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US Soccer

Alex Morgan Scores as the U.S. Women’s National Team Draws 1-1 with Japan in Front of 15,159 Fans in Sendai

  • Japan's Yukari Kinga Scores First in 32nd Minute, Morgan Equalizes in the 73rd
  • U.S. WNT Will Now Travel to Chiba to Face Brazil on April 3 Live on ESPN2 and ESPN3 at 7 a.m. ET

SENDAI, Japan (April 1, 2012) “ U.S. forward Alex Morgan equalized for the U.S. Women's National Team with 17 minutes remaining in the match to earn a 1-1 draw with Japan in the first game of the Kirin Challenge Cup.

"It was an important game for us and excellent environment," said U.S. head coach Pia Sundhage. "I am so grateful that we got this kind of game. We can learn from how we played in the first half and how we changed it in the second half. It is great when you have such a big crowd watching and cheering when it really matters, and today it did." (POST-GAME QUOTES)

The USA will now have a quick turnaround, traveling south to Chiba, a suburb of Tokyo, to face Brazil on Tuesday, April 3, at Fukuda Denshi Arena. Kickoff is at 7 a.m. ET and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2 and ESPN3. Fans can also follow along on ussoccer.com's MatchTracker or via Twitter @ussoccer_wnt.

Morgan's goal came with a bit of controversy as it was initially nullified for offside. Chinese referee Li Juan then sprinted over to the assistant referee who had put her flag up, conferred briefly, and then correctly signaled for a U.S. goal.

Replays showed that not only did the pass to Morgan come off the foot of a Japanese defender, but she was also in an onside position when U.S. midfielder Carli Lloyd was dispossessed in a dangerous position in the center of the penalty area. Morgan took her chance expertly, darting behind two Japanese defenders to collect before slotting her left-footed shot across the face of the goal into the lower right corner from about eight yards out.

It was Morgan's team-leading 12th goal of 2012 and 10th since she earned a spot in the starting lineup at the end of January for the championship game of the CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying tournament in Canada. The USA defeated the hosts 4-0 with Morgan scoring twice. The goal also upped Morgan's career total to 22 in 37 caps.

Like the meeting 27 days ago in group play at the Algarve Cup in Portugal, the USA started slowly, playing a choppy first half that saw the superbly technical Japan side control possession and take the game to the Americans.

The U.S. team found a rhythm for a short time about 13 minutes into the game on the cold night with the ball moving quickly on the slick field. The Americans earned three corner kicks in four minutes, but they were all well defended by Japan. The best chance came in the 14th minute when a short corner kick was played from Lauren Cheney to Heather O'Reilly on the right wing. O'Reilly chipped her cross into the pack of players and Rachel Buehler got her head on the ball, but it bounced right to Japan goalkeeper Ayumi Kaihori.

Buehler, who played a fine match in the middle of the U.S. defense with captain Christie Rampone against the wonderfully crafty and deceptive Japan, had to stretch to clear a ball in the 22nd minute when Japan captain Aya Miayama got into a dangerous position off a counter attack down the left side and crossed. One minute later, Nahomi Kawasumi latched onto the ball just outside the penalty area on the left side and unleashed a sizzling drive that went wide right of the diving Hope Solo’s net.

Japan’s pressure paid off in the 32nd minute after a deft series of touches got Japan in behind the U.S. defense. The ball was lifted over the back line and into the penalty area for Yukari Kinga, who timed her run perfectly and found herself squared up with Solo at the right post. She cut the ball back into the middle and Solo made a spectacular save on the first shot, but the ball rebounded right back to Kinga, who plowed her chance into the right side of the net from two yards out past the sliding Amy LePeilbet.

Morgan almost tied the score four minutes before halftime. She broke free down the left side, but took the ball a bit too deep into the penalty area and had a sharp angle for her left-footed shot. Nevertheless, she almost sneaked her attempt inside the right post but it skipped just inches wide.

The Americans played a much better second half and managed to out-shoot Japan 5-4 in the second half (for the entire match, Japan had a 10-8 advantage). The first of those shots after the break came in the 49th minute when Lloyd struck a free kick that sailed just over the goal from 25 yards out and struck the top of the net.

