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Spain's strikers Deulofeu and Jese slice through U.S. U-20s
by Mike Woitalla, June 21st, 2013 4:55PM

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TAGS:  under-20 world cup, youth boys

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[USA-SPAIN] In its U-20 World Cup opener, the USA nearly matched Spain in ball possession and attacked as much as the Spaniards did, but the Americans were blown away by the Real Madrid-Barcelona frontline duo of Gerard Deulofeu and Jese in a 4-1 loss on Friday in Istanbul.

Five minutes after kickoff, Deulofeu eluded Javan Torre near on the right wing and delivered a cross to Jese, who escaped the marking of DeAndre Yedlin and stroked the ball past keeper Cody Cropper.

The Americans should have equalized in the 13th minute when Luis Gil chipped a pass that left Alonso Hernandez with only keeper Daniel Sotres to beat near the penalty spot, but Hernandez shot wide of the goal.

Despite having 51 percent of the possession at halftime, Coach Tab Ramos’ team entered the locker room with a 3-0 deficit. Deulofeu had curled a 20-yard shot into the far corner in the 42nd minute and Jese scored from 11 yards in the 44th after Javier Manquillo blew past Torre to set up the strike.

Missing the Colorado Rapids’ Shane O’Neill -- for a red card in the Concacaf championship final -- the central defense of Torre and Caleb Stanko continued to look vulnerable in the second half and was left in the dust when Deulofeu scored Spain’s fourth in the 61st minute.

Gil provided consolation for the Americans in the 77th minute with a 24-yard left-footed shot into the top right corner after faking out Jose Campana.

Deulofeu has scored 27 goals in 67 games for Barcelona’s reserve team in the second division and has a pair of appearances in both La Liga and the Champions League. Jese has one La Liga appearance for Real Madrid and 22 goals in 38 second division games.

Their marksmanship proved the difference on Friday, when the Americans outshot the Spaniards, 13-12, but only put five on frame to Spain’s nine. Spain finished with a 54-46 edge in possesion.

On Monday, the USA faces France, which opened with a 3-1 win over Ghana.

June 21 in Istanbul
USA 1 Spain 4
Goals: Gil 77; Jese 5, Deulofeu 42, Jese 44, Deulofeu 61.
USA -- Cropper; Yedlin, Stanko, Javan Torre, Ocegueda; Joya, Trapp; Garcia (Cuevas, 56), Gil, Villarreal (Lopez, 72); Hernandez (Rodriguez, 46).
Spain -- Sotres; Manquillo, Derik (Llorente, 74), Puerto, Campana (Ruben, 70), Suso, Jese (Paco Alcacer, 76), Juan Bernat, Saul, Oliver, Gerard Deulofeu.
Yellow cards: USA -- Villarreal 64, Ocegueda 87, Lopez 90+2; Manquillo 20, Puerto 52.
Referee: Bakary Gassama (Gambia).

Game highlights ...



9 comments
  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: June 21, 2013 at 5:59 p.m.
    The offense was not the problem from what I saw in the 2nd 1/2. Defenders looked lost on last Spain goal but the biggest on that play goes to the Goalie. He should have never came out like he did. This is the way a Usa side shiuld play. If they just work on tactcs a little more we will be fine. Gil goal was the best if all 5. Pure quality. If they keep playing like that up top look for several of these players to get European interest right away. Good job Ramos.

  1. R2 Dad
    commented on: June 21, 2013 at 9:10 p.m.
    That seems to be the difference, Luis. Spain's players are already settled in clubs over there with 2-3 years under their belts while our guys (NIC Gil) are hoping to get a tryout. We need most of our squad in Europe by the time they're U18.

  1. Bill Morrison
    commented on: June 22, 2013 at 8:36 a.m.
    I agree with the above - we played attractive possession-attacking soccer. The defense was a bit naive, but lets get real, Deulofeu and Jese are superstars in the making, on the books at Real Madrid and Barcelona for years. They've learned well, Spain counter-attacked with deadly efficiency; something we could not consistently do. There are lots of positives to take away from this game, even a 4-1 loss. I think against France on Monday we'll see a different result.

