US SoccerUS Soccer
All Stories
Features
News
Videos

Herzog Names 24-Player Roster for Final Camp Ahead of Olympic Qualifying

CHICAGO (Aug. 28, 2015) – U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team head coach Andi Herzog has called 24 players to England for a final preparation camp before the 2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Tournament in October.

The camp will run in Manchester, England, from Aug. 30-Sept. 8 and will feature friendlies against England on Sept. 3 at Deepdale Stadium in Preston, and Qatar on Sept. 8 at Gigg Lane in Bury. Fans can follow the action live via Twitter through @ussoccer.

"These are two important games here because they are our last before the Olympic Qualifying tournament,” Herzog said. “We have a strong group of players that we believe in, and now we are able to look as some of the guys who did very well with our U-20 team. This is really the last chance for all of the players to make an impression before we select the final roster for qualifying.”

The U-23’s were last in Europe in June, where they competed in the prestigious Toulon Tournament. With group stage wins against Netherlands and Qatar, the team advanced to the tournament’s third-place playoff, where it defeated England and matched its best ever finish in the tournament. The U-23’s are 5-3-0 in 2015, having also logged wins against Bosnia in March and Mexico in April.

The 2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Championship will be played across the United States from Oct. 1-13. The U.S. was drawn into Group A and opens with a pair of games at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas, against Canada on Oct. 1 at 8 p.m. CT and Cuba on Oct. 3 at 4 p.m. CT. The U.S. will conclude group play at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colorado on Oct. 6 against Panama at 7:30 p.m. MT. [TICKETS]

Roster By Position: Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3):
Cody Cropper (MK Dons; Maple Grove, Minn.), Ethan Horvath (Molde; Highlands Ranch, Colo.), Zack Steffen (Freiburg; Downington, Pa.).
DEFENDERS (8): Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham Hotspur; Westcliff on Sea, England), Matt Miazga (New York Red Bulls; Clifton, N.J.), Eric Miller (Montreal Impact; Woodbury, Minn.), Boyd Okwuonu (Real Salt Lake; Edmund, Okla.), Shane O’Neill (Apollon Limassol; Boulder, Colo.), William Packwood (Unattached; Concord, Mass.), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids; Brighton, Colo.), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy; Los Angeles, Calif).
MIDFIELDERS (8): Gboly Ariyibi (Chesterfield; Arlington County, Va.), Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake; Garden Grove, Calif.), Emerson Hyndman (Fulham; Dallas, Tex.), Benji Joya (Club Necaxa; San Jose, Calif.), Marc Pelosi (San Jose Earthquakes; Sunnyvale, Calif.), Matt Polster (Chicago Fire; Milwaukee, Wisc.), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew; Gahanna, Ohio), Gedion Zelalem (Rangers; Bethesda, Md.).
FORWARDS (5): Alonso Hernandez (C.D. Juarez; El Paso, Texas), Jerome Kiesewetter (VfB Stuttgart; Berlin, Germany), Mario Rodriguez (Borussia Mönchengladbach; North Hollywood, Calif.), Rubio Rubin (Utrecht; Beaverton, Ore.), Maki Tall (Scion; Washington, D.C.).

Roster Notes:

  • Seven players from the USA’s 2015 U-20 World Cup team that advanced to the quarterfinals in New Zealand now join the U-23 group: Cameron Carter-Vickers, Emerson Hyndman, Matt Miazga, Rubio Rubin, Zack Steffen, Maki Tall and Gedion Zelalem.
  • Five players from this roster have scored goals for the U-23’s in 2015: Alonso Hernandez, Benji Joya, Jerome Kiesewetter, William Packwood and Mario Rodriguez.
  • Three from this roster scored goals with the U-20’s in 2015: Hyndman, Rubin and Tall.
  • Shane O’Neill was a force for the squad on the backline in the Toulon Tournament, and earned honors as the Third-Best player in the tournament.
  • Hernandez and Joya both scored penalties in the third-place playoff of the Toulon Tournament. Hernandez’s strike was the first score of the game and Joya’s proved to be the game-winner.
  • Rodriguez returns to the mix after missing the Toulon Tournament. The strong striker plays at Borussia Mönchengladbach, the same club as Men’s National Team defender Fabian Johnson. The North Hollywood-native has scored twice in as many games in 2015.
  • Luis Gil also returns to the U-23’s after missing the Toulon Tournament. Gil wore the captain’s armband in each of the first three games of 2015, where he leads the team with four assists.
  • Goalkeeper Cody Cropper (MK Dons), defender Carter-Vickers (Tottenham Hotspur) and midfielder Hyndman (Fulham) won’t have far to travel for this camp, coming over from their nearby English club teams.
  • Eighteen-year-old Gedion Zelalem, who recently completed a loan move from Arsenal to Rangers, made his U.S. debut for the U-20’s in this summer’s World Cup.
  • The roster is a diverse mix with the players coming from club teams of various leagues around the world. Nine players from this roster represent MLS clubs, three come from German club teams, four from English teams, two from Mexico, and a single player each from leagues in Cyprus, Netherlands, Norway, Scotland, and Switzerland.
  • Twelve players from this roster have ties to the Development Academy: Ethan Horvath (Real Colorado), Emerson Hyndman (FC Dallas), Benji Joya (De Anza Force), Matt Miazga (New York Red Bulls), Eric Miller (Minnesota Thunder Academy), Boyd Okwuonu (FC Dallas), Shane O’Neill (Colorado Rapids), Marc Pelosi (De Anza Force), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy & Pateadores), Zack Steffen (Continental FC DELCO), Wil Trapp (Crew SC Academy).

All-Important October Matches Loom Large for MNT and U-23s

At the start of the year, the clearest goal for the U.S. Men’s National Team was to lock up a spot at the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup. The road to Russia now has one final hurdle, and it’s a mouth-watering matchup with its biggest rival.

On Oct. 10, the United States and Mexico will meet in a do-or-die, one-match playoff at the legendary Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, with the winner taking CONCACAF’s spot at the World Cup warm-up competition.

While the U.S. has largely been successful against Mexico on home soil in the last 20 years, the task of facing a charged Mexican side at a giant venue like The Rose Bowl will serve up a new challenge. Four of the six largest crowds ever to watch the MNT play have watched a USA-Mexico match in southern California, and often with a heavy pro-Mexico tilt. That tide has turned in other venues – most notably Columbus Crew Stadium – and now the opportunity exists to make the Rose Bowl another example of the growing legion of U.S. supporters. After experiencing strong fan turnout during domestic matches throughout 2015, U.S. manager Jurgen Klinsmann stressed the importance of making sure American fans turn up for the team at the imperative playoff match.

USA to Face Canada, Cuba and Panama in Men’s Olympic Qualifying

CHICAGO (Aug. 18, 2015) – The U.S .Under-23 Men’s National Team was drawn into Group A with Canada, Cuba and Panama for the 2015 CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship, which will be played from Oct. 1-13 in the United States.

The USA opens with a pair of games at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas, against Canada on Oct. 1 at 8 p.m. CT and Cuba on Oct. 3 at 4 p.m. CT. The U.S. will conclude group play at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colorado, on Oct. 6 against Panama at 7:30 p.m. MT.

“Now we know what’s ahead of us,” head coach Andi Herzog said. “It’s an interesting group and strong group and we want to win and advance. Canada we’ve looked at and we know they have some strong players in MLS. Panama is also strong and Cuba, we saw this summer in the Gold Cup, has some young players we expect to face in this tournament. In the end it’s an interesting group and we’re excited.”

Each of the host venues opens ticket sales separately. For full ticketing information click here. Television information will be announced at a later date.

Mexico, Honduras, Haiti, and the winner of the UNCAF playoff between Costa Rica and Guatemala, will make up Group B. The top two finishers from Group A and Group B will advance to Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, for the all-important semifinals on Oct. 10.

Winners of the semifinal match-ups will advance to the Oct. 13 final  and qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, while the losers will meet in a third place match, also on Oct. 13. The third-place winner will qualify for the CONCACAF–CONMEBOL playoff, where it will face Colombia in a final opportunity to qualify for the Summer Olympics.

USA Group A Schedule:
Oct. 1 – USA vs. Canada, 8 p.m. CT, Sporting Park, Kansas City, Kan.
Oct. 3 – USA vs. Cuba, 4 p.m. CT, Sporting Park, Kansas City, Kan.
Oct. 6 – USA vs. Panama, 7:30 p.m. MT, Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, Commerce City, Colo.

Oct. 10 Semi-Finals, 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. MT, Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, Utah
Oct. 13 Third Place Game, 5 p.m. MT, Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, Utah
Oct. Final, 5 p.m. MT, Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, Utah

2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Groups
Group A: United States, Panama, Cuba, Canada
Group B: Mexico, Honduras, Haiti, Costa Rica/Guatemala winner

Tickets for 2015 CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship Go on Sale Later this Month

CHICAGO (Aug.  13, 2015) – Tickets for the 2015 CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship, which will be played in the United States from Oct. 1-13, will go on sale later this month. Venues in four different cities will each host two doubleheader events.

Each venue will open ticket sales separately.  The United States heads Group A, where the first two matches of the group will be played Oct. 1 and Oct. 3 at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas. Fans can purchase tickets for the two events in Kansas City starting Wednesday, Aug. 19, at 12 p.m. CT through ussoccer.com, by phone at 1-800-745-3000 and at all Ticketmaster ticket centers in the Kansas City area (including many Hen House Markets). [Note: Tickets will not be sold at the Sporting Park ticket office.] Availability is limited.

2012 Olympic Gold medalists Mexico headline Group B and will play their first two matches on Oct. 2 and Oct. 4 at StubHub Center in Carson, Calif.  Tickets for the two events in the Los Angeles area go on sale to the general public Friday, Aug. 14, at 10 a.m. PT through ussoccer.com, by calling 1-888-929-7849, and at the StubHub Center ticket office (open Monday-Friday, 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.).

