Host Mexico clinched the four-nation U-20 Revelations Cup title by winning a 2-1 thriller over a U.S. team that had rebounded from its 4-0 opening loss to Brazil with a 1-1 tie with Colombia.
Mexico, whose squad included LAFC defender Antonio Leone and forward Christian Torres, and Galaxy forward Jonathan Perez, entered the game after scoreless tie with Colombia and a 2-1 win over Brazil. (Torres and Leone played for the USA at the 2019 Concacaf U-15 Championship and Perez appeared for the U.S. U-16s at the UEFA Development Tournament in Prague).
The tournament marked the first competition for the U.S. U-20s in 22 months and the start of Mikey Varas' tenure as coach. He was appointed less than a week before the tournament kicked off.
Mexico took a 6th minute lead with a goal by Marcelo Flores, who was born and raised in Canada and is eligible for Mexico through his father, Rubén Flores, a Mexico City native who played for Atlante before moving to Canada. (Marcelo Flores, whose Canadian mother is of English descent, plays for Arsenal's U-18 and his eligible for Canada and England.)
The second half of Tuesday's game in Celaya became end-to-end dramatic after 18-year-old Diego Luna of the El Paso Locomotive slid in to score from a pass by the San Jose Earthquakes' Cade Cowell.
Mexico prevailed thanks to a goal by Monterrey's Ali Avila, who met a low cross by Flores that U.S. keeper Gabriel Slonina got his fingertips on but couldn't deflect to safety.
Nov. 16 in Celaya, Mexico
Mexico 2 USA 1. Goals: Flores 6, Avila 62; Luna 50.
Mexico -- Pérez, R.Torres, Leone, Alcántar (Gutiérrez, 46); Ambriz (Espinoza, 53), C.Torres (González, 46), Mariscal, Hernández (Ávila, 46), Flores, Díaz, Pérez (Campos, 79).
USA -- Slonina, Wiley (Pierre, 79); Che; 5, Henry, Leyva (Edelman, 75), Neal, Pukstas (Sealy, 46); Gutiérrez; Cowell; Luna 23, Garay (Sanogo, 86).
Yellow cards: Mexico -- Mariscal 33, Alcántar 42, Pérez. USA -- Cowell 42, Sealy 85. Red cards: none.
Referee: Joaquín Alberto Vizcarra
USA U-20 Roster (Revelations Cup)
GOALKEEPERS (2): Alexander Borto (Fulham/ENG), Gabriel Slonina (Chicago Fire).
DEFENDERS (7): Justin Che (FC Dallas), Jacob Greene (D.C. United), Kobi Henry (Orange County SC), Jalen Neal (LA Galaxy), Kayden Pierre (Sporting KC), Casey Walls (San Jose Earthquakes), Caleb Wiley (Atlanta United II).
MIDFIELDERS (8): Paxten Aaronson (Philadelphia Union), Caden Clark (NY Red Bulls), Daniel Edelman (NY Red Bulls II), Jeremy Garay (D.C. United), Daniel Leyva (Seattle Sounders), Diego Luna (El Paso Locomotive), Jack McGlynn (Philadelphia Union), Rokas Pukstas (Hajduk Split U19/CRO)
FORWARDS (6): Cade Cowell (San Jose Earthquakes), Brian Gutierrez (Chicago Fire), Missael Rodriguez (Chicago Fire), Malick Sanogo (Union Berlin U19/GER), Dante Sealy (PSV/NED), Quinn Sullivan (Philadelphia Union).
Nov. 10 -- USA 0 Brazil 4. Nov. 13 -- USA 1 Colombia 1. Nov. 16 -- Mexico 2, USA 1.