Japan’s counter-attacks were dangerous in the second half and in the 62nd minute the ball was tackled hard off of Lloyd’s foot in the midfield. In a matter of moments, several quick touches put Kawasumi behind the U.S. defense, but she struck her hard and low shot just wide left from 12 yards out on a chance that likely would have sealed the match.

Morgan’s speed stretched Japan all night and she had another nice look at the goal in the 67th minute when she ran onto a long ball up the middle, collected and cut inside to her left foot at the top of the penalty area. Unfortunately, Morgan slipped as she was shooting and sent the ball high over the goal from 20 yards out.

Solo came up huge for the USA in the 69th minute as Kawasumi once again got behind the U.S. defense in the right side of the penalty area. Solo came out hard and made herself big on the slide as she swept the shot away with her body for a corner kick.

The Japan defense seemed to be cracking in the 72nd minute when Wambach picked off another pass deep into the USA’s attacking third and played a square pass to Lloyd. Her first touch took her into the penalty area, but her sliding shot from 10 yards out went right at Kaihori as Lloyd appeared to be tugged down by a defender.

That set the stage for another dramatic score from Morgan, but after the tying goal, the Americans did not create another really good chance before the final whistle.

It was not due to lack of trying, as Sundhage sent on Tobin Heath for Shannon Boxx right after the equalizer, moving Cheney from wide left into the center midfield, and then sent on speedsters Amy Rodriguez and Sydney Leroux for the last nine minutes of regulation time plus stoppage.

The USA did have to fend off a Japan push at the end that earned two corner kicks, one of which produced a shot from Mizuho Sakaguchi that she skied over the crossbar after the ball dropped to her at the top of the penalty box.

Additional Match Notes:

  • This was the first draw of 2012 for the U.S. team which is now 9-1-1 on the year with the loss and tie coming against Japan. 
  • The USA has now failed to beat Japan in three consecutive games, a rare feat for a U.S. opponent, but one Japan accomplished in three consecutive meetings with the USA between 2000-2004 when the teams tied three times. 
  • The meeting with Brazil on April 3 will be the first between the teams since the historic quarterfinal at the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in which Abby Wambach scored the latest goal in World Cup history to tie the score, and the Americans went on to win in a dramatic penalty kick shootout. 
  • Sydney Leroux’s nine-minute appearance was just her ninth career cap. 
  • The USA has been shut out just once in the past 60 matches, that coming in the 1-0 loss to Japan at the 2012 Algarve Cup in Portugal. 
  • Alex Morgan has scored in six out of the last eight matches for the USA. 
  • Wambach moved into sole possession of ninth on the USA’s all-time caps list, passing Shannon MacMillan with her 177th appearance for the USA.

- U.S. Women's National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. Women's National Team vs. Japan
Date: April 1, 2012
Competition: Kirin Challenge Cup
Venue: Yurtec Stadium; Sendai, Japan
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. Local / 6:30 a.m. ET
Attendance: 15,159
Weather: 46 degrees, cold and clear

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

JPN - Yukari Kinga 32nd minute
USA - Alex Morgan 73

Lineups:
USA: 1-Hope Solo; 6-Amy LePeilbet, 3-Christie Rampone (capt.), 19-Rachel Buehler, 5-Kelley O'Hara; 12-Lauren Cheney, 7-Shannon Boxx (17-Tobin Heath, 73), 10-Carli Lloyd, 9-Heather O'Reilly (8-Amy Rodriguez, 82), 13-Alex Morgan (11-Sydney Leroux, 82), 20-Abby Wambach
Subs not used: 2-Heather Mitts, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 15-Megan Rapinoe, 16-Lori Lindsey, 14-Stephanie Cox, 18-Nicole Barnhart, 21-Ashlyn Harris, 22-Whitney Engen, 23-Meghan Klingenberg
Head coach: Pia Sundhage

JPN: 1-Ayumi Kaihori; 2-Yukari Kinga, 4-Saki Kumagai, 5-Aya Sameshima (15-Saori Ariyoshi, 67), 14-Asuna Tanaka; 16-Kyoko Yano, 6-Mizuho Sakaguchi (20-Yuika Sugasawa, 86), 8-Aya Miyama (capt.), 9-Nahomi Kawasumi, 11-Shinobu Ohno (13-Rumi Utsugi, 86), 17-Yuki Nagasato (7-Kozue Ando, 61)
Subs not used: 3-Chiaki Minamiyama, 12-Miho Fukumoto, 18-Megumi Kamionobe, 19-Megumi Takase, 21-Manami Nakano, 22-Yuri Kawamura, 23-Kana Osafune, 24-Yumi Uetsuji
Head coach: Norio Sasaki

Statistical Summary: USA / JPN
Shots: 8 / 10
Shots on Goal: 3 / 5
Saves: 3 / 2
Corner Kicks: 5 / 5
Fouls: 14 / 5
Offside: 0 / 3

Misconduct Summary:
None

Officials
Referee: Li Juan (CHN)
Assistant Referee: Shiho Ayukai (JPN)
Assistant Referee: Kumi Sunaga (JPN)
4th Official: Mariko Iwaki (JPN)

Bud Light Woman of the Match : Rachel Buehler

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WNT Apr 1, 2012

- U.S. Women's National Team Match Report -

Match: U.S. Women's National Team vs. Japan
Date: April 1, 2012
Competition: Kirin Challenge Cup
Venue: Yurtec Stadium; Sendai, Japan
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. Local / 6:30 a.m. ET
Attendance: 15,159
Weather: 46 degrees, cold and clear

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

JPN - Yukari Kinga 32nd minute
USA - Alex Morgan 73

Lineups:
USA: 1-Hope Solo; 6-Amy LePeilbet, 3-Christie Rampone (capt.), 19-Rachel Buehler, 5-Kelley O'Hara; 12-Lauren Cheney, 7-Shannon Boxx (17-Tobin Heath, 73), 10-Carli Lloyd, 9-Heather O'Reilly (8-Amy Rodriguez, 82), 13-Alex Morgan (11-Sydney Leroux, 82), 20-Abby Wambach
Subs not used: 2-Heather Mitts, 4-Becky Sauerbrunn, 15-Megan Rapinoe, 16-Lori Lindsey, 14-Stephanie Cox, 18-Nicole Barnhart, 21-Ashlyn Harris, 22-Whitney Engen, 23-Meghan Klingenberg
Head coach: Pia Sundhage

JPN: 1-Ayumi Kaihori; 2-Yukari Kinga, 4-Saki Kumagai, 5-Aya Sameshima (15-Saori Ariyoshi, 67), 14-Asuna Tanaka; 16-Kyoko Yano, 6-Mizuho Sakaguchi (20-Yuika Sugasawa, 86), 8-Aya Miyama (capt.), 9-Nahomi Kawasumi, 11-Shinobu Ohno (13-Rumi Utsugi, 86), 17-Yuki Nagasato (7-Kozue Ando, 61)
Subs not used: 3-Chiaki Minamiyama, 12-Miho Fukumoto, 18-Megumi Kamionobe, 19-Megumi Takase, 21-Manami Nakano, 22-Yuri Kawamura, 23-Kana Osafune, 24-Yumi Uetsuji
Head coach: Norio Sasaki

Statistical Summary: USA / JPN
Shots: 8 / 10
Shots on Goal: 3 / 5
Saves: 3 / 2
Corner Kicks: 5 / 5
Fouls: 14 / 5
Offside: 0 / 3

Misconduct Summary:
None

Officials
Referee: Li Juan (CHN)
Assistant Referee: Shiho Ayukai (JPN)
Assistant Referee: Kumi Sunaga (JPN)
4th Official: Mariko Iwaki (JPN)

Bud Light Woman of the Match : Rachel Buehler 

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US Soccer

USA-Ecuador: Three Tidbits of History

With nearly 700 official matches in the books against 97 different opponents since the U.S. Men’s National Team first started playing in 1916, the MNT has accumulated a rich history of dramatic results, intriguing story lines and interesting anecdotes.

Ahead of Thursday’s match against Ecuador, here are three tidbits of the MNT’s history against La Tricolor:

A Team to Debut Against

This is a completely random and unscientific fact, but did you know that six MNT players who made their senior debut against Ecuador went on to represent the United States in at least one FIFA World Cup?


Future MNT captain Tony Meola around the time of his MNT debut vs. Ecuador in 1988

Why is it significant? Because as international opponents go, that ranks as the second most behind only Canada and Guatemala, who each had seven future U.S. World Cup players debut against them.

Who are the six, you ask? Here’s a grid to lay it all out for you…

Future USA World Cup Players to Debut vs. Ecuador

Player

Debut Date

World Cup Rosters

Total MNT Caps

Mike Windischmann

Nov. 30, 1984

1990

50

Brian Bliss

Dec. 2, 1984

1990

33

Tony Meola

June 7, 1988

1990, 1994, 2002

100

Pablo Mastroeni

June 7, 2001

2002, 2006

61

Tim Howard

March 10, 2002

2006, 2010, 2014

121

Benny Feilhaber

March 25, 2007

2010

44

The seven players on that list combine for a total of 11 World Cup rosters and 409 caps. Two players captained the USA at the World Cup (Mike Windischmann 1990; Tony Meola 1994), while Meola and Tim Howard are two of the MNT’s world-record holding 17 players to attain 100 or more caps.

Landon’s Second Hat Trick

The last MNT World Cup player to debut against Ecuador was Benny Feilhaber, but his first cap in 2007 was understandably overshadowed by the second of Landon Donovan’s MNT record three career hat tricks.

Donovan tallied one of the fastest goals in MNT history, putting back a rebound just 35 seconds into the game. He then completed the feat with goals in the 66th and 67th minutes to cap the scoring in a 3-1 victory at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla.


Donovan made his 157th and final international appearance against Ecuador, playing 41 minutes in a 1-1 draw on Oct. 10, 2014 in East Hartford, Conn. 

The Last Meeting

The highest stakes encounter with Ecuador was also the last meeting, coming in the quarterfinals of the 2016 Copa America Centenario.

In a chippy match where both teams played much of the second half with 10 men, goals from Clint Dempsey and Gyasi Zardes and a strong defensive effort helped the USA earn a memorable 2-1 victory in front of 47,322 fans at CenturyLink Field in Seattle.

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MNT Mar 17, 2019
US Soccer

Jesse Gonzalez Replaces Zack Steffen on MNT Roster for Matches Against Ecuador and Chile

CHICAGO (March 17, 2019) – U.S. Men’s National Team goalkeeper Zack Steffen has been forced to withdraw from the squad’s upcoming friendlies against Ecuador and Chile due to injury.

Following Saturday’s 1-0 shutout win for Columbus Crew SC against FC Dallas, the MNT ‘keeper was diagnosed with a minor right knee injury.

FC Dallas goalkeeper Jesse Gonzalez has been added to the roster, keeping the squad at 24 players as the team begins reporting to Orlando on Sunday. Having filed a one-time change of association to represent the United States, Gonzalez was included in the knockout phase roster of the 2017 Gold Cup-winning U.S. side. Still in search of his first cap, Gonzalez appeared on the roster for the USA’s 1-1 draw against then No. 3-ranked Portugal on Nov. 17, 2017 in Leiria.  

U.S. Men's National Team head coach Gregg Berhalter will continue the evaluation process of the MNT pool this month in his second camp in charge. The team building process takes its next steps with challenges against Ecuador on March 21 at Orlando City Stadium, then five days later against two-time defending South American champion Chile on March 26 at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston. [TICKETS] Both matches will be shown live at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2, UniMas and UDN.

Fans can follow both matches on U.S. Soccer's official Facebook, Twitter (@USMNT) and Instagram (@USMNT) accounts.

