USA Falls to Mexico in U17 Concacaf Final

USA Falls to Mexico in U17 Concacaf Final
by Travis Clark
February 27, 2023
Players featured in this article:
MF | Austin FC
GK | San Diego FC
Adrian Gill |  2024
MF | FC Barcelona
MF | Crew Academy
Tyler Hall |  2024
D | Inter Miami CF
D | Seattle Sounders
Sawyer Jura |  2024
D | Portland Timbers
Cruz Medina |  2024
F | San Jose
MF | Feyenoord
Pedro Soma |  2024
MF | U.E. Cornella
MF | Phil. Union
D | San Jose

The United States Under-17 Men’s National Team came up short in the final of the Concacaf Championship, falling 3-1 at the hands of Mexico on Sunday.

Playing the second game in three days, the U.S. conceded early goals in each half, unable to unlock the Mexican defense in the final 20 minutes of the game.

Stephano Carrillo converted a penalty kick in the 10th minute, and Luis Navarrete’s 51st minute goal provided the eventual winning tally. Pedro Soma’s excellent header served as consolation for the USA, and Isaac Martinez converted another penalty kick in second half stoppage time.

It was a relatively even start to the match, as both sides traded possession for early stretches. Mexico earned the early spot kick when U.S. goalkeeper Duran Ferree was just a bit late to collect a header from Sawyer Jura.

Mexico goalkeeper Norberto Bedolla ensured that his side held the lead at the half, saving the best U.S. chance of the game in the 41st minute. A well-worked move between Cruz Medina, Oscar Verhoeven and Taha Habroune ended up with Medina’s low shot turned aside by Bedolla.

Navarette made it a 2-0 lead six minutes into the second half. A short corner was served into the box and the center back glanced it past Ferree without even looking.

The U.S. struck back from a set piece. Keyrol Figueroa had his shot saved in the 68th minute after brilliant individual work, earning a corner. From the ensuing service, Soma glanced home the header to give the U.S. life.

That jolted the U.S. to life a bit. Substitute Chris Aquino had a gold chance to tie the game a couple of minutes later, but he stayed underneath a bouncing ball, volleying over the bar.

Pushing forward in the game’s final 15 minutes the U.S. was able to carve out chances. Paulo Rudisill stung the gloves of Bedolla in the 76th minute. Verhoeven had an excellent left-footed effort turned aside in the 79th minute. A Figuera header was guided just wide four minutes later.

With the U.S. pushing forward for a tying goal, Mexico won a late penalty in the 89th minute; Ferree was sent off after receiving a second yellow. Stuart Hawkins moved into goal, with the U.S. out of subs, but captain Isaac Martinez converted the spot kick to make it a 3-1 game.

Both sides have already advanced to this year's Under-17 World Cup, scheduled for this November in Peru.

U.S. Lineup: Duran Ferree; Sawyer Jura (Aiden Harangi); Tyler Hall, Stuart Hawkins, Oscar Verhoeven (Adrian Gill); Pedro Soma, Cruz Medina, Taha Habroune (Chris Aquino); David Vazquez (Paulo Rudisill), Keyrol Figueroa, Brian Carmona (Micah Burton)

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