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Global May 08, 2017

USA falls in PKs to Mexico in CONCACAF U-17 Championship final

PANAMA CITY, Panama (Via U.S. Soccer) – Having already qualified for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup, the U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team played to a 1-1 draw with Mexico before falling 5-4 on penalty kicks in the final of the 2017 CONCACAF U-17 Championship at Estadio Rommel Fernandez. The USA finishes the tournament with a 5-0-1 record and now turns its focus to preparing for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup, set for Oct. 6-28 in India.

The U.S. carried the play early on and came close to taking the lead in the 10th minute when Ayo Akinola’s opportunity was denied thanks to a last-gasp clearance from Mexico captain Luis Olivas. Mexico put their stamp on the remainder of the first half and forced two diving saves out of U.S. goalkeeper Justin Garces, ensuring that the teams went into the halftime break scoreless.

El Tri carried their momentum early in the second half, as Daniel Lopez had a what would have been the go-ahead goal called back for a handball in the 53rd minute before Jairo Torres clanged his effort off the post five minutes later.

The U.S. broke through just after the hour mark when Tim Weah won a poor clearance at the back, leading to Andrew Carleton’s blistering effort in the 62nd minute. The U.S. had chances to increase the lead, as Josh Sargent’s opportunistic run led to a point-blank save from Mexico goal keeper Cesar Lopez in the 82nd minute before Chris Goslin hit the woodwork in the 90th.

Mexico finally broke through in second-half stoppage time as Robles headed home a cross from Daniel Lopez, sending the final to penalty kicks.

The teams converted each of the first three attempts in the shootout, but the pivotal penalty kick would come in the fourth round when Akil Watts lifted his take just over the bar. After Alexis Gutierrez gave Mexico a 4-3 advantage, James Sands gave the U.S. hope in the fifth round, only to see Roberto de la Rosa send the title-winning penalty inside the right post.

Following the match, Garces was awarded the Golden Glove as the best goalkeeper of the tournament.

Up Next: The U-17 MNT will now prepare for the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup, set for Oct. 6-28 in India. John Hackworth’s side will learn its group opponents when the draw takes place July 7 in Mumbai.

U-17 MNT Results at 2017 CONCACAF U-17 Championship
Date Result Round Goal Scorers
April 23 5-0 W vs. Jamaica Group Stage Durkin, Weah, Sargent, Akinola (2)
April 26 4-3 W vs. Mexico Group Stage Sargent (2), Ferri, Akinola
April 29 1-0 W vs. El Salvador Group Stage Z. Jones
May 3 3-0 W vs. Honduras Classification Stage Sargent (2), Akinola
May 5 6-2 W vs. Cuba Classification Stage Vassilev, Carleton, Z. Jones, Reynolds, Weah, o.g.
May 7 1-1 D (4-5 PKs) vs. Mexico Final Carleton

Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Andrew Carleton (Tim Weah), 62nd minute:
The U.S. took advantage of a Mexico mistake to break the deadlock. After the Mexico back line pushed the ball around the defensive end, goalkeeper Cesar Lopez’s mishit his clearance, popping the ball up just outside the penalty area. Substitute Tim Weah alertly won the aerial challenge with Luis Olivas, heading it down for Andrew Carleton who took the ball on the hop and fired a blistering effort that evaded Lopez before sneaking inside the left post. USA 1, MEX 0 [WATCH]

MEX – Carlos Robles (Daniel Lopez), 90+2 minute: Relentless in their quest for an equalizer, Mexico would get it in dramatic fashion as Lopez’s dangerous cross from the left picked out Robles who nodded his header inside the back post to send the match to penalty kicks.

Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
MEX – Luis Olivas, 10th minute: The U.S. had the first quality chance of the game when Andrew Carleton hit a picture-perfect ball to split the Mexico back line and give Ayo Akinola a clean look at goal, but Olivas’ desperation touch at the top of the box was enough to throw off the U.S. attacker’s first touch before the ball trailed through the box.

USA – Jaylin Lindsey, 10th minute: Mexico immediately came back the other way and after a progressive build-up through midfield, Jairo Torres penetrated up the right and whipped in a cross looking for Andres Perez. Lindsey was there to meet the cross, but his header fell straight for Alexis Gutierrez, whose follow-up shot was blocked by the Sporting KC product, leading to a corner kick.

USA – Justin Garces, 26th minute: Mexico forward Daniel Lopez won the ball at midfield and quickly turned to begin a combination play with Roberto de la Rosa. After a set of passes between the two, Lopez lofted a ball into the box for his fellow striker before de la Rosa hit a right-footed effort that saw Garces produce a diving reaction stop as he pawed the ball away with his left hand.