All teams in both Group A and Group B will then travel to Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colo., for the final matches of the first round, with Group A playing on Oct. 6 and Group B on Oct. 7. Tickets for the two events near Denver go on sale to the general public Thursday, Aug. 27, at 10 a.m. MT through ussoccer.com, by phone at 1-866-461-6556 or 303-534-6119 (Monday-Saturday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. MT; Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. MT), at the Dick's Sporting Goods Park ticket office (open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.) and the Pepsi Center box office (open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.).

Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, will host the all-important semifinals on Oct. 10 and the third place match and final on Oct. 13. The availability of series tickets for the two doubleheader events that determine the two automatic CONCACAF representatives at the 2016 Olympic Games and the tournament champion will be announced at a later date.

A total of eight teams will compete in the tournament: three from North America (direct qualifiers: Canada, Mexico and the United States), three from Central America and two from the Caribbean. The USA was seeded as the tournament host in Group A.  Mexico, the defending Olympic Qualifying Tournament champion and 2012 Olympic gold medalist, was seeded in Group B. The rest of the teams will be placed into the groups at the Olympic Qualifying Tournament draw, which is set to take place Aug. 18 in Los Angeles.

Winners of the semifinal match-ups will qualify for the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics and advance to the Oct. 13 final, while the losers will meet in a third place match. The third-place winner will qualify for the CONCACAF – CONMEBOL playoff, where it will face Colombia in a final opportunity to qualify for the Olympics in Rio.

Date

Event

Start Times

Location

Oct. 1

Group A Doubleheader*

5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. CT

Kansas City, Kan

Oct. 2

Group B Doubleheader**

6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. PT

Carson, Calif.

Oct. 3

Group A Doubleheader*

1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. CT

Kansas City, Kan

Oct. 4

Group B Doubleheader**

1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. PT

Carson, Calif.

Oct. 6

Group A Doubleheader*

5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. MT

Commerce City, Colo.

Oct. 7

Group B Doubleheader**

5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. MT

Commerce City, Colo.

Oct. 10

Semifinal Doubleheader

2 p.m. and 5 p.m. MT

Sandy, Utah

Oct. 13

Third Place & Final

5 p.m. and 8 p.m. MT

Sandy, Utah

* USA to play in second match
** Mexico to play in second match

U-23 MNT Wraps up First College ID Camp

The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team gathered for its first College Identification Camp last week at the National Training Center in Carson, California, concluding the event with a 3-1 win against Club Tijuana’s Segunda Premier Team.

Paul Salcedo (California) Mac Steeves (Providence) and Brandon Vincent (Stanford) scored goals to lead the U-23s.

U-23 MNT head coach Andi Herzog spent three days working with the group of 28 collegiate players, which allowed the coaching staff to scout a new crop of talent as they continue preparations ahead of October’s qualifying tournament for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

“It was the first time that U.S. Soccer has had college camp like this,” Herzog said. “I got the chance to learn more about all of these players. After an intra-squad scrimmage and especially after the game against Tijuana, I was really pleased because I saw a lot of talent. We will certainly be watching.”

The camp took place across three days in Carson, run by Herzog and assistant coaches John Hackworth and Matthias Hamann.

“It’s something I would want to do again. It was great and fun to work with these kids,” Herzog said. “They were really, really ambitious. After the camp I told them it was really nice to work with them and they were very interesting and maybe next time we’ll do it a bit longer and it will be even better. There’s a chance that we’ll see some of these players again.”

The 28 players from the group now return to their colleges where they will prepare for the start of the NCAA soccer season.

“It was great that the college coaches helped us out a lot, both me and Jurgen [Klinsmann] to make the roster. We asked them to suggest the three or four of the best players at each position and then selected from there. It was interesting because there were a few different age groups. There were players from the ’93 age group and the youngest were ’96 and ’97. These players are about to start preseason at their colleges and it was important to take this opportunity.”

The U-23’s will be back in action in September when they travel to England for friendlies against England and Qatar. 

Herzog Calls 28 Players for College Identification Training Camp

CHICAGO (July 28, 2015) – U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team head coach Andi Herzog has called 28 players to Carson, California, for a College Identification training camp that will allow the coaching staff to scout a new crop of collegiate players as the team continues preparations ahead of October qualifying for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The group will train from August 5-8 at the U.S. National Training Center in Carson.

"It will be great to work with this group and have a look at them,” head coach Andi Herzog said. “We have brought college players in and have seen them go on to have success with the senior team. Jordan Morris was an example of that this year. This camp is another chance to build our pool of talented players.”

Eleven of the 28 players have experience playing in the U.S. Men’s National Team youth system.

Roster By Position: Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (4): Wade Hamilton (Cal Poly; Murrieta, Calif.), Jonathan Klinsmann (Cal; Newport Beach, Calif.), Kendall McIntosh (Santa Clara; Santa Rosa, Calif.), Andrew Tarbell (Clemson; Mandeville, La.).
DEFENDERS (9): Jonathan Campbell (North Carolina; Greensboro, N.C.), Alex Crognale (Maryland; Gahanna, Ohio), Chase Gasper (UCLA; Alexandria, Va.), Tomas Hilliard-Arce (Stanford, Matthews, N.C.), Grant Lillard (Indiana; Hinsdale, Ill.), Jakob Nerwinski (Connecticut; Lawrenceville, N.J.), Chris Odoi-Atsem (Maryland; Mitchellville, Md.), Sam Strong (UCSB; Santa Barbara, Calif.), Brandon Vincent (Stanford; Valencia, Calif.).
MIDFIELDERS (10): Corey Baird (Stanford; Escondido, Calif.). Andrew Brody (Lousiville; Orlando, Fla.), Mael Corboz (Maryland; Green Brook, N.J.), Niko Hansen (New Mexico; Sacramento, Calif.), Ian Harkes (Wake Forest; Fairfax, Va.), Patrick Hodan (Notre Dame; Brookfield, Wisc.), James Moberg (Washington; Winsdor, Calif.), Adam Najem (Akron; Clifton, N.J.), Keegan Rosenberry (Georgetown; Ronks, Pa.), Jake Rozhansky (Virginia; Germantown, Md.).
FORWARDS (5): Michael Gamble (Wake Forest; Columbia, Md.), Connor Maloney (Penn State; Harrisburg, Pa.), Alex Muyl (Georgetown; New York, N.Y.), Paul Salcedo (Cal; Inglewood, Calif.), Mac Steeves (Providence; Needham, Mass.).

 

U-23 MNT Defeats England 2-1 to Take Third at Toulon Tournament

TOULON, France (June 7, 2015)  – The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team converted a pair of penalty-kick goals to defeat England 2-1 and earn third place at the historic Toulon Tournament in France.

The USA got out to an early lead when Alonso Hernandez netted a penalty kick in the sixth minute, but it didn’t take long for England to respond leveling on a close-range strike in the 10th.

In the 65th minute an England handball in the box gave the USA another penalty kick, which Benji Joya coverted for the U.S. lead. Goalkeeper Cody Cropper came up with a pair of timely saves in the match’s final minutes.

The third-place finish matched the best finish for the USA in the renowned tournament. The other time was in 1989 when it similarly defeated England, 2-0. Following the match, defender Shane O’Neill earned honors as the tournament’s third-best player was presented a trophy for his efforts.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Alonso Hernandez (penalty kick), 7th minute: 
Jerome Kiesewetter ran on to a lofted ball and attacked with pace down the right side. England defender Kortney Hause was losing ground on Kiesewetter and attempted to shoulder his way in for a tackle. Kieswetter went down and the referee signaled for a penalty kick. Alonso Hernandez hit it low and hard into the right corner for his second goal of the tournament. USA 1, ENG 0

ENG – Kortney Hause, 10th minute: Shortly after conceding the opening goal, the English side pressed back with an attack of its own. A foul set up a free kick for England on the left side, which it quickly played forward catching the U.S. off guard. The ball was sent in on a cross and bounced around in front of the box. Hause’s was the first foot to it, tapping it in from close range. USA 1, ENG 1

USA – Benji Joya (penalty kick), 65th minute: The USA was pressuring on an attack and Jerome Kiesewetter fired a shot toward the goal from outside of the box. The ball rebounded off one of the English defenders’ foot and off the hand of another, which set up the penalty. U.S. captain Benji Joya stepped up and blasted it into the upper right corner for the lead. USA 2, ENG 1. (FINAL)

Additional Notes:

  • Benji Joya scored in his second Toulon Tournament after also scoring a goal when he  played with the U.S. U-20 MNT that participated in 2013.
  • The match was the first between England and the USA at the U-23 age level. The two teams are scheduled to meet again for a friendly in September.
  • This is the second straight year that England has finished fourth at the Toulon Tournament.
  • Marc Pelosi was suspended and was not eligible to play in the match today due to yellow card accumulation, while Sam Strong was unavailable due to a concussion he sustained in the game against Qatar.

