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U-20 USMNT come from behind to edge Chile in first NTC game

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It took a come-from-behind effort, but the Under-20 U.S. Men’s National Team is off to a winning start in California.

The U.S. defeated Chile in their first 2014 National Training Center Invitational match on Monday, using a pair of second-half goals from a couple of substitutes in a 2-1 victory. Andrija Novakovich started the comeback with a strike in the 65th minute off a free kick from Zach Pfeffer, who put the Americans ahead eight minutes later with a goal of his own.

Tab Ramos’ side went down 22 minutes into the match in Carson, Calif. when Cristian Cuevas found the back of the net, but Novakovich and Pfeffer both helped to erase the deficit and push the U.S. out in front after entering the match together in the 63rd minute.

The Americans will continue to partake in the NTC Invitational on Wednesday with a match against Bermuda, who suffered a 4-1 loss to Australia in their opener on Monday.

Here is the U.S. lineup that played against Chile:

Santiago Castano; John Requejo Jr., Michael Amick, Conor Donovan, Shaquell Moore; Romain Gall (Zach Pfeffer, 63), Russell Canouse, Fernando Arce, Paul Arriola (capt.) (Marco Delgado, 74); Lynden Gooch (Jacori Hayes, 83), Benji Lopez (Andrija Novakovich, 63)


What do you think of the U-20 USMNT beating Chile, 2-1? Think the Americans will cruise past Bermuda? Which prospect on this U.S. squad are you most intrigued by?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Good changes by Tab Ramos. Interesting to see how some of these higher soccer IQ players of recent USMNT fame transition into coaches.

    • Good point, and I am curious to see whether it is Klinsmann or Ramos who takes the reins should the team qualify for the Olympics (I believe this is at JK’s discretion right now, with no discussion or announcement having been publicized).

      I am fine with either— I bring it up because I believe that the tournament will be of high importance to the program, and if JK and USSF allow Ramos to keep the reins with this group and act as head coach for Rio 2016, it may be a very good indication that he is being seriously considered as a successor to Klinsmann as USMNT head coach (particularly if JK plans to remain aboard as technical director). I sense Klinsmann has a strong preference for “promote from within” in this regard, rather than bringing in somebody with a big resume and little to no buy-in on the long-term project he and USSF have focused on.

      Getting a bit ahead of myself, I know…

  2. From what i have seen Cuevas is a real talent to watch. A winger that likes to run into the defense. The US has never had this amount & quality of wingers like they do now. Looking forward to seeing which ones pan out.

    • Winger is still a real need at the Sr. Level of the national team. There are good prospects coming up through the ranks of the previous U-23 and the current U-23/U-20 Teams but only time will tell which realize their potential.
      Green, Gyau, Arriola, Gall, Gatt, Shea, Parker, etc….

      The USMNT needs a couple of these to pan out and begin contributing for the team this coming cycle. Don’t know why I keep envisioning it but something like the following come 2016 looks good to me:
      Bench: Boyd/Agudelo, Gyau, Parker, Arriola, Trapp/Powers, Lichaj, Klute, Besler,
      TBD (2 Backup Keepers), TBD CDM, TBD

      • Iid be surprised to see Besler lose his spot and Danny Williams become a starter

        As with all of these young guys it so early but I could absolutely see a number of them taking roster spots in 2018. Watching Klinsmann work them into the cycle will be exciting. As you noted a lot spots openning and a lot of candidates

      • why would you be surprised about Williams? i feel like, for the moment, he is the clear go-to guy there in a 2018 prediction. he played for Reading this week in preseason, so it seems like he is back from his injury. i think the younger guys will have to do a lot to overtake him. which is totally possible by 2018, but i think Williams has the clear edge. that said, Stanko could give him a serious run for his money if he finds playing time in the Bundesliga as a #6.

    • I’m just noticing that he’s still eligible. If he plays for them that’ll be nice sort of like Pogba for France or Messi for Argentina at the U-20 level. He’ll provide leadership and all the opposing player focusing their tactics on trying to stop him will give other players the chance to get open and make something happen.

