BANDUNG, Indonesia (Nov. 21, 2023) – The U.S. Under-17 Men’s Youth National Team fell to Germany, 3-2, in a wild back-and-forth Round of 16 match to end its run at the tournament. The young Americans fought valiantly against the champions of Europe, coming back to draw even at 1-1 on a goal from midfielder Taha Habroune and 2-2 on a hard-hit free kick from forward David Vazquez before conceding in the game’s waning moments.
The U.S. grew into the game strongly on the offensive side of the ball, taking it to Germany for long stretches of the second half while playing stout team defense from the opening whistle. Goalkeeper Adam Beaudry continued his string of strong performances with a number of impressive saves to keep the USA in the game. The U-17s held the better of possession on the afternoon, but Germany’s ability to create danger quickly was enough to earn advancement to the quarterfinals.
Without three players due to suspension after yellow card accumulation and a red card in the group stage, head coach Gonzalo Segares started midfielder Pedro Soma at center back and the Floridian performed admirably parrying German attacking runs. The Europeans threatened first on the day, as center back partner Stuart Hawkins made an important clearance near the goal line after Beaudry punched away a corner that landed near the feet of a Germany player in the ninth minute.
Two minutes later, Die Mannschaft swung a lovely ball in for forward Paris Brunner, but the Colorado Rapids ‘keeper leapt to his left to deny Germany’s first real chance. The European champions opened the scoring in the 14th as Charles Herrmann tallied on a perfectly-placed free kick from just beyond the top of the box to the upper right corner.
The U.S. got more and more comfortable in possession as the half wore on, while Habroune, forward Nimfasha Berchimas and outside back Aiden Harangi combined well on the right. Berchimas helped create Habroune’s equalizer in the 24th. Center forward Keyrol Figureoa dished to Berchimas on the right side of the box, who cut it back into the German defense before the attempted clearance fell to Habroune to shoot and score.
Germany’s ability to threaten quickly shone through in the 34th as the European power pulled ahead once again. Outside back Eric Da Silva Moreira made an impressive run down the right side, slipping past the U.S. defense as he sped down the sideline before playing to Hermmann in the box, where he set up center forward Max Moerstedt for a clean one-time finish.
Beaudry made another clutch save in the 43rd, diving to halt a German shot after another menacing run down the right side. The U.S. responded with one of its most solid chances of the opening 45, as Figueroa held strong with the ball in the box before dishing to left winger Peyton Miller, whose shot was skied over the bar.
Momentum started to swing solidly in the Americans’ favor after the break, especially with a series of threatening chances at the start of the half. Figueroa took a hard-hit shot on a set piece in the 53rd, a free kick just outside the box in the 56th looked to have been a handball by Germany before it was ripped towards goal by midfielder Matthew Corocran and Soma came forward to take a long-range hit in the 59th. Germany nearly extended its advantage in the 65th, as Herrmann put a great ball in to the onrushing Moerstedt in the box, but his header flew over the crossbar.
The U.S. was determined to find the equalizer, pushing Germany hard from the 75th minute on. Second-half substitute David Vazquez provided a spark off the bench with fresh legs, and after a few good looks equalized for the USA in the 80th minute. His hard-rolling free kick just outside the box swept past the entire German defense and goalkeeper Max Schmitt to draw the U.S. level.
Not satisfied with the draw, the USA continued to work in possession, but a misplayed ball in the game’s final minutes proved to be the difference. Brunner pounced on an American error and midfielder Bilal Yalcinkaya finished it off to put Germany ahead for good.
The U-17s never quit in the remaining few minutes of regulation and six minutes of stoppage time. They nearly came back again in the 90th minute, as midfielder Matthew Corcoran took a rip from the top of the box, forcing Schmitt into a diving save.