- U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team vs. England
Date: June 7, 2015
Competition: 2015 Toulon Tournament – Third Place Match
Kickoff: 11 a.m. ET (5 p.m. local)
Attendance: 910
Weather: 80 degrees, Sunny 

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

USA – Alonso Hernandez (penalty kick)      7th minute
ENG – Kortney Hause                                   10
USA – Benji Joya (penalty kick)                   65 

Lineups:
USA: 1-Cody Cropper; 3-Boyd Okwuonu (20-Tyler Turner, 55), 5-William Packwood, 4-Shane O’Neill, 2-Juan Pablo Ocegueda; 7-Dillon Serna, 14-Daniel Metzger, 8-Benji Joya (capt.), 16-Julian Green; 17-Jerome Kiesewetter, 11-Alonso Hernandez (17-Alfred Koroma Shams, 63)
Subs Not Used: 22-Tyler Miller
Head Coach: Andreas Herzog 

ENG: 1-Christian Walton (13-Jordan Pickford, 41); 2-Iorfa Dominc, 5-Jack Stephens, 6-Bailey Cargill, 15-Kortney Hause; 17-John Swift, 7-Matthew Grimes (capt.), 20-Duncan Watmore, 18-Jamie Hanson; 19-Kwame Thomas (10-Chuba Akpom, 49), 11-Rolando Aarons (16-Callum Robinson, 49)
Subs Not Used: 8-Lewis Baker, 9-James Wilson, 12-Isaac Hayden, 14-Demarai Gray
Head Coach: Aidy Boothroyd 

Stats Summary: USA / ENG
Shots: 9 / 6
Shots on Goal: 5 / 4
Saves: 4 / 3
Corner Kicks: 6 / 2
Fouls: 9 / 8
Offsides: 2 / 1 

Misconduct Summary:
ENG – Kortney Hause (caution)                      6th minute
ENG – Matthew Grimes (caution)                   8
USA – Benji Joya (caution)                             53 

Officials:
Referee: Fabio Verissimo (POR)
Assistant Referee: Paulo Santos Soares and Pedro Mota (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Adil Zourak (MAR) 

ussocer.com Man of the Match: Shane O’Neill


U-23 MNT Advances to Third Place Match at 2015 Toulon Tournament

The U-23 #USMNT made it through group play and advanced to the 3rd place match at the 2015 Toulon Tournament, providing head coach Andi Herzog and the players another chance to tune up for Olympic Qualifying later this year.

U-23 MNT Advancement Scenarios in Final Day at Toulon

The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team was the first team in the Toulon Tournament to complete group play. Going into Thursday, the last night of Group A pool play matches, the standings are as follows:

Group A

National Team

Games Played

W

L

D

Pts.

Total Goals Scored

Total Goals Allowed

France

3

3

0

0

9

7

2

Netherlands

3

2

1

0

6

9

6

USA

4

2

2

0

6

6

6

Costa Rica

3

1

2

0

3

5

6

Qatar

3

0

3

0

0

1

8

The top two teams advance in the tournament, with the No. 1 team moving on to play the No. 1 from Group B in the final and the No. 2 team from Group A meeting its counterpart from Group B in the third place game. Both games will be played on June 7. 

The U.S. will need help if it is to gain sole-possession of to the number two spot. The Tournament tie-breaker rules are:

  1. Goal Differential
  2. Total Goals Scored
  3. Head-to-head result 

At this point the U.S. is even on goal differential, Netherlands is +3 and Costa Rica is -1. That being the case the U.S. needs help on the final night of matches. To advance the U-23’s require France to defeat Netherlands by a margin of four goals (Netherlands would beat the U.S. out on goal differential or total goals scored tie-break with a loss of three goals or less) and a Costa Rica draw or loss in its match with Qatar (A Costa Rica one-goal win would level it with the U.S. and Costa would advance on the head-to-head tiebreaker, having defeated the U.S. on May 31 2-1). 

Costa Rica and Qatar square off at 11 a.m. ET followed by the match between France and Netherlands at 1 p.m. ET.

All-Important October Matches Loom Large for MNT and U-23s

At the start of the year, the clearest goal for the U.S. Men’s National Team was to lock up a spot at the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup. The road to Russia now has one final hurdle, and it’s a mouth-watering matchup with its biggest rival.

On Oct. 10, the United States and Mexico will meet in a do-or-die, one-match playoff at the legendary Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, with the winner taking CONCACAF’s spot at the World Cup warm-up competition.

While the U.S. has largely been successful against Mexico on home soil in the last 20 years, the task of facing a charged Mexican side at a giant venue like The Rose Bowl will serve up a new challenge. Four of the six largest crowds ever to watch the MNT play have watched a USA-Mexico match in southern California, and often with a heavy pro-Mexico tilt. That tide has turned in other venues – most notably Columbus Crew Stadium – and now the opportunity exists to make the Rose Bowl another example of the growing legion of U.S. supporters. After experiencing strong fan turnout during domestic matches throughout 2015, U.S. manager Jurgen Klinsmann stressed the importance of making sure American fans turn up for the team at the imperative playoff match.

U.S. Set for Run in Historic Toulon Tournament

In France it has been called le lieu où naissent les étoiles, the place where stars are born. Always a gathering of the world’s top soccer powers, this year’s 43rd edition of the Toulon Tournament features regular competitors Netherlands, England and host France, as well as Costa Rica, China, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Mexico, Qatar and the USA.

“It’s a huge tournament,” U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team head coach Andi Herzog said. “I think at this age group, there’s the World Cup and for sure there’s the Olympic Tournament, but apart from those competitions, this is the biggest tournament in this age group. With all the teams like England, Netherlands, France, Mexico, and the USA competing against each other, at this age group that’s a really, really good competition and it’s a good challenge for us to show that we have a good team together.”

In 1975, Cesar Luis Menotti coached an Argentina youth squad featuring Daniel Passarella, Americo Gallego, Alberto Tarentini, and Jose Daniel Valencia to a championship in the third Toulon Tournament. Three years later, those four players were a part of the Argentina side that won the 1978 FIFA World Cup. Following the win, Menotti recalled Toulon as being a fundamental piece of the players’ development that led to their victory, and hence, le lieu où naissent les étoiles.

In the 40 years since, many of the biggest and most renowned footballers have made their mark in Toulon, and the tournament has proven to be a foreshadower of what’s to come in international play. In 2011, Colombian striker James Rodriguez earned honors as the Toulon Player of the Tournament. Three summers later, Rodriguez burst onto the scene and won the Golden Boot at the 2014 FIFA World cup after scoring six goals in five games.

Other international footballers who have also gained experience in the Toulon Tournament include: Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham, Thierry Henry, Cristiano Ronaldo, Alan Shearer, Javier Mascherano, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, Nuno Gomes, Rui Costa and many more.

The U.S. was in Toulon for the tournament in 2013, competing with its U-20 MNT and taking seventh place. Their best finish in Toulon history dates back to 1989, when the team took third place behind Bulgaria and champion France.

This year the U-23’s will try to best that finish. To do that, they will have to navigate through group play matchups with France on May 27, Netherlands on May 29, Costa Rica on May 31 and Qatar on June 2. 

Q&A: Andi Herzog Talks Toulon

U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team head coach Andi Herzog spoke with ussoccer.com about the Toulon Tournament and the U-23’s continued preparation for October’s CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Championship

ussoccer.com: What can you say about this group that’s been brought together for the Toulon Tournament?
Andi Herzog: “I’m happy; I think we have a good group together. It’s mostly the same players we had against Mexico and the first Bosnia and Denmark trips. I want to have a little continuity and hopefully it will work in France. Obviously it’s a situation where a lot of MLS teams have a lot of games during the same time period, so mostly the players starting for the MLS teams were not released.”

ussoccer.com: How does this renowned tournament help prepare the team for the Olympic Qualifying Championship?
AH: “This tournament in France is huge because there are a lot of great opponents. The other thing is we play a game every second day, so we will need everyone on the field and we’ll have to make a lot of changes from game to game. I think it’s a great chance for every single player to be able to be a big part of the team who will qualify for the Olympics.”

ussoccer.com: How did the fact that the tournament schedule features games every other day go into the makeup of this roster?
AH: “It’s clear: You need to double up every position. Overall we have a good group together with some young kids playing, like Marc Pelosi coming back after a long injury, so it will be interesting to see all of them.”

ussoccer.com: Over the years a number of the world’s great international footballers have played in this tournament. What does that say about the challenge ahead for the team?
AH: “It’s a great challenge and it’s a great opportunity for us to play against some of the best. The France team is the defending World Champion at the Under-20 level from two years ago in Turkey. They were the best team in the world two years ago and they are our first opponent, so that will be a real good possibility to see how good we already are.”

“It’s a huge tournament. I think at this age group, there’s the World Cup and for the Olympics, but apart from those competition, this is the biggest tournament in this age group. You have all the regular teams like England, Netherlands, France, Mexico, USA competing against each other, so at this age group that’s a really, really good competition.

 ussoccer.com: How would you describe the form of the players on the roster coming in?
AH: “We have two or three players that had injuries before, but I talked to them and they’re fine, so it’s normal. For every National Team coach it’s always the same. You don’t train on a regular basis, so it’s just from month to month you see your players. That’s why I want to keep going always with most of the same players if they do well. Hopefully we made the right decisions.  

ussoccer.com: How does a tournament like this fit into the bigger picture of preparing these players for the next level of play?
AH: “Developing players for the senior National Tam has to be our goal. I think for a youth team it’s important to compete on the highest level at World Cups and Olympics, but overall the most important thing is you get at least two or three players for the National Team as regular starters afterwards. Otherwise we did a bad job as coaches.”

Gallery: U-23 MNT Win Completes Two-Game Double for USA Over Mexico

Photos from the U.S. Under-23 Men's National Team 3-0 victory over its counterpart from Mexico at the StubHub Center in Carson, California on April 22, 2015. Los Angeles-area native Mario Rodriguez started the scoring for the U.S. in the second half. Fellow California Christian Dean followed up with his first international goal for the USA before Stanford University sophomore Jordan Morris capped off the night with his second goal against Mexico in as many games. Morris also scored the winning goal for the senior MNT in its 2-0 win against Mexico the week before. Additionally, U.S. goalkeeper Cody Cropper turned in a fine performance, stopping all seven shots on goal he faced to earn his first shutout of the year for the U-23s. 

The U-23 MNT will next be in action come the end of May when the team travels to France for the international Toulon Tournament. The USA will face France (May 27), the Netherlands (May 29), Costa Rica (May 31) and Qatar (June 2) during group play of the competition as it continues preparation for Olympic Qualifying, which kicks off this fall and will take place throughout the United States.

