The U.S. U20 Men’s National Team used goals from Luis Gil, Jose Villarreal, and Wil Trapp to top Canada 4-2 in the crucial quarterfinal fixture at the CONCACAF Championship and clinch a spot at the World Cup in Turkey.
The Canucks opened the scoring with a scorching shot from 30 yards out off the boot of Dylan Carreiro.
U.S. responded well from the goal and put three on the board before the break. Gil grabbed the equalizer when he got on the end of a cross from Daniel Cuevas.
Villarreal notched the second thanks to an assist from Mario Rodriguez. The LA Galaxy Homegrown product was unmarked in the box and easily directed the cross into the net.
Trapp’s deflected shot off a corner kick from 30 yards out was the final tally of the opening half.
Villarreal notched his third goal of the tournament early in the second half, which effectively put the game out of reach.
Samuel Piette had the last tally of the high-scoring affair. The Canadian punished a poor clearance by Trapp on a corner kick with a rousing strike from 22 yards out into the upper corner of the net.
U.S. will meet the winner of Costa Rica/Cuba in the semifinal. However, the Americans will be short handed as Gil and starting goalkeeper Cody Cropper flew back to their respective clubs following the quarterfinal game.
Player Ratings (0-10)
GK Cody Cropper, 5: Cropper’s positioning was off on the first Canada goal, and there was nothing he could do on the second strike. It was a fairly quiet outing beyond that for the U.S. keeper.
D Boyd Okwuonu, 4: Another game where the North Carolina defender struggled at the right back spot. Okwuonu gave away possession too often and was beat on the dribble a few times.
D Caleb Stanko, 5: Stanko’s poor passing led to the first goal for Canada. His positioning is still a work in progress as well.
D Shane O'Neill, 5: Like Stanko, O’Neill is still very raw as a center back. He was caught out of position on a couple of diagonal balls by Canada in the final third.
D Juan Pablo Ocegueda, 6: The Chivas left back definitely offered more going forward than his counterpart on the other flank and contributed to the second goal for the U.S.
M Wil Trapp, 5: His lack of pressure on the ball was an issue on the first goal for Canada. His header from the near post into the center of the field on the second goal was the only mistake for the U.S. on the second goal. He made up for those errors, partially, with his goal.
M Benji Joya, 6: The freedom on the right wing helped Joya become more involved in the second half of the game. His pass set up Villarreal’s second of the game.
M Luis Gil, 7: The Real Salt Lake midfielder jumpstarted the U.S. comeback with his goal only minutes after Canada’s opener. Gil’s composure really set the tone for the group and helped see them through to the World Cup.
F Daniel Cuevas, 6: There were glimpses when Cuevas looked like he was going to run through all of Canada’s defense, but it never materialized. He did well on the opening assist.
F Jose Villarreal, 8: The Galaxy attacker was the main weapon for the U.S. on the day and unlucky not to grab a hat trick for his work. His goals were well taken.
F Mario Rodriguez, 6: Tuesday was easily the best game of the tournament from Rodriguez. He adds toughness to the team that it lacks from the front line.
Danny Garcia, 5: Garcia should have been more selfish with his chance late in the game. The FC Dallas Academy product could have put in the fifth for the U.S.
Dillon Serna, N/R: The recent Homegrown signing for the Colorado Rapids only had a few minutes at the end of the game to make his mark. He nearly scored though in stoppage time, but his shot hit off the crossbar.