GOAL SCORING RUNDWON
GER – Charles Herrmann, 14th minute: Following a U.S. foul at the top of the box, Herrmann lined up for the free kick from 22 yards out. He hit a perfect strike to the top right corner, leaving no opportunity for U.S. goalkeeper Adam Beaudry to make the stop. USA 0, GER 1
USA – Taha Habroune, 24th minute: Midfielder Cruz Medina drove the ball up the middle channel before colliding with a German defender at the top of the box, where forward Keyrol Figueroa was there to jump on the loose ball. He looked to shoot, then dished to winger Nimfasha Berchimas on the right side, who cut it back in the air into the six. German defender Finn Jeltsch headed it away, but it landed for Habroune near the penalty spot and he controlled the ball before slotting it home to equalize for the U.S. USA 1, GER 1
GER – M Moerstedt (C Herrmann), 34th minute: Outside back Eric Da Silva Moreira made a speedy run down the right wing, slipping by the U.S. defense and cutting inside before playing up to Herrmann on the run into the box. The winger sent it back towards the spot for Moerstedt, who one-timed it to the back of the net to retake the lead. USA 1, GER 2
USA – David Vazquez, 80th minute: Taking a free kick a yard away from the top right corner of the box, Vazquez unleashed a hard-hit shot towards goal. It rolled past the entire German defense and outstretched goalkeeper Max Schmitt to the far post to draw the U.S. even late. USA 2, GER 2
GER – Bilal Yalcinkaya (Paris Brunner), 87th minute: Putting pressure on the U.S. as it aimed to maintain possession, Brunner jumped on an errant American pass back to the defense. He drove the ball forward and played to Yalcinkaya on the left side, who dribbled into the six and ripped his shot to the right side for the game-winning goal. USA 2, GER 3 FINAL
- The U.S. reached the knockout stage for the 10th time in its record 18 FIFA U-17 World Cup appearances. This year marked the USA’s return after not advancing from the group stage at the 2019 tournament.
- In total, 20 of 21 players took the field for the U.S. in Indonesia, providing important experience as they progress through the National Team pathway.
- The USA is now 0-3-0 vs. Germany at the FIFA U-17 World Cup and 5-13-3 against European opposition. All three meetings with Germany have come in the Round of 16.
- Midfielder Taha Habroune netted his fourth goal of the 2022-23 U-17 cycle, while forward David Vazquez tallied his first.
- Forward Micah Burton made his cycle-leading 22nd appearance.
- U.S. UNDER-17 MEN’S YOUTH NATIONAL TEAM MATCH REPORT -
Match: United States Men’s Under-17 Men’s Youth National Team vs. Germany
Date: November 21, 2023
Competition: 2023 FIFA U-17 World Cup – Group E
Venue: Si Jalak Harupat Stadium; Bandung, Indonesia
Kickoff: 3:30 a.m. ET (3:30 p.m. local)
Weather: 85 degrees, cloudy
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 1 1 2
GER 2 1 3
GER – Charles Herrmann 14th minute
USA – Taha Habroune 24
GER – Max Moerstedt (Charles Herrmann) 34
USA – David Vazquez 80
GER – Bulal Yalcinkaya (Paris Brunner) 87
USA: 1-Adam Beaudry; 18-Aiden Harangi, 8-Pedro Soma (Capt.), 5-Stuart Hawkins (3-Tahir Reid-Brown, 86), 2-Oscar Verhoeven; 6-Matthew Corcoran, 14-Taha Habroune, 10-Cruz Medina (16-Santiago Morales, 86); 7-Nimfasha Berchimas (20-Bryce Jamison, 86), 17-Keyrol Figueroa (9-Micah Burton, 78), 13-Peyton Miller (11-David Vazquez, 60)
Substitutes not used: 12-Duran Ferree, 21-Zackory Campagnolo
Not eligible: 4-Tyler Hall, 5-Noahkai Banks, 19-Paulo Rudisill
Head coach: Gonzalo Segares
GER: 1-Max Schmitt; 17-Eric Da Silva Moreira, 4-Finn Jeltsch, 14-David Odogu, 13-Maximilian Hennig (2-Kurt Rüger, 86); 6-Fayssal Harchaoui (16-Winners Osawe, 63), 20-Robert Ramsak, 10-Noah Darvich (Capt.) (3-Almugera Kabar, 63); 11-Charles Herrmann, 9-Max Moerstedt (18-Bilal Yalcinkaya, 86), 7-Paris Brunner (8-Maximilian Herwerth, 90+5)
Substitutes not used: 12-Konstantin Heide, 21-Louis Babatz, 5-Maxim Dal, 15-Justin Von Der Hitz
Head coach: Christian Wüeck
Stats Summary: USA / GER
Shots: 13 / 14
Shots on Goal: 4 / 6
Saves: 3 / 2
Corner Kicks: 5 / 4
Fouls: 15 / 16
Offside: 1 / 1
GER – Finn Jeltsch (Caution) 61st minute
Referee: Ming Fu (CHN)
Assistant Referee 1: Yi Cao (CHN)
Assistant Referee 2: Ji Ma (CHN)
Fourth Official: Hyungjin Ko (KOR)
VAR: Tatiana Guzman (NCA)
AVAR 1: Angelos Evangelou (GRE)