.C. United; Alexandria, Va.)
FORWARDS (7): Robert Knights (LA Galaxy; Bristol, England), Lucas Mendes (D.C. United; Washington, D.C.), Nebojsa Popovic (Vardar SC; Loznica, Serbia), Christian Ramirez (FC Dallas; Farmers Branch, Texas), Juan Sanchez (New York Red Bulls; Ossining, N.Y.), Ryan Sierakowski (Chicago Fire; McHenry, Ill.), Adrian Vera (LA Galaxy; Norwalk, Calif.)

The Younger Yanks Are Coming

ussoccer.com: Having reviewed the win against the Czech Republic, what are your lasting impressions of the performance?
Jurgen Klinsmann: “There are a lot of positives we can take out of this game. We asked this younger generation - the group that here and there was not a big part of the World Cup in Brazil - to step it up and make statements. I think that young group made a very, very strong statement. We asked players such as Mix Diskerud, Joe Corona, Jozy Altidore and others to take the responsibilities into their hands and guide that young team in Prague, and that’s what they did. Winning in Prague against a Czech team that barely missed out on qualifying for the World Cup is a strong statement. So overall, it was a very positive trip. We learned a lot, and this group deserves to come along.”

ussoccer.com: There seemed to be an increased aggressiveness in the midfield. What were your instructions to those guys?
JK: “With every young group that comes through the system, you want them to step it up physically year by year. You want them to take over responsibilities, you want them to grow, to be louder on the field, but also to send out signals physically. It’s a physical sport, and in many cases it’s about one-on-one battles on the field and winning those battles. That’s what Mix, Michael Orozco, Joe Corona, John Brooks, Jozy Altidore, Ale Bedoya did. They stepped up and showed they can compete physically. That’s what we wanted to see, so for that reason they deserve a compliment.”

ussoccer.com: The team also seemed to show a commitment to playing out of the bac, particularly with the distribution by Brad Guzan. Did you ask them to stick with that plan and not be afraid to take risks? Is that something you plan to preach moving forward?
JK: “It’s definitely a huge step for us to play out of the back, to find defenders and open up the game right away and not to play long balls all the time. Pretty much every long ball is a turn over. In the first half with Brad Guzan delivering those balls into Diskerud, into the fullbacks, into the centerbacks, that looked really nice. Obviously for Nick Rimando, he’s used to doing that. He’s almost like a field player and he’s very comfortable playing out of the back. We told them not to worry about making mistakes. Here and there it might happen, but we want this game to be developed from the back into the midfield and then into the forwards and not to be forced always to play long balls. This is something we are going to encourage more and more going forward. We want to keep the ball. We want to build out of the back. We want them to have the confidence to do that and not worry about mistakes. I think it was a big step forward, and we will emphasize that going into the October games as well.”

ussoccer.com: While Jozy didn’t have many scoring chances, he seemed to show improved hold up play. What were your impressions?
JK: “It was huge for us to have Jozy Altidore back in our lineup. This was the biggest bummer for us in the World Cup, to lose Jozy in the first game. I think we could have made a huge step in the World Cup, especially facing a team like Belgium in the Round of 16, if Jozy had been on the field.  I asked him to guide this young group. He’s still a young guy himself - he’s 24 years old but he already has 70 caps. We made him the captain and told him to guide these guys and he enjoyed that. He battled the whole game. He won most of his one-on-one battles, he provided great assists. He connected with Joe Gyau to the right and Julian green to the left, and connected to the midfield. It was a very strong performance by Jozy, even if he didn’t score. This is what we want to see from him. Sooner or later, I told him you are going to score your goals in the Premier League and continue to score goals for the National Team.”

U-18 MNT Wins Vaclav Jezek Tournament in Czech Republic

The U.S. U-18 Men won the 2014 International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek with victories of Czech Republic, Hungary, and Ukraine. Head Coach Javier Perez and players Mukwelle Akale, Victor Mansaray, and Cameron Carter-Vickers talk about the opportunity they took to gain international experience and bring home a trophy.

U-18 MNT Wins Title at International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek

ZLIN, Czech Republic (Aug. 23, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team defeated Ukraine 1-0 in the championship match of the 21st International Tournament of Václav Ježek.

Mukwelle Akale scored the game’s only goal in the 47th minute off of a Cameron Lindley assist. Akale was named the tournament’s top player. Earlier this year, the Minnesota Thunder Academy product and former U.S. U-17 Residency midfielder was named the MVP of the 2014 Copa del Atlantico.

The USA’s Jonathan Klinsmann was named the event’s best goalkeeper for earning a clean sheet and coming up with five saves in the final. He also had three saves during the U-18 MNT’s group-opening 3-1 victory against Hungary on Aug. 20.

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

-U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team Match Report-

Match: U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team vs. Ukraine
Date: Aug. 23, 2014
Competition: 21st International Youth Tournament of Václav Ježek
Venue: Zlin, Czech Republic
Kickoff: 2 p.m. CEST
Weather: 70 degrees

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

USA – Mukwelle Akale (Cameron Lindley)     47th minute

Lineups:
USA: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann; 4-Justen Glad, 5-Cameron Carter-Vickers, 15-Mauricio Pineda, 3-Pablo Pelaez, 20-Jackson Yueill (11-Sebastian Saucedo, 62), 6-Ben Swanson, 10-Mukwelle Akale (capt.) (14-Collin Fernandez, 89), 8-Cameron Lindley, 13-Victor Mansaray (9-Coy Craft, 46), 18-Sebastian Elney (19-Haji Wright, 76)
Subs Not Used: 2-Kyle Duncan, 7-Jorge Ruiz, 16-Malcolm Jones, 17-Sean Wilson, 22-JT Marcinkowski
Head Coach: Javier Perez

UKR: 1-Dmytro Fastov; 18-Oleksandr Tymchyk, 22-Dmytro Shevchenko, 15-Sergiy Chobotenko, 3-Vasyl Kravets, 19-Yaroslav Fursov, 7-Rostyslav Taranukha (20-Volodymyr Grachov, 72), 8-Volodymyr Shepeliev (14-Oleksiy Zinkevych, 46), 21-Bogdan Mykhaylichenko, 17-Oleksii Gutsuliak (10-Artur Avagimin, 62), 9-Olekxiv Shchebetun
Subs Not Used: 4-Roman Lebed, 11-Oleksandr Pikhalonok, 12-Andril Marchuk, 16-Dmitro Sautin
Head Coach: Oleg Kuznetsov

Stats Summary: USA / UKR
Shots: 11 / 9
Shots on Goal: 5 / 5
Saves: 5 / 4
Corner Kicks: 4 / 11
Fouls: 11 / 21
Offside: 2 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Mauricio Pineda (caution)         39th minute
USA – Coy Craft (caution)                     49
UKR – Oleksiy Zinkevych (caution)      52
USA – Cameron Lindley (caution)        53
UKR – Yaroslav Fursov (caution)         58
UKR – Dmytro Shevchenko (caution)  69

Officials:
Referee: Franek Pavel
Assistant Referee: Vlasjuk Pavel
Assistant Referee: Kotik Radek
Fourth Official: N/A

Coy Craft and Cameron Lindley

U.S. U-18s Win Group with 3-2 Victory Over Czech Republic

KROMERIZ, Czech Republic (Aug. 21, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team beat the Czech Republic 3-2 to take the top spot in Group A and advance to the 21st International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek  final against Ukraine on Saturday, Aug. 23.

