The U20 United States Men's National Team enjoyed their most complete and dominant performance when they defeated hosts New Zealand, 4-0, in front a crowd of 15,678. The US opened the scoring in the 6th minute via Rubio Rubin, then added another goal from Emerson Hyndman before halftime. Paul Arriola scored in the 58th minute, then Rubin kicked his second in the 83rd minute. Even though there was 50-50 possession for both teams, the US outshot New Zealand 30 to 11. The US put 11 of their shots on goal, forcing goalkeeper, Oliver Sail, to make seven saves.
The match served as a bit of a coming out party for Arsenal's Gedion Zelalem, who impressed fans and journalists with his pinpoint passing and ability to work out of tight spaces.
Zelalem casually pulling off a rabona for the US U20s pic.twitter.com/HCSoVJyqs3— Passenal (@Passenal1) June 2, 2015
New York Red Bulls center back Matt Miazga played all 90 minutes and earned a clean sheet, but also picked up a yellow card for a heavy foul in the 26th minute. Tab Ramos will most likely sit Miazga all or part of the next game. If he were to pick up another yellow, he would miss the Round of 16 match due to yellow card accumulation.
The US are now sitting in first place in their group with six points, but their next opponent, Ukraine, has four points. The US have clinched a spot in the Round of 16, but they would come in 2nd with a loss. The match is scheduled for 3:00am EDT on June 5th.
Looking ahead to the Round of 16, if the US finish first in their group, they will take on the 3rd place finisher with the most points between Groups C, D and E. If they finish second, they will play the runner-up of Group C (Portugal or Colombia). Both matches are scheduled for June 10th.
Here are the match highlights.
United States Lineup:
1-Zack Steffen; 17-Desevio Payne, 4-Cameron Carter-Vickers, 5-Matt Miazga; 6-Kellyn Acosta; 15-Marky Delgado (Joel Soñora, 87), 8-Emerson Hyndman (capt.), 19-Gedion Zelalem, 7-Paul Arriola; 9-Rubio Rubin (3-John Requejo, 84), 11-Bradford Jamieson IV (13-Tommy Thompson, 62)
Substitutions Not Used: 12-Thomas Olsen, 21-Jeff Caldwell, 2-Shaquell Moore, 16-Conor Donovan, 18-Erik Palmer-Brown, 20-Jordan Allen