Detailed Roster by Position (Club; Caps/Goals)

GOALKEEPERS (3): Jesse Gonzalez (FC Dallas; 0/0), Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge, BEL; 3/0), Sean Johnson (New York City FC; 6/0)

DEFENDERS (8): John Brooks (Wolfsburg, GER; 36/3), Omar Gonzalez (Atlas, MEX; 48/3), Nick Lima (San Jose Earthquakes; 2/0), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls; 4/0), Daniel Lovitz (Montreal Impact; 2/0), Matt Miazga (Reading, ENG; 11/1), Tim Ream (Fulham, ENG; 26/1), DeAndre Yedlin (Newcastle United, ENG; 57/0)

MIDFIELDERS (7): Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig, GER; 9/1), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC, CAN; 143/17), Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy; 7/2), Weston McKennie (Schalke, GER; 7/1), Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund, GER; 23/9), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders FC; 7/0), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew SC; 13/0)

FORWARDS (6): Paul Arriola (D.C. United; 19/3), Corey Baird (Real Salt Lake; 2/0), Jonathan Lewis (New York City FC; 2/0), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders FC; 25/5), Christian Ramirez (LAFC; 2/1), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew SC; 42/6)

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MNT Mar 17, 2019
US Soccer

Five Things to Know About Ecuador

The U.S. Men’s National Team continues its preparations for the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup when it takes on Ecuador on Thursday, March 21 at Orlando City Stadium in Orlando, Fla. (8 p.m. ET; ESPN2, UniMas, UDN).

Here are five things to know about La Tricolor:

Footballing History
While not a traditional power of South America, Ecuador has raised its game since the turn of the century. Previously, fourth-place finishes in the 1959 and 1993 Copa America tournaments were the country’s most notable feats until La Tricolor qualified for its first FIFA World Cup in 2002. Since that first appearance, Ecuador has been at three of the last five FIFA World Cups, and memorably advanced from the group stage during the 2006 edition in Germany.

The nation’s all-time cap leader is former defender Iván Hurtado, whose 168 appearances also place him sixth worldwide. With 31 career goals, former striker Agustín Delgado is Ecuador’s all-time leading scorer. Both players were part of the team’s pinnacle success in 2006, with Hurtado serving as captain, while Delgado found the back of the net twice in the tournament. 

Here and Now
Ecuador stayed alive throughout qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup but faltered in its last few matches and finished seventh in the unforgiving CONMEBOL qualifying format. Ecuador began a new era last fall, as Hernan Dario Gomez returned to take the reins of La Tricolor after previously guiding Ecuador to its first FIFA World Cup in 2002.

The early returns for Ecuador under “El Bolillo” have been positive, with the team going 4-1-1 in its six matches since last fall. Just like MNT head coach Gregg Berhalter, Gomez will use his team’s March matches against the USA and Honduras (March 26 in Harrison, N.J.) as final preparation for their own regional tournament, Copa America 2019, to be held this summer in Brazil. 

All-Time Series: USA vs. Ecuador
The USA trails Ecuador ever so slightly, with a 4-5-5 all-time record. However, the MNT has been dominant since the turn of the century, going 4-1-2 in the last seven meetings.

U.S. head coach Gregg Berhalter earned two of his 44 caps against Ecuador, helping keep clean sheets in a 0-0 draw on June 7, 2001 in Columbus, Ohio and a 1-0 win on March 10, 2002 in Birmingham, Ala (photo above). Hernan Dario Gomez also coached Ecuador in this match. 

Ecuador Roster
Ecuador manager Hernan Dario Gomez summoned a 23-player roster whose average age of 26 years, 184 days emphasizes a good mix of youth and experience. Highlighting the squad are Manchester United midfielder Antonio Valencia and Tigres UANL attacker Enner Valencia.

With 93 caps, Antonio Valencia is the most experienced played on the roster, while Enner Valencia’s 27 international goals places him just four behind Agustin Delgado’s all-time scoring lead for La Tricolor. Two players from Major League Soccer also feature on the roster – FC Dallas midfielder Carlos Gruezo and Orlando City SC midfielder Jhegson Méndez, who will have the chance of facing the USA in his club’s home stadium on March 21.