After a scoreless first half, the U.S. got its first goal just two minutes after halftime. Sebastian Saucedo finished a Collin Fernandez assist in the 47th minute to give the U.S. a 1-0 lead.

The tandem teamed up again but switched roles for a second goal just four minutes later. Fernandez doubled the U.S. lead to 2-0 in the 51st minute with Saucedo picking up the assist.

A U.S. handball in the box breathed life into the Czech Republic attack, as Denis Lanka converted the penalty kick to cut the deficit to one goal in the 72nd minute. Haji Wright restored the two-goal advantage for the U.S. in the 78th minute, a goal that would prove to be a game-winner.

The Czech Republic put pressure on the U.S. back line and scored in the second minute of second-half stoppage time but failed to net an equalizer before the final whistle, leaving the result at 3-2 in favor of the U.S.

The U-18s finish group play with a 2-0-0 record and six points. The U.S. opened the tournament with a 3-1 win against Hungary on Aug. 20.

Along with Saturday’s final, the tournament’s two second-place teams from group play square off in the third-place match and the groups’ third-place teams will play in the fifth-place match. All three games will take place on Aug. 23.

-U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team Match Report-

Match: United States U-18 Men’s National Team vs. Czech Republic
Date: Aug. 21, 2014
Competition: 21st International Youth Tournament of Václav Ježek
Venue: Zlin; Kromeriz, Czech Republic
Kickoff: 5 p.m. CEST
Weather: 70 degrees

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

USA - Sebastian Saucedo (Collin Fernandez)                    47th minute
USA - Collin Fernandez (Sebastian Saucedo)                    51
HUN - Denis Lanka                                                                 72
USA - Haji Wright                                                                    78
HUN - Ondrej Mihalik                                                             90+2

Lineups:
USA: 22-JT Marcinkowski; 4-Justen Glad, 15-Mauricio Pineda, 5-Cameron Carter-Vickers, 16-Malcolm Jones, 17-Sean Wilson, 11-Sebastian Saucedo (18-Sebastian Elney, 75), 8-Cameron Lindley (6-Ben Swanson, 62), 14-Collin Fernandez (10-Mukwelle Akale, 73), 9-Coy Craft (capt.), 19-Haji Wright
Subs Not Used: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann, 2-Kyle Duncan, 3-Pablo Pelaez, 7-Jorge Ruiz, 13-Victor Mansaray, 20-Jackson Yueill
Head Coach: Javier Perez

CZE: 16-Frantisek Chmiel; 2-Jan Zarsky (20-David Brezina, 8), 18-Vojtech Brak, 6-Josef Kvida, 13-Vojtech Cmelik, 12-Lukas Krivanek, 4-Daniel Bocek, 8-Michal Bilek, 14-Krystof Kadlec (11-Denis Lanka, 46), 10-Matej Pulkrab (17-Ondrej Mihalik, 63), 19-Tomas Ladra
Subs Not Used: 1-David Zalesky, 3-David Lischka, 5-David Stepanek, 7-Tomas Weisner, 9-Jan Kuctha, 15-Petr Prucha
Head Coach: Istvan Mihalecz                                                                                   

Stats Summary: USA / CZE
Shots: 9 / 5
Shots on Goal: 3 / 3
Saves: 1 / 0
Corner Kicks: 3 / 4
Fouls: 11 / 16
Offside:  3 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
CZE - Denis Lanka (caution)              53th minute
CZE - Michal Bilek (caution)              66
CZE - Daniel Bocek (caution)             88
USA - Mukwelle Akale (caution)        90

Officials:
Referee: Pavel Julinek
Assistant Referee: Zdenek Kneisl
Assistant Referee: Leos Kneisl
Fourth Official: N/A

U-18 MNT vs. Hungary: Highlights - Aug. 20, 2014

The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team, led by Sebastian Elney and Haji Wright, rallied for a 3-1 victory against Hungary to open the 21st International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek in the Czech Republic.

U-18s Rally Past Hungary to Open Czech Republic Tournament

SPYTIHNEV, Czech Republic (Aug. 20, 2014) – Led by Sebastian Elney’s second-half brace, the U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team overcame a one-goal halftime deficit to beat Hungary 3-1 in the USA’s opener of the 21st International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek.

Trailing 1-0 after a first half full of chances for the U.S., Elney scored the equalizer in the 50th minute off of a Ben Swanson assist.

Just four minutes later, Elney struck again to give the U.S. a 2-1 lead in the 54th minute, with Pablo Pelaez recording the assist.

The U.S. would get an insurance goal in the 82nd minute when Haji Wright scored from a Collin Fernandez assist to extend the lead to 3-1.

With the win, the U.S. sits in second place in Group A and will face the Czech Republic on Thursday, Aug. 21, for the top spot in the group. Both teams are tied with three points, but the Czech Republic holds the goal-differential tiebreaker due to its 4-1 victory over Hungary on Tuesday, Aug. 19. The Czech Republic needs either a draw or a win to earn first in the group.

-U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team Match Report-

Match: United States U-18 Men’s National Team vs. Hungary
Date: Aug. 20, 2014
Competition: 21st International Youth Tournament of Václav Ježek
Venue: Spytihnev; Spytihnev, Czech Republic
Kickoff: 5 p.m. local
Weather: 68 degrees

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

HUN - Benedek Murka                                                             4th minute
USA - Sebastian Elney (Ben Swanson)                                  50
USA - Sebastian Elney (Pablo Pelaez)                                   54
USA - Haji Wright (Collin Fernandez)                                     82

Lineups:
USA: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann; 2-Kyle Duncan, 5-Cameron Carter-Vickers, 15-Mauricio Pineda, 3-Pablo Pelaez, 20-Jackson Yueill (11-Sebastian Saucedo, 62), 6-Ben Swanson, 10-Mukwelle Akale (14-Collin Fernandez, 77), 13-Victor Mansaray (19-Haji Wright, 61), 18-Sebastian Elney (7-Jorge Ruiz, 86), 8-Cameron Lindley
Subs Not Used: 4-Justen Glad, 9-Coy Craft, 16-Malcolm Jones, 17-Sean Wilson, 22-JT Marcinkowski
Head Coach: Javier Perez

HUN: 12-Renato Boros; 14-Daniel Kertai (13-Daniel Kutai, 77), 3-Imre Feher, 5-Bonifac Csonka, 6-Donat Szivacski, 4-Noel Laszlo, 8-Andras Erdei (15-Krisztofer Orlik, 53), 16-Miklos Kitl, 18-Benedek Murka (9-Alex Pendl, 56), 11-Zsolt Ovari (17-Milan Toth, 61), 10-Roland Sallai
Subs Not Used: 1-Peter Ipacs, 2-Balazs Farkas, 7-Patrik Ternovan
Head Coach: Istvan Mihalecz                                                                                   

Stats Summary: USA / HUN
Shots: 14 / 6
Shots on Goal: 7 / 4
Saves: 3 / 4
Corner Kicks: 6 / 0
Fouls: 16 / 15
Offside:  5 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
HUN - Daniel Kertai (caution)                43
USA - Pablo Pelaez (caution)                 77
USA - Sebastian Saucedo (caution)     85

Officials:
Referee: Vit Ondras
Assistant Referee: Petr Antonicek
Assistant Referee: Petr Vyslouzil
Fourth Official: N/A

U.S. U-18 MNT Roster Named For Czech Republic Tournament

CHICAGO (Aug. 13, 2014) – U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team head coach Javier Perez has named his 20-man roster that will make the trip to the Czech Republic for the 21st International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek from Aug. 14-24.

