USA to kickoff Concacaf Women’s U-17 Championship on April 23
CHICAGO – The U.S. Under-17 Women’s Youth National Team will face Grenada, Costa Rica and Puerto Rico in Group G at the 2022 Concacaf Women’s U-17 Championship, set for April 23-May 8 in the Dominican Republic.
The top three finishers in the tournament will advance to represent the region at the 2022 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in India.
All the tournament matches will be broadcast in English on Fox Soccer Plus or FS2 and on the Fox Sports app with corresponding authentication. All matches will be available in Spanish on TelevisaUnivision’s new streaming service ViX. Fans can download the app on their devices to watch all games.
The U.S. opens the World Cup qualifying competition against Grenada on Saturday, April 23 (Fox Soccer Plus, ViX), faces Puerto Rico on Monday, April 25 (FS2, ViX) and finishes group play against Costa Rica on Wednesday, April 27 (FS2, ViX). All of the USA’s group matches will kick-off at 4 p.m. ET.
Due to the cancellation of U.S. Soccer’s YNT programing over most of 2020 and 2021 due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, these will be the first-ever U-17 international matches for this group of players. The U.S. U-17 WYNT age group has not played an international match since Feb. 22, 2020, a 2-0 victory against England in Bradenton, Fla. Just over two weeks later, the sporting world shut down due to COVID-19 and eventually the 2020 Concacaf Women’s U-17 Championship and the 2020 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup were cancelled.
The U.S. U-17s reconvened for the first times since February 2020 for training camps in October and November of last year in San Diego, and in February of this year in Florida.
Like the Concacaf Women’s U-20 Championship that took place this past February and March, all 40 tournament matches will take place at two stadiums in the Dominican Republic – Estadio Olimpico Felix Sanchez in Santo Domingo and Estadio Panamericano in San Cristobal.
“This is a young group just starting their international careers, but in the brief time we’ve had to work together, I’ve seen a team with some big personalities that is highly competitive, committed to growing individually and working hard to come together as a unit,” said U.S. U-17 WYNT head coach Natalia Astrain, who served as an assistant coach for the U.S. U-20 WYNT during its successful qualification and regional title-winning campaign in the Dominican Republic. “The opportunity to jump into a tournament like this is a big challenge that all the players and staff are really looking forward to.”
Astrain will take a roster of 22 players into a pre-tournament training camp in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., running from April 14-19 and will then choose a roster of 20 players to travel to the Dominican Republic.
The tournament format is the same as it was for the U-20 competition. After round-robin play, the top three teams in each group will advance to the 16-team knockout stage that will run from April 30-May 8 where they will be joined by the four best teams (Guyana, Honduras, Curaçao and Saint Kitts & Nevis) from the preliminary qualifying round. The tournament’s top two finishers, plus the winner of the Third Place Match, will advance to the 2022 FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup, to be held in India in October.
The Round of 16 matches will take place on Saturday, April 30 and Sunday, May 1, while the quarterfinals are set for Wednesday, May 4. The semifinal games will take place on Friday, May 6 and the confederation champion will be crowned on Sunday, May 8. The final U-17 Women’s World Cup berth will also be determined in the Third Place Match that day.
USA – GROUP G SCHEDULE – 2022 CONCACAF WOMEN’S U-17 CHAMPIONSHIP
|Date||Match-up||Kickoff (ET) / TV||Venue|
|Saturday, April 23||USA vs. Grenada||4 p.m. / Fox Soccer Plus, ViX App in Spanish||Estadio Panamericano|
|Monday, April 25||USA vs. Puerto Rico||4 p.m. / FS2, ViX App in Spanish||Estadio Panamericano|
|Wednesday, April 27||USA vs. Costa Rica||4 p.m. / FS2, ViX App in Spanish||Estadio Olimpico Felix Sanchez|
The top four teams in the Concacaf Women’s U-17 rankings – Mexico, Canada, USA and Haiti – were seeded for the draw into Groups E through H. The full listing of groups is below:
|Group E||Group F||Group G||Group H|
|Mexico (MEX)||Canada (CAN)||United States (USA)||Haiti (HAI)|
|Trinidad & Tobago (TRI)||Jamaica (JAM)||Costa Rica (CRC)||Guatemala (GUA)|
|Panama (PAN)||Bermuda (BER)||Puerto Rico (PUR)||El Salvador (SLV)|
|Nicaragua (NCA)||Dominican Republic (DOM)||Grenada (GRN)||Cuba (CUB)|
Groups A, B and C (there were not enough teams to fill out a Group D) were contested as pre-qualifying with each group winner advancing directly to the knockout round of the tournament proper along with the best second-place team. The Group A winner was St. Kitts and Nevis, Group B was won by Curaçao, Group C was topped by Honduras and Guyana finished behind Honduras to earn a berth as the best second-place team.
The U.S. will be playing to win its fifth Concacaf U-17 Women’s Championship – and third in a row — after winning this tournament in 2008, 2012, 2016 and 2018. The two Concacaf Women’s U-17 Championships at which the USA finished third – in 2010 and 2014 – were both years in which the World Cup was held in Concacaf countries and thus only two berths from the region were up for grabs.
Seven countries have qualified for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup thus far. In addition to host India, China PR and Japan have qualified from Asia via nominations by Asian Football Confederation based on results of 2019 AFC U-16 Women’s Championship after the U-17 qualifying tournament was cancelled. Brazil, Chile and Colombia have qualified from the recently completed 2022 South American U-17 Women’s Championship while New Zealand was nominated by the Oceania Football Confederation after their qualifying tournament was also cancelled. Nine berths remain to be filled, three each from Concacaf, Africa and Europe.