From Germany to California: A Rodriguez Homecoming

U.S. Under-23 Men’s National team forward Mario Rodriguez made the longest journey of the 20 players on the roster to get to this week’s camp after traveling 5,600 miles from his Bundesliga club Borussia Mönchengladbach in Germany to Los Angeles, a place he knows well.

“I’m from North Hollywood,” Rodriguez said. “Coming back here is good, but it’s different because this time it’s strictly business, and it’s a good feeling playing against Mexico in my home. It’s really something else and it really feels good.”

Rodriguez has his eyes focused closely on the prize of another U.S. victory over Mexico, hoping to follow up on the senior team’s 2-0 win last week. He got off the plane at LAX after a 13-hour flight with one thing in mind.

“It’s a big rivalry,” he said. “Mexico and the U.S. have been at this battle for a very long time and it’s our turn now.”

Rodriguez was one of the last players to arrive at camp, getting in just shortly after the week’s first training session had begun. Eager to get to work, he texted the team coordinator who he had thought would be waiting for him at the airport.

“I said, ‘What’s up, are you going to come pick me up?’” Rodriguez said. “He was like, ‘No, not right now,’ and I said ‘What?’, and then out of nowhere my parents were there.”

Rodriguez’s mother and father still live in his hometown of North Hollywood, just north of LAX, and were there to surprise him at the airport. Living so far away from home, Rodriguez said it was an amazing surprise and it was wonderful to get the chance to see them.

“They really surprised me,” Rodriguez said. “It was just so nice to see them because I wasn’t expecting it and I haven’t seen them in so long.”

Rodriguez rode alongside mom and dad to the team hotel where they were able to meet the rest of his teammates as they pulled in from training. They wished them all well and told them they would be watching on Wednesday.

Growing up in the Los Angeles area, Rodriguez spent the early part of his career playing through the LA Galaxy youth system. From there he moved on to play for 1. FC Kaiserslautern in 2012 and in 2013 he moved around Germany to play for Borussia Mönchengladbach, the same club as fellow American and U.S. MNT defender Fabian Johnson.

After being on the other side of the world for the last few years, Rodriguez said it will be a great experience to play back home in LA in the stadium of the club where it all began for him.

“It’s always a privilege to put on the red, white and blue and to play for the National Team.”

As an added bonus this time around, he will have his family cheering him on when he does so on Wednesday.


Full Circle: Youngest and Oldest U.S. Soccer YNT Programs Share Lunch During Training

This week, the U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team and the Under-14 Boys' National Team are both training at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, California. Having camps just one field apart gave the squads an opportunity to gather together after training and meet for a group lunch. For the U-14's, it was an opportunity to see where continued hard work might lead. For the U-23's, it was a reminder of how far they have come, and an opportunity to share with the youngsters what they have learned along the way.

“Getting together is really important,” U-14 BNT head coach Brian Johnson said. “I think it’s important for both age groups actually. For the U-14's, it’s an opportunity to see older players, who have come through, as most of [the U-23's] have come through the system. It’s important for them to be able to talk to the [U-23’s] and eat lunch with them and ask questions and just engage in community.”

With the U-14's being the youngest of U.S. Soccer’s Youth National Teams and the U-23's being the last stop before the Senior National Team, the boys were able to tap into the older players' full range of U.S. Soccer experiences.

U-23 MNT U-14 BNT
U-23 MNT midfielder Luis Gil laughs with members of the U-14 Boys' National Team. Players from both teams shared lunch while simultaneously training at the U.S. Soccer National Training Center in Carson, California.

“It feels very good and I feel very blessed that I got chosen to be with this talented group of players,” U-14 forward Jose Rivas said. “I asked how it feels to score in an international game. I asked where they played as youngsters and where they grew up and where they plan to play in the next few years.”

The U-14's and the U-23's were spread out amongst the tables and had the chance to sit with players that play the same positions. Rivas had the opportunity to sit down with a fellow forward.

“I talked to Jordan Morris, the man who scored against Mexico,” Rivas said grinning. “So happy. He said he doesn’t really know how it felt, it was a blur for him.”

In the coming years, Rivas hopes to have an experience like that of his own, but in the meantime, he will continue to work towards that goal. This week he gets to watch from only steps away, an experience he said is very special.

“It’s important that the U-14's see that connection and that they have these guys to look up to.” Johnson said. “They kind of find out some of the things that they’ve done well, and also maybe some of the things that have been tough for them and the different obstacles to overcome.

“When you play for the National Team it gets harder and harder as you get older, so it’s important for them to know, even specifically with their own positions, some of the stuff they do well, and maybe some of the things that they work on their own outside of training, so that they can do better and ultimately help the team.”

On the Lookout

On April 1, the 18 players that were a part of the U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team March camp in Europe headed home after a week of intense training and friendlies with Bosnia-Herzegovina and Denmark. For head coach Andi Herzog and assistant coach Matthias Hamann that camp may have been over, but the process of continuing preparation for the Olympic qualifications with the U-23 squad, and the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup with the U.S. MNT, was just beginning. The ensuing scouting phase would see them travel more than 7,000 miles in the course of the three weeks that followed.

In addition to being coaches for the U-23s, Herzog and Hamann are also the European-based eyes of the senior National Team, constantly tracking players and evaluating talent for MNT head coach and U.S. Soccer Technical Director Jurgen Klinsmann. However, the pair crossed the pond for this round of scouting, traveling across North America to see games and players in the United States and Mexico.

“We came straight to Texas on April 10 from our March camp in Europe to watch FC Dallas play Colorado Rapids and to see our players,” Herzog said. “Dillon Serna came in 15 minutes from the end and scored a great goal. The next day we went to see the Houston Dynamo against the Montreal Impact. Then after that we came back to Dallas and drove our cars from Dallas to Houston and then from Houston to San Antonio to join the Senior Team for the match against Mexico.”

And that wasn’t all. Next the duo flew to Los Angeles and drove 150 miles to the border before parking and walking through the world’s busiest border crossing.  “We went to Los Angeles and then from LA to Tijuana to watch the U-20’s from Club Tijuana, and Greg Garza and Joe Corona for their first team. We also saw a few of the Mexican players that we will face in the Gold Cup or in World Cup qualifications, so it was an interesting game,” Herzog said.

From Tijuana it was back to Los Angeles to view the LA Galaxy and U.S. MNT players Omar Gonzalez and Gyasi Zardes, as well as U-23 MNT members Jose Villareal and Oscar Sorto.

And that wasn’t all.

“It was nice. It was a lot of games, and in the meantime because of the time difference we were watching the European games on TV,” Herzog said.

Dillon Serna, Shane O'Neill, Wil Trapp, Luis Gil
U-23 MNT members Dillon Serna (No. 21), Shane O'Neill (No. 16) and Luis Gil (No. 14) have all spent time with the spent time with the Senior MNT as well.

Herzog and Matthias take in game after game from Europe to the U.S. to Mexico. Really anywhere there is a game going on that has ties to U.S. Soccer – be that U.S. players or players that the USA will face down the line – there’s a good chance Herzog or Hamann are watching.

“Most of the time because we live in Europe we are scouting all the European-based players for the U.S. MNT and the youth teams, and for our Olympic team as well.” Herzog said. “It’s also critical that we see as many of the players based here as possible. When there’s a game in the U.S., we always try to come a little bit early to watch as many games as we can.”

That is precisely what they did again this time around, going from city-to-city and match-to-match. Seeing the games up close lets the coaches keep tabs on current players, while at the same time giving them the opportunity to scout for new talent.

“The most important thing is to scout our players,” Herzog said. “Even when the U-23 guys aren’t playing, because of my job as an assistant coach for Jurgen Klinsmann, I have to look at all of the players. It’s always good to get a lot of new impressions. You may have already had an opinion and you think, okay this guy is good, and then you get to confirm the level of play.”

It’s safe to say that when this camp is over Herzog and Hamann will be back on the grind. 

“It’s always fun to watch. It’s our profession and our passion. We’re both crazy and every weekend we’re in a different soccer stadium.”

First Step Completed on the Road to Rio for U-23 MNT

The U.S. Men’s Under-23 National Team completed its first camp of the year this week, and looking beyond the two results achieved in the friendly matches played, things went as expected for U-23 MNT head coach Andreas Herzog.

"It was my first camp; the players had to get an idea of the new coaching staff, the philosophy and style of play," Herzog said following the second match of the camp against Denmark. "Every single one showed great effort, but that's normal. First of all, it’s the national team and it's a new coach. Everyone wants to make a good impression, so that's nothing that I wasn't expecting."

On March 22, Herzog called-in 18 players to participate in training camp, as the group began preparing for October's tournament that will qualify two CONCACAF teams to the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil. He later added two more players on March 24, and later added one more player when Jordan Morris was called into the senior MNT camp, thus rounding out the U-23 roster to 20. The camp, which ran from March 23-26, started in Bosnia. There, the U-23’s played the host nation on March 27, earning a 5-2 victory. They later traveled to Denmark, facing the Danes on March 31 in Copenhagen, falling 1-0 in the wrap-up match of the team’s European camp.

"We had a great result in Bosnia," Herzog said. "We made some mistakes too, but Bosnia didn’t punish us for our mistakes. I think we played against a real good Danish team with a lot of power. You could see right from the beginning they had a different power; the passing, the speed."

Midfielder Luis Gil, who captained the side in both matches, offered his viewpoint on the group from a players' perspective.

"It's our first camp together, so we're still getting used to all the players," said Gil. "It's great to have a group like this out here. Obviously we have some work to do. It's going to take some time, but the future is looking positive. We just have to take it step-by-step and I feel like we'll get there. We have a great coaching staff and great players. We just have to work."

Gil had three assists out of the five goals scored against Bosnia. While also active throughout the match in Copenhagen, the opponent proved too strong to break down.

"We played two completely different teams," he said in regards to the team’s friendlies. "It's difficult playing against a great team from Europe in Europe. I feel like we learned a lot from this, especially in the game against Denmark."

Herzog was not pleased with the team's overall performance in the loss to Denmark, singling out a few things.

"I think we had 60 minutes that we didn't play really well," Herzog said of the match in Copenhagen. "We didn't keep the ball and we were not confident enough. It was just a matter of time when they scored. And when we regained possession of the ball, we did not keep it for a while, so we didn't create anything. It was not a 50-50 game; it was more like 75 to 25 with a much better Danish team. 

"And then, the game changed in the opposite direction because we were the better team the final 30 minutes. We created four great chances. If you have a bad game but you still have four clear chances, you have to score. Overall, I have to give the players credit and compliment them. After a bad 60 minutes, we showed good character and fought our way back into the game and we should have tied the game."

One of the players Herzog is clearly counting on to play an important role moving forward on the year is Gil.

"He has to be a difference maker. With his quality I expect more, of course," Herzog said. "He had some good situations, like against Bosnia when he made some great passes which led to goals. He's an experienced guy. He's played a couple of years in MLS, so I expect from him to lead the team. He has to change the rhythm of the game with a lot of dynamic runs and sometimes with his great technique. He has to be confident in the number 10 position. Overall, all of us have to do an even better job in order to get to Rio."

Gil, who was a member of the U-20 MNT World Cup squad in 2013, is eager to show that he can help steer the team to the Olympics.

"This is the first time where I really get to be the leader of a team," he said. "I have to show more on the field and pick them up off the field. I have to be a leader for these guys. I have to push them harder and I feel that we'll be successful."

With the first camp in the books, Herzog won't have to wait long to see the group again. The team will face Mexico U-23’s at StubHub Center in Carson, California on April 22.

For the Herzog, it's another opportunity to continue working with the core players he expects to play come October.

"We already have our next game on April 22 against Mexico in LA, where hopefully we'll get most of the players together again so that we can develop our style," he said. "Hopefully, we get a good group together and we can beat Mexico."

Gallery: U-23 MNT Holds First Olympic Qualifying Prep Camp in Bosnia

The U-23 Men's National Team is holding its first training camp of 2015 ahead of Olympic qualifying this fall. The U-23's trip included a 5-2 win against Bosnia's U-21 side in Tuzla where the team has been based for a majority of the camp. Next up for the U-23's is a friendly against Denmark on March 31. Keep up with the U-23 MNT's camp and match against Denmark on Twitter @ussoccer_ynt and @ussoccer_esp.  

THREE'S CAMPANY

March 2015 is the curtain raiser on a busy cycle for the men’s side of the U.S. National Team program.

And USMNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann will use the March friendlies at Denmark and Switzerland as prep for this summer’s CONCACAF Gold Cup, while also wearing his other hat as Technical Director as he helps oversee a busy time for the U.S. U-20 and U-23 MNT sides that will hold simultaneous European camps at the end of the month.

Beginning preparations for CONCACAF Olympic qualification in October, USMNT assistant coach Andi Herzog convenes his first camp in charge of the U-23 side ahead of games at Bosnia-Herzegovina (March 27) and Denmark (March 31). Meanwhile, having recently qualified for the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand, U-20 head coach Tab Ramos will bring his team to England for a pair of matches against the England U-21s and Tottenham Hotspur U-21s.

“For the youngsters to look towards the U-20 World Cup is huge,” Klinsmann told ussoccer.com. “For the U-23s, we have to get them going in order to prepare for the qualifiers later this year towards the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Andi Herzog has his hands full with that group. For me and the Senior Team perspective, I’m looking at all these youngsters and thinking who can come through these periods and develop the fastest possible in order to make himself a strong competitor for the senior group. So this is a great time now, and we can’t wait to get these games going at the end of the month.”

BREAKING DOWN THE ROSTERS

 The balance has a telling diversity among the 62 players that have been summoned.

  • Twenty players representing 12 different MLS clubs have been called across the three rosters, while another 30 players from clubs in Germany (11), England (10) and Mexico (9) add to the bulk of the call-ups.
  • Nine of the 18 players called for U-23 camp were part of Tab Ramos’s 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup squad: Luis Gil, Alonso Hernandez, Benji Joya, Eric Miller, Juan Pablo Ocegueda, Shane O’Neill, Mario Rodriguez, Oscar Sorto, and Wil Trapp.
  • U-23 call-ups Luis Gil, Jordan Morris and Wil Trapp have also already played for the Senior National Team.
  • Five of the U-20 call-ups were part of the U.S. U-17 World Cup qualifying campaign in 2013: Jeff Caldwell, Conor Donovan, Junior Flores, Shaquell Moore and John Requejo.
 

With all three camps taking place at the same time, the understanding between the three coaches, all of whom worked together at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, has been key as Klinsmann has continued to develop a structure that works not only for the senior team but helps develop players that will one day play for it.

“In terms of style of play, it’s the same approach that Jurgen has and what Tab Ramos has done with the U-20s,” Herzog said in regards to coaching the U-23s. “We all work together with the senior team. For this group, I want to have a team where there are a lot of variations. We want to be attack-minded, keep possession, and have the whole team proactively working to win the ball back as soon as possible.”

Though just beginning the U-23 cycle, with the previous team missing out on qualification for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Herzog said the task of getting the team to Rio next year begins with his new side understanding the playing philosophy being handed down this initial camp.

“It’s a big goal, and I think it will be really important to start from the first session to get the players into this philosophy.”

Beyond ensuring a similar playing style, the understanding has perhaps been most important when figuring out how to balance three different rosters with players that could go between two different teams.

 “It’s all very clear,” Ramos told ussoccer.com. “Jurgen and I have had a conversation to make sure that we put all things in the right places as we’re moving forward. Obviously having three National Teams go to camp at the same time is not easy.  We don’t all get the players we need at times, and it’s not easy on the clubs because MLS doesn’t stop for the FIFA dates and we’re at times asking for a bunch of players from the same team. We try not to deplete any one club at one time so the conversations between Jurgen, Andi and me as he passes down the information have to be very clear. We’ve done that, we’re all on the same page and I think it’s going to go smoothly.”

A past member of U.S. U-17 and U-20 World Championship squads as well as the 2008 Olympic team, U.S. senior international Jozy Altidore spoke to the value of these experiences for players who are beginning to develop international careers.

“It’s great to be involved at these levels because you get exposed to different types of teams,” said Altidore. “You see early how competitive it is, and how good the up and coming players are. Even getting used to things like travel is valuable. Dealing with all the elements of being an international player helps you get used to it and it becomes less of an issue as you progress, because it doesn’t get any easier. All these things prepare you for what’s to come.”

Altidore joins Beijing 2008 teammates Michael Bradley and Michael Orozco for USMNT camp this month, while another six of the senior players called in have represented the U.S. at various youth World Cups or in qualifying.

“These are important experiences,” continued Altidore. “A lot of the things you see at that level can prepare you for when you make the jump to the senior team, so these guys should take it seriously and get the most of out of it.”

Herzog Names 24-Player Roster for Final Camp Ahead of Olympic Qualifying

CHICAGO (Aug. 28, 2015) – U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team head coach Andi Herzog has called 24 players to England for a final preparation camp before the 2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Tournament in October.

The camp will run in Manchester, England, from Aug. 30-Sept. 8 and will feature friendlies against England on Sept. 3 at Deepdale Stadium in Preston, and Qatar on Sept. 8 at Gigg Lane in Bury. Fans can follow the action live via Twitter through @ussoccer.

"These are two important games here because they are our last before the Olympic Qualifying tournament,” Herzog said. “We have a strong group of players that we believe in, and now we are able to look as some of the guys who did very well with our U-20 team. This is really the last chance for all of the players to make an impression before we select the final roster for qualifying.”

The U-23’s were last in Europe in June, where they competed in the prestigious Toulon Tournament. With group stage wins against Netherlands and Qatar, the team advanced to the tournament’s third-place playoff, where it defeated England and matched its best ever finish in the tournament. The U-23’s are 5-3-0 in 2015, having also logged wins against Bosnia in March and Mexico in April.

The 2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Championship will be played across the United States from Oct. 1-13. The U.S. was drawn into Group A and opens with a pair of games at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas, against Canada on Oct. 1 at 8 p.m. CT and Cuba on Oct. 3 at 4 p.m. CT. The U.S. will conclude group play at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colorado on Oct. 6 against Panama at 7:30 p.m. MT. [TICKETS]

Roster By Position: Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (3):
Cody Cropper (MK Dons; Maple Grove, Minn.), Ethan Horvath (Molde; Highlands Ranch, Colo.), Zack Steffen (Freiburg; Downington, Pa.).
DEFENDERS (8): Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham Hotspur; Westcliff on Sea, England), Matt Miazga (New York Red Bulls; Clifton, N.J.), Eric Miller (Montreal Impact; Woodbury, Minn.), Boyd Okwuonu (Real Salt Lake; Edmund, Okla.), Shane O’Neill (Apollon Limassol; Boulder, Colo.), William Packwood (Unattached; Concord, Mass.), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids; Brighton, Colo.), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy; Los Angeles, Calif).
MIDFIELDERS (8): Gboly Ariyibi (Chesterfield; Arlington County, Va.), Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake; Garden Grove, Calif.), Emerson Hyndman (Fulham; Dallas, Tex.), Benji Joya (Club Necaxa; San Jose, Calif.), Marc Pelosi (San Jose Earthquakes; Sunnyvale, Calif.), Matt Polster (Chicago Fire; Milwaukee, Wisc.), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew; Gahanna, Ohio), Gedion Zelalem (Rangers; Bethesda, Md.).
FORWARDS (5): Alonso Hernandez (C.D. Juarez; El Paso, Texas), Jerome Kiesewetter (VfB Stuttgart; Berlin, Germany), Mario Rodriguez (Borussia Mönchengladbach; North Hollywood, Calif.), Rubio Rubin (Utrecht; Beaverton, Ore.), Maki Tall (Scion; Washington, D.C.).