The roster includes players from 10 states. California has the most representatives with six on the squad. Cameron Carter-Vickers, a member of Tottenham, is the only player currently living and playing abroad. Haji Wright is the sole member born in 1998, as the remaining 19 were all born in 1997.

Four players on the roster recently played in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy U-15/16 final. Jorge Ruiz and Malcolm Jones were part of 2014 national champion LA Galaxy. Justen Glad and Sabastian Saucedo led their Real Salt Lake AZ squad to a runner-up finish. Of the 20 players, 19 have ties to the Development Academy.

The tournament format will consist of the six participating teams divided into two groups of three: the Czech Republic, Hungary and USA in Group A and Ukraine, Slovakia and Japan in Group B.

Each team will play the other two teams in its group. Teams will be awarded points based on the results of the matches – three for a win, two for a team winning on a penalty kick shootout after a draw, one for a draw and losing on penalties, and zero points in defeat. The round-robin games will take place Aug. 19-21, with the USA facing Hungary on Aug. 20 and the Czech Republic on Aug. 21.

The top team in each group will then play in the final on Aug. 23. The final day of the tournament will also include the second-place teams in each group squaring off in the third-place game, as well as the groups’ third-place teams playing for fifth place.

The U.S. U-18s last saw action at the Lisbon International Tournament and had a foreign training camp in Portugal from May 31-June 11. The U.S. went 0-2-1 over three games, tying Norway on June 6 and falling to Portugal 2-0 on June 8 and Sweden 1-0 on June 10.

Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Jonathan Klinsmann (Irvine Strikers; Newport Beach, Calif.), JT Marcinkowski (San Jose Earthquakes; Alamo, Calif.)
DEFENDERS (6): Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham; Westcliff on Sea, Essex), Kyle Duncan (New York Red Bulls; Brooklyn, N.Y.), Justen Glad (Real Salt Lake AZ; Tucson, Ariz.), Malcolm Jones (LA Galaxy; Chino Hills, Calif.), Pablo Pelaez (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.), Mauricio Pineda (Chicago Fire; Bolingbrook, Ill.)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Mukwelle Akale (Unattached; Minneapolis, Minn.), Collin Fernandez (Chicago Fire; Downers Grove, Ill.), Cameron Lindley (Chicago Fire; Carmel, Ind.), Jorge Ruiz (LA Galaxy; Mission Hills, Calif.), Sebastian Saucedo (Real Salt Lake AZ; Casa Grande, Ariz.), Ben Swanson (Crew Soccer Academy; Grove City, Ohio), Sean Wilson (Philadelphia Union; West Chester, Pa.), Jackson Yueill (Minnesota Thunder; Bloomington, Minn.)
FORWARDS (4): Coy Craft (FC Dallas; Frisco, Texas), Sebastian Elney (Boca United; Boca Raton, Fla.), Victor Mansaray (Seattle Sounders FC; Des Moines, Wash.), Haji Wright (Unattached; Los Angeles, Calif.)

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. 

The Younger Yanks Are Coming

ussoccer.com: Having reviewed the win against the Czech Republic, what are your lasting impressions of the performance?
Jurgen Klinsmann: “There are a lot of positives we can take out of this game. We asked this younger generation - the group that here and there was not a big part of the World Cup in Brazil - to step it up and make statements. I think that young group made a very, very strong statement. We asked players such as Mix Diskerud, Joe Corona, Jozy Altidore and others to take the responsibilities into their hands and guide that young team in Prague, and that’s what they did. Winning in Prague against a Czech team that barely missed out on qualifying for the World Cup is a strong statement. So overall, it was a very positive trip. We learned a lot, and this group deserves to come along.”

ussoccer.com: There seemed to be an increased aggressiveness in the midfield. What were your instructions to those guys?
JK: “With every young group that comes through the system, you want them to step it up physically year by year. You want them to take over responsibilities, you want them to grow, to be louder on the field, but also to send out signals physically. It’s a physical sport, and in many cases it’s about one-on-one battles on the field and winning those battles. That’s what Mix, Michael Orozco, Joe Corona, John Brooks, Jozy Altidore, Ale Bedoya did. They stepped up and showed they can compete physically. That’s what we wanted to see, so for that reason they deserve a compliment.”

ussoccer.com: The team also seemed to show a commitment to playing out of the bac, particularly with the distribution by Brad Guzan. Did you ask them to stick with that plan and not be afraid to take risks? Is that something you plan to preach moving forward?
JK: “It’s definitely a huge step for us to play out of the back, to find defenders and open up the game right away and not to play long balls all the time. Pretty much every long ball is a turn over. In the first half with Brad Guzan delivering those balls into Diskerud, into the fullbacks, into the centerbacks, that looked really nice. Obviously for Nick Rimando, he’s used to doing that. He’s almost like a field player and he’s very comfortable playing out of the back. We told them not to worry about making mistakes. Here and there it might happen, but we want this game to be developed from the back into the midfield and then into the forwards and not to be forced always to play long balls. This is something we are going to encourage more and more going forward. We want to keep the ball. We want to build out of the back. We want them to have the confidence to do that and not worry about mistakes. I think it was a big step forward, and we will emphasize that going into the October games as well.”

ussoccer.com: While Jozy didn’t have many scoring chances, he seemed to show improved hold up play. What were your impressions?
JK: “It was huge for us to have Jozy Altidore back in our lineup. This was the biggest bummer for us in the World Cup, to lose Jozy in the first game. I think we could have made a huge step in the World Cup, especially facing a team like Belgium in the Round of 16, if Jozy had been on the field.  I asked him to guide this young group. He’s still a young guy himself - he’s 24 years old but he already has 70 caps. We made him the captain and told him to guide these guys and he enjoyed that. He battled the whole game. He won most of his one-on-one battles, he provided great assists. He connected with Joe Gyau to the right and Julian green to the left, and connected to the midfield. It was a very strong performance by Jozy, even if he didn’t score. This is what we want to see from him. Sooner or later, I told him you are going to score your goals in the Premier League and continue to score goals for the National Team.”

Javier Perez Names 36-Player Roster for U-18 MNT Camp Oct. 23-31 at NTC

CHICAGO (Oct. 22, 2014) – U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team head coach Javier Perez has named a 36-player roster for the team’s training camp from Oct. 23-31 at U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center in Carson, California.

The majority of the roster features players who are involved in their first camp at this age group. Every player is born in 1997, so this cycle is geared toward the group that would be involved in the qualification process toward the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

The nine-day camp will include an intrasquad match on Sunday, Oct. 26.

