NEW DELHI, India (Via U.S. Soccer) – The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team continued its impressive performance at the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup, advancing to the Quarterfinal Round with an emphatic 5-0 win against Paraguay before 34,895 fans at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
Led by a historic hat trick from Tim Weah, the USA rode a strong defensive performance in the first half and a breakout offensive display in the second to its second all-time win in the Knockout Round and first Quarterfinal appearance since 2005. Captain Josh Sargent and midfield maestro Andrew Carleton also scored for the USA, while Chris Durkin, James Sands and goalkeeper Justin Garces anchored a U.S. defense that recorded its third clean sheet in four games at the tournament as well as the USA’s first ever shutout in a Knockout Round game.
The teams traded opportunities at the start of the match before the U.S. began to establish possession and attack down the flanks, in particular via overlapping runs from Sergino Dest. The offensive posture paid off in the 19th minute when Weah, son of former FIFA World Player of the Year George Weah, staked the USA to a 1-0 lead.
From there, the physicality of the match picked up. Blaine Ferri took a knock after a tough challenge and after trying to gut it out had to be replaced by Indiana Vassilev in the 34th minute. Additionally, Chris Durkin, whose grit and hustle in midfield helped shield the U.S. backline, picked up a yellow card that will see him miss the USA’s Quarterfinal match.
The U.S. fought to halftime with the 1-0 lead before Weah added his second with an outrageous shot into the upper left-hand corner in the 53rd minute. Ten minutes later Carleton, put the USA out of sight by finishing off a well-orchestrated offensive flurry. Sargent then made it 4-0 in the 74th minute with a thunderous finish before Weah capped the scoring and his hattrick with the USA’s fifth a couple minutes later.
Up Next: The USA advances to a Quarterfinal showdown against the winner of Tuesday’s match between England and Japan at Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 21 in Goa (10:30 a.m. ET; FS2, Telemundo).
Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Tim Weah (Ayo Akinola), 19th minute: A great bit of build-up play by Josh Sargent and Andrew Carleton saw the latter send a perfectly weighted through ball into space for Ayo Akinola to run onto before carrying into the left side of the Paraguay box. There, he picked out Weah’s run right down the center of the area with a pin-point pass. Weah expertly shuffled his stride in order to apply a controlled finishing touch with his left foot to score his first goal of the World Cup. USA 1, PAR 0
USA – Tim Weah (Indiana Vassilev), 53rd minute: Sargent collected a 50-50 ball in midfield and left it for Vassilev with a nifty back heel. With plenty of time to pick out a pass, Vassilev sent the ball out wide to Weah on Paraguay’s right flank. The Paris Saint Germain man beat his defender one-on-one before riffling a shot into the upper left corner that left Diego Huesca no chance in the Paraguay net. USA 2, PAR 0
USA – Andrew Carleton (Josh Sargent), 63rd minute: The U.S. overloaded the Paraguay left flank as Akinola connected with Akil Watts on an overlapping run. Watts rounded his defender with pace and found Sargent stationed in the middle of the box. Shielding off his defender, Sargent turned away from goal and played a pass to the top of the box for Carleton’s late run and the Atlanta United man one-timed a low shot into the left corner. USA 3, PAR 0
USA – Josh Sargent (Andrew Carleton), 74th minute: Another nice build-up from the USA began with Sargent dropping the ball for Carleton and then continuing his run behind his marker. Carleton spotted the move and played a perfectly timed ball into the box for Sargent, who took one touch before blasting a close-range effort off the underside of the bar. USA 4, PAR 0
USA – Tim Weah (Andrew Carleton), 77th minute: Akinola got on the ball near the midfield stripe and carried into the final third before two Paraguay defenders converged to stop him. However, the ball slipped through to Carleton, who snuck a peek across the Paraguay box before centering for Weah to one-time his third finish of the day over Huesca. USA 5, PAR 0 FINAL
Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
PAR – Diego Huesca, 44th minute: The USA won a free kick 40 yards from goal that Chris Goslin rocketed off the crossbar after the slightest of touches from Huesca.
PAR – Marcelo Rolon, 45+3: A crafty throw-in from Sergino Dest deep in the Paraguay end found Carleton behind the defense. There he lifted a perfect cross from near the left end line to the far post for an unmarked Akinola, who couldn’t get a firm enough touch to the ball, allowing Marcelo Rolon to recover and clear it off the line just before Akinola could apply a second, finishing touch.
– U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team Match Report –
Match: U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team vs. Paraguay
Date: Oct. 16, 2017
Competition: FIFA U-17 World Cup – Round of 16
Venue: Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium; New Dehli, India
Kickoff: 10:30 a.m. ET (8 p.m. local)
Weather: 83 degrees; haze
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
USA 1 4 5
PAR 0 0 0
USA – Tim Weah (Ayo Akinola) 19th minute
USA – Tim Weah (Indiana Vassilev) 53
USA – Andrew Carleton (Josh Sargent) 63
USA – Josh Sargent (Andrew Carleton) 75
USA – Tim Weah (Andrew Carleton) 77
USA: 1-Justin Garces, 4-James Sands, 6-Chris Durkin, 7-Ayo Akinola (16-Taylor Booth, 79), 8-Blaine Ferri (18-Indiana Vassilev, 34), 9-Josh Sargent (Capt.), 10-Tim Weah, 11-Andrew Carleton, 13-Sergino Dest (3-Chris Gloster, 46), 14-Akil Watts, 20-Chris Goslin
Subs Not Used: 2-Jaylin Lindsey, 5-Tyler Shaver, 12-CJ Dos Santos, 15-George Acosta, 17-Bryan Reynolds, 19-Jacobo Reyes, 21-Alex Budnik
Head Coach: John Hackworth
PAR: 1-Diego Huesca, 2-Jesus Rolon, 3-Roberto Fernandez, 5-Alexis Duarte (Capt.), 6-Braian Ojeda, 7-Antonio Galeano (9-Fernando Romero, 30), 10-Julio Baez (20-Giovanni Bogado, 78), 11-Leonardo Sanchez, 13-Marcelo Rolon, 17-Fernando Cardozo (18-Blas Armoa, 55), 21-Alan Rodriguez
Subs Not Used: 4-Pedro Alvarez, 8-Stevens Gomez, 12-Angel Roa, 14-Victor Villasanti, 15-Luis Zarate, 16-Anibal Vega, 19-Jonathan Martinez
Head Coach: Gustavo Morinigo
Stats Summary: USA/PAR
Shots on Goal: 6/1
Corner Kicks: 0/4
USA – James Sands (Caution) 14th minute
USA – Chris Goslin (Caution) 27
USA – Josh Sargent (Caution) 65
Referee: Ovidiu Hategan (ROU)
Assistant Referee 1: Octavian Sovre (ROU)
Assistant Referee 2: Sebastian Gheorghe (ROU)
Fourth Official: Robert Madden (SCO)
ussoccer.com Man of the Match: Tim Weah