By DAN KARELL
The U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team are entering the final stage of preparation for the CONCACAF U-20 Championships.
Ahead of the U-20 World Cup qualifying tournament, U.S. U-20 head coach Tab Ramos has named a 35-man provisional squad, from which he has to pick a 20-man roster by Friday.
The provisional squad features 28 players either in the professional ranks or playing in the academies of professional teams. Of those 27, eight are based in Europe, including Rubio Rubin at Utrecht, Russell Canouse with Hoffenheim, Borussia Dortmund’s Junior Flores, and 16-year-old Cameron Carter-Vickers with Tottenham. Five players are based in Mexico, and nine players are on MLS clubs.
Ramos has also called 21 players together for a final domestic training camp in Sunrise, Fla. ahead of the U-20 tournament, which takes place in Jamaica from Jan. 9-24.
“I am looking forward to our last camp leading into U-20 World Cup qualifying, and there will be some very difficult selections in what we think is a very competitive, deep and united pool of players,” Ramos said in a statement. “They have performed well together over the past 18 months.”
After a decision is made on Friday on the final 20-man squad for the tournament, Ramos will continue training with his team through Jan. 5, when they will depart for Jamaica.
The U.S. was drawn in Group A along with the hosts Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Panama, Aruba, and Guatemala. Group B includes Mexico, Canada, Honduras, Cuba, El Salvador, and Haiti.
CONCACAF is introducing a new format for the tournament, with each nation playing five group-stage games.
Following the five matches, the group winners will automatically qualify for the 2015 U-20 World Cup and face each other for the CONCACAF U-20 Championship title. The second and third-place finishers in each group will then be re-seeded and face off for the final two spots available for the U-20 World Cup.
Here’s a look at the provisional U.S. U-20 squad:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Jeff Caldwell (Virginia), Ethan Horvath (Molde FK), Zack Steffen (SC Freiburg)
DEFENDERS (12): Michael Amick (UCLA), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham Hotspur), Conor Donovan (N.C. State), Chase Gasper (UCLA), Luis Martir (Chivas Guadalajara), Matt Miazga (New York Red Bulls), Shaquell Moore (Unattached), Chris Odoi-Atsem (Maryland), Erik Palmer-Brown (Sporting Kansas City), Tommy Redding (Orlando City), John Requejo (Club Tijuana), Tyler Turner (Orlando City)
MIDFIELDERS (12): Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas), Fernando Arce (Club Tijuana), Corey Baird (Stanford), Russell Canouse (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim), Marco Delgado (Toronto FC), Luis Felipe (Cruzeiro), Junior Flores (Borussia Dortmund), Romain Gall (Columbus Crew), Lynden Gooch (Sunderland), Emerson Hyndman (Fulham), Zach Pfeffer (Philadelphia Union), Joel Soñora (CA Boca Juniors)
FORWARDS (8): Paul Arriola (Club Tijuana), Bradford Jamieson IV (LA Galaxy), Amando Moreno (Club Tijuana), Alex Muyl (Georgetown), Andrija Novakovich (Reading), Rubio Rubin (FC Utrecht), Ben Spencer (Indy Eleven), Tommy Thompson (San Jose Earthquakes)
Here’s a look at the U-20 squad for the domestic training camp in Sunrise, Florida, beginning on Sunday:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Ethan Horvath (Molde FK), Zack Steffen (SC Freiburg)
DEFENDERS (7): Conor Donovan (N.C. State), Chase Gasper (UCLA), Luis Martir (Chivas Guadalajara), Matt Miazga (New York Red Bulls), Shaquell Moore (Unattached), John Requejo (Club Tijuana), Tyler Turner (Orlando City)
MIDFIELDERS (7): Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas), Fernando Arce (Club Tijuana), Russell Canouse (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim), Marco Delgado (Toronto FC), Junior Flores (Borussia Dortmund), Romain Gall (Columbus Crew), Lynden Gooch (Sunderland)
FORWARDS (5): Paul Arriola (Club Tijuana), Bradford Jamieson IV (LA Galaxy), Amando Moreno (Club Tijuana), Ben Spencer (Indy Eleven), Tommy Thompson (San Jose Earthquakes)
What do you think of this news? What do you think of this provisional squad? Who do you see making the final 20-man roster?
Share your thoughts below.
Why no Julian Green? He should be age qualified and isn’t getting a to of playing time in Germany.
Where is that georgetown midfielder Arun Basuljevic? Isn’t he age eligible?
Ben Spencer? Don’t you have to be a finisher to be called a forward? Guy was terrible to watch for Indy Eleven.
guy only played for indy xi in the first half of the year, a part where indy struggled in the attack. Ben actually looked decent given his age and experience. But injury prevented him from showing. He was calm and collect with the ball, though he didnt score much. I think Spencer and Johnson would have been stellar together.
Saying that, I like Rugg as a player more. I am hopeful that Indy can eventually bring Rugg back.
Really talented group, only issue i see with the 21 going to camp is the lack of true CBS (just miazga and donovan), likely will add carter-vickers or redding to this group for qualifying, may also be waiting to see how palmer-brown recovers from his injury.
As of now, the season long loan of Ben Spencer has ended. He is back at Molde, not with Indy XI. I’d be interested in Indy going after Ben again, i just hope if we do he remains healthy.
If everyone was available, Picking 20 from this group will be tough. Definitely exciting to see the wealth of potential from the u-20 crowd.
The change in format is great news. Much less likely to be upset.
+1 I wonder what criteria they will use when they reseed second and third place teams.
This is great news, considering how mentally weak these age groups have been in the past.
This site is becoming a joke, this is the second post all weekend.
I hope you’re being sarcastic.
Firstly, it’s a holiday week. Second there’s 8 posts posted this weekend….
Can you believe the nerve on these folks… only 8 posts on a holiday weekend?!? You should ask for your money back dude. With all the billions of dollars these guys are almost certainly pulling in, I’m sure they can compensate you for your anguish
What’s the deal with the Chivas kid? I thought Chivas kids couldn’t represent the US.
Only applies to first team players I think.
I thought they just had to be Mexican but that Mexican-American was ok, even if they played for the US. Not 100% sure though.
Nope- Chivas policy is that its players be Mexican citizens and can not represent another country’s national team. There has been talk of challenging/changing the rule, but to this point, has never happened.