Update: The U-18 MNT has also scheduled two games during the camp this Thursday. The U-18s face a pair of USL PRO sides with LA Galaxy II in the morning and Orange County Blues FC in the evening.

Among this roster, 35 of the 36 players are currently registered with Development Academy clubs, and everyone has a tie-in with an Academy club. Midfielder James Murphy was a member of Players Development Academy’s national champion U-17/18 team this past summer, as well as a member of the U.S. Futsal National Team during its trip to Argentina. Bennett Sneddon was the winning goalkeeper and defender Michael Lopez and forward Adrian Vera played the full 90 minutes during the LA Galaxy U-15/16 Academy team’s 2-0 win against Real Salt Lake AZ in its national title game on July 19.

Five players have youth ties with the LA Galaxy, and four with Real Salt Lake AZ and Chicago Magic PSG.

Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (4): Konrad Dziedzic (Chicago Magic PSG; Schiller Park, Ill.), Parker Siegfried (Columbus Crew; Granville, Ohio), Bennett Sneddon (LA Galaxy; Encino, Calif.), Mason Stajduhar (Orlando City SC; Lithia, Fla.)
DEFENDERS (13): Gavin Barger (Baltimore Celtic SC; Fallston, Md.), Nigel Blackwood (Georgia United; Marietta, Ga.), Alessandro Campoy (Weston FC; Miami, Fla.), Sean Dedrick (BSC CT; Wilton, Conn.), Aaron Hererra (Real Salt Lake AZ; Las Cruces, N.M.), Nicholas Hinds (Kendall SC; Plantation, Fla.), Elan Koenig (LA Galaxy; Los Angeles, Calif.), Andrew Lombard (New York Red Bulls; Montclair, N.J.), Michael Lopez (LA Galaxy; Cypress, Calif.), Donald Mason (CASL; Raleigh, N.C.), Diego Silva (Real Salt Lake AZ; Layton, Utah), Alex Vigliotti (Oakwood SC; Branford, Conn.), Aidan Wixted (Orlando City SC; Melbourne, Fla.)
MIDFIELDERS (12): Danilo Acosta (Real Salt Lake AZ; Sandy, Utah), Amir Bashti (San Jose Earthquakes; Cupertino, Calif.), Michael Boakye (Oakwood Soccer Club; East Hartford, Conn.), Juan Gamino Jr. (Kendall SC; Homestead, Fla.), Jeremiah Gutjahr (Indiana Fire; Bloomington, Ind.), Jack Miler (Minnesota Thunder; Lakeville, Minn.), James Murphy (PDA; Scotch Plains, N.J.), Stephen Payne (Chicago Magic PSG; Birmingham, Ala.), Jesus Perez Jr. (Chicago Magic PSG; Waukegan, Ill.), Grzegorz Solawa (Chicago Magic PSG; Niles, Ill.), Evan Waldrep (Real Salt Lake AZ; Peoria, Ariz.), Eryk Williamson (D.C. United; Alexandria, Va.)
FORWARDS (7): Robert Knights (LA Galaxy; Bristol, England), Lucas Mendes (D.C. United; Washington, D.C.), Nebojsa Popovic (Vardar SC; Loznica, Serbia), Christian Ramirez (FC Dallas; Farmers Branch, Texas), Juan Sanchez (New York Red Bulls; Ossining, N.Y.), Ryan Sierakowski (Chicago Fire; McHenry, Ill.), Adrian Vera (LA Galaxy; Norwalk, Calif.)

U-18 MNT Wins Title at International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek

ZLIN, Czech Republic (Aug. 23, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team defeated Ukraine 1-0 in the championship match of the 21st International Tournament of Václav Ježek.

Mukwelle Akale scored the game’s only goal in the 47th minute off of a Cameron Lindley assist. Akale was named the tournament’s top player. Earlier this year, the Minnesota Thunder Academy product and former U.S. U-17 Residency midfielder was named the MVP of the 2014 Copa del Atlantico.

The USA’s Jonathan Klinsmann was named the event’s best goalkeeper for earning a clean sheet and coming up with five saves in the final. He also had three saves during the U-18 MNT’s group-opening 3-1 victory against Hungary on Aug. 20.

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

-U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team Match Report-

Match: U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team vs. Ukraine
Date: Aug. 23, 2014
Competition: 21st International Youth Tournament of Václav Ježek
Venue: Zlin, Czech Republic
Kickoff: 2 p.m. CEST
Weather: 70 degrees

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

USA – Mukwelle Akale (Cameron Lindley)     47th minute

Lineups:
USA: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann; 4-Justen Glad, 5-Cameron Carter-Vickers, 15-Mauricio Pineda, 3-Pablo Pelaez, 20-Jackson Yueill (11-Sebastian Saucedo, 62), 6-Ben Swanson, 10-Mukwelle Akale (capt.) (14-Collin Fernandez, 89), 8-Cameron Lindley, 13-Victor Mansaray (9-Coy Craft, 46), 18-Sebastian Elney (19-Haji Wright, 76)
Subs Not Used: 2-Kyle Duncan, 7-Jorge Ruiz, 16-Malcolm Jones, 17-Sean Wilson, 22-JT Marcinkowski
Head Coach: Javier Perez

UKR: 1-Dmytro Fastov; 18-Oleksandr Tymchyk, 22-Dmytro Shevchenko, 15-Sergiy Chobotenko, 3-Vasyl Kravets, 19-Yaroslav Fursov, 7-Rostyslav Taranukha (20-Volodymyr Grachov, 72), 8-Volodymyr Shepeliev (14-Oleksiy Zinkevych, 46), 21-Bogdan Mykhaylichenko, 17-Oleksii Gutsuliak (10-Artur Avagimin, 62), 9-Olekxiv Shchebetun
Subs Not Used: 4-Roman Lebed, 11-Oleksandr Pikhalonok, 12-Andril Marchuk, 16-Dmitro Sautin
Head Coach: Oleg Kuznetsov

Stats Summary: USA / UKR
Shots: 11 / 9
Shots on Goal: 5 / 5
Saves: 5 / 4
Corner Kicks: 4 / 11
Fouls: 11 / 21
Offside: 2 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Mauricio Pineda (caution)         39th minute
USA – Coy Craft (caution)                     49
UKR – Oleksiy Zinkevych (caution)      52
USA – Cameron Lindley (caution)        53
UKR – Yaroslav Fursov (caution)         58
UKR – Dmytro Shevchenko (caution)  69

Officials:
Referee: Franek Pavel
Assistant Referee: Vlasjuk Pavel
Assistant Referee: Kotik Radek
Fourth Official: N/A

Coy Craft and Cameron Lindley

U.S. U-18s Win Group with 3-2 Victory Over Czech Republic

KROMERIZ, Czech Republic (Aug. 21, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team beat the Czech Republic 3-2 to take the top spot in Group A and advance to the 21st International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek  final against Ukraine on Saturday, Aug. 23.

After a scoreless first half, the U.S. got its first goal just two minutes after halftime. Sebastian Saucedo finished a Collin Fernandez assist in the 47th minute to give the U.S. a 1-0 lead.

The tandem teamed up again but switched roles for a second goal just four minutes later. Fernandez doubled the U.S. lead to 2-0 in the 51st minute with Saucedo picking up the assist.

