Florida kid George Acosta leads U.S. U-17 boys to triumph in France

By Mike Woitalla

The U.S. U-17 boys national team beat host France, 3-2, to win 44th International Montaigu Tournament. George Acosta, who scored twice in final, also scored twice in the USA’s 4-0 win over Russia and in its 2-2 tie with England.

The USA, coached by U-16 coach Shaun Tsakiris because U-17 head coach John Hackworth is serving as U.S. U-23 assistant coach for its Olympic play-in series with Colombia, opened the tournament with a 1-1 tie with Brazil.

Acosta, who plays for Florida club Weston FC, scored the gamwinner in the final by lobbing the goalkeeper from 25 yards out. His six goals led the tournament, followed by Brazil’s Paulo Henrique (5 goals) and France’s Matthias Phaetton (4).

“It didn’t surprise me,” says Victor Pastora, Weston’s Assistant Technical Director, of Acosta’s performance. “He’s a very, very talented, special player. He’s not just player who has the qualities to play at that level, he’s different.

“He can assist, he can score, and he can do it in so many different ways. He can dribble through people, he can combine, he can hit it with the right, with the left, he can head it in. … He’s naturally right-footed, but he’s player who when we told players to work on their left foot, he did it. In a lot of scrimmages and small-sided games, he always used his left and had fun with it.”

George Acosta

In between playing for Weston’s U-14 and U-16 Development Academy teams, Acosta, whose father hails from Colombia, spent a season with Argentine club Estudiantes de La Plata.

The title was the first for the USA at the Montaigu Mondial since it beat Spain, 2-1, in the 1992 final. The U.S. goalkeeper was Jon Busch.

March 28 in Montaigu, France
France 2 USA 3. Goals: Phaeton 29, Kerouedan 40; Weah 5, Acosta 43, Acosta 79.

March 26 in Bretignolles Sur Mer, France
USA 4 Russia 0. Acosta (Akinola) 1, Acosta (Ferri) 7, Akinola (Weah) 43, Akinola (Goslin) 47.
USA -- Garces; Foe Nuphaus (Vasquez, 51), Durkin, Shaver, Cornfield Saunders; Goslin (Sands, 51), Ferri (Lemoine, 76), Acosta (McGann, 76); Weah, Akinola (Carleton, 51), Villegas (Sargent, 41).
Russia -- Shitov; Evinov, Mikhailov, Moskvichev (Giurdzhan, 41), Zavarukhin; Umiarov, Mironov (Karapuzov, 61), Velikorodnyy (Prutsev, 49); Gomaniuk (Radostev, 41), Lopatin (Ageev, 41), Kolesnichenko.
Red cards: USA -- Durkin 80; Russia -- Evinov 80.

March 24 in Le Poire Sur Vie, France
USA 2 England 2. Goals: Acosta (Ferri) 39, Acosta (pen.) 76; Gibbs White 33, Wilson 37.
USA -- Garces; Vasquez (Lemoine, 72), Durkin, Arteaga (Cornfield Saunders, 69), McGann; Sands (Goslin, 41), Ferri (Foe Nuphaus, 41), Acosta; Weah (Akinola, 41), Sargent, Carleton (Garcia-Morillo, 41).
England -- Male; Lavinier, Wilson, Strachan, Medley; O'Riley, McEachran, Foden; Brewster (Loader, 69), Griffiths (Skipp, 55), Gibbs White.

March 22 in Le Poire Sur Vie, France
USA 1 Brazil 1. Goal: Akinola (Sargent) 81; Souza Da Silva 35.
USA -- Budnik; McGann, Shaver, Durkin, Foe Nuphaus; Sands (Garcia-Morillo, 69), Goslin (Lemoine, 61), Ferri; Carleton, Sargent, Akinola.
Brazil -- Gabriel; Leonardo de Freitas, Clayton, Vitor, Lucas Eduardo (Leonardo De Carvalho, 68); Iago (Wallace Ruan, 53), Alan, Joao Pedro; Helio Junio (Victor Natan, 69), Brenner, Paulo Henrique.

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Everton wins Dallas Cup Super Group

Everton beat Fulham, 2-1, an all-England final to win the Dallas Cup Gordon Jago Super Group. FC Dallas, the only U.S. team to reach the final four, fell, 3-1, to Everton in the semifinals.

The U.S. U-20 national team was knocked out in group play because of a stoppage-time equalizer in its 3-3 tie with Germany’s Hoffenheim. Coach Tab Ramos' U.S. team had beaten Mexico’s Monterrey, 1-0, and lost to Fulham, 2-1.

Real Salt Lake, the third American team in the Super Group, won its first two games but was eliminated when it fell to Everton, 3-1.

Dallas Texans Red in 2006 are the only U.S. team to win the Dallas Cup Super Group, which last year was won by Brazil's Coritiba. No U.S. team reached the semis in 2015.

The Dr Pepper Dallas Cup XXXVII Champions
Gordon Jago Super Group: Everton (England)
U-19: Golden State White (California)
Super 17s: Tigres (Mexico)
U-17: New York SC
U-16: Monterrey (Mexico)
U-15: Eintracht Frankfurt (Germany)
U-14: Los Angeles B01 Black (California)
U-13: Solar Chelsea 03B (Texas)

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U.S. U-18 men win three games in Argentina

The U.S. U-18 men's national team (1999s) won all three of its games during its training camp in Argentina. Coach Omid Namazi's team beat Argentine clubs San Lorenzo (2-1) and Racing Club (3-2), and Uruguay’s national team (2-1).

FC Richmond’s Nick Taitague scored on penalty kicks in the wins over San Lorenzo and Racing Club and notched an assist. Also scoring twice was Griffin Dorsey (Colorado Rush).

March 12 in Buenos Aires
San Lorenzo 1 USA 2. Goals: Palacios 8; Uribe (Taitague) 1 Taitague (pen.) 42.
USA -- Lopez; Zarris, Vom Steeg, Uribe, Real (Mendoza, 41); Aguilera (Paoli, 4), Pomykal (Alfaro, 66), Gonzalez; Rennicks, Taitague (Perry, 61), Dorsey (Bulut, 66).

March 14 in Buenos Aires
Racing Club 2 USA 3. U.S. goals: Dorsey (Gonzalez)  7, Taitague (pen.) 9, Rennicks (Zarris) 48.
USA -- Lopez (Williams, 63); Zarris, Vom Steeg, Uribe (Stanley, 41), Real (Jones, 41); Paoli (Mendoza, 62), Pomykal, Gonzalez (Alfaro, 60); Rennicks (Bulut, 60), Taitague (Perry, 60), Dorsey (Del Rosario, 57).

March 16 in Buenos Aires
USA (99s) 2 Uruguay (00s) 1. U.S. goals: Dorsey (Jones)  48, del Rosario 60.
USA  -- Williams; Zarris (Real, 41), Uribe (Vom Steeg, 49), Stanley, Jones; Paoli (Mendoza, 41), Gonzalez (Tomozawa), Alfaro (Pomykal); Rennicks (Bulut, 36), Taitague (Perry, 49), Dorsey (Del Rosario, 50).
Uruguay -- Silveira; Gonzalez Sena, Parada, Elizalde (Santellan); Napoli, Medina Alfonso, Mechoso; Torres Falconis (Suarez).

3 comments about "Florida kid George Acosta leads U.S. U-17 boys to triumph in France".
  1. BJ Genovese, March 28, 2016 at 9:28 p.m.

    Are these just clubs in France they are playing against? Not other nations best? Mediocre.

  2. Goal Goal, March 29, 2016 at 5:24 p.m.

    BJ that insinuation is uncalled for in my opinion. Give the kids and the coaching credit for a job well done. This age group and younger is the future. The U15 boys are getting ready to get some exposure to world talent also. Let's wish them all the best.

  3. beautiful game, March 29, 2016 at 9:47 p.m.

    Maybe Hackworth should be reassigned.

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