Roster Notes:

  • Seven players from the USA’s 2015 U-20 World Cup team that advanced to the quarterfinals in New Zealand now join the U-23 group: Cameron Carter-Vickers, Emerson Hyndman, Matt Miazga, Rubio Rubin, Zack Steffen, Maki Tall and Gedion Zelalem.
  • Five players from this roster have scored goals for the U-23’s in 2015: Alonso Hernandez, Benji Joya, Jerome Kiesewetter, William Packwood and Mario Rodriguez.
  • Three from this roster scored goals with the U-20’s in 2015: Hyndman, Rubin and Tall.
  • Shane O’Neill was a force for the squad on the backline in the Toulon Tournament, and earned honors as the Third-Best player in the tournament.
  • Hernandez and Joya both scored penalties in the third-place playoff of the Toulon Tournament. Hernandez’s strike was the first score of the game and Joya’s proved to be the game-winner.
  • Rodriguez returns to the mix after missing the Toulon Tournament. The strong striker plays at Borussia Mönchengladbach, the same club as Men’s National Team defender Fabian Johnson. The North Hollywood-native has scored twice in as many games in 2015.
  • Luis Gil also returns to the U-23’s after missing the Toulon Tournament. Gil wore the captain’s armband in each of the first three games of 2015, where he leads the team with four assists.
  • Goalkeeper Cody Cropper (MK Dons), defender Carter-Vickers (Tottenham Hotspur) and midfielder Hyndman (Fulham) won’t have far to travel for this camp, coming over from their nearby English club teams.
  • Eighteen-year-old Gedion Zelalem, who recently completed a loan move from Arsenal to Rangers, made his U.S. debut for the U-20’s in this summer’s World Cup.
  • The roster is a diverse mix with the players coming from club teams of various leagues around the world. Nine players from this roster represent MLS clubs, three come from German club teams, four from English teams, two from Mexico, and a single player each from leagues in Cyprus, Netherlands, Norway, Scotland, and Switzerland.
  • Twelve players from this roster have ties to the Development Academy: Ethan Horvath (Real Colorado), Emerson Hyndman (FC Dallas), Benji Joya (De Anza Force), Matt Miazga (New York Red Bulls), Eric Miller (Minnesota Thunder Academy), Boyd Okwuonu (FC Dallas), Shane O’Neill (Colorado Rapids), Marc Pelosi (De Anza Force), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy & Pateadores), Zack Steffen (Continental FC DELCO), Wil Trapp (Crew SC Academy).

USA to Face Canada, Cuba and Panama in Men’s Olympic Qualifying

CHICAGO (Aug. 18, 2015) – The U.S .Under-23 Men’s National Team was drawn into Group A with Canada, Cuba and Panama for the 2015 CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship, which will be played from Oct. 1-13 in the United States.

The USA opens with a pair of games at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas, against Canada on Oct. 1 at 8 p.m. CT and Cuba on Oct. 3 at 4 p.m. CT. The U.S. will conclude group play at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colorado, on Oct. 6 against Panama at 7:30 p.m. MT.

“Now we know what’s ahead of us,” head coach Andi Herzog said. “It’s an interesting group and strong group and we want to win and advance. Canada we’ve looked at and we know they have some strong players in MLS. Panama is also strong and Cuba, we saw this summer in the Gold Cup, has some young players we expect to face in this tournament. In the end it’s an interesting group and we’re excited.”

Each of the host venues opens ticket sales separately. For full ticketing information click here. Television information will be announced at a later date.

Mexico, Honduras, Haiti, and the winner of the UNCAF playoff between Costa Rica and Guatemala, will make up Group B. The top two finishers from Group A and Group B will advance to Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, for the all-important semifinals on Oct. 10.

Winners of the semifinal match-ups will advance to the Oct. 13 final  and qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, while the losers will meet in a third place match, also on Oct. 13. The third-place winner will qualify for the CONCACAF–CONMEBOL playoff, where it will face Colombia in a final opportunity to qualify for the Summer Olympics.

USA Group A Schedule:
Oct. 1 – USA vs. Canada, 8 p.m. CT, Sporting Park, Kansas City, Kan.
Oct. 3 – USA vs. Cuba, 4 p.m. CT, Sporting Park, Kansas City, Kan.
Oct. 6 – USA vs. Panama, 7:30 p.m. MT, Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, Commerce City, Colo.

Oct. 10 Semi-Finals, 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. MT, Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, Utah
Oct. 13 Third Place Game, 5 p.m. MT, Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, Utah
Oct. Final, 5 p.m. MT, Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, Utah

2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Groups
Group A: United States, Panama, Cuba, Canada
Group B: Mexico, Honduras, Haiti, Costa Rica/Guatemala winner

Tickets for 2015 CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship Go on Sale Later this Month

CHICAGO (Aug.  13, 2015) – Tickets for the 2015 CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship, which will be played in the United States from Oct. 1-13, will go on sale later this month. Venues in four different cities will each host two doubleheader events.

Each venue will open ticket sales separately.  The United States heads Group A, where the first two matches of the group will be played Oct. 1 and Oct. 3 at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas. Fans can purchase tickets for the two events in Kansas City starting Wednesday, Aug. 19, at 12 p.m. CT through ussoccer.com, by phone at 1-800-745-3000 and at all Ticketmaster ticket centers in the Kansas City area (including many Hen House Markets). [Note: Tickets will not be sold at the Sporting Park ticket office.] Availability is limited.

2012 Olympic Gold medalists Mexico headline Group B and will play their first two matches on Oct. 2 and Oct. 4 at StubHub Center in Carson, Calif.  Tickets for the two events in the Los Angeles area go on sale to the general public Friday, Aug. 14, at 10 a.m. PT through ussoccer.com, by calling 1-888-929-7849, and at the StubHub Center ticket office (open Monday-Friday, 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.).

All teams in both Group A and Group B will then travel to Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colo., for the final matches of the first round, with Group A playing on Oct. 6 and Group B on Oct. 7. Tickets for the two events near Denver go on sale to the general public Thursday, Aug. 27, at 10 a.m. MT through ussoccer.com, by phone at 1-866-461-6556 or 303-534-6119 (Monday-Saturday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. MT; Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. MT), at the Dick's Sporting Goods Park ticket office (open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.) and the Pepsi Center box office (open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.).

Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, will host the all-important semifinals on Oct. 10 and the third place match and final on Oct. 13. The availability of series tickets for the two doubleheader events that determine the two automatic CONCACAF representatives at the 2016 Olympic Games and the tournament champion will be announced at a later date.

A total of eight teams will compete in the tournament: three from North America (direct qualifiers: Canada, Mexico and the United States), three from Central America and two from the Caribbean. The USA was seeded as the tournament host in Group A.  Mexico, the defending Olympic Qualifying Tournament champion and 2012 Olympic gold medalist, was seeded in Group B. The rest of the teams will be placed into the groups at the Olympic Qualifying Tournament draw, which is set to take place Aug. 18 in Los Angeles.

Winners of the semifinal match-ups will qualify for the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics and advance to the Oct. 13 final, while the losers will meet in a third place match. The third-place winner will qualify for the CONCACAF – CONMEBOL playoff, where it will face Colombia in a final opportunity to qualify for the Olympics in Rio.

Date

Event

Start Times

Location

Oct. 1

Group A Doubleheader*

5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. CT

Kansas City, Kan

Oct. 2

Group B Doubleheader**

6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. PT

Carson, Calif.

Oct. 3

Group A Doubleheader*

1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. CT

Kansas City, Kan

Oct. 4

Group B Doubleheader**

1:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. PT

Carson, Calif.

Oct. 6

Group A Doubleheader*

5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. MT

Commerce City, Colo.

Oct. 7

Group B Doubleheader**

5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. MT

Commerce City, Colo.

Oct. 10

Semifinal Doubleheader

2 p.m. and 5 p.m. MT

Sandy, Utah

Oct. 13

Third Place & Final

5 p.m. and 8 p.m. MT

Sandy, Utah

* USA to play in second match
** Mexico to play in second match

U-23 MNT Wraps up First College ID Camp

The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team gathered for its first College Identification Camp last week at the National Training Center in Carson, California, concluding the event with a 3-1 win against Club Tijuana’s Segunda Premier Team.

Paul Salcedo (California) Mac Steeves (Providence) and Brandon Vincent (Stanford) scored goals to lead the U-23s.

U-23 MNT head coach Andi Herzog spent three days working with the group of 28 collegiate players, which allowed the coaching staff to scout a new crop of talent as they continue preparations ahead of October’s qualifying tournament for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

“It was the first time that U.S. Soccer has had college camp like this,” Herzog said. “I got the chance to learn more about all of these players. After an intra-squad scrimmage and especially after the game against Tijuana, I was really pleased because I saw a lot of talent. We will certainly be watching.”

The camp took place across three days in Carson, run by Herzog and assistant coaches John Hackworth and Matthias Hamann.

“It’s something I would want to do again. It was great and fun to work with these kids,” Herzog said. “They were really, really ambitious. After the camp I told them it was really nice to work with them and they were very interesting and maybe next time we’ll do it a bit longer and it will be even better. There’s a chance that we’ll see some of these players again.”

The 28 players from the group now return to their colleges where they will prepare for the start of the NCAA soccer season.