A U.S. handball in the box breathed life into the Czech Republic attack, as Denis Lanka converted the penalty kick to cut the deficit to one goal in the 72nd minute. Haji Wright restored the two-goal advantage for the U.S. in the 78th minute, a goal that would prove to be a game-winner.

The Czech Republic put pressure on the U.S. back line and scored in the second minute of second-half stoppage time but failed to net an equalizer before the final whistle, leaving the result at 3-2 in favor of the U.S.

The U-18s finish group play with a 2-0-0 record and six points. The U.S. opened the tournament with a 3-1 win against Hungary on Aug. 20.

Along with Saturday’s final, the tournament’s two second-place teams from group play square off in the third-place match and the groups’ third-place teams will play in the fifth-place match. All three games will take place on Aug. 23.

-U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team Match Report-

Match: United States U-18 Men’s National Team vs. Czech Republic
Date: Aug. 21, 2014
Competition: 21st International Youth Tournament of Václav Ježek
Venue: Zlin; Kromeriz, Czech Republic
Kickoff: 5 p.m. CEST
Weather: 70 degrees

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

USA - Sebastian Saucedo (Collin Fernandez)                    47th minute
USA - Collin Fernandez (Sebastian Saucedo)                    51
HUN - Denis Lanka                                                                 72
USA - Haji Wright                                                                    78
HUN - Ondrej Mihalik                                                             90+2

Lineups:
USA: 22-JT Marcinkowski; 4-Justen Glad, 15-Mauricio Pineda, 5-Cameron Carter-Vickers, 16-Malcolm Jones, 17-Sean Wilson, 11-Sebastian Saucedo (18-Sebastian Elney, 75), 8-Cameron Lindley (6-Ben Swanson, 62), 14-Collin Fernandez (10-Mukwelle Akale, 73), 9-Coy Craft (capt.), 19-Haji Wright
Subs Not Used: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann, 2-Kyle Duncan, 3-Pablo Pelaez, 7-Jorge Ruiz, 13-Victor Mansaray, 20-Jackson Yueill
Head Coach: Javier Perez

CZE: 16-Frantisek Chmiel; 2-Jan Zarsky (20-David Brezina, 8), 18-Vojtech Brak, 6-Josef Kvida, 13-Vojtech Cmelik, 12-Lukas Krivanek, 4-Daniel Bocek, 8-Michal Bilek, 14-Krystof Kadlec (11-Denis Lanka, 46), 10-Matej Pulkrab (17-Ondrej Mihalik, 63), 19-Tomas Ladra
Subs Not Used: 1-David Zalesky, 3-David Lischka, 5-David Stepanek, 7-Tomas Weisner, 9-Jan Kuctha, 15-Petr Prucha
Head Coach: Istvan Mihalecz                                                                                   

Stats Summary: USA / CZE
Shots: 9 / 5
Shots on Goal: 3 / 3
Saves: 1 / 0
Corner Kicks: 3 / 4
Fouls: 11 / 16
Offside:  3 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
CZE - Denis Lanka (caution)              53th minute
CZE - Michal Bilek (caution)              66
CZE - Daniel Bocek (caution)             88
USA - Mukwelle Akale (caution)        90

Officials:
Referee: Pavel Julinek
Assistant Referee: Zdenek Kneisl
Assistant Referee: Leos Kneisl
Fourth Official: N/A

U-18s Rally Past Hungary to Open Czech Republic Tournament

SPYTIHNEV, Czech Republic (Aug. 20, 2014) – Led by Sebastian Elney’s second-half brace, the U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team overcame a one-goal halftime deficit to beat Hungary 3-1 in the USA’s opener of the 21st International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek.

Trailing 1-0 after a first half full of chances for the U.S., Elney scored the equalizer in the 50th minute off of a Ben Swanson assist.

Just four minutes later, Elney struck again to give the U.S. a 2-1 lead in the 54th minute, with Pablo Pelaez recording the assist.

The U.S. would get an insurance goal in the 82nd minute when Haji Wright scored from a Collin Fernandez assist to extend the lead to 3-1.

With the win, the U.S. sits in second place in Group A and will face the Czech Republic on Thursday, Aug. 21, for the top spot in the group. Both teams are tied with three points, but the Czech Republic holds the goal-differential tiebreaker due to its 4-1 victory over Hungary on Tuesday, Aug. 19. The Czech Republic needs either a draw or a win to earn first in the group.

-U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team Match Report-

Match: United States U-18 Men’s National Team vs. Hungary
Date: Aug. 20, 2014
Competition: 21st International Youth Tournament of Václav Ježek
Venue: Spytihnev; Spytihnev, Czech Republic
Kickoff: 5 p.m. local
Weather: 68 degrees

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

HUN - Benedek Murka                                                             4th minute
USA - Sebastian Elney (Ben Swanson)                                  50
USA - Sebastian Elney (Pablo Pelaez)                                   54
USA - Haji Wright (Collin Fernandez)                                     82

Lineups:
USA: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann; 2-Kyle Duncan, 5-Cameron Carter-Vickers, 15-Mauricio Pineda, 3-Pablo Pelaez, 20-Jackson Yueill (11-Sebastian Saucedo, 62), 6-Ben Swanson, 10-Mukwelle Akale (14-Collin Fernandez, 77), 13-Victor Mansaray (19-Haji Wright, 61), 18-Sebastian Elney (7-Jorge Ruiz, 86), 8-Cameron Lindley
Subs Not Used: 4-Justen Glad, 9-Coy Craft, 16-Malcolm Jones, 17-Sean Wilson, 22-JT Marcinkowski
Head Coach: Javier Perez

HUN: 12-Renato Boros; 14-Daniel Kertai (13-Daniel Kutai, 77), 3-Imre Feher, 5-Bonifac Csonka, 6-Donat Szivacski, 4-Noel Laszlo, 8-Andras Erdei (15-Krisztofer Orlik, 53), 16-Miklos Kitl, 18-Benedek Murka (9-Alex Pendl, 56), 11-Zsolt Ovari (17-Milan Toth, 61), 10-Roland Sallai
Subs Not Used: 1-Peter Ipacs, 2-Balazs Farkas, 7-Patrik Ternovan
Head Coach: Istvan Mihalecz                                                                                   

Stats Summary: USA / HUN
Shots: 14 / 6
Shots on Goal: 7 / 4
Saves: 3 / 4
Corner Kicks: 6 / 0
Fouls: 16 / 15
Offside:  5 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
HUN - Daniel Kertai (caution)                43
USA - Pablo Pelaez (caution)                 77
USA - Sebastian Saucedo (caution)     85

Officials:
Referee: Vit Ondras
Assistant Referee: Petr Antonicek
Assistant Referee: Petr Vyslouzil
Fourth Official: N/A

U.S. U-18 MNT Roster Named For Czech Republic Tournament

CHICAGO (Aug. 13, 2014) – U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team head coach Javier Perez has named his 20-man roster that will make the trip to the Czech Republic for the 21st International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek from Aug. 14-24.

The roster includes players from 10 states. California has the most representatives with six on the squad. Cameron Carter-Vickers, a member of Tottenham, is the only player currently living and playing abroad. Haji Wright is the sole member born in 1998, as the remaining 19 were all born in 1997.

