The United States U20 team secured their second win in as many games by dominating Fiji 3-0. The score could have easily been five or six to zero and the game was played primarily in Fiji's final third and penalty box area. Fiji was overwhelmed or the majority of the match with only one decent chance in the entire game. The United States are now pretty guaranteed a spot in the round of 16 and will be looking to win the group outright with a tie or win against Slovakia on Friday.
Tactics and run of play
Mikey went back to a 4-3-3 press without the ball and 2-3-5 in possession where McGlynn was the main orchestrator. The tactics were pretty straight forward in that the U.S. dominated the ball and Fiji was backed up into their penalty box for most of the game and they struggled to break out of United States pressure when they did have the ball.
The U.S. was relying heavily on McGlynn playing diagonal balls to the far post side of the penalty box where a receiving player would look to play a ball back across the face of the goal. This pattern worked fairly well and McGlynn was able to show off his passing precision often.
The majority of first half chances came off a similar sequence or when they would turn Fiji over in dangerous positions. There was chance after chance and the United States just could not find the back of the net.
The boys finally broke through in the 65th minute off of a goal from Diego Luna and that was followed by goals from Cade Cowell and Caleb Wiley.
He was the main trigger man and orchestrator all game and was highly efficient and precise with his passