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U.S. U-17s advance to Aegean Cup final after victory vs. Belgium


The U.S. Under-17 National Team’s Aegean Cup journey continues on to the final.

The Americans, coached by John Hackworth, will face off against host Turkey in the Aegean Cup final on Saturday after defeating Belgium, 2-0, on Thursday. The Americans topped Group B after winning two of three group games.

Andrew Carleton scored his second goal of the competition against Belgium, while Joshua Sargent netted late to seal the U.S. victory.

In the Americans’ first matchup of the group stage, Romania was given a free kick opportunity on the right wing in just the second minute of play. Antonio Sefer curled an effort over the wall and just above U.S. goalkeeper Alexander Budnik’s hands to score the only goal of the game en route to a 1-0 loss for the Americans.

The U.S. performed better in the second group game, scoring two second-half goals in a 2-1 win against Greece. Carleton and Tonny Temple were the goal-scorers for the U.S. on the day, but the main talking point was the goal scored by Alexandros Gkargkalatzidis.

The Americans were huddled around the coaching staff near the sideline after celebrating Temple’s goal in the 66th minute, and Greece quickly ran the ball back to the center circle. The referee blew his whistle while most of the U.S. players were still near the sideline, and Gkargkalatzidis raced towards goal and scored.

Greece, which finished second in Group B, will play Ukraine in the tournament’s third-place game on Saturday.

Here are the highlights for the U.S. U-17s group games (vs. Romania, Greece and Belgium, respectively):

What do you think of the U-17s performances? Think they can win the final on Saturday?

Share your thoughts below.


    • AIN’T NO MORE PLAY IN G-A! yes yes, keep an eye on Carleton and glad to see the Peach State producing some real talent.

      (and gotta love the guy dabbing after the second goal. haha)

  1. Thanks for these highlights. Hackworth should be suitably embarrassed on that Greek goal. The team not being ready because of their celebrating on the sidelines is on him. The team really looked good vs. Belgium, creating a lot of chances. It looked like Belgium didn’t threaten at all the second half. And the US players showed a lot of ball skills and good interchange among the players, something we fans have been looking for. All in all looks like a good performance so far.

    • The question is: Will they keep playing that way? The last U-17 squad played similarly; good individual flair and creativity. Unafraid to try things. And then that suddenly stopped and they took a more pragmatic approach as the U-17 WC drew near.

      Sigh…when we learn that at the youth level, its better to lose looking good, than to win looking ugly.


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