  1. Bernd Grabowski
    commented on: June 22, 2013 at 9:02 a.m.
    That was the most naive display I have seen in a long time. It is great that at times the US could maintain possession and play with Spain but they gifted the Spaniards 4 goals. Everybody is blaming the defense but these guys were left on an island. Just look at the first goal. The referee!!!! outran the entire US midfield to be on top of the play while Trapp and Joya were taking their time to track back. You just can't do that at that level. Ramos had a month to prepare these guys. You would expect he would come up with a better plan to play team defense.

  1. Walt Pericciuoli
    commented on: June 22, 2013 at 9:16 a.m.
    Our team showed confidence, poise and attacking flare. They had the defending U19 European Champions and favorites to win the cup back on their heels most of the game. We dominated possession. When does that happen vs. any Spain Nat team? They took chances going forward to attempt to win. I'll take that any time over playing a bunkered down defense and hope to escape with a respectable scoreline.Credit to Tab for putting out there a team I can enjoy watching. Yes our central defenders were weak, our outside backs very slow and naive, but look who they were matched up against. I said great job, the 4-1 result did not do justice to the actual game on the field. Tighten up the defense a bit, but otherwise,don't change anything.

  1. David V
    commented on: June 22, 2013 at 2:32 p.m.
    @ Everyone... see my comments here... http://www.socceramerica.com/article/52266/luis-gil-stands-out-defense-struggles.html USA is not there yet, be patient, the answer is posted under the link above ... it's not what you want to hear, but we aren't there yet... we aren't Tahiti, but it's the same principle, it would be foolish for Tahiti thinking it came out with the wrong game plan and that's why they lost 10-0 to Spain. Tahiti isn't anywhere close to spain, the US isn't close... how silly it would be to bag on the Tahitian coach, same thing with Ramos here... again, we're not down 122 places in the Fifa rankings, but US youth and players and MLS at best are like a 2nd division and 3rd division mix in Spain... Good Job, Tab

  1. David V
    commented on: June 22, 2013 at 3:08 p.m.
    As I mentioned @ http://www.socceramerica.com/article/52266/luis-gil-stands-out-defense-struggles.html to compete with the midfield, something had to give, and that was at the back... Spain doesn't play possession to play possession, they play to attack and win, if the opponent is going to sacrifice the back for the midfield, a team in Spain's category, far above the USA, will exploit it and win... this isn't really a moral victory that everyone thinks it is, the USA got hammered, we must become more educated

  1. Peter Skouras
    commented on: June 22, 2013 at 8 p.m.
    Absolutely correct David!!! HAMMERED! US Soccer players at all levels must learn "how" to win! That means defending intelligently and putting the ball in the back of the net. Our Domestic structure does not encourage "winning" because there is nothing to win! And losing? There is nothing to lose...meaning relegation systems...so what do we do? Just go out and have a good time! No real purpose is there? Giving out players experience? For what? Think about it! The SCORELINE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT HERE! 1:4 (0:3) USA SPAIN 11 Shots 12 5 Shots on goal 9 46% Possession (%) 54%

  1. Luis Arreola
    commented on: June 22, 2013 at 11:07 p.m.
    Peter, would you prefer 2 shots for Usa and 10 for Spain? No matter how you play them they will get those shots off at least. Difference will be more bodies to deflect the shots for less goals scored and maybe a 10% chance if tying. Thats not soccer. Its better to stay home or create a 2nd tier for W.C. U20 so no team plays scared if getting killed. Look at Mexico vs Greece. 20 shots to 5. 9 out of 10 games Mexico wins this game. But poor defnding and great individual play from a few Greek players pulled off an unlikely win. Thats soccer!!


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