Shocker: Mexico's U-20s eliminated after missing five penalty kicks

The USA, Honduras, Dominican Republic and Guatemala will be Concacaf's four representatives at the 2023 Under-20 World Cup in Indonesia.

That's right -- missing from that list is Mexico.

El Tri not only won't be going to the Under-20 World Cup but also won't be going to the Olympics, where it won a bronze medal last year and the gold medal a decade ago.

Concacaf's two berths in men's soccer at the 2024 Olympics will be decided on Friday when the USA faces host Honduras and the Dominican Republic meets Guatemala in the Concacaf Under-20 Men's Championship semifinals.

The USA and Honduras will meet for the third straight time with a berth in the Olympics on the line. Guatemala has not gone to the Olympics since 1968. The Dominican Republic is going to its first FIFA world championship at any level with its qualification for the 2023 U-20 World Cup.

Guatemala-Mexico. Mexico's U-20s suffered a shocking defeat to Guatemala, losing 2-1 in a shootout after their match ended 1-1.

FC Cincinnati's Quimi Ordonez put Guatemala ahead in the 39th minute, and Los Chapines led until the 74th minute when Esteban Lozano equalized. Lozano had a chance to win the game for Mexico in the 88th minute but his penalty kick was saved by Jorge Moreno.

In the shootout, Guatemala jumped out to a 2-0 lead when Moreno stopped penalty kicks by Jesus Hernandez and Isaías Violante and LAFC's Antonio Leone fired his shot wide of the goal.

Mexico appeared to have been given a new life when Guatemala twice missed penalty kicks that would have clinched the win, but Moreno stopped Bryan Gonzalez's shot in the fifth round to clinch the win.

The victory sends Guatemala to the Under-20 World Cup for the second time. In 2011, it qualified after beating the USA, 2-1, in the quarterfinals.

Dominican Republic-Jamaica. The Dominican Republic advanced thanks to a 1-0 win over Jamaica.

It had to go through the pre-championship qualifying tournament for Concacaf's weakest nations to reach the round of 16 and needed goals in the 88th and 94th minute to clinch its ticket to Honduras with a 2-2 tie against St. Lucia.



In the round of 16, the Dominican Republic upset group winner El Salvador, 5-4, twice coming back to win on a penalty kick by Inter Miami's Edison Azcona.

Against Jamaica, the Dominican Republic started Houston Dynamo goalkeeper Xavier Valdez, Inter Miami academy star Izzy Boatwright and Taft School's Sebastian Manon in addition to Azcona.

The game's lone goal was scored by Angel Montes de Oca in the 10th minute.

Photos (Concacaf.com): Top -- Quimi Ordonez; Below: Edison Azcona (10), Izzy Boatwright (6).

9 comments about "Shocker: Mexico's U-20s eliminated after missing five penalty kicks".
  1. Bob Ashpole, June 30, 2022 at 6:01 a.m.

    What were the odds of that result? But that is why in real life they play the games. This isn't a video game. So sad for Mexico.

  2. Santiago 1314 replied, June 30, 2022 at 6:31 a.m.

    Not Sad at All... Should help us in the "Recruiting" Wars...Toma Ya.!!!

  3. humble 1, June 30, 2022 at 8:15 a.m.

    The great soccer nation Mexico is struggling to produce their next generations.  This will be a blow.  Traditionally they have players forming in the U20 comtext and the Olympics.  We know how missing U20 and Olympics can impact NT player progresssion very well here.  There were already cracks showing in their MNT age mix and there pipeline of players to europe.  MLS is becoming preferred home of returning Euro-stars. What gives?

  4. Karl Sonneman replied, June 30, 2022 at 5:09 p.m.

    Great analysis.  Reporters should be writing about this.

  5. Kevin Sims, June 30, 2022 at 12:40 p.m.

    This stuff ain't easy, folks! They are called "games", "contests", "competitions" for a reason ... not "certainties" or "knowns". All of the chatter about what should happen at any level or type of USA competition sometimes misses this point. Teams do not always play to the best of their ability. Teams sometimes play beyond their known best. Moments turn matches. Momentum happens. Officiating happens. Weather happens. Off days happen for teams and players and coaches and officials. All of this: embrace the spirit of competition and be grateful for an y positive result! 

  6. humble 1 replied, July 1, 2022 at 1:18 p.m.

    Sure, anything can happen in tournament play, but Mexico has been very consitent over the years in player production and tournament performance. This is just the latest slip-up.  Yeah, it's true that MLS and USL are lifting all boats, and the competition is more stiff, but it does seem that the Mexican system is struggling on all fronts.  Not a good outcome for them. Period. 

  7. Chris Wasdyke, June 30, 2022 at 3:01 p.m.

    I'd be really worried if I was a fan of the Mexican team.  They seem like they have given up on Mexico.  They heavily recruit Mexican Americans, they play all their friendly games in the US for more $$$.  I think with the rise of MLS, Mexican dominance is waning.  I used to think it was MLS that wanted closer ties with LigaMX, now I think it's the other way around.

  8. R2 Dad replied, July 1, 2022 at 11:14 a.m.

    The paramilitary drug cartels have literally changed the game in Mexico. Anyone who wants out has gone north or to Europe. No surprises there.

  9. humble 1 replied, July 1, 2022 at 1:13 p.m.

    I am not sure there is such a simple explanation.  There has been turmoil in Mexico for very long time and their soccer system produced.  There is more to the story. 

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