The US U-20 Men's National Team stormed into the quarterfinals of the 2017 U-20 World Cup with a comprehensive, 6-0 dismantling of New Zealand.
If the USA's presence in the final eight of the tournament will be qualified by the observation that it drew arguably the weakest team to make it out of the group stage in the round of 16, that observation can be countered by the scale of the victory that brought the young Americans to quarterfinals.
The 6-0 win equaled the USA's record margin of victory at this tournament (the '93 cohort hammered Turkey in its opening game of the group stage), and Josh Sargent opened the scoring with a record-equaling fourth goal of the competition for the young Americans. He joins Jozy Altidore, Eddie Johnson, and Taylor Twellman at the top of the USA's U-20 World Cup scoring chart.
Sargent's 32nd-minute opener was the only goal of the first half, and for as long as the score was 1-0, New Zealand had a chance. A chance that mostly looked restricted to maybe grabbing a set-piece equalizer and forcing the match to penalties, but a chance nonetheless.
But the USA's massive possession advantage ultimately found its way to the score line. Jeremy Ebobisse bagged the Americans' second in the 64th minute and the floodgates were opened. Brooks Lennon tallied a minute later; Justen Glad's name was on the board in the 76th; Auston Trusty found the net in the 84th, and Lagos Kunga added the capper in second-half stoppage-time.
New Zealand was not even credited with a shot on target; the USA cruises into the quarterfinals with momentum to spare.
New York Red Bulls' Tyler Adams started and played the full 90 minutes for the USA, and continued to attract positive attention for his contributions, including the praise of former RBNY captain Dax McCarty.
Rewatching the U-20 game, it is impressive how Tyler Adams (eligible for 2019 U-20s) has matured with the U-20s in 2017. Big, big upside— Brian Sciaretta (@BrianSciaretta) June 1, 2017
The USA U-20s will play Venezuela in the quarterfinals on June 4. As it happens, McCarty and the senior USMNT will play Venezuela in a friendly at Real Salt Lake's Rio Tinto Stadium that will kick-off a few hours before the U-20s face off in South Korea.