U20s Dominant over Indomitable Lions


What a difference a few days makes.

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U20s v. Germany – The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Just got around to catching the game after a full morning of sports. I haven’t read anything on the other blogs yet, so I don’t know if there are reasons why certain players played ahead of others.

Even though it was a demoralizing display, I think we’ve got some prospects with bright futures.

The Good:

  • Tony Taylor is a future stud. Boatloads of speed and appears to have a high skill level to go with it. He got almost no help today, though, and struggled to make an impact as a lone striker. The kid is looking for a European contract and someone will probably take a chance on the kid for his speed and work rate alone.
  • Jared Jeffrey is uber-talented. He’s not a great athlete, but he sees the whole field and has impressive passing range for someone so young. You can tell the difference between him and the college kids – his composure on the ball was worlds better than some of his teammates. He’s an eventual US starter down the road.
  • Mix Diskerud is impressive, if a bit awkward. Unfortunately, he didn’t get much support in the first half on his side from Ownby and Powers, and he ended up being responsible for a ton of space. Good player with a high skill level though. Let’s just hope we keep him as a Nat and he doesn’t decide to go back to the Norwegian setup.
  • Bryan Arguez should have started ahead of Powers. Arguez changed the game at halftime for the Nats by providing much needed composure in front of the defenders, as well as quality passing. Definitely a talent and, if he keeps his head on straight, another surefire Nat starter in the future.

The Bad

  • Ike Opara was terrible. With the US being hyped as a defensive team, it was surprising to see just how bad their most-hyped defender is. Opara struggled all game with poor positioning and awful timing. He’s a good athlete and seems to have decent skill on the ball, but his tackling, timing, and positioning are all woeful. He’s supposedly going to be the 1st pick in the MLS college draft this year?
  • Gale Agbossoumonde wasn’t great, but then you realize that he’s only 17. He’s got plenty of size and athleticism for the position and seems to have a good sense for his position, but he’s definitely rough around the edges. He desperately needs to get into a professional setup and out of Miami. It’s doing him no good to train with the worst USL team. The quicker he makes it to a European program, the better.
  • Brek Shea is all hype. The kid does what he always does – shows you glimpses of talent followed by extended periods of loafing and invisibility. If a coach or training staff doesn’t instill some onfield work ethic in him soon, he’s going to be a waste of talent. Everything is entirely too casual for him on the pitch. I wish he played with half as much drive as Taylor or Ownby.
  • Brian Perk is a quality keeper. However, I don’t know how much of a future he has with the Nats. He’s very small and, worse, plays smaller. He was petrified of crosses against the Germans and seemed to have little command of his box. Great shot-stopper that appears to have great reflexes, as well as a cannon for a foot.

The Ugly

  • Dillon Powers was overmatched from the start. He couldn’t keep up with the speed of play, let alone the speed of the German mids. His passes were always off target and he didn’t show much to justify his starting spot.
  • Brian Ownby has plenty of speed and hustle. Unfortunately, he appears to have little else. His work ethic is good and the kid was a nuisance to the Germans down his flank, but his lack of skill kept him from being any kind of threat in the offensive half. I’m fairly shocked he started, and even more shocked he wasn’t subbed out.
  • Jorge Flores looked well out of place. Maybe it was because he’s not really a defender, or maybe it’s because he looked overwhelmed by the speed of play. Either way, he struggled after taking over for Kyle Davies.

I’m pretty unhappy with the way this one was coached, as it didn’t seem like we had a gameplan at all. Rongen started some head-scratchers in Ownby and Power, and also made some interesting moves along the backline by playing Kyle Davies at LB and Gerson Mayen at RB.
I thought Duka and Arguez were useful in their time, so I hope to see them get starts in the next game.

U20 World Cup on ESPN family of channels…

Once again, Ives Galarcep has the scoop on ESPN’s coverage of the U-20 World Cup, which kicks off Thursday in Egypt.

According to Ives, an ESPN will air all  52 games on their family of networks, meaning you’ll be able to catch the US (and any other) matches over the next few weeks.

Here is the schedule, according to Ives (all times are EASTERN):

FIFA Under-20 World Cup Schedule

Date Time (ET) Network Match Group/ Match # Site Round Robin Phase


12:55 p.m. ESPN360.com Egypt vs. Trinidad & Tobago A – 1 Alexandria


9:55 a.m. ESPN360.com Paraguay vs. Italy A – 2 Cairo

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Nigeria vs. Venezuela B – 3 Cairo

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Spain vs. Tahiti B – 4 Cairo


9:55 a.m. ESPN360.com/ ESPN Classic USA vs. Germany C – 5 Suez

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Cameroon vs. Korea Republic C – 6 Suez

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Ghana vs. Uzbekistan D – 7 Ismailia

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com England vs. Uruguay D – 8 Ismailia


9:55 a.m. ESPN360.com Brazil vs. Costa Rica E – 9 Port Said

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Czech Republic vs. Australia E – 10 Port Said

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com United Arab Emirates vs. South Africa F – 11 Alexandria

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Honduras vs. Hungary F – 12 Alexandria

Mon., Sept 28

9:55 a.m. ESPN360.com Nigeria vs. Spain B – 13 Cairo

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Italy vs. Trinidad & Tobago A – 14 Cairo