John Brooks and Ecuador's Enner Valencia during the Copa America Centenario Quarterfinal on June 21, 2016 in Seattle (ISI Photos)

Check out the full roster below:

Goalkeepers (3): Maximo Banguera (Barcelona; 35/0), Alexander Domínguez (Velez Sarsfield, ARG; 47/0), Pedro Ortiz (Delfín; 0/0)

Defenders (8): Gabriel Achilier (Morelia, MEX; 38/1), Xavier Arreaga (Barcelona; 1/0), Beder Caicedo (Barcelona; 2/0), John Narváez (Melgar, PER; 2/0), Juan Carlos Paredes (Emelec; 73/0), Ángelo Preciado (Independiente del Valle; 4/0), Jackson Porozo (Santos, BRA; 0/0), Cristian Ramirez (Krasnodar, RUS; 18/1)

Midfielders (8): Carlos Gruezo (FC Dallas, USA; 20/0), Renato Ibarra (Club América, MEX; 37/1), Romario Ibarra (Minnesota United FC; 6/3), Jefferson Intriago (LDU Quito; 4/0), Jhegson Méndez (Orlando City SC, USA; 5/0), Jefferson Orejuela (LDU Quito; 12/0), Ayrton Preciado (Santos Laguna, MEX; 9/0), Antonio Valencia (Manchester United, ENG; 93/11)

Forwards (4): Leonardo Campana (Barcelona; 0/0), Ángel Mena (Club León, MEX; 9/3), Jhohan Julio (LDU Quito; 0/0), Enner Valencia (Tigres UANL, MEX; 46/27)

Ecuador: The Country
Located in the northwest corner of South America, Ecuador is bordered by Colombia (northeast), Peru (south) and the Pacific Ocean (west).

With 16.3 million people, Ecuador is the seventh-most populous country in South America and interestingly, uses the U.S. dollar as its official currency.

The capital of Quito sits 9,350 feet above sea level, making for a significant home-field advantage in World Cup qualifying.

Finally, the national team is referred to as La Tricolor in recognition of the three colors featured on the Flag of Ecuador: yellow, blue and red.

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MNT Mar 15, 2019
US Soccer

2019 FIFA WWC: Five Things to Know About the USA's Group F

On December 8, 2018, at the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup Official Draw in Paris, the U.S. Women’s National Team was drawn into Group F alongside Thailand, Chile and Sweden.

With the World Cup less than three months away, and the USA’s first group match on June 11 coming into focus, here are five things to know about the USA’s group stage in France.

Good to See You Again

Familiarity will be on the USA’s side in France as the Americans have played all three of its group opponents within the last three years. It faced Thailand in 2016, Sweden in 2017 and Chile (twice) in 2018.

Against Thailand, the U.S. won their only match to date by a score of 9-0 on Sept. 15, 2016. The game was U.S. legend Heather O’Reilly’s final international game. It was also the first game for the U.S. Women following the 2016 Olympics Games.


The USA dominated the game vs. Thailand in 2016.

In the summer of 2017, the U.S. traveled to Gothenburg, Sweden, to face the home side abroad on June 8, winning 1-0 on a goal from Rose Lavelle. Before that matchup, the teams met in Brazil at the Olympics, where the USA fell on penalty kicks after a 1-1 draw through regulation and overtime.

The two matches against Chile were the first matches between the teams. The USA won both games, 3-0 on Aug. 31 in Carson, Calif. and 4-0 on Sept. 4 in San Jose, Calif.

Thailand (vs. USA on June 11 in Reims)

Thailand will feature at a second consecutive World Cup tournament after making its Women’s World Cup debut in 2015, putting in a respectable performance. Thailand qualified for France with some solid play during their regional tournament.

At the 2018 AFC Women’s Cup, Thailand almost pulled off a massive upset when it faced top-ranked Australia in the semifinal as the teams battled to a 2-2 draw, but only after Alanna Kennedy tied it for Australia in second-half stoppage time. Australia then defeated Thailand in a penalty shootout to advance to the championship match while Thailand went to the Third-Place match, where it fell to China PR, 3-1.

Chile (vs. USA on June 16 in Paris)

This summer, Chile will participate in its first Women’s World Cup at the senior level. Chile was a surprise qualifier to the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup. La Roja Femenina finished second behind Brazil at the 2018 Copa América Femenina, which it hosted last April, to earn its first World Cup berth.

