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U.S. U-17 MNT draws Brazil 1-1 to close Nike Friendlies

LAKEWOOD RANCH, Fla. (Via U.S. Soccer) – The U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team utilized a 53rd minute equalizer from Diego Lopez to draw 1-1 with Brazil in a tight contest to close out the 2017 Men’s Nike International Friendlies. With the tie, Brazil clinches the tournament title.

The USA came out with pressure and managed some nice runs into the Brazilian final third, but struggled making the final pass into the box. After a few threatening chances for Brazil, a 14th minute yellow card on the USA gave the Canahrinha a free kick in a dangerous position. Gustavo sent a booming ball into the box from the right that found Alysson free and the defender rifled in a well-hit header to open the scoring. The red, white and blue found success in the build-up forward as the half wore on, but the Brazilian defense made it difficult to penetrate in front of the net.

While the first half saw the teams combine for just two shots on goal, the offenses were reinvigorated after the break. Three substitutions fueled some quick attacking for Brazil, but the U.S. began to hold more possession and find success with a high press, earning quality chances and knocking on the door of the goal line.

+READ: Netherlands routs U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team 5-1

The USA finally broke through in the 53rd minute. After earning a corner kick, Gilbert Fuentes Perez launched a long service to a cluster of U.S. players behind the crowd in the box. Axel Alejandre rose at the top of the box to his head on the ball and Diego Lopez redirected the effort near the goal line to even the score.

There were several dangerous opportunities for the USA to nab the game-winner, but the they were unable to convert. A great service by Joseph Scally gave Ray Serrano a chance on goal and the high press gave Lopez an opportunity for his second goal, but both attempts were swallowed by Bruno Carcaioli. In the final minutes of stoppage time, the USA earned a free kick 25 yards out, but Gianluca Busio’s attempt was batted down by the Brazilian wall.

With the draw, Brazil wins the 2017 Men’s Nike International Friendlies. It’s Brazil’s first tournament championship since 2014

2017 Mens Nike International Friendlies Standings
Team GP W L D Pts. GF GA GD
Brazil 3 2 0 1 7 5 3 +2
Netherlands 3 2 1 0 6 8 4 +4
England 3 1 2 0 3 3 5 -2
USA 3 0 2 1 1 2 6 -4

Goal Scoring Rundown

BRA – Alysson (Gustavo), 15th minute: After a yellow card was shown to Peter Stroud for a foul on the right side, Brazil earned a free kick near the corner of the 18-yard box. Gustavo launched a soaring entry into the box, where Alysson broke free in the back of the scrum, nailing a well-timed header past the outstretched arms of goalkeeper Damian Las to put Brazil on the board. USA 0, BRA 1 

USA – Diego Lopez (Axel Alejandre), 53rd minute: Off a long ball from Adam Saldana, Alfonso Ocampo Chavez made a dangerous run into Brazilian territory. The defense cleared it, but granted the USA a corner kick. Gilbert Fuentes Perez lined up to take it, and he hit a long ball that found a group of USA players behind the crowd. Axel Alejandre got his head on it and Diego Lopez, posted near the goal line, drove it home to tie things up. USA 1, BRA 1 

Key Saves and Defensive Stops

USA – Damian Las, 4th minute: On Brazil’s first dangerous entry deep into U.S. territory, Wesley played out of the corner to Gustavo where the defender re-centered for Bruno Conceicao. Rotating the ball inside the 18-yard-line, Conceicao tapped it to Emerson, who made a sliding play to Bruno Bortolotti lurking near the left post. Bortolotti’s touch was a bit too much, and Las pounced on the ball to make an early save.

USA – George Bello, 46th minute: Buoyed by the fresh legs of three substitutions, Brazil got the second half off to a quick start. An interchange between Alejandro, Giovanni and Emerson saw Alejandro on the move towards the net before dishing out to Emerson making a run on the wing. He sent a cross parallel to the goal line, but Bello came in to squash the attempt near the post.

BRA – Bruno Carcaioli, 57th minute: Gianluca Busio played all the way across the field to Joseph Scally on the right wing with plenty of space. There, Scally sent a booming ball into the box towards two on-rushing American attackers, but Brazilian ‘keeper Carcaioli dove to bat away the attempt. Fuentes Perez got a touch on the rebound, but the Brazilian defense managed to clear.

BRA – Bruno Carcaioli, 61st minute: Playing up top, Lopez pressed relentlessly as Brazil attempted to begin a possession out of the back. After nearly swiping the ball from the Brazilian ‘keeper, Carcaioli played to Alysson. Lopez swooped in and won the ball from the defender, quickly turning and teeing up a shot, but Carcaioli slid in to halt the attempt and Dhouglas cleared the rebound.

BRA – Bruno Carcaioli, 77th minute: As Brazil began a build-up in its own end, Chavez came up with an errant pass. He played to Saldana, who wheeled around a defender and played it back to Chavez on the right wing. The Seattle Sounders FC forward sent a booming service into the box to meet the feet of Serrano, but Carcaioli swallowed the rolling attempt.

– 2017 Men’s Nike International Friendlies Match Report –

Match: U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team vs. Brazil
Date: Dec. 3, 2017
Competition: 2017 Men’s Nike International Friendlies
Venue: Premier Sports Campus Stadium Field
Kickoff: 5 p.m. ET
Attendance: 1,807
Weather: 72 degrees, partly cloudy

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

BRA – Alysson (Gustavo)                              15th minute
USA – Diego Lopez (Axel Alejandre)              53

Lineups:
USA: 1-Damien Las; 2-Joseph Scally, 4-Mason Judge, 5-Axel Alejandre, 3-George Bello; 6-Peter Stroud, 7-Gilbert Fuentes Perez (18-Ray Serrano 71), 8-Adam Saldana; 11-Cade Hagan (19-Diego Lopez, 52), 9-Alfonso Ocampo Chavez, 10-Gianluca Busio (capt.)
Substitutes not used: 12-Kasophe Oladapo, 13-Sebastian Anderson, 14-Kenneth Nielsen, 15-Maximillian Goeggel, 16-Joshua Atencio, 17-Dante Sealy, , 20-Julian Gaines
Head coach: John Hackworth

BRA: 1-Bruno Carcaioli; 2-Gustavo, 3-Derick, 4-Alysson (capt.), 6-Maranyao; 20-Wesley (10-Giovanni, 41), 8-Hiago (5-Sandry, 65) 15-Dhouglas, 7-Miguel (13-Yago, 54); 17-Bruno Conceicão (11-Alejandro, 41), 19-Bruno (9-Lazaro, 41; 14-Deivid, 80+2)
Substitutes not used: 12-Pedro Henrique, 16-Gabriel Rodrigues, 18-Gabriel Borsatto
Head coach: Carlos Guilherme Della Dea

Stats Summary: USA / BRA
Shots: 14 / 11
Shots on Goal: 4 / 4
Saves: 3 / 3
Corner Kicks: 6 / 2
Fouls: 13 / 11
Offside: 2 / 2

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Peter Stroud (caution)             14th minute
BRA – Hiago (caution)                        63
BRA – Giovanni (caution)                   78
USA – Gianluca Busio (caution)         80+2

Officials: 
Referee: Ramy Touchan (USA)
Assistant Referee 1: John Krill (USA)
Assistant Referee 2: Tom Felice (USA)
Fourth Official: Resendo Mendoza (USA)

The game was played with two 40-minute halves