Four players on the roster recently played in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy U-15/16 final. Jorge Ruiz and Malcolm Jones were part of 2014 national champion LA Galaxy. Justen Glad and Sabastian Saucedo led their Real Salt Lake AZ squad to a runner-up finish. Of the 20 players, 19 have ties to the Development Academy.

The tournament format will consist of the six participating teams divided into two groups of three: the Czech Republic, Hungary and USA in Group A and Ukraine, Slovakia and Japan in Group B.

Each team will play the other two teams in its group. Teams will be awarded points based on the results of the matches – three for a win, two for a team winning on a penalty kick shootout after a draw, one for a draw and losing on penalties, and zero points in defeat. The round-robin games will take place Aug. 19-21, with the USA facing Hungary on Aug. 20 and the Czech Republic on Aug. 21.

The top team in each group will then play in the final on Aug. 23. The final day of the tournament will also include the second-place teams in each group squaring off in the third-place game, as well as the groups’ third-place teams playing for fifth place.

The U.S. U-18s last saw action at the Lisbon International Tournament and had a foreign training camp in Portugal from May 31-June 11. The U.S. went 0-2-1 over three games, tying Norway on June 6 and falling to Portugal 2-0 on June 8 and Sweden 1-0 on June 10.

Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Jonathan Klinsmann (Irvine Strikers; Newport Beach, Calif.), JT Marcinkowski (San Jose Earthquakes; Alamo, Calif.)
DEFENDERS (6): Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham; Westcliff on Sea, Essex), Kyle Duncan (New York Red Bulls; Brooklyn, N.Y.), Justen Glad (Real Salt Lake AZ; Tucson, Ariz.), Malcolm Jones (LA Galaxy; Chino Hills, Calif.), Pablo Pelaez (San Diego Surf; San Diego, Calif.), Mauricio Pineda (Chicago Fire; Bolingbrook, Ill.)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Mukwelle Akale (Unattached; Minneapolis, Minn.), Collin Fernandez (Chicago Fire; Downers Grove, Ill.), Cameron Lindley (Chicago Fire; Carmel, Ind.), Jorge Ruiz (LA Galaxy; Mission Hills, Calif.), Sebastian Saucedo (Real Salt Lake AZ; Casa Grande, Ariz.), Ben Swanson (Crew Soccer Academy; Grove City, Ohio), Sean Wilson (Philadelphia Union; West Chester, Pa.), Jackson Yueill (Minnesota Thunder; Bloomington, Minn.)
FORWARDS (4): Coy Craft (FC Dallas; Frisco, Texas), Sebastian Elney (Boca United; Boca Raton, Fla.), Victor Mansaray (Seattle Sounders FC; Des Moines, Wash.), Haji Wright (Unattached; Los Angeles, Calif.)

U-18 MNT Falls to Sweden in Final Lisbon Tournament Match

MALVEIRA, Portugal (June 10, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team lost its final match of the 20th Lisbon International Tournament 1-0 to Sweden on Tuesday.

The match remained scoreless through the first half. But in the second, the Sweden, which fielded a team of players born in 1996, broke through when the U.S. gave the ball up in midfield and Gustav Engvall fed Carlos Strangberg for a shot that found the back of the net to give Sweden a 1-0 lead early in the second half.

Although the U.S. – comprised of players primarily born in 1997 – carved out multiple opportunities to equalize, Sweden was able to hang on and claimed the tournament title with the victory.

- U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. U-18 MNT v. Sweden
Date: Tuesday, June 10, 2014
Competition: 20th Lisbon Tournament
Venue: Estadio das Seixas; Malveira, Portugal
Kickoff: 4 p.m. (11 a.m. ET)
Attendance: 55
Weather: 72 degrees; Rainy

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

SWE – Carlos Strangberg

Lineups:
USA: 12- JT Marcinkowski (1-Jonathan Klinsmann, 62); 3-Malcolm Jones, 15-Quentin Pearson, 6-Mauricio Pineda, 8-Chase Gasper; 7-Ben Swanson, 17-Maduabuchi Obinwa (14-Camerson Lindley, 45), 11-Collin Fernandez (10-Sebastian Elney, 84); 20-Sebastian Saucedo (9-Coy Craft, 62), 13-Brooks Lennon (4-Dembakwi Yomba, 71), 16-Rubio Rubin (capt.)
Subs not used: 2-Mukwelle Akale
Not Dressed: 5-Tommy Redding
Head Coach: Eddie Lewis

SWE: 1-Tim Erlandsson (12-Hampus Stromgren, 45); 5-Martin Johansson Zanjanchi, 8-Noah Sonko Sundberg (3-Hannes Cederholm, 63), 4-Linus Fridolf, 7-Sebastian Ramhorn; 15-Dennis Olofsson (13-Anton Jonsson Saletros, 63), 14-Viktor Nordin (2-Andreas Bengtsson, 84), 16-Erdal Rakip (capt.), 11-Mirza Halvadzic; 20-Gustav Engvall (18-Shelqim Krasniqi, 72), 17-Carlos Strangberg
Subs not used: 6-Johan Ramhorn; 9-Alexander Achinioti Jonsson; 10-Elias Andersson; 19-Christer Lipovac
Head Coach: Claes Eriksson

Stats Summary: USA / SWE
Shots: 9 / 14
Shots on Goal:  5 / 7
Saves: 6 / 5
Corner Kicks: 5 / 7
Fouls: 6 / 17
Offside: 6 / 4

Misconduct Summary:
USA – 7 – Ben Swanson                                    Caution                 74th Minute
SWE – 13 – Anton Jonsson Saletros                Caution                 86

Officials:
Referee – Rui Rodrigues
1st Assistant Referee – Tiago Rocha
2nd Assistant Referee – Pedro Ribeiro
4th Official – Martin Lundby

U-18 MNT Falls 2-0 to Portugal

MAFRA, Portugal (June 8, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team allowed two goals in the final 20 minutes against Portugal in dropping its second match of the 20th Lisbon International Tournament.

The U.S. (0-1-1; 1pt) will play its third and final tournament match this Tuesday against Sweden (1-0-1; 4pts), which tied Norway (0-0-2; 2pts) in the day’s other game 0-0.

Through the first 45 minutes, neither team could take advantage of the chances they created in a tight overall match. U.S. head coach for the tournament Eddie Lewis made two changes at the half, but it was Portugal slew of subs in the 63rd minute that changed the game as Hildeberto twice created both goals for fellow sub Goncalo Guedes.

The game-winner came in the 71st minute when Hilderberto’s initial shot was saved by U.S. goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski, but the rebound fell right to Guedes, who tapped home from close range. Hildeberto then fed Guedes for an insurance goal in second-half stoppage time, cutting the ball back from the end line for Guedes to slot into the back of the net.

A four-goal win for the U-18 MNT against Sweden on Tuesday coupled with a 0-0 tie between Portugal and Norway would capture the tournament title for the U.S.

