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Multi-ethnic Germans tall order for USA
by Paul Kennedy, June 30th, 2011 1:06AM

TAGS:  germany, u-17 world cup


[UNDER-17 WORLD CUP] The USA, which won only one knockout game in its 13 previous appearances at the Under-17 World Cup, faces a tall order in Thursday's match against Germany in Queretaro (TV: ESPNU,, live, 4 p.m. ET). With three wins by a margin of 11-1, no team came close to matching Germany's performance in the group stage of the Under-17 World Cup.

Coach Steffen Freund's team is led by Samed Yesil, Levent Aycicek, Okan Aydin and Mitchell Weiser, who all have two goals apiece.

The European runners-up reflect the multi-ethnic approach Germany has taken to building its national team program.

Yesil, Aycicek and Aydin are among seven players of Turkish origin on the team.

Midfielder Rani Khedira, whose older brother Sami signed with Real Madrid after a sensational 2010 World Cup for Germany, was born to a father from Tunisia and mother is from Germany.

Goalie Odisseas Olachodimos is Greek.

  1. John Munnell
    commented on: June 30, 2011 at 9:18 a.m.
    If the German soccer gods --- THE GERMANS! --- can embrace their cultural diversity in team selection, why in the world can't the US?
  1. Walt Pericciuoli
    commented on: June 30, 2011 at 9:40 a.m.
    Well said John. The U17's now will pay the price for not taking care of business in the group stage. Lets' hope for their best form from our boys.
  1. P Van
    commented on: June 30, 2011 at 1:50 p.m.
    I know it's not as easy as all this, but imagine--Klinsmann for Gulati; Latino coach for the FUTURE of American soccer and America...
  1. Bill Anderson
    commented on: June 30, 2011 at 4:58 p.m.
    Ric, the Germans are destroying our U-17s. There is little organization and a lack of leadership. What is the saying about a fish rotting from the head first. Look at the top of the US Soccer and find Sunil and Bob Sr.
  1. James Froehlich
    commented on: June 30, 2011 at 9:49 p.m.
    Hear! Hear! John M.
  1. James Froehlich
    commented on: June 30, 2011 at 9:56 p.m.
    The only good thing about their performance was that they were actually trying to play a more skill-based game but that just ended up demonstrating how lacking we are in skill development. Will the recent disasters for US Soccer result in a rethink??

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