USA – James Sands, 31st minute: A ball played over the top skipped past U.S. defender Arturo Vasquez, allowing de la Rosa to run onto it in stride. Entering the box with a clear lane to goal, the Mexico forward was undone just before his shot as Sands’ well-timed challenge at the top of the area cleared the danger.

USA – Justin Garces and Arturo Vasquez, 35th minute: Olivas’ chipped ball over the top was taken down off the chest by Torres before he powered towards goal and unleashed a low effort that forced Garces down to his left. De la Rosa collected the rebound and crossed looking for Lopez, but Vasquez nodded the ball out for a corner kick.

USA – Justin Garces, 73rd minute: Following Carleton’s strike, Mexico continued pushing for the equalizer. De la Rosa flicked on a header into the path of Alfonso Alvarado, who made his way into the box, his centering pass filtered through the legs of Chris Durkin before de la Rosa let off a one-time blast that Garces bravely turned away to keep the advantage.

MEX – Cesar Lopez, 82nd minute: With Mexico pushing more numbers forward, the USA nearly put the game on ice when Josh Sargent latched onto a lazy ball at the back. The U.S. captain fended off challenges from Olivas and Carlos Robles before seeing his tight-angle shot from the right well saved by Lopez.


  • The USA is now 1-4-3 all-time vs. Mexico in CONCACAF U-17 Championship play.
  • With the result, John Hackworth moves to 9-1-2 all-time in U-17 World Cup Qualifying matches.
  • Justin Garces was awarded the Golden Glove as the tournament’s best goalkeeper.
  • S. captain Josh Sargent finished as the tournament’s third leading goal scorer with five goals.
  • Ayo Akinola finished tied for fourth on the scoring chart with four goals.

– U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team Match Report –

Match: U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team vs. Mexico
Date: May 7, 2017
Competition: 2017 CONCACAF U-17 Championship – Final
Venue: Estadio Rommel Fernández; Panamá City, Panamá
Kickoff: 3 p.m. CT
Attendance: 233
Weather: 84 degrees; mostly cloudy

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

USA – Andrew Carleton (Tim Weah)        62nd minute
MEX – Carlos Robles (Daniel Lopez)       90+2

Penalty Summary:
USA: Josh Sargent (goal), Tim Weah (goal), Chris Goslin (goal), Akil Watts (missed), James Sands (goal)
MEX: Daniel Lopez (goal), Carlos Robles (goal), Jairo Torres (goal), Alexis Gutierrez (goal), Roberto De La Rosa (goal)
U.S. loses 4-5 on PKs

USA: 1-Justin Garces; 2-Jaylin Lindsey, 4-James Sands, 5-Arturo Vasquez, 3-Chris Gloster; 8-Blaine Ferri (17-Bryan Reynolds, 80), 6-Chris Durkin, 14-Chris Goslin, 7-Ayo Akinola (19-Tim Weah, 56), 9-Josh Sargent (capt.), 11-Andrew Carleton (13-Akil Watts, 86)
Subs not used: 10-George Acosta, 12-Carlos Dos Santos, 15-Zyen Jones, 16-Taylor Booth, 18-Indiana Vassilev, 20-Adrian Villegas
Head coach: John Hackworth

MEX: 12-Cesar Lopez; 2-Adrian Vazquez, 3-Carlos Robles, 4-Luis Olivas (capt.), 5-Raul Sandoval (15-Andres Catalan, 7); 7-Jairo Torres, 16-Marco Ruiz (19-Cesar Huerta, 23), 8-Alexis Gutierrez, 11-Andres Perez (20-Alfonso Alvarado, 53); 10-Roberto De La Rosa, 9-Daniel Lopez
Subs not used: 1-Andre Alcaraz, 6-Luis Gamiz, 13-Haret Ortega, 14-Alan Maeda, 17-Carlos Guerrero, 18-Victor Reyes
Head coach: Mario Alberto Arteaga

Stats Summary: USA / MEX
Shots: 12 / 19
Shots on Goal: 4 / 4
Saves: 3 / 3
Corner Kicks: 1 / 8
Fouls: 19 / 16
Offside: 0 / 4

Misconduct Summary:
USA – Tim Weah (caution)     83rd minute

Referee: Hector Martinez (HON)
Assistant Referee 1: David Moran (SLV)
Assistant Referee 2: Kevin Stephens (GUY)
4th Official: Ismael Cornejo (SLV) Man of the Match: Andrew Carleton

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