- U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team Match Report –

Match: U.S. U-18 MNT vs. Portugal U-18
Date:
Sunday, June 8, 2014
Competition:
20th Lisbon Tournament
Venue:
Eng. Ministro Santos Sports Complex; Mafra, Portugal
Kickoff:
6 p.m. (1 p.m. ET)
Attendance:
150
Weather:
68 degrees; Sunny

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

POR        Goncalo Guedes                                 71st minute
POR        Goncalo Guedes (Hildeberto)            90+1

Lineups:
USA:
12-JT Marcinkowski; 3-Malcolm Jones (10-Sebastian Elney, 77), 5-Tommy Redding (capt.)(15-Quentin Pearson, 45), 6-Mauricio Pineda, 8-Chase Gasper; 7-Ben Swanson, 14-Cameron Lindley (17-Maduabuchi Obinwa, 77), 20-Sebastian Saucedo, 4-Demakwi Yomba (13-Brooks Lennon, 59), 9-Coy Craft (2-Mukwelle Akale, 45) (11-Collin Fernandez, 63), 16-Rubio Rubin
Subs not used: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann

Head Coach: Eddie Lewis

POR: 12-Stojkovic; 3-Bruno Wilson, 13-Diogo Verdasca, 5-Joao Serrano, 2-Jorge Silva; 19-Joao Lima (6-Gilson Costa, 77), 14-Filipe Ferreira, 18-Clever Franca (8-Goncalo Guedes, 63); 17-Sergio Ribeiro (capt.)(20-Hildeberto, 63), 11-Macedo (7-Romario, 45), 9-Postiga (10-Gil Dias, 63)
Subs not used: 1-Joel Pereira; 4-Ricardo Carvalho; 15-Jose Gomes; 16-Andre Horta
Head Coach: Edgar Borges

Stats Summary: USA / POR
Shots: 8 / 14
Shots on Goal:  2 / 5
Saves: 3 / 2
Corner Kicks: 3 / 7
Fouls: 14 / 13
Offside: 5 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Sebastian Saucedo                 Caution                                 67th minute
USA – Chase Gasper                          Caution                                 79
POR – Hildeberto                                Caution                                 84

Officials:
Referee – Patrick Ariksson
1st Assistant Referee – Pedro Garcia
2nd Assistant Referee – Pedro Felisberto
4th Official – Martin Lundby

U-18 MNT Ties Norway 0-0 in Opening Lisbon Tournament Match

MALVEIRA, Portugal (June 6, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team tied its first match of the 20th Lisbon international Tournament on Friday, 0-0 with Norway.

U.S. goalkeeper JT Marcinkowski saved all five shots he faced to record a clean sheet and help the USA earn a valuable point on the opening day of the competition.

The U.S. U-18s are in second place in the standings behind Sweden, which defeated Portugal 3-1 in the day’s other game. The U.S. faces Portugal on Sunday before closing tournament play against Sweden next Tuesday.

- U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. U-18 MNT vs. Norway U-18
Date: Friday, June 6, 2014
Competition:
20th Lisbon Tournament
Venue:
Estadio das Seixas; Malveira, Portugal
Kickoff:
4 p.m. (11 a.m. ET)
Attendance:
30
Weather:
60 degrees/ Rainy

Scoring Summary:            1              2              F
USA                                        0              0              0
NOR                                       0              0              0                

Lineups:
USA:
12- JT Marcinkowski; 3-Malcolm Jones, 5-Tommy Redding (capt.), 6-Mauricio Pineda, 8-Chase Gasper; 7-Ben Swanson, 14-Cameron Lindley (17-Maduabuchi Obinwa, 77), 2-Mukwelle Akale (11-Collin Fernandez, 39); 20-Sebastian Saucedo, 4-Demakwi Yomba (10-Sebastian Elney, 63), 9-Coy Craft (13-Brooks Lennon, 77)
Subs not used: 1-Jonathan Klinsmann; 15-Quentin Pearson

Not dressed: 16-Rubio Rubin
Head Coach: Eddie Lewis

NOR: 12-Viljar Rosholt; 2-Julian Veen Uldal, 3-Adrian Lillebekk Ovlien, 7-Aslak Fonn Witry (capt.), 5-Sverre Bjorkkjaer; 8-Vebjorn A. Hoff, 9-Mathias Berg Gjerstrom, 10-Truls Saelevik Vagle (11-Mattias Totland, 45); 16-Elias Skogvoll (13-John Hou Saeter, 73), 14-William Venta Akre (18-Marius Wichne, 80), 15-Julian Kristoffersen
Subs not used: 1-Amund Wichne; 4-Eirik Haugan; 6-Jan Ruben Sleen; 17-Martin Hummervoll
Head Coach: Oivind Nilsen

Stats Summary: USA / NOR
Shots: 6 / 5
Shots on Goal:  3 / 5
Saves: 5 / 3
Corner Kicks: 4 / 2
Fouls: 14 / 11
Offside: 0 / 3

Misconduct Summary:
NOR – Julian Kristoffersen                                Caution                                 78th minute
USA – Ben Swanson                                           Caution                                 83

Officials:
Referee – Rui Rodrigues
1st Assistant Referee – Tiago Rocha
2nd Assistant Referee – Pedro Ribeiro
4th Official – Patrick Eriksson

U-18 MNT Earns Comeback Draw against Benfica U-19s

LISBON, Portugal (June 3, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team earned a 1-1 draw with Primeira Liga powerhouse Benfica’s U-19 team on the strength of a Collin Fernandez strike midway through the second half of the USA’s lone warm-up match ahead of the upcoming Lisbon International Tournament.

Benfica striker Oliveira tucked home the game’s opening goal just before the stroke of halftime, prompting Eddie Lewis, the USA’s head coach for the trip, to make five substitutions at the break, including bringing on Ben Swanson, who supplied the final ball on Fernandez’s equalizer.

A long-time member of the U.S. Youth National Team Program, Swanson measured a long through-ball beyond the Benfica backline for Fernandez, who’s shot from the top of the penalty area found the back of the net to give the U.S. a positive result ahead of its first game at the Lisbon International Tournament.

The U.S. U-18s open tournament play on Friday when they face Norway’s U-18s in the first of three matches at the competition. The U.S. will also play Portugal on Sunday and Sweden next Tuesday.   

- U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. U-18 MNT vs. Benfica U-19
Date:
Tuesday, June 3, 2014
Competition:
International Friendly
Venue:
Benfica – Caixa Futeball Campus; Lisbon, Portugal
Kickoff:
4:30pm (11:30am ET)
Attendance:
25
Weather:
71 degrees 

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

BEN-Kevin Oliveira                                                            43rd minute
USA-Collin Fernandez                                                        65

Lineups:
USA:
12-JT Marcinkowski (1-Jonathan Klinsmann, 66); 3-Malcolm Jones, 6-Mauricio Pineda, 15-Quentin Pearson (5-Tommy Redding, 45), 8-Chase Gasper; Maduabuchi Obinwa (7-Ben Swanson, 45), 13-Brooks Lennon (9-Coy Craft, 45), 14-Cameron Lindley (11-Collin Fernandez, 45), 2-Mukwelle Akale; 4-Dembakwi Yomba (20-Sebastian Saucedo, 45), 16-Rubio Rubin (capt.) (10-Sebastian Elney, 66)
Subs not used: N/A
Head Coach: Eddie Lewis
 

