After Classification Stage wins against Mexico (1-0) and El Salvador (2-1) in the U-20 CONCACAF Championship, the United States under-20 national team earned their way to a World Cup berth and the right to play in the U-20 CONCACAF finals against Honduras.
After a very hard fought game, the US claimed their first CONCACAF title, defeating Honduras 5-3 in penalty kicks after a 0-0 regulation match. The game was highly physical, but no team could break the scoring column during the first 90 minutes. The telling statistic of this was Honduras’ 22 fouls to the US’ 12. Surprisingly, no cards were issued the entire match. The US controlled most of the game and earned eight corner kicks to Honduras’ 2.
New York Red Bulls midfielder, Tyler Adams, started and played the entire match, preventing Honduras from scoring.
During PKs, the two teams matched kick for kick in the first three rounds. In round four, Luca de la Torre converted his kick. Then Rembrandt Adán Flores from Honduras stepped up. US keeper Jonathan Klinsmann guesses the correct way, but he wouldn’t have had a chance if it was well-placed. Luckily for he and the US, Flores hit it wide right of the goal. On the final shot, Real Salt Lake’s Danilo Acosta gave the US the win.
It’s a bit ironic, but Acosta was born in Honduras, so it was very fitting for him to be the final shooter to seal the victory for the Americans.
Klinsmann walked away with the tournament’s Golden Glove (best goalkeeper) and Sporting Kansas City’s Erik Palmer-Brown earned Golden Ball (tournament MVP).
Next for the U-20’s is the World Cup in South Korea in May. They are one of 24 teams vying for the title, along with Honduras, Mexico and Costa Rica from CONCACAF. All of the teams will learn their groups on March 15th once the draw is completed.
Congratulations to Tyler Adams and the U-20 US national team!