VINA DEL MAR, Chile (Oct. 19, 2015) – The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team continues its 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup campaign in Chile against Croatia in the second match of Group A play at Estadio Sausalito in Viña del Mar, Chile on Tuesday, Oct. 20 at 4 p.m. ET (NBC Universo).
The U-17’s fell 2-0 to defending champions Nigeria in their opening match on Saturday, Oct. 17.
A total of 24 countries are in Chile participating in the tournament. The top two teams in each group, as well as the best four third-place teams, advance to the Round of 16 on October 28 and 29.
U.S. Roster By Position:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Eric Lopez (LA Galaxy II; Westminster, Calif.), William Pulisic (Richmond United; Mechanicsville, Va.), Kevin Silva (Players Development Academy; Bethlehem, Pa.)
DEFENDERS (8): Tyler Adams (New York Red Bulls II; Wappinger Falls, N.Y.),Hugo Arellano (LA Galaxy Academy; Norwalk, Calif.), Danny Barbir (West Bromwich Albion; Allentown, Penn.), Tanner Dieterich (Real Salt Lake Academy; Nashville, Tenn.), John Nelson (Internationals; Medina, Ohio), Matthew Olosunde (New York Red Bulls Academy; Trenton, N.J.), Auston Trusty (Philadelphia Union Academy; Media, Pa.), Alexis Velela (New York Cosmos; San Diego, Calif.)
MIDFIELDERS (5): Eric Calvillo (Real So Cal; Palmdale, Calif.), Luca de la Torre (Fulham F.C. San Diego, Calif.), Thomas McCabe (Players Development Academy; South Orange, N.J.), Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund; Hershey, Pa.), Alejandro Zendejas (FC Dallas; El Paso, Tex.)
FORWARDS (5): Pierre da Silva (Orlando City SC Academy; Port Chester, N.Y.), Joe Gallardo (C.F. Monterrey; San Diego, Calif.), Josh Perez (Unattached; La Habra, Calif.), Brandon Vazquez (Club Tijuana; Chula Vista, Calif.), Haji Wright (New York Cosmos; Los Angeles, Calif.)
• The 2-0 loss to Nigeria was only the fifth game in 21 matches this year in which the U-17s were shut out.
• Defender Austin Trusty will miss the match against Croatia after receiving a red card in the 87th minute of the match against Nigeria.
• Nineteen of the 21 players on the roster were born in 1998, with Tyler Adams and Eric Lopez being the lone players born in 1999
• Nineteen players on this roster were a part of the U-17 team that defeated Jamaica in penalty kicks in March to qualify for the World Cup.
• William Pulisic started as the goalkeeper in every match for the U-17's in the CONCACAF Championship
• Arellano (two goals), Da Silva (one goal), de la Torre (one goal), Gallardo (nine goals), Perez (eight goals), Pulisic (four goals), Vasquez (four goals), Wright (three goals) and Zendejas (two goals) have each tallied goals with the U-17s this year.
• Twenty players on the roster are products of the Development Academy: Adams (New York Red Bulls Academy),Arellano (LA Galaxy Academy), Barbir (Players Development Academy), Calvillo(Real So Cal), da Silva (Orlando City SC Academy), de la Torre (Nomads SC & San Diego Surf), Dieterich (Real Salt Lake AZ),Gallardo (Nomads SC), Lopez (LA Galaxy Academy), McCabe(Players Development Academy), Nelson(Internationals), Olosunde (New York Red Bulls Academy), Perez (Chivas USA),C. Pulisic (PA Classics), W. Pulisic (Richmond United), Silva(Players Development Academy), Trusty(Philadelphia Union), Velela (San Diego Surf), Wright (LA Galaxy Academy),Zendejas (FC Dallas Academy)
USA vs. CROATIA:
• The United States have never faced Croatia in World Cup play.
• The U.S. faced emerged victorious in a pair of friendlies against Croatia in April 2014, defeating their hosts 1-0 on April 8. Two days later, midfielder Christian Pulisic tallied his fifth of 16 goals in 2014 in a 1-0 win over Croatia on April 10.
• The U.S. are 5-11-1 all-time in U-17 World Cup play against European opposition.
IN FOCUS: CROATIA
Croatian Football Federation
Founded: June 13, 1912
FIFA affiliation: July 3, 1992
Head Coach: Dario Basic
U-17 World Cup Appearances: 2001, 2013
CROATIA ROSTER BY POSITION:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Ivan Nevistic, Adrian Semper, Bruno Sutalo
DEFENDERS (7): Martin Erlic, Matej Hudecek, Branimir Kalaica, Marin Karamarko, Vinko Soldo, Borna Sosa, Marin Sverko
MIDFIELDERS (6): Neven Durasek, Marko Gjira, Dino Halilovic, Luka Ivanusec, Nikola Moro, Luka Pasaricek
FORWARDS (5): Matko Babic, Josep Brekalo, Ivan Delic, Davor Lovren, Karlo Majic
• This is Croatia’s third appearance in the FIFA U-17 World Cup. Their debut came at Trinidad and Tobago in 2001. Croatia has never advanced beyond group play.
• Nikola Moro opened scoring for Croatia in the eight minute of their opening match but Yerko Leiva equalized for hosts Chile in the 33th minute as the two sides split the points on Oct. 17, 2015 at Estadio Nacional Julio Martínez Prádanos in Santiago.
• In qualifying for the UEFA European U-17 /Championship Bulgaria 2015, Croatia went unbeaten in both the qualifying and elite rounds. Into the finals, they defeated Bulgaria 2-0, Austria 1-0 and drew 0- with Spain to top their group. They conceded their only goal of the tournament against Belgium in the quarterfinals, falling in penalties. Croatia qualified for the World Cup with a 1-0 win over Italy in the playoff match.