“It was great that the college coaches helped us out a lot, both me and Jurgen [Klinsmann] to make the roster. We asked them to suggest the three or four of the best players at each position and then selected from there. It was interesting because there were a few different age groups. There were players from the ’93 age group and the youngest were ’96 and ’97. These players are about to start preseason at their colleges and it was important to take this opportunity.”

The U-23’s will be back in action in September when they travel to England for friendlies against England and Qatar. 

Herzog Calls 28 Players for College Identification Training Camp

CHICAGO (July 28, 2015) – U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team head coach Andi Herzog has called 28 players to Carson, California, for a College Identification training camp that will allow the coaching staff to scout a new crop of collegiate players as the team continues preparations ahead of October qualifying for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The group will train from August 5-8 at the U.S. National Training Center in Carson.

"It will be great to work with this group and have a look at them,” head coach Andi Herzog said. “We have brought college players in and have seen them go on to have success with the senior team. Jordan Morris was an example of that this year. This camp is another chance to build our pool of talented players.”

Eleven of the 28 players have experience playing in the U.S. Men’s National Team youth system.

Roster By Position: Detailed Roster
GOALKEEPERS (4): Wade Hamilton (Cal Poly; Murrieta, Calif.), Jonathan Klinsmann (Cal; Newport Beach, Calif.), Kendall McIntosh (Santa Clara; Santa Rosa, Calif.), Andrew Tarbell (Clemson; Mandeville, La.).
DEFENDERS (9): Jonathan Campbell (North Carolina; Greensboro, N.C.), Alex Crognale (Maryland; Gahanna, Ohio), Chase Gasper (UCLA; Alexandria, Va.), Tomas Hilliard-Arce (Stanford, Matthews, N.C.), Grant Lillard (Indiana; Hinsdale, Ill.), Jakob Nerwinski (Connecticut; Lawrenceville, N.J.), Chris Odoi-Atsem (Maryland; Mitchellville, Md.), Sam Strong (UCSB; Santa Barbara, Calif.), Brandon Vincent (Stanford; Valencia, Calif.).
MIDFIELDERS (10): Corey Baird (Stanford; Escondido, Calif.). Andrew Brody (Lousiville; Orlando, Fla.), Mael Corboz (Maryland; Green Brook, N.J.), Niko Hansen (New Mexico; Sacramento, Calif.), Ian Harkes (Wake Forest; Fairfax, Va.), Patrick Hodan (Notre Dame; Brookfield, Wisc.), James Moberg (Washington; Winsdor, Calif.), Adam Najem (Akron; Clifton, N.J.), Keegan Rosenberry (Georgetown; Ronks, Pa.), Jake Rozhansky (Virginia; Germantown, Md.).
FORWARDS (5): Michael Gamble (Wake Forest; Columbia, Md.), Connor Maloney (Penn State; Harrisburg, Pa.), Alex Muyl (Georgetown; New York, N.Y.), Paul Salcedo (Cal; Inglewood, Calif.), Mac Steeves (Providence; Needham, Mass.).

 

U-23 MNT Defeats England 2-1 to Take Third at Toulon Tournament

TOULON, France (June 7, 2015)  – The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team converted a pair of penalty-kick goals to defeat England 2-1 and earn third place at the historic Toulon Tournament in France.

The USA got out to an early lead when Alonso Hernandez netted a penalty kick in the sixth minute, but it didn’t take long for England to respond leveling on a close-range strike in the 10th.

In the 65th minute an England handball in the box gave the USA another penalty kick, which Benji Joya coverted for the U.S. lead. Goalkeeper Cody Cropper came up with a pair of timely saves in the match’s final minutes.

The third-place finish matched the best finish for the USA in the renowned tournament. The other time was in 1989 when it similarly defeated England, 2-0. Following the match, defender Shane O’Neill earned honors as the tournament’s third-best player was presented a trophy for his efforts.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Alonso Hernandez (penalty kick), 7th minute: 
Jerome Kiesewetter ran on to a lofted ball and attacked with pace down the right side. England defender Kortney Hause was losing ground on Kiesewetter and attempted to shoulder his way in for a tackle. Kieswetter went down and the referee signaled for a penalty kick. Alonso Hernandez hit it low and hard into the right corner for his second goal of the tournament. USA 1, ENG 0

ENG – Kortney Hause, 10th minute: Shortly after conceding the opening goal, the English side pressed back with an attack of its own. A foul set up a free kick for England on the left side, which it quickly played forward catching the U.S. off guard. The ball was sent in on a cross and bounced around in front of the box. Hause’s was the first foot to it, tapping it in from close range. USA 1, ENG 1

USA – Benji Joya (penalty kick), 65th minute: The USA was pressuring on an attack and Jerome Kiesewetter fired a shot toward the goal from outside of the box. The ball rebounded off one of the English defenders’ foot and off the hand of another, which set up the penalty. U.S. captain Benji Joya stepped up and blasted it into the upper right corner for the lead. USA 2, ENG 1. (FINAL)

Additional Notes:

  • Benji Joya scored in his second Toulon Tournament after also scoring a goal when he  played with the U.S. U-20 MNT that participated in 2013.
  • The match was the first between England and the USA at the U-23 age level. The two teams are scheduled to meet again for a friendly in September.
  • This is the second straight year that England has finished fourth at the Toulon Tournament.
  • Marc Pelosi was suspended and was not eligible to play in the match today due to yellow card accumulation, while Sam Strong was unavailable due to a concussion he sustained in the game against Qatar.

- U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team vs. England
Date: June 7, 2015
Competition: 2015 Toulon Tournament – Third Place Match
Kickoff: 11 a.m. ET (5 p.m. local)
Attendance: 910
Weather: 80 degrees, Sunny 

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

USA – Alonso Hernandez (penalty kick)      7th minute
ENG – Kortney Hause                                   10
USA – Benji Joya (penalty kick)                   65 

Lineups:
USA: 1-Cody Cropper; 3-Boyd Okwuonu (20-Tyler Turner, 55), 5-William Packwood, 4-Shane O’Neill, 2-Juan Pablo Ocegueda; 7-Dillon Serna, 14-Daniel Metzger, 8-Benji Joya (capt.), 16-Julian Green; 17-Jerome Kiesewetter, 11-Alonso Hernandez (17-Alfred Koroma Shams, 63)
Subs Not Used: 22-Tyler Miller
Head Coach: Andreas Herzog 

ENG: 1-Christian Walton (13-Jordan Pickford, 41); 2-Iorfa Dominc, 5-Jack Stephens, 6-Bailey Cargill, 15-Kortney Hause; 17-John Swift, 7-Matthew Grimes (capt.), 20-Duncan Watmore, 18-Jamie Hanson; 19-Kwame Thomas (10-Chuba Akpom, 49), 11-Rolando Aarons (16-Callum Robinson, 49)
Subs Not Used: 8-Lewis Baker, 9-James Wilson, 12-Isaac Hayden, 14-Demarai Gray
Head Coach: Aidy Boothroyd 

Stats Summary: USA / ENG
Shots: 9 / 6
Shots on Goal: 5 / 4
Saves: 4 / 3
Corner Kicks: 6 / 2
Fouls: 9 / 8
Offsides: 2 / 1 

Misconduct Summary:
ENG – Kortney Hause (caution)                      6th minute
ENG – Matthew Grimes (caution)                   8
USA – Benji Joya (caution)                             53 

Officials:
Referee: Fabio Verissimo (POR)
Assistant Referee: Paulo Santos Soares and Pedro Mota (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Adil Zourak (MAR) 

ussocer.com Man of the Match: Shane O’Neill


U-23 MNT Advancement Scenarios in Final Day at Toulon

The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team was the first team in the Toulon Tournament to complete group play. Going into Thursday, the last night of Group A pool play matches, the standings are as follows:

Group A

National Team

Games Played

W

L

D

Pts.

Total Goals Scored

Total Goals Allowed

France

3

3

0

0

9

7

2

Netherlands

3

2

1

0

6

9

6

USA

4

2

2

0

6

6

6

Costa Rica

3

1

2

0

3

5

6

Qatar

3

0

3

0

0

1

8

The top two teams advance in the tournament, with the No. 1 team moving on to play the No. 1 from Group B in the final and the No. 2 team from Group A meeting its counterpart from Group B in the third place game. Both games will be played on June 7. 

The U.S. will need help if it is to gain sole-possession of to the number two spot. The Tournament tie-breaker rules are:

  1. Goal Differential
  2. Total Goals Scored
  3. Head-to-head result 

At this point the U.S. is even on goal differential, Netherlands is +3 and Costa Rica is -1. That being the case the U.S. needs help on the final night of matches. To advance the U-23’s require France to defeat Netherlands by a margin of four goals (Netherlands would beat the U.S. out on goal differential or total goals scored tie-break with a loss of three goals or less) and a Costa Rica draw or loss in its match with Qatar (A Costa Rica one-goal win would level it with the U.S. and Costa would advance on the head-to-head tiebreaker, having defeated the U.S. on May 31 2-1). 

Costa Rica and Qatar square off at 11 a.m. ET followed by the match between France and Netherlands at 1 p.m. ET.

Quote Sheet: Herzog, Metzger, Green and Morris Reflect on Qatar Win, Tournament Overall

U-23 MNT head coach ANDI HERZOG

On the game and the win:
I knew that we were the better team, but you could see that we were really tired today. When you’re tired you have to make the right decisions on the field, especially in possession you have to keep the ball, but I’m happy that we won the game. I’m not that happy with our performance, but when you have four games in seven days, and it was really hot. We had some injuries and some players with muscle problems at the end. It was great that we didn’t concede any goals, we had a shutout and that’s the most important thing for me, even though we didn’t play well at least we won, 1-0 and it’s a good result for us, it’s just that in the second half I was expecting us to get more counter breaks.”