      • Normally I would say it’s unlikely that a player who has now played and scored at the WC level would join this group, but I think this may be possible, given that this group is likely to provide the core pool for the 2016 Olympic team (U-23 technically). I don’t see Green coming in much for these types of games, but it would be interesting to see if Klinsmann/Ramos would like to have Green for Olympics, Copa America, or even both.

      • Green should. It builds chemistry vertically through the system. Some of these guys may be future teammates.

      • I think so too. I am increasingly inclined to think JK will bring the cavalry as far as the Olympic group goes. Yedlin, Green… any player who is U-23 eligible will be a target. More than anything, it seems like Klinsmann wants to develop a winning mentality amongst this group– to eliminate the barrier in the collective psychology when playing top teams. If Mexico can win Gold, why shouldn’t we think we can win something? Even a medal would be a new accomplishment.

        I don’t think he’ll opt for any of the “big guns” from the rest of the senior group for the overage players… probably a couple of vets and/or peripheral guys to provide stability and organization… but I think the Olympic group will be as important to Klinsmann as the Copa America team. For Gulati and JK, this competition is perhaps the first real benchmark of the development revamp they have been targeting. Both have spoken of the damage and disappointment of missing 2012.

      • This group will not be the core of the Olympic team. Most of the players in that pipeline are training now with the U21 (soon to be U23) squad. While a few U20s might get the call up, they won’t be the core. I really doubt that Green will be called into that side. If he is, it will be for the finals, and not any qualifying — but, it’s just not likely.

      • Corrected– I have generalized certainly I did not mean to exclude the U-21’s… I believe the group will be comingled (as typically happens as players move toward the senior level) for the purpose of the Olympic finals. My point is that I expect the team to be the “best available”, at least of the of-age group that Ramos has been training, and may even include those who have moved into the senior team.

        Agree that Green will not do qualifying. But I can’t see a reason to compete with the group, unless he is deployed heavily at Copa America and Bayern (or whoever owns him at the time) gets thorny about his overuse.

        Olympics are such a great opportunity (as JK has spoken about)… the allocation rules are very favorable for CONCACAF teams and even Honduras was able to claim some great results at the last tournament. Only 3-4 teams are likely to be clearly stronger on paper. We could conceivably win something, and this would be superb for the mentality of our new core.

  3. That’s good. The team is missing some A squad players; especially at CB e.g. EPB, Miazga, Redding.

    This team/cycle players have the potential to do good things.

  4. Stats Summary: USA / CHI
    Shots: 14 / 14
    Shots on Goal: 7 / 2
    Saves: 1 / 5
    Corner Kicks: 2 / 3
    Fouls: 12 / 23
    Offside: 1 / 2

    The shots on goal stat is nice. Looks like the defense did a good job. Then again… 1 goal out of 2 shots on target is less than awesome.

    • Chile is definitely a soccer nation on the rise, so it is nice to get a win over their U-20s and either play them evenly or be a little better in the end. Sounds like we have some very good prospects on this squad, not to mention the guys that are missing. Very exciting.

  5. I would say Arriola and Gall excite me the most among the players that featured in yesterday’s match. From reading the report at U.S. Soccer’s website, both were fairly influential.

    • I think it’s just bizarre that this kid is saying he wants to play for the U.S. I’m sure that if the Mexican set-up asked him in, that would be his first choice. His connection with the US is that he was born here? Did his parents do that deliberately for citizenship, or were they looking for better medical care? Or, was it totally unplanned? Has he spent any time here? At least, Johansson visited here a lot and went to IMG. All those Germans have an American parent. I don’t get it.

      • Reading some other boards, it looks like it is not that uncommon for Mexicans who have access to easy legal movement across the border will arrange to have their child born in the US, whether for health reasons or access to citizenship.

        He doesn’t seem to have spent much time in the US.

        But, for the son of a Mexican NTer to put on the US kit… it’s gotta be more than a flirtation. He could get a MNT U20 call-up as a favor to his dad.