WNT - Tobin Heath
Chile's Endler (above) made several spectacular saves vs. the USA when the teams met in 2018.

One of the main reasons for Chile’s success at the Copa America was the play of their captain, 27-year-old goalkeeper Christiane Endler. The six-foot Endler, whose father is from Germany and whose mother is from Chile, holds both Chilean and German passports. She played college soccer in the USA at South Florida and currently plays for one of the world’s top clubs in Paris Saint-Germain.

Sweden (vs. USA on June 20 in Le Havre)

The USA and Sweden are two of only seven countries to have competed in every edition of the FIFA Women’s World Cup – Brazil, Germany, Japan, Nigeria and Norway are the others.

Currently ranked ninth in the FIFA Women’s World Rankings, Sweden, a U.S. opponent during the past four FIFA Women’s World Cup group stages, was also the USA’s first Women’s World Cup opponent when FIFA’s premier women’s competition began with the 1991 event in China. While the teams have never met in a Knockout Round match, the USA holds a 3-1-1 record vs. Sweden in the teams’ five previous World Cup games.

Bonjour, Northern France

All three cities the U.S. will play its group games in are located across the north of France with Reims located just a 90-minute drive northeast of Paris and Le Havre a little more than a two-hour drive northwest of the French capital.

WNT - Mallory Pugh
The USA will conclude Group F play vs. Sweden on June 20.

The USA opens its 2019 World Cup campaign vs. Thailand in Reims on June 11 (3 p.m. ET, FOX Sports, Telemundo), then continues on to Paris to face Chile on June 16 (12 p.m. ET, FOX Sports, Telemundo), and wraps up group play on June 20 (3 p.m. ET, FOX Sports, Telemundo) in Le Havre vs. Sweden.

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WNT Mar 14, 2019
US Soccer

Ramos Calls 20 Players to Spain for Final Pre-U-20 World Cup Training Camp

CHICAGO (March 14, 2019) — U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team head coach Tab Ramos has named a 20-player roster for the team’s final training camp before this summer’s FIFA U-20 World Cup. The USA will face two fellow World Cup participants, beginning with France on Friday, March 22 (10 a.m. ET) and Japan on Monday, March 25 (7 a.m. ET). Both matches will be played at Pinatar Arena in San Pedro del Pinatar, Spain.

“I’m looking forward to our last camp before the U-20 World Cup,” Ramos said. “With competition against two quality opponents, it’s one more opportunity for us to build a strong core and one more chance for the players to leave a good impression in order to be considered for the final 21-player roster. Japan always has highly skilled youth teams and France is always a World Cup contender.”

The games against France and Japan will serve as the U-20 MNT’s final official international matches before they kick off Group D play at the World Cup in Poland. The USA will open against Ukraine on May 24, take on Nigeria on May 27 and finish the group stage on May 30 versus Qatar.

Eighteen of 20 players on the roster - every player born in the U.S. - have spent at least one season in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy.

Players born on or after Jan. 1, 1999 are age-eligible for the 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup. For this camp, Ramos has called in six players born in 1999, 12 born in 2000 and two born in 2001.

U.S. U-20 MNT Roster by Position (Club or College; Hometown; Caps/Goals)
GOALKEEPERS (2): C.J. Dos Santos (Benfica/POR; Philadelphia, Pa.; 1/0), Trey Muse (Seattle Sounders FC; Louisville, Ky.; 0/0)

DEFENDERS (6): Sergino Dest (Ajax/NED; Almere-Stad, Netherlands; 6/1), Chris Gloster (Hannover 96/GER; South Orange, N.J.; 9/0), Aboubacar Keita (Columbus Crew SC; Columbus, Ohio; 0/0), Jaylin Lindsey (Sporting Kansas City; Charlotte, N.C.; 5/0), Matthew Real (Philadelphia Union; Drexel Hill, Pa.; 8/0), Chris Richards (Bayern Munich/GER; Hoover, Ala.; 6/0)