On if he expects more out of the team in the future:
“We have to do better, but as a coach you have to think about all the positives as well. We had a very tough schedule. We had to play every other day and my players are not used to playing this way and today we rested some of our key players in the first half and in the second half I thought they would make the difference, but they were not on the level that they were against Netherlands.”

On the best teams remaining in this tournament:
“France I think is the best team. We helped them a lot with the mistakes that we made in the first 15 minutes of our game and for us the game was already over, but again I think France is a great team. I don’t know exactly the other group, maybe Morocco, England and Mexico have some good players and good quality. For us we’ll have to wait and watch France and see if they win to get us through to the next round.”

U-23 MNT midfielder DAN METZGER

On going ahead early:
It was definitely the way we needed to start this game. It was the first game we’d started out with the first goal so it gave us a lot of momentum in this game to give ourselves a chance to move forward in the tournament. It was good to just get out and get the win and get the first goal and put together 80 minutes.”

On the mentality of the team going into the next few days of waiting to see what happens:
It’s unfortunate that we put ourselves in this situation, where we have to rely on some teams. We’re hoping for the best from France to put up some good results, so it’s just a waiting game right now.”

On what the team takes away from this tournament:
That every international game is going to be a battle no matter what the team is and no matter what the circumstance is, we’ve just got to stick with what we know best.”

U-23 MNT midfielder JULIAN GREEN

On his goal:
It was a good feeling to score a goal of course and it was important for us to have the first goal in this game and after that it was a little bit easier, but I think we could have scored more goals.”

On where this win leaves the team:
I think we can do nothing. We just have to look at the other teams playing and hope for the best.”

On how the team has performed over the course of the tournament:
It’s always a good experience to play against team’s like Netherlands and France and I think it was a hard tournament because we played every other day and it’s very hard for bodies, but I think we made the best out of the situation and it was a good experience for us.”

On what the team takes away from this tournament:
“We know we have a lot of work to do. We saw from the first game against France that every little mistake can change the game and that’s what we can learn from these games.”

U-23 MNT forward JORDAN MORRIS

On the rigorous tournament:
Yeah it was pretty tough. The schedule for us was definitely grueling and some of the other teams had three or four days in between games and we never had that. We had to rebound have a day off and play again and I think definitely in this fourth game you saw some fatigue, but I thought the team did really well to fight through that and we got the win today, which wasn’t the prettiest, but we got the result.”

On what the team takes away from this tournament:
I think we learn that we have to approach every game in the way that we approached the game against Netherlands. We saw that we came out flat against France and they punished us for it and when you play really good teams they’ll punish you for it, but I think we rebounded really well in the second half of that game and in all other games I don’t think that our work rate was the issue. I think that in all games it’s important to learn that mentality that we’re just going to outwork the other team and I think we did that this tournament and it’s something we’ll take to qualifying.”

On the game today:
I think we were a little bit frustrated because we knew we could do a little bit better and put some more in the back of the net, but that starts with me, you’ve got to finish your chances there. I think that coming into this game we knew that you’ve got to get at least a result and hopefully goals, so we were a little bit frustrated and obviously the second half was the prettiest of halves either. We just know that we can do better and I think that the guys were a little bit frustrated because of that.”

Julian Green Strike Sees U-23 MNT Past Qatar 1-0

AUBAGNE, France (June 2, 2015) –The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team defeated Qatar in its fourth game of the 2015 Toulon Tournament, 1-0.

For the first time in the tournament, the U.S. scored first going 1-0 up in the opening 10 minutes when Julian Green blasted home a volley from an Alonso Hernandez cross.

The U.S. pressured on the attack for the rest of the game, hoping to gain goal-differential ground on competitors Netherlands and Costa Rica in Group A. Despite a number of second-half opportunities spurred by halftime subs Jordan Morris and Jerome Kiesewetter, Green’s goal ultimately stood as the lone score of the game.

The win preserved the U.S.’s hopes of advancing to a placement game on June 7, but the team’s fate will be in the hands of France, which defeated Costa Rica 2-1 in the day’s late game and now must beat the Netherlands by a three-goal margin on June 4 in order for the U.S. to advance.

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA- Julian Green (Alonso Hernandez), 8th minute: 
Alonso Hernandez stepped in front of an errant Qatar pass on the U.S. side of the field, sidestepped a defender and turned on the jets, sprinting down the sideline across midfield on the right. As he neared the end line Hernandez drove a cross into the center of the box that Julian Green one-timed into the back of the net on a stellar volley. USA 1, QAT 0 (FINAL) 

Additional Notes:

  • Julian Green’s goal was his first his first with the U-23 MNT and his first in a USA uniform since his goal with the senior team against Belgium in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. He also tallied his first assist in U.S. colors in this tournament in the game against Netherlands.
  • The match was the first between the U.S. and Qatar at the U-23 age level.
  • For the first time this year, Shane O’Neill was not in the USA’s starting lineup.
  • Sam Strong made his first start with the U-23’s, but left the game at halftime with a head injury.
  • Tyler Miller made his first career start for the U-23 MNT, earning his first shutout in the process by making two saves against Qatar. 

- U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team Match Report - 

Match: U.S. U-23 Men’s National Team vs. Qatar
Date: June 2, 2015
Competition: 2015 Toulon Tournament
Kickoff: 10 a.m. ET (5 p.m. local)
Attendance: 680
Weather: 80 degrees; Sunny 

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

USA - Julian Green (Alonso Hernandez)                   8th minute

Lineups:
USA: 22-Tyler Miller; 3-Boyd Okwuonu, 5-William Packwood, 6-Sam Strong (13-Fatai Alashe, 46), 2-Juan Pablo Ocegueda (7-Dillon Serna, 20); 14-Daniel Metzger, 8-Benji Joya, 10-Marc Pelosi, 15-Alfred Koroma Shams (9-Jordan Morris, 46); 16-Julian Green (17-Jerome Kiesewetter, 46) 11-Alonso Hernandez
Subs Not Used: 1-Cody Cropper, 4-Shane O’Neill, 12-Charlie Horton ,18-Jalen Robinson, 20-Tyler Turner
Head Coach: Andreas Herzog 

QAT: 1-Sateh A. Al-Abbasi; 17-Mohaammed Alaaeldin, 2-Khidir Musaab, 6-Ali Bazmandegan, 15-Ali Alob; 11-Ahmed Fadhil (3-Huthaifa Ali Al-Salemi, 15), 8- Ahmed Fathy Abdoulla(16- Ali Awad Bujaloof, 73), 4-Mohammed Al-Saeed, 7-Ahmed Alaaeldin; 9-Othaman Alawi Alyhari (13-Yousuf Alkubaisi-62), 14-Nasser Al-Khalfan (10-Saleh Yazidi, 75)
Subs Not Used: 5-Abdulaziz Abdulla Shareef, 12-Abdulrahan Al Haziri, 18-Shaheen Al Kuwari, 19-Ali Ahmad Ghaderi, 20-Abdulrahman Alkorbi
Head Coach: Fahad Abdulla Al-Zarraa 

Stats Summary: USA / QAT
Shots: 9 / 3
Shots on Goal: 4 / 2
Saves: 2 / 3
Corner Kicks: 5 / 2
Fouls: 9 / 8
Offside: 1 / 0 

Misconduct Summary:
QAT - Ali Alob (caution)                      21st minute
USA - Marc Pelosi (caution)               40
USA - Benji Joya (caution)                 68
QAT - Ahmend Fathy Abdoulla          73 

Officials:
Referee: Fabio Verissimo (POR)
Assistant Referee: Paulo Santos Soares and Pedro Mota (POR)
Assistant Referee 2: Oscar Macias Romo (MEX 

ussocer.com Man of the Match: Julian Green

U-23 MNT Advances to Third Place Match at 2015 Toulon Tournament

The U-23 #USMNT made it through group play and advanced to the 3rd place match at the 2015 Toulon Tournament, providing head coach Andi Herzog and the players another chance to tune up for Olympic Qualifying later this year.

U-23 MNT Finding Their Feet on International Stage

The U-23 Men’s National Team are in Toulon. After a tough match against France the team bounced back with a 3-1 victory against Netheerlands.

U-23 MNT Gears Up for Prestigious Toulon Tournament

The U-23 Men's National Team has arrived in the South of France to train before opening the 2015 Toulon Hopefuls Tournament with tough European tests against France and Netherlands.

Highlights: Morris Strikes Again, Rodriguez and Dean Add Gloss to U-23 MNT Win Over Mexico

The U.S. U-23 MNT defeated Mexico 3-0 in Carson, California.

GOAL: Jordan Morris Caps Off U-23 MNT's 3-0 Win vs. Mexico

For the second time in a week, Jordan Morris scored against Mexico - this time with the U-23 MNT to close out a 3-0 win.

GOAL: Christian Dean Extends U-23 MNT Lead Over Mexico to 2-0

Christian Dean's headed goal from a second half set piece doubled the U.S. U-23 MNT's lead. #dosacero

GOAL: Mario Rodriguez Lands Opening Blow for U.S. U-23s vs. Mexico

Mario Rodriguez smartly finished from a Luis Gil cross to give the U-23 #USMNT a 1-0 lead over Mexico.

U-23s Continue Rivalry with Mexico in Carson

The U-23 MNT is preparing for Olympic Qualifying later this year and their first home match of 2015 is against Mexico in Carson. Watch as the USA prepares for a match against its archrival with an eye towards qualifying and Rio de Janeiro next year.

U-23 MNT vs. Denmark: Highlights - March 31, 2015

The U.S. U-23 MNT dropped a 1-0 decision to Denmark in Copenhagen.

U-23 MNT vs. Bosnia-Herzegovina: Highlights - March 27, 2015

The U-23 Men's National Team beat Bosnia and Herzegovina 5-2 in Sarajevo as the team continues to tune up for Olympic Qualifying later this year.
×