U.S. Men’s Pan American Team Secures Spot in Tournament Semifinals with 2-0 Victory against Colombia

USA Will Face Host Chile on Wed, Nov. 1 for Berth in Gold Medal Match; Forwards Tega Ikoba and Rodrigo Neri Score Goals to Send USA to Semis

VALPARAISO, Chile (Oct. 29, 2023) – The U.S. Men’s Pan American Team advanced to the semifinals of the 2023 Pan American Games with a strong 2-0 victory against Colombia. Forwards Tega Ikoba and Rodrigo Neri netted second-half goals to earn the USA’s spot in the final four and a chance at a Pan American medal.

With the result, the U.S. will face host Chile in the semifinals on Wednesday, Nov. 1 at 4 p.m. ET. Brazil and Mexico will meet in the other semifinal at 7 p.m. ET. The winners of each semifinal will head to the Gold Medal Match, while the two losers will play for bronze.

Fielding its first men’s soccer team at the Pan American Games since 2007, the U.S. is aiming for its best finish since taking bronze at Winnipeg 1999 with a squad that featured future senior USMNT stalwarts Landon Donovan and Carlos Bocanegra. 

Tied for second in Group B on points and goal differential entering the match, both teams needed a win to secure advancement. After a tightly-contested first half, the U.S. finally found its breakthrough in the 63rd minute.  Winning the ball from Colombia in its territory, forward Jackson Hopkins played to Ikoba cutting into the box on the left side. The Portland Timbers attacker unleashed a hard-hit shot as his defender attempted a tackle, ripping it across goal to the far right post for the game’s opening goal.

Atletico Madrid forward Rodrigo Neri put the game on ice 12 minutes later. On the break down the left side, forward Theodore Ku-DiPietro dished to Neri near the middle of the six. He one-timed it to the left side of the net past diving Colombia goalkeeper Luis Marquinez to seal the USA’s semifinal spot.

Four different players have scored the USA’s four goals thus far at the Pan American Games. All three group stage matches have been battles to the end, as the four U.S. goals have come in the final 30 minutes of play, while conceding just once in the first half.


W L D GD Pts.
Chile* 3 0 0 7 9
Mexico* 2 0 1 2 7
Uruguay 1 2 0 -1 3
Dominican Republic 0 2 1 -7 1

*Advanced to semifinals

Monday, Oct. 23
Uruguay 1, Dominican Republic 0
Chile 1, Mexico 0

Thursday, Oct. 26
Mexico 0, Dominican Republic 0
Chile 1, Uruguay 0

Sunday, Oct. 29
Mexico 1, Uruguay 0
Chile 5, Dominican Republic 0


  W L D GD Pts.
Brazil* 3 0 0 6 9
USA* 2 1 0 3 6
Colombia 1 2 0 -2 3
Honduras 0 3 0 -7 0

*Advanced to semifinals

Monday, Oct. 25
Colombia 2, Honduras 0
Brazil 1, USA 0

Thursday, Oct. 26
USA 2, Honduras 1
Brazil 2, Colombia 0

Sunday, Oct. 29
Brazil 3, Honduras 0
USA 2, Colombia 0

The Pan American Games, a continental multi-sport event for North and South America, have featured a variety of age restriction rules for soccer since their launch in 1951. As the Pan American Games are held the year before the Olympics, all nations are now restricted to bringing under-22 players, aligning with the under-23 age restriction at the Olympics. U.S. head coach Michael Nsien brought three players born in 2002, five born in 2003, five born in 2004 and five born in 2005.

The United States qualified for the Pan Am Games with its dominant title-winning performance at the 2022 Concacaf U-20 Championship. The U.S. won the tournament for the third-straight time, clinching its first men’s Olympic berth since 2008 in the process. Four teams from Concacaf qualified to the Pan American Games, the U-20 Championship winner (USA) plus the best team from each of the confederation’s three sub-regions- Caribbean (Dominican Republic), Central America (Honduras) and North America (Mexico).

This year marks the U.S. men’s 13th appearance over 19 editions of the Pan American Games. The red, white and blue took home gold at the 1991 tournament in Havana, Cuba with the likes of future USMNT legends like Cobi Jones, Kasey Keller and Claudio Reyna. The USA also reached the podium in its tournament debut at Chicago 1959 and at Winnipeg 1999.


Match: United States Men’s Pan American Soccer Team vs. Colombia
Date: Oct. 29, 2023
Kickoff: 5 p.m. ET (4 p.m. local)
Competition: 2023 Pan American Games – Group B
Venue: Estadio Elias Figueroa; Valparaiso, Chile
Weather: 66 degrees, cloudy

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

USA – Tega Ikoba (Jackson Hopkins)                           63rd minute
USA – Rodrigo Neri (Theordore Ku-DiPietro)             75

USA: 12-Antonio Carrera; 4-Nicolas Carrera, 5-Thomas Williams, 6-Daniel Levya (Capt.), 7-Jackson Hopkins (3-Michael Wentzel, 87), 8-Brookyln Raines (18-Javier Casas Jr., 80), 9-Theodore Ku-DiPietro (14-Vaughn Covil, 80), 10-Jack Panayotou (15-Sergio Oregel, 75), 11-Tega Ikoba (17-Rodrigo Neri, 75), 13-Alexander Freeman, 16-Nolan Norris
Substitutes not used: 1-Chituru Odunze, 2-Mauricio Cuevas
Head coach: Michael Nsien

COL: 12-Luis Marquinez; 2-Cristian Castro (Capt.), 5-Stiven Valencia, 6- Fabian Angel, 9-Ricardo Caraballo (20-Alejandro Garcia, 46), 10-Daniel Ruiz, 13-Juan Castilla, 14-Carlos Cortes, 15-Luis Mosquera (24-Brahian Palacios, 46), 16-Eber Moreno, 18-Johan Torres
Substitutes not used: 1-Sebastian Guerra, 4-Andres Alarcon, 17-Kalazan Suarez, 21-Johan Rojas
Head coach: Hector Cardenas

Stats Summary: USA / COL
Shots: 11 / 11
Shots on Goal: 4 / 4
Saves:  4 / 2
Corner Kicks: 4 / 4
Fouls: 11 / 8
Offside: 1 / 1

Misconduct Summary:
COL – Johan Torres (Caution)             6th minute
USA – Nolan Norris (Caution)             28
USA – Antonio Carrera (Caution)       84
COL – Daniel Ruiz (Caution)                 89
COL – Brahian Palacios (Caution)       90+4

Referee: Fernando Vejar (CHI)
Assistant Referee 1: Carlos Poblete (CHI)
Assistant Referee 2: Alan Sandoval (CHI)
Fourth Official: Manuel Vergara (CHI)

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