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Ramos names heavy international-based squad for U.S. U-20 camp in Italy

Tab Ramos

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U.S. Under-20 head coach Tab Ramos has announced his first squad since the FIFA Under-20 World Cup this past summer, and it’s loaded with youngsters plying their trade both professionally and overseas.

A whopping 50 percent of the squad selected by Ramos for a camp in Verona, Italy from November 10-20 play for various clubs in Europe, including Romain Gall with FC Lorient, Emerson Hyndman with Fulham FC, and Junior Flores with Borussia Dortmund. The 22-man U.S. squad will face the Hellas Verona U-20 side, the Iranian U-20 team, and another opponent to be determined during the 11-day trip to Italy.

Six players in the U.S. team are members of Major League Soccer clubs, with Amando Moreno, Matt Miazga, and Santiago Castaño members of the New York Red Bulls organization. Zach Pfeffer, a homegrown signing for the Philadelphia Union, is on-loan with TSG Hoffenheim in Germany. FC Dallas’ Kellyn Acosta is the only returning member from the last U-20 cycle.

In addition to the 22-player squad, Ramos has added Clint Mathis and Tony Meola to Ramos’ training staff during the camp’s duration.

Here’s a closer look at the U.S. Under-20 squad for their November camp in Italy:


GOALKEEPERS: Santiago Castano (New York Red Bulls; Union City, N.J.), Ethan Horvath (Molde FK; Highlands Ranch, Colo.)

DEFENDERS: Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas; Plano, Texas), Conor Donovan (Capital Area RailHawks Academy; Fuquay Varina, N.C.), Matias Fracchia (NJSA 04; Roselle Park, N.J.), Matthew Miazga (New York Red Bulls; Clifton, N.J.), Shaquell Moore (IMG Academy; Powder Springs, Ga.), John Requejo Jr. (Real So Cal; Carpinteria, Calif.)

MIDFIELDERS: Russell Canouse (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim; Lancaster, Pa.), Marco Delgado (Chivas USA; Glendora, Calif.), Junior Flores (Borussia Dortmund; Manassas Park, Va.), Romain Gall (FC Lorient; Herndon, Va.), Lynden Gooch (Sunderland AFC; Santa Cruz, Calif.), Emerson Hyndman (Fulham FC; Plano, Texas), Kristian Scott (Swansea City AFC; Winterbourne, Bristol), Omar Thompson (Wigan Athletic; Miami, Fla.)

FORWARDS: Kainoa Bailey (Bayer 04 Leverkusen; Henderson, Nev.), Benji Lopez (Real Salt Lake; San Diego, Calif.), Amando Moreno (New York Red Bulls; Morganville, N.J.), Zach Pfeffer (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim; Dresher, Pa.), Rubio Rubin (Unattached; Beaverton, Ore.), Ben Spencer (Molde FK; Albuquerque, N.M.)


What do you think of this squad? Excited about the potential of some of the youngsters? Which players are you most looking forward to seeing how they fare?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. US Youth Soccer Program is going to bankrupt due to incompetent coaches and leadership (except 2012 WNT U20 coach). I like Tab Ramos as a player but making him as U20 coach is a joke. All others U17, U20, U23 both men and women coaches are garbage including youth directors. They failed in every subject: selection, line-up and tactical. They and their bosses all should be fired.

    • I think your concerns of bankruptcy are more metaphorical, but I’m actually worried about the state of USSOCCER’s finances. They had a rough go with the 2008 crash and their investments haven’t done so very well since. Really do need more money friendlies or some better TV or sponsor/partner money.

      • I agreed but money will not come with poor and lousy performances. USSoccer hired many incompetence coaches and directors, USSC hired their buddies and those have absolutely no future vision. Look at WNT if they do not change the roster and tactic they will not go far. I like the philosophy of Klinsman “nobody safe, every player must raise their bar”, he has been fair to all players.

      • What do you know about the USSF finances? Let us know and share your sources.

        What were their investments, and how have they failed?

      • Darwin, I have no knowledge about USSF financial, I think Jacobian may know. I just response to his comment regarding his worries & US youth program.
        Hope Jacobian can provide some info

  2. wish Kyle Scott was called up (kristian scott’s younger brother) he is the next big thing, might even get signed to real madrid or barca.

