U-23 USMNT's Olympic Bid Falls Short With Loss to Honduras
Jackson Yueill’s 25-Yard Blast Sparks a Valiant Second Half Effort
GUADALAJARA, Mexico (March 28, 2021) – The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team’s bid to qualify for the 2020 Olympic Games fell short following a tough 2-1 loss to Honduras on Sunday evening in semifinals of the Concacaf Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship. After conceding goals minutes apart on either side of the break, U.S. captain Jackson Yueill’s blast from distance got the USA back into the game in the 52nd minute. Despite a relentless attack over the final half hour, the U.S. could not find the equalizer.
While the USA held a slight edge in possession during the first half, a number of potentially promising spells often dissipated in the final third. Honduras was aggressive in the early going, attempting long-range shots that tested but did not get by U.S. goalkeeper David Ochoa.
Los Catrachos finally broke through late in first-half stoppage time as Juan Carlos Obregon redirected a header across the goalmouth.
Looking for a spark, the USA inserted Sebastian Saucedo to start after the break, but the challenge became more difficult when Honduras’ Luis Palma capitalized on a misplayed pass to double the lead just two minutes into the second half.
Yueill reignited the USA’s hopes five minutes later with an audacious 25-yard rocket to the upper corner for his second goal of the tournament. The goal lifted the U.S. and swung momentum to the young Americans.
After U.S. forward Hassani Dotson drew a foul some 30 yards out, Yueill hit a free kick to the far left side that Jesus Ferreira headed back towards the middle. Winger Jonathan Lewis connected with a point-blank header on frame only to see his attempt headed out by Honduras defender Wesly Decas in front of goal.
Minutes later, Dotson again drew a free kick just outside the box. Yueill’s curling free kick around the wall was heading to the far inside post but Honduras goalkeeper Alex Barrios laid out to his left and made a finger-tip save to push the ball wide.
One of the best late U.S. chances came with five minutes left. Substitute Tanner Tessmann did well to create separation for himself on the left side of the box and whipped in a low cross that Lewis could not redirect towards goal from six yards out.
GOAL SCORING RUNDOWN:
HON– Juan Carlos Obregon (Denil Maldonado), 45+4th minute: A Honduras free kick on the right just beyond midfield caused no issues, but Los Catrachos took advantage of a second opportunity to open the scoring. Edwin Rodriguez pinged a ball some 40 yards over the top to the far post, where Denil Maldonado headed it back across goal. Juan Carlos Obregon held off his defender and directed the ball forward off his thigh into goalkeeper David Ochoa, continued his momentum and was able to push the ball across the goal line.USA 0, HON 1
HON– Luis Palma, 47thminute: Honduras jumped on an error as the second half started to double its lead. Pressuring the USA as it attempted to play out of the back, Palma jumped on an errant pass and deflected it into the goal. USA 0, HON 2
USA – Jackson Yueill (Andrés Perea), 52nd minute: Captain Jackson Yueill got the USA back into the game with a spectacular blast from distance. Receiving a ball in his own half from Andrés Perea, Yueill advanced forward, set up his right foot some 25 yards from goal and ripped a powerful shot to the upper left corner past the diving attempt of goalkeeper Alex Barrios for his second goal of the tournament. USA 1, HON 2
- U.S. Men’s National Team Match Report -
Match: U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team vs. Honduras
Date: March 28, 2021
Competition: Concacaf Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship
Venue: Estadio Jalisco; Guadalajara, Mexico
Attendance: Limited attendance
Kickoff: 6:00 p.m. ET / 4:00 p.m. local
Weather: 90 degrees; Sunny
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
HON – Juan Carlos Obregon (Denil Maldonado)45+4th minute