JAKARTA, Indonesia (Nov. 15, 2023) – The U.S. Under-17 Men’s Youth National Team topped Burkina Faso 2-1 in its second match of the 2023 FIFA U-17 World Cup, clinching a berth in the Round of 16 with six points from its first two matches. Two goals late in the first half, one from cycle-leading scorer Keyrol Figueroa in the 45th minute and one from 15-year-old Nimfasha Berchimas in the sixth minute of stoppage time, lifted the USA past a relentless effort from the African squad.
Next, the U.S. will play for the top spot in Group E on Saturday, Nov. 18 vs. France at 7 a.m. ET (FS1, Telemundo). The USA and France are guaranteed to finish first and second in the group after France defeated Korea Republic 1-0 in the second Group E match of the day. The top two teams in each of the six groups, as well as the four best third-place teams, advance to the knockout stage of the competition.
While the U.S. held the better of possession in the first half, Burkina Faso was more threatening, challenging the Gonzalo Segares’ side. on the wings and combining well around the box to keep the ball in the American final third. After a strong performance in the World Cup opener against Korea Republic, goalkeeper Adam Beaudry once again stood tall, making a number of important stops while the U.S. back line also cleared a number of dangerous balls from danger.
The Colorado Rapids ‘keeper stopped a hard-hit shot from midfielder Arouna Ouattara at the top of the box in the 10th and swallowed up a menacing through ball in the 27th. Center back Tyler Hall made three clearances in the span of a minute following a Burkina Faso corner in the 25th.
The U.S. had a few spells of patient possession and some nice build-up, but had trouble getting dangerous looks in front of goal early. In the 18th, a nice exchange between defender Oscar Verhoeven and Berchimas got the ball to Figueroa, but his shot rippled the side netting.
The young Americans finally broke through in the 45th minute. Berchimas found midfielder Paulo Rudisill cutting into the box and the midfielder sent a cross in for Figueroa, who tapped it home to open the scoring. It was the Liverpool forward’s team-leading ninth goal of the cycle.
Rudisill found Peyton Miller on the left wing to tee up the second goal and cap off a nice U.S. counterattack. The 16-year-old forward played a cross from the top of the box to the six and while Figueroa wasn’t able to get to the ball, Berchimas was well positioned a few yards behind and hit it from a tight angle to double the U.S. advantage heading into the break.
Berchimas’ three goals at the FIFA U-17 World Cup are tied for third for the U.S. all-time, trailing just Freddy Adu and Judah Cooks, who tallied four goals in 2003 and 1993, respectively.
The 15-year-old nearly had his second brace of the tournament just after the half with another impressive finish inside the box in the 50th, but it was whistled offside.
Burkina Faso came out renewed after the break and continued to challenge the U.S. defense, but Beaudry and the back line held strong for the most part down the stretch. In the 63rd, Beaudry came off his line to make a diving stop, while Les Etalons had one of their most dangerous looks in the 74th, with the ball bouncing around the box after a corner kick until the U.S. was finally able to clear the danger after two shots.
The waves of pressure became too much to withstand in the 89th, when Burkina Faso finally broke through on a goal from Jack Diarra. It was a tense final 10 minutes for the USA, as Les Etalons continued to charge again and again at the U.S. defense, including a shot that Beaudry got a hand to before it rattled off the crossbar in the 90th minute.
GOAL SCORING RUNDOWN
USA – Keyrol Figueroa (Paulo Rudisill), 45th minute: After a cutting run down the middle from the left back spot, defender Tahir Reid-Brown found forward Nimfasha Berchimas 15 yards from the top right corner of the box. He played Rudisill charging down the right side and the midfielder sent a cross into the middle of the six. Burkina Faso goalkeeper Isidore Traore dove to stop it, but it rolled by him to the sliding Figueroa, who tapped it in for the game’s opening goal. USA 1, BFA 0
USA – Nimfasha Berchimas (Peyton Miller), 45+6th minute: Rudisill also helped set up the second goal, dribbling up the middle channel before finding Miller on the run on the left wing. The New England Revolution forward sent in a cross from the top left corner of the box and it slipped by one diving defender to Figueroa near the middle of the six-yard box. He wasn’t able to get his outstretched foot on the ball, but Berchimas was well-positioned at the right corner of the six to shoot past a charging defender and the diving goalkeeper at a tight angle for his team-leading third goal of the tournament. USA 2, BFA 0
BFA – Jack Diarra (Aboubacar Camara), 89th minute: On the break, Camara laid it off for Diarra cutting down the left wing. He dribbled past a U.S. defender before shooting from 12 yards out around another and past diving goalkeeper Adam Beaudry to the right side of the net. USA 2, BFA 1 FINAL.