MIDFIELDERS (6): Frankie Amaya (FC Cincinnati; Santa Ana, Calif.; 11/1), Christian Cappis (Hobro/DEN; Katy, Texas; 2/0); Andrew Carleton (Atlanta United FC; Powder Springs, Ga.; 5/2), , Chris Durkin (D.C. United; Glen Allen, Va.; 0/0), Alex Mendez (Freiburg/GER; Los Angeles, Calif.; 13/8), Juan Pablo Torres (New York City FC; Lilburn, Ga.; 10/4)
FORWARDS (6): Ayo Akinola (Toronto FC/CAN; Detroit, Mich.; 10/9), Jonathan Amon (Nordsjaelland/DEN; Summerville, S.C.; 0/0), Konrad de la Fuente (Barcelona/ESP; Barcelona, Spain; 0/0), Ulysses Llanez (Unattached; Lynwood, Calif.; 9/7), Justin Rennicks (New England Revolution; Hamilton, Mass.; 12/6), Sebastian Soto (Hannover 96/GER; San Diego, Calif.; 3/2)                                                          

Match Schedule

Date

Match-up

Time (ET)

Friday, March 22

U-20 MNT vs. France

10 a.m.

Monday, March 25

U-20 MNT vs. Japan

7 a.m.

The U-20 MNT previously held its second training camp of the 2018-19 cycle in San Pedro del Pinatar, splitting two games with France’s U-21 squad in March 2018. This year’s two matches will serve as part of the Pinatar Arena Football Festival, an event that will feature 14 international friendlies between 14 U-20, U-21 and U-23 national teams from Africa, Asia, Europe, North America and South America. The U.S. U-23 MNT will play Egypt on Friday, March 22 and the Netherlands on Sunday, March 24 as part of the event.

Twelve players return from the U-20 MNT’s title run at the 2018 Concacaf U-20 Championship, including U.S. captain Matthew Real and tournament Golden Ball winner Alex Mendez. Mendez also went on to win 2018 U.S. Soccer Young Player of the Year, largely based on his stellar performance at the World Cup qualifying tournament. With 13 U-20 caps, the midfielder enters this training camp as the squad’s most experienced player.

ROSTER NOTES:

  • Eighteen different clubs are represented on the roster, with nine players coming from domestic teams and 10 based internationally in Germany (4), Denmark (2), Canada, Netherlands, Portugal and Spain (1 each).
  • FC Barcelona forward Konrad de la Fuente is the lone player to make his first U-20 MNT camp appearance.
  • The two players born in 2001- de la Fuente and forward Ulysses Llanez- are also age-eligible for the 2021 FIFA U-20 World Cup.
  • Forward Justin Rennicks has appeared in seven of eight U-20 training camps this cycle, the most of any player.
  • Ayo Akinola enters this camp as the team’s leading scorer with nine international goals. The Toronto FC forward scored seven of those goals at the Concacaf U-20 Championship.
  • Seven of 20 players have seen minutes with their clubs’ first teams in 2019.
  • Goalkeeper Trey Muse recorded a shutout in his first professional start last weekend, manning the net for Seattle Sounders FC’s USL Championship affiliate Tacoma Defiance in a 1-0 victory against Rio Grande Valley.
  • Chris Gloster and Sebastian Soto were recently called up to begin training with the Hannover 96 first team.
  • Soto has been on a tear since the winter break with Hannover’s U-19 squad, scoring four goals in five games.
  • This week, de la Fuente helped FC Barcelona U-19 reach the quarterfinals of the UEFA Youth Champions League, starting and going the full 90 against Hertha BSC.

ACADMEY TIES:

  • The roster includes two former Academy Players of the Year: midfielder Christian Cappis and Muse took home the honor in 2017 at the U-16/17 level for the Central and West Conferences, respectively.
  • Seven players were named to 2017-18 Academy Best XIs for their respective conferences- midfielder Frankie Amaya, Llanez, Mendez and Soto in the West plus Cappis, defender Aboubacar Keita and defender Chris Richards in the West.
  • Three players have won Academy national championships, both in 2017- Cappis and Richards with Texans SC Houston U-17/18 and midfielder Andrew Carleton with Atlanta United FC U-15/16.
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U-20 MNT Mar 14, 2019
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