[UNDER-17 WORLD CUP] Once again, the USA didn't make it past the first hurdle of the knockout stage at the Under-17 World Cup. Indeed, it matched its worst defeat ever in its 14 appearances at the FIFA world championship when it was routed by Germany, 4-0, in the round of 16 Thursday in Queretaro. The scary thing is that it could have been a lot worse. The loss capped a horrible season for the men's national team program. The senior national team's season of discontent ended with a 4-2 loss to Mexico in the Gold Cup, and the U-20s failed to qualify for the world championship in their age group.
HORRIBLE DEFENDING. U.S. U-17 coach Wilmer Cabrera mentioned that Germany was "very clinical in their finishing," but the fact of the matter is that horrible defending by the USA gifted the Germans at least three of the goals. If the Germans had taken all their chances, they could have easily had 10 goals.
LACK OF PATIENCE. Considering a nucleus of the team had been together for almost two years, the USA showed a remarkable lack of cohesion. The Americans had plenty of the ball -- they finished with a 22-19 edge in shots -- but they displayed a maddening lack of patience on the ball.
ANOTHER KNOCKOUT DEFEAT. The loss marked the fifth straight tournament, dating back to 2003 with Freddy Adu, at which the USA reached the knockout stage but fell at the first hurdle. Only in 1999 when the USA with Landon Donovan, DaMarcus Beasley and Oguchi Onyewu beat Mexico, 3-2, in the quarterfinals has it won a knockout game.
Knockout Stage Results
YEAR OPPONENT SCORE
2011 Germany 0-4
2009 Italy 1-2
2007 Germany 1-2
2005 Netherlands 0-2
2003 Brazil 0-3
1999 Mexico 3-2
1999 Australia 2-2 (7-8)
1993 Poland 0-3
1991 Qatar 1-1 (4-5)
WORST LOSS SINCE 1993. The only other time the USA lost by as many as four goals was in 1993 when it lost to Oman, 4-0, in its opening game of the tournament.
June 30 in Queretaro
Germany 4 USA 0. Goals: Guenter 20, Weiser 40, Yesil 43, Ducksch 50.
USA -- McIntosh, Acosta, Fehr, Carroll, Amon (Smith, 46), E.Rodriguez, Dunn, Guido, Koroma, Arriola (Melo, 54), M.Rodriguez (McBean, 57)
Germany -- Vlachodimos, Weiser (Born, 79), Roecker, Guenter, Perrey, Yalcin, Can, Yesil (Khedira, 69), Aycicek (Schnellhardt, 58), Ayhan, Ducksch.
Referee: Omar Ponce (Ecuador).