  3. Love starting new cycles with teams. There is always so much optimism and speculation. Here’s hoping that this crew of young players develop well and make a splash at their clubs and with the youth national team.

  4. Why isn’t John Anthony Brooks being called up for the US U-20 team? Brooks is not yet ready for the USMNT. He has lost his starting position for Hertha Berlin and playing on the U-20 team would be helpful in getting him adjusted to the international game yp prepare him for the move up to the USMNT when he is ready.

    • not eligible. also, did he really lose his spot because of form/ability or because of injury? i just read something (yesterday?) which claimed the coach said he was finally back to training. maybe it was the JK interview and he was relaying information? can’t remember.

    • This is the start of the new cycle. unfortunately Brooks is not age eligible for this new cycle. Brooks didn’t lose his spot due to form, he lost his spot due to an injury. And after last weekends defensive debacle by Hertha I would guess he is in line to start this weekend. Klinsmann seems to think he is ready for the USMNT, hence why Klinsmann already stated that Brooks is being called up next week. Fortunately the only opinion that matters when it comes to player selection is Klinsmann’s and not fans.

  5. Is Rubin really unattached? What happened at Utrecht? Any chance he might sign a GA deal with MLS — or is he Timbers’ property?

  6. Am I the only one that everytime I see a picture of Tab Ramos all I can imagine is him doing pushups in an empty gym and eating a snickers???

  7. Since the present u-20s lost (to Ghana, who else?) at the 2012 WC in Turkey, I am pretty sure Ramos is now selecting only players who were born in 2015 or before and will be age eligible in 2015 for the U-20 WC that will be held in New Zealand. Gil, Yedlin and a host of others who are eligible this year will not be in 2 years. Most of the guys selected are 17 or 18 many still HS aged.

  8. No Gill of RSL? Isn’t he still under 20? Do the dates conflict with MLS playoffs? And how about Yedlin of Sounders? He’s available now.

  9. Tab added Clint Mathis as an assistant?! Really? What’s Clint going to teach these kids? How to party and smoke cigarettes, and piss off your coach by pointing to your wrist after you a score a goal? I loved Clint as a player, but as a youth coach? Strange decision by Tab.

      • When Clint was in Germany, his manager subbed him into a game, he scored the winning goal, and then ran toward the bench point at his wrist, implying that it was about time his manager played him. This gesture did not endear him to his boss.

      • I would go so far as to say that was the beginning of the end of his professional career. It seemed to plummet downhill quickly after that incident, which is why Eddie Johnson’s ‘pay me’ histrionics annoyed me so much. Just play the game the right way and good things will come.

    • As a side note, I saw “Cletus” on Fox (I think it was) doing some pre- and post-game analysis and he surprised me by not being a total dud. Plus, we need to embrace more “characters” in the US game. IMO

  10. I’ve reached the point where I’m not getting overly excited about prospects anymore, especially prospects that are a considerable distance from making a first team appearance.

    • I still love watching the new kids and trying to project which, if any, will be the next big thing. No, you can’t get too wrapped up in it, but it’s still fun.

  11. i wonder what’s the number of Yanks at foreign clubs in Europe, especially in regard to their academies? Has to be a growing number, perhaps it is of concern to the Euros.

    brazilians, argentinians, african youths in their academies and we are growing as well

    • Growing number of what benchwarmers? Stop deluding yourself. Mexican youths are making better progress while US fans are in delusion as to how many of their average youth players are getting chances in Europe. What a joke.

      • How’s all that youth success been working out for you and Nigeria? Must be tons of senior team trophies to show for it…

      • Jay,

        US fans aren’t concerned with what a CONCACAF minnow like Mexico is doing with their youth program. The US is aspiring to do more than eek out qualification. Enjoy re-watching the DVD’s of that magical U-17 World Cup title though

      • Jay, show some respect, without the Americans your Mexican prodigies wouldn’t even be in the field for the WC anymore. Your lawn mower is fixed, get back to work.

      • Dude, that’s flat out wrong. Make fun of El Tri-tanic all you want, but don’t stoop to La Raza’s level.

      • Flores and Hyndman are serious talents, regarded as major prospects even at the big clubs they’re with now. Gall has potential, and Scott is pretty well-regarded.

        The forward class, moreover, is probably the deepest the USA has ever put out. 3 kids who are the top prospect at their MLS club, and the others were too good to stay with MLS sides. Are we going to see the next Klose out of this group? Unlikely, but these guys should all have solid careers.

      • A bit defensive? Mexico has heaps of youth talent, this just happens to be an article on the U.S. U-20 side and the fact that 50% of the roster selected are European based, so it kind of makes sense that a reader would make a comment on that now doesn’t it?

        Here’s a tip: I know a wonderful site to vent your anger and insecurity where no matter the context of the article, all paths lead to hostile, confrontational Mexico v. US “commentary”. Look up Course… I’m pretty sure you’ve already been there.

      • @ Jay Bonds,

        You just come off a Jealous, there are more US youth in Academy’s all over the world than ever before. US is going to do what Mexico has been unable to do. We will become a world power in football.

      • You’re a comedian, where has those youth all over the globe gotten you? Where are the medals at the youth level? Jokers!!

      • Players that actually show up for their county and its fans when it matters. There is still time Jay. Join us JAY. cleanse your sport fans soul partake in a baptism of red, white, and Blue. Cheer U-S-A, U-S-A, U-S-A…

      • @Jay Bonds,

        Like I said, we are now starting to have youth in academy’s all over the world, you will see in a few years where it gets us. By the way, who cares about medals at the youth level, we have won the last 3 hex’s! How has Mexico done?

      • Lol we have the comedian Jay. Mexico win youth and then their done. Never will Mexico become a power you know why? Because Mexicans at U17 get overhyped and think they are the greatest. When the reality is their not. Look at Gio, the next ronaldinho where is he in this national team now a days? But he won U17. Look at Vela, he knows your team is a disaster why u think he doesnt wanna join you jokers. There is a reason why Mexico nor Nigeria have the same success in U20 and onwards. Regardless U17 is nice but its nothing to brag about when you have a team like the USA winning the Hex every cycle after a while we start to see who actually is dominating the region and trying to grow more than just Mexico level which is nothing

      • actually, Nigeria has won at U20 and Olympics and a few Africa Confederation Cups. I think that they haven’t down well at the world cup senior level because of the mis-management of the team by their Federation (no surprise there). Additionally, the current senior team is one the weakest they have had, but are relatively respectable.

      • Benchwarmers? I would say the MT players know more about bench warming in euro if any. The point here is that we have many more players abroad whether senior or junior playing their trait in Europe than anyone else in concacaf. And it’s showing .. Either way, good luck with all 3 Mexicans playing in Europe… 100 years of football and nothing to show for it smh

      • …but they have a MUCH better domestic league than MLS, have better pay and get to play in Copa Libertadores.

        I am a huge fan of the US and support the MLS, but part of the reason some Mexicans don’t go abroad is that they have a better domestic option (very good technical league, high profile games and good pay). Why go to the northern European leagues when you have better in LigaMX

    • You all do realize these guys are now 17 or 18 years old and a lot haven’t even graduated from HS yet. Figuring out which of these guys, if any, will be around in 4 or 5 years is a crap-shoot at best. So many variables that cannot be foretold it is impossible to know. (If you can accurately predict which players will blossom and which will flame out , Man U. Barcelona, etc. have a high paying job for you.) This is still such a small number that a reasonable expectation is that few or even none of them will ever play for the USMNT. One of the players is ranked #84 among HS prospects (#22 at his position) by Top Drawer, yet Ramos has him in the top few at his position, even guys who purport to know can’t come close to agreeing.

      • I’m pretty sure at least 50% of the squad will be around in 4 or 5 years time…they are professionals playing in Europe. To get to that level at this age shows that they are dedicated to their craft for the long-haul…unless there’s a Stu Holden or John O’Brien in this group.

      • Try as they will youth coaches invariably pick the most mature athletes which often means they are the ones who will not improve over the next few years as much as kids who still aren’t shaving. It is just one more thing to consider with young players on top of totally unpredictable things like injury or the kid’s ability to enjoy training year-round for several years.

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