BEN: 12-Andre Ferreira (2-Romario, 45 (1-Thieri, 76)); 2-Rafael Ramos (17-Fonseca, 63), 13-Ronk (6-Loao Gamboa, 63), 17-Kike (2-Ever Peralta,  63), 4-Alexandrea Faiate (3-Roniualdo, 45); 5-Valdomiro (16-Joao Gamboa, 45), 7-Jusuc, 8-Filipe Naseimento (capt.) (11-Robert, 54), 9-Kevin Oliveira (10-Pedro Alves, 45 (17-Fonseca, 76)); 11-Gonealo Maria (8-Diogo David, 54), 1-Rafael Perreira (15-Bongo Nathanael, 60)
Subs not used: N/A
Head Coach: Joao Tralhao
 

Stats Summary: USA / BEN
Shots: 11 / 8
Shots on Goal:  6 / 3
Saves: 2 / 5
Corner Kicks: 4 / 6
Fouls: 18 / 11
Offside: 9 / 3 

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Mauricio Pineda      Caution                                 29th minute
BEN – Joao Gamboa         Caution                                 91 

Officials:
N/A

U-18 MNT to Play at International Tournament in Portugal

CHICAGO (June 2, 2014) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team will take an 18-player roster to the U-18 International Tournament in Lisbon, Portugal, from June 6-11.

While at the four-team event, the U.S. will face Norway on June 6, Portugal on June 8 and Sweden on June 10 in a round-robin style competition. The U.S. U-18s will also play a pre-tournament friendly against Primeira Liga powerhouse Benfica’s U-19 squad on June 3.

Former U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder Eddie Lewis will guide the squad while U-18 MNT head coach Javier Perez assists with the senior Men’s National Team as it prepares for this summer’s FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

The U.S. roster features sixteen players who are currently registered with U.S. Soccer Development Academy Clubs, including Minnesota Thunder midfielder Mukwelle Akale, who was named the tournament MVP at the Copa del Atlantico this past February in Canary Islands, Spain.

Akale’s 23 previous Youth National Team call-ups across all age levels are second on the roster only to FC Utrecht striker Rubio Rubin’s 35 and Crew Soccer Academy midfielder Ben Swanson’s 25.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, relative new-comer Mauricio Pineda is attending just his second event and first international competition with the U.S. YNT program. Pineda and midfielders Collin Fernandez and Cameron Lindley represent the largest contingent of players from one team; all three are part of the Chicago Fire Academy.

U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team International Tournament Schedule:
Date                Opponent                    Time (Local)
June 3             vs. Benfica U-19         4:30 p.m.
June 6             vs. Norway U-18         4 p.m.
June 8             vs. Portugal U-18        6 p.m.
June 10           vs. Sweden U-18        4 p.m.

Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Jonathan Klinsmann (Irvine Strikers; Newport Beach, Calif.), JT Marcinkowski (San Jose Earthquakes; Alamo, Calif.)
DEFENDERS (5): Chase Gasper (Bethesda Olney; Alexandria, Va.), Malcolm Jones (LA Galaxy; Chino Hills, Calif.), Quentin Pearson (Colorado Rapids; Longmont, Colo.), Mauricio Pineda (Chicago Fire; Bolingbrook, Ill.), Tommy Redding (Orlando City; Oveido, Fla.)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Mukwelle Akale (Minnesota Thunder; Minneapolis, Minn.), Collin Fernandez (Chicago Fire; Downers Grove, Ill.), Brooks Lennon (RSL Arizona; Paradise Valley, Ariz.), Cameron Lindley (Chicago Fire; Carmel, Ind.), Maduabuchi Obinwa (Chicago Magic; Orlando, Fla.), Sebastian Saucedo (RSL Arizona; Casa Grande, Ariz.), Ben Swanson (Crew Academy; Grove City, Ohio)
FORWARDS (4): Coy Craft (FC Dallas; Frisco, Texas), Sebastian Elney (Boca United; Boca, Fla.), Rubio Rubin (FC Utrecht; Beaverton, Ore.), Dembakwi Yomba (Concorde Fire; Lithona, Ga.)

U-18 MNT Camp Gives Opportunity for New Players to Break into Team

U.S. Under-18 Men's National Team head coach Javier Perez called 36 players into an October camp at the National Training Center in Carson, California, for a chance to integrate talented players who hadn't previously been part of the U-18 MNT. The camp featured numerous Development Academy players who hope to be part of the corps U-20 group moving forward.

U-18 MNT Wins Vaclav Jezek Tournament in Czech Republic

The U.S. U-18 Men won the 2014 International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek with victories of Czech Republic, Hungary, and Ukraine. Head Coach Javier Perez and players Mukwelle Akale, Victor Mansaray, and Cameron Carter-Vickers talk about the opportunity they took to gain international experience and bring home a trophy.

U-18 MNT vs. Hungary: Highlights - Aug. 20, 2014

The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team, led by Sebastian Elney and Haji Wright, rallied for a 3-1 victory against Hungary to open the 21st International Tournament of Vaclav Jezek in the Czech Republic.

U.S. U-18 MNT Values Jurgen Klinsmann's Tutelage

U.S. Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann took some time to help coach the U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team during its April camp in Carson, Calif. Klinsmann, U-18 head coach Javier Perez and midfielder Ben Swanson chat about this valuable experience.

U-18 MNT Prepares for Mexico Friendly

U-18 MNT Head Coach Javier Perez and players Sebastian Saucedo, Mukwelle Akale, and Coy Craft look ahead to playing rival Mexico in the final match of April camp.

U-18 MNT vs. Canada: Highlights - April 8, 2014

The U-18 Men's National Team took on their Canadian counterparts on April 8th on Mooch Myernick Field at the National Training Center in Carson, Calif. The American attack, led by Coy Craft, proved too much for the Canadians as they were defeated 2-1.

Opportunity Knocks: Real Salt Lake’s Justen Glad

Defender Justen Glad of Real Salt Lake AZ’s U-17/18 Academy team recently signed a homegrown contract with his MLS side. Glad takes some time during U.S. U-18 MNT camp to discuss his decision to sign with Real Salt Lake and the opportunity to compete during RSL’s preseason, and he looks back at the Academy national title with Real Salt Lake AZ’s U-15/16s last year.

Academy and YNT Benefit from Head-to-Head Duels

A unique element of the 2013-14 Development Academy season has been the opportunity to reward some of the top Academy programs with matchups against the U.S. Under-15 Boys’ National Team and U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team. U.S. Soccer Technical Advisors and players discussed the twofold benefits from this experience – the YNT squads having the chance to play against older U-15/16 and U-17/18 Academy players, and the Academy clubs earning the chance to face top Youth National Team talent during the 2013 Academy Winter Showcase.

U-18 MNT Gears Up for Domestic Camp at NTC

Head coach Javier Perez and the U.S. U-18 MNT are in the midst of an April domestic camp at U.S. Soccer’s National Training Center in Carson, Calif. Following a successful Copa del Atlantico in February, Perez discusses the U-18 group competing in the April camp and looks ahead to the Lisbon tournament in May.

U18 MNT vs Canary Islands Highlights Feb 7 2014

The U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team falls short to the Canary Islands 3-2 in the finale of the 2013 Copa del Atlantico on Feb. 7 in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain.
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