USA to face Ghana, Netherlands and Japan in 2022 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup
CHICAGO – The U.S. Under-20 Women’s Youth National Team will face Ghana, Netherlands and Japan in Group D at the upcoming 2022 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup, which will take place Aug. 10-28 in Costa Rica. The final draw for the competition took place today at the National Theatre in San Jose, Costa Rica.
The USA opens the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup on Thursday, Aug. 11 against Ghana, faces the Netherlands on Sunday, Aug. 14 and finishes the group stage vs. Japan on Wednesday, Aug. 17. The U.S. will play its first and third group games at Estadio Alejandro Morera Soto in Alajuela, Costa Rica and its second group game at the Estadio Nacional in San José.
“We can’t wait to take on the challenge of a World Cup,” said U.S. U-20 WYNT head coach Tracey Kevins. “I’m excited by our draw and the chance to take on some of the world’s best teams. To play the reigning champion in Japan, a rising European power in the Netherlands and an always dangerous African squad in Ghana is an incredible opportunity for our players. We have an expectation of excellence in our Women’s National Team program and we’ll be preparing every day until August 11 to give our best possible performance in Costa Rica.”
2022 FIFA U-20 WOMEN’S WORLD CUP GROUP D SCHEDULE
|Thursday, Aug. 11||USA vs. Ghana||Estadio Alejandro Morera Soto; Alajuela, Costa Rica|
|Sunday, Aug. 14||USA vs. Netherlands||Estadio Nacional; San José, Costa Rica|
|Wednesday, Aug. 17||USA vs. Japan||Estadio Alejandro Morera Soto; Alajuela, Costa Rica|
The USA qualified for the World Cup by winning its record seventh Concacaf Women’s U-20 Championship in dominant fashion this March, rattling off seven straight victories and a 49-0 goal differential. The U.S. is one of four nations to compete in all 10 editions of the U-20 Women’s World Cup, winning the tournament in 2002, 2008 and 2012, which is tied for the most-ever world championships at this age level.
The 2022 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup features 16 countries divided into four groups of four teams. The top two finishers in each group will advance to the quarterfinals on Saturday, Aug. 20 and Sunday, Aug. 21. The semifinals will take place on Thursday, Aug. 25, while the World Cup Final is set for Sunday, Aug. 28.
|Group A||Group B||Group C||Group D|
Should the USA advance to the quarterfinals, it would face a team from Group C.
The USA was drawn out of Pot 2 that also contained Nigeria, Spain and Mexico. Teams were sorted into pots based on a ranking determined by success in the last five FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cups, with more recent tournament results weighted more heavily, as well as performance in Confederation qualifying tournaments.
Costa Rica 2022 is the 10th overall world championship for this age group. The first two were held as the FIFA U-19 Women’s World Championship before the competition was moved to the U-20 level for the 2006 tournament and it assumed its current name in 2008. A number of current USWNT players have used the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup as a springboard to the senior team. From the USA’s 2018 U-20 WWC Team, Emily Fox, Naomi Girma, Jaelin Howell, Ashley Sanchez and Sophia Smith have made their full USWNT debuts.
Japan is a historical powerhouse on the women’s youth level and is the only nation to win FIFA Women’s World Cups at the senior, U-20 and U-17 levels. Japan is the reigning U-20 Women’s World Cup champions and this will be the third-straight tournament in which the USA and Japan will square off. The USA suffered 1-0 losses in the 2018 group stage and 2016 Third-Place Match.
Netherlands is making just its second U-20 WWC appearance after debuting at the 2018 competition.
Ghana has faced the USA in three of its previous five appearances at the U-20 Women’s World Cup, with the U.S. holding a 1-0-2 record. The U-20 WYNT’s lone win, a 4-0 victory, kicked off the USA’s run to the world championship at Japan 2012, while a 1-1 group stage draw at Papua New Guinea 2016 helped the U.S. narrowly advance to the quarterfinals.