      • you sound racist your probably a white person any ways arce was born in california a close border to the US from mexico his dad played in tijuana baja california so yeah his parents home is in california the US territory i don’t think they need better life i mean his father is one of the best payed players in xolos de tijuana your a bit racist to a mexican-american and i don’t curse at you because it’s not worth it but whether you like it or not a mexican – american like claudio reyna is a legend for usmnt , also omar gonzalez his parents are mexicans and he was thought to play for mexico at a point
        carlos bocanegra is mexican – american
        so if i was you i’d shut up dude because another of usmnt future stars is junior flores from salvadorian parents who came to the us for better life so shut up and stop being racist because were all the same race we all come from the same people we can genetically have children with ant color person so animals like ligers mixture of tiger and lion can have babies because of different race
        well guess what a mexican and a whit person can have a baby and that baby can have babies and so and so on dum ass

      • There is absolutely nothing racist in his comment and what he says is true. Dropping an anchor baby is an unfortunate trick many illegals use to get into this country. Not racist but a fact. That law that is making that possible is being abused by illegals and was NEVER intended to be used the way it is being used now. It needs to be changed

      • Okay and what’s wrong with that i know Fernando arce himself and paul arriola so yeah you should do some re wearch because Fernando arce is married to a U.S. citizen women so please shut up and learn your facts before you speak

      • I don’t really want any part of the “political” part of this discussion, but I am curious to hear more about Arce, if you have some knowledge.

        Most of us remember Arce from his years with El Tri, which were occurred during an absolute high point of the rivalry, where tensions were obvious from the opening whistle and physical confrontations were numerous.

        Memorable years — I think a lot of people here are just a bit surprised to see his son’s name at first glance (a bit like seeing Landon Donovan, Jr. on the U20 Mexico team sheet… maybe not quite so extreme, but you get the idea).

        I know a bit about the kid, and I’m sure if he on the US team it’s because he wants to be, so he is welcome in my view. But there really isn’t that much out there yet about the kid, or his decision to be a USMNT player. If you have some background about him you could share, that would be great to hear.


      • Speaking of knowing facts — Claudio Reyna is in no way a Mexican-American. His father is from Argentina. His mother is of Portuguese descent. True, he was one of the best, if not the best player to suit up for the national team. On the other hand, he grew up in New Jersey.

        As for the kid in question — you may be right about his mother being American. Haven’t found anything definitive, but her name, Nancy, is Anglo, so it’s certainly possible. If so, he may feel some real connection to the USA. Perhaps, he’s spent more time here than we know.

      • OK, so Arce jr., is a Chicano, Mexican-American, where as Reyna, and Ramos, are Latino Americana, and so on etc.
        We got Scotch American,
        English and Irish American,
        German, Norwegian, Icelandic,
        Serbian, Bosnian, Asian and African Americans.
        Oddly enough no self professed Native Americans?,
        Although I am sure some are randomly part Indian,
        like Jim Thorpe, Jim Brown and Elvis.

        P.S. If I missed anyone?,
        you’re welcome and included.

        “This is not about red states or blue states,
        This is the United States of America”.

      • The Garrincha –

        Wondolowski is half Native American, half Polish.

        I don’t blame you for missing him on your list, though.

      • Xenophobia and racism are not the same things…

        Both are distasteful.

        However cultural relativism is a mistake otherwise you end up having to justify evil behavior. Cultures(often tied to a national identify)do have bad traits but unlike a genetic code one can and should do their best to improve.

        Example: Human sacrifice is bad. So we dont do that in Mexico or Rome anymore.

      • Squad are you implying that a propensity to sacrifice humans isn’t a bad cultural trait?

        Remind me to stay away from your part of town…

      • Yes kimosabee. Many pale face come from Europe many moons ago. Pale face came and took land broke treaties and killed native Amercans. Now pale face complain about blood brothers coming to land they stole from us and Mexico. Crazy Horse laugh at this for many moons. Maybe blood brothers from Mexico and Central America can teach pale face to hold the ball and keep possession not just kick the ball run as fast as can and hack man who take ball.

      • Yes, the child is a citizen at birth, but the parents are not and as such can be deported.