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Tahiti vs. Venezuela B – 15 Cairo

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Egypt vs. Paraguay A – 16 Cairo

Tues., Sept.29

9:55 a.m. ESPN360.com Korea Republic vs. Germany C – 17 Suez

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com/ ESPN2 USA vs. Cameroon C – 18 Suez

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Uruguay vs. Uzbekistan D – 19 Ismailia

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Ghana vs. England D – 20 Ismailia

Wed., Sept. 30

9:55 a.m. ESPN360.com Australia vs. Costa Rica E – 21 Port Said

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Brazil vs. Czech Republic E – 22 Port Said

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Hungary vs. South Africa F – 23 Alexandria

3:35p.m. ESPN360.com United Arab Emirates vs. Hungary F – 24 Alexandria

Thurs., Oct. 1

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Tahiti vs. Nigeria B – 25 Cairo

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Venezuela vs. Spain B – 26 Cairo

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Trinidad & Tobago vs. Paraguay A – 27 Cairo

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Italy vs. Egypt A – 28 Cairo

Fri., Oct. 2

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com/ ESPN2 Korea Republic vs. USA C – 29 Suez

12:40 ESPN360.com Germany vs. Cameroon C – 30 Ismailia

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Uruguay vs. Ghana D – 31 Ismailia

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Uzbekistan vs. England D – 32 Suez

Sat., Oct. 3

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com Hungary vs. United Arab Emirates F – 33 Alexandria

12:40 p.m. ESPN360.com South Africa vs. Honduras F – 34 Port Said

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Costa Rica vs. Czech Republic E – 35 Alexandria

3:25 p.m. ESPN360.com Australia vs. Brazil E – 36 Port Said

Round of 16

Mon., Oct. 5

10:25 a.m. ESPN360.com 1st B vs. 3rd A/C/D 37 Cairo

1:55 p.m. ESPN360.com 2nd A vs. 2nd C 38 Cairo

Tues, Oct. 6

10:25 a.m. ESPN360.com 1st D vs. 3rd B/E/F 39 Ismailia

1:55 p.m. ESPN360.com 1st A vs. 3rd C/D/E 40 Cairo

1:55 p.m. ESPN360.com 1st F vs. 2nd E 41 Alexandria

Wed., Oct. 7

10:25 a.m. ESPN360.com 1st E vs. 2nd D 42 Port Said

10:25 a.m. ESPN360.com 2nd B vs. 2nd F 43 Suez

1:55 p.m. ESPN360.com/ESPN2 1st C vs. 3rd A/B/F 44 Suez


Fri., Oct. 9

10:25 a.m. ESPN360.com Winners – 38 vs. 39 45 Suez

1:50 p.m. ESPN360.com/ESPN2 Winners – 37 vs. 41 46 Suez

Sat., Oct. 10

10:25 ESPN360.com Winners – 42 vs. 44 47 Cairo

1:55 p.m. ESPN360.com Winners – 43 vs. 40 48 Cairo


Tues., Oct.13

10:20 a.m. ESPN360.com ESPN2 Winners – 45 vs. 46 49 Cairo

1:50 p.m. ESPN360.com/ESPN2 Winners – 47 vs. 48 50 Cairo

Third Place

Fri., Oct.16

10:55 a.m. ESPN360.com Third Place 51 Cairo

Title Match

Fri., Oct. 16

1:50 p.m. ESPN360.com/ESPN U-20 World Cup Title Match 52 Cairo

USSF has Jones’ paperwork…

…but FIFA is the next stop for that paperwork, meaning Jones could be ruled eligible in relatively short fashion.

SBI is reporting that Jones’ paperwork has finally been given USSF, meaning the last hurdles to a USMNT call-up are about to be cleared. With Jones still unfit, though, don’t expect a call-up until November at the earliest.

Jermaine Jones update – no surgery

Schalke is reporting on their website that Jones does NOT need a 2nd surgery, a few days after the club and player had announced that the surgery was a possibility.

Jones will not be eligible for the October call-ups (at least at this point, and it’s not likely he’d be fit anyways) and is still awaiting FIFA and the German FA to get things finished for his federation switch.

Jermaine Jones possibly under the knife again…

Looks like the USMNT debut for Jermaine Jones could take quite a bit longer than we first thought.

Not only is there still an issue with his FIFA paperwork, but now it’s come out that he could very well have surgery on his leg (again) this week.

Jones underwent surgery for a shin injury back in June, but reportedly continues to feel pain in his leg. Schalke officials are considering new options for treatment, one of which is to perform another procedure.

“Jermaine possibly needs to undergo surgery again. We will make a decision about that later this week,” Schalke coach Felix Magath told German newspaper Bild.

Changes to the U-20 Squad

Sounds like Anthony Wallace has suffered a nasty knee injury and is off the squad. Gerson Mayen, a left-sided player for Chivas USA, has been brought in as his replacement. Mayen is a midfielder that can play as a defender, as is his Chivas teammate  Jorge Flores. It seems likely that one of the two will start at left back.

Soccernet has a good writeup on the squad as they leave today for Cyprus, where they will play their first pre-tournament friendly.

As we get closer to the first games, I’ll start writing about the squad.