- The USA improves to 1-0-0 vs. Burkina Faso at the FIFA U-17 World Cup and 4-8-1 against African competition at the tournament. Les Etalons were the USA’s 42nd opponent all-time at the U-17 World Cup.
- With three goals, Berchimas is tied for third all-time in goals for the U.S. at this tournament with Landon Donovan (1999), Mykell Bates (2007), Josh Sargent (2017) and Tim Weah (2017). Judah Cooks (1993) and Freddy Adu (2003), each scored four goals.
- Berchmias is the 17th player to score in multiple games for the USA at the U-17 World Cup.
- The son of Honduras legend Maynor Figueroa, Keyrol Figueroa scored his first goal of the World Cup and cycle-leading ninth goal.
- The USA has won its first two games at the U-17 World Cup for the fifth time, following strong starts in 2017, 2005, 2003 and 1991. The 1991 tournament was the only edition that the U.S. finished the group stage 3-0-0.
- Forward Micah Burton and midfielder Paulo Rudisill made their cycle-leading 20th appearances.
- Nineteen of the 21 players have appeared through the first two matches, with only goalkeepers Zackory Campagnolo and Duran Ferree yet to play in the tournament.
- U.S. UNDER-17 MEN’S YOUTH NATIONAL TEAM MATCH REPORT -
Match: United States Men’s Under-17 Men’s Youth National Team vs. Burkina Faso
Date: November 15, 2023
Competition: 2023 FIFA U-17 World Cup – Group E
Venue: Jakarta International Stadium; Jakarta, Indonesia
Kickoff: 4 a.m. ET (4 p.m. local)
Weather: 86 degrees, humid
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 2 0 2
BKA 0 1 1
USA – Keyrol Figueroa (Paulo Rudisill) 45th minute
USA – Nimfasha Berchimas (Peyton Miller) 45+6
BKA – Jack Diarra 89
USA: 1-Adam Beaudry; 2-Oscar Verhoeven, 5-Stuart Hawkins, 4-Tyler Hall (Capt.), 3-Tahir Reid-Brown (11-David Vazquez, 57); 6-Matthew Corcoran (14-Taha Habroune, 80), 8-Pedro Soma (16-Santi Morales, 56), 19-Paulo Rudisill; 7-Nimfasha Berchimas (20-Bryce Jamison, 65) 17-Keyrol Figueroa (9-Micah Burton, 65), 13-Peyton Miller
Substitutes not used: 12-Duran Ferree, 21-Zackory Campagnolo, 10-Cruz Medina, 15-Noahkai Banks, 18-Aiden Harangi
Head coach: Gonzalo Segares
BKA: 1-Isidore Traore; 5-Junior Traore (4-Aly Sokondou, 46), 6-Balde Bah (3-Aboubacar Camara, 46), 7-Ousmane Camara (9-Jack Diarra, 64), 8-Arouna Ouattara (10-Cheick Camara, 87), 12-Faycal Traore, 14-Lassina Traore, 15-Idrissa Sore (11-Appolinaire Bougma, 61), 17-Landry Yameogo (Capt.), 18-Souleymane Alio, 20-Emmanuel Ouedraogo
Substitutes not used: 16-Abdoulaye Traore, 21-Amine Compaore, 2-Hamzah Traore, 13-Abdoul Sambare, 19-Bougasse Pouabizan
Head coach: Brahima Traore
Stats Summary: USA / BKA
Shots: 7 / 27
Shots on Goal: 3 / 6
Saves: 5 / 1
Corner Kicks: 5 / 5
Fouls: 8 / 9
Offside: 5 / 0
BKA – Ousmane Camara (Caution) 23rd minute
BKA – Arouna Ouattara (Caution) 56
USA – Paulo Rudisill (Caution) 90+6
Referee: Roberto Perez (PER)
Assistant Referee 1: Stephen Atoche (PER)
Assistant Referee 2: Enrique Pinto (PER)
Fourth Official: Thoriq Al Katiri (IDN) VAR: Rodrigo Carvajal (CHI)
AVAR 1: Igor Benevenuto (BRA)