        It’s not a law genius that grants children born here citizenship. It’s the 14th Amendment, specifically Sec. 1:

        “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

        You need to either RE AMEND the 14th or pass a new Constitutional Amendment. Changing laws is insufficient

      • What I can’t figure out is, how are you are so obviously illiterate and yet still knew how to navigate this website?

      • Dear oh dear…

        What I can’t figure out is: How does a person who professes to such proficient literacy misplace a comma so profanely?

      • You, sir, were quite fine. You’ve not criticized anybody. Your grammar could use some improvement, and my teeth could use some straightening. One day, we’ll get around to it.

        My comment was directed toward the peasant (“campesino”?) who has appointed himself to the grammar constibulary. I nearly spit my tea across my bureau at his ineptitude. A real scofflaw, this one.

      • Actually in the United states i’ve seen so many racist white people
        They hate Hispanics and blacks that’s why i said that
        The U.S. is the country of the freedom and honestly white people are the meanest to Hispanics and blacks
        Why idk but they think they run the country when our president is black
        I have nothing against white folks but truth is they are the racist people i’ve ever seen in the U.S.
        Sorry if i offend anybody but i’m talking as a whole i know some white people aren’t like that but is a big percentage that are

      • Look, I’m not here to get into any political discussions on this site at all. There’s more than enough sites out there for discussions on politics, etc.

        If someone on here does say something racist or discriminatory, that person should be called out. We don’t need that on this soccer site. However, if you are going to make sweeping negative generalizations, someone should also call you out.

        a white guy in an interracial marriage

      • Johnny-come-lately, may i suggest quietly observing fischy’s body of work for a while before crow-barring him into your stereotype?

      • EM15, your post proves that racism is not limited to white people. You should not transpose your personal negative experience with a handful of folks onto the majority of Americans, whom you labeled racists based on their racial origin.

      • Actually… Yo soy Mexicano-Americano. Todavia tengo familia en Mexico.


        And, I’m still surprised that he would want to play for the US. Yeah, I know he hasn’t been called by El Tri.

      • all it is is that his dad lives in Chula Vista, which is in San Diego but just on the other side of the border (Gomez and Corona live there too). he raised his family there and that is where Jr was born and raised. so he identifies as an American despite his strong ties to Mexico. that’s all there is to it. probably helps there are so many other young Mexican-Americans at Xolos who have the exact same story.

      • to clarify, just on the other side of the border from Tijuana. so easy commute for Xolos players.

      • Except that none of that is true. His dad has played throughout Mexico, but his time with the Xolos was pretty recent. He certainly did not raise his kids on this side of the border. Junior grew up in Mexico and learned his soccer there.

        Having said that, there may be other reasons why he might feel a connection to the USA.

      • none of that is true?! re-read what i wrote because it shouldn’t be controversial. i said his dad lives in Chula Vista. he does. why? because of his time at Xolos and because, you know, he’s from Tijuana! you can ask him why he would prefer to live in Chula Vista on the US side over just living in TJ, but fact is, he lives in Chula Vista and is from TJ. so their family, as a whole is settled in that area.

        Jr was born in Chula Vista. his youth career has been at Santos, Monarcas, and Xolos. he has been with Xolos and living in Chula Vista for a few years now and spent his very early years playing in TJ. given he was born in Chula Vista and that his dad is from TJ, he has said he identifies with San Diego/TJ metro area but leans towards his USA side.

        that’s all i’m saying. just throwing out a possible explanation for why he is playing for the US. i’m not saying he was developed in the US. and maybe saying “raised in the US” isn’t the most accurate way to describe it.

        “FA Jr. :: YES. Yes, I would play for the U.S. team.

        FA Jr. :: Yes, there are many Americans playing in Tijuana right now and we all get along well. Paul was the one who told me that I should play for the U.S. team. I talked to him about what I need to do to get into the squad and he told me to just remain focused and work hard.

        FA Jr. :: We’ve talked about it a lot and he said it’s my decision. And I told him I want to go play with the U.S. team if possible.”

      • More generally, I’m a bit surprised slowleftarm hasn’t checked in on this, given how he was tarred-and-feathered here a few months ago for questioning Julian Green’s credentials. Seems the line of people willing to ask “How American is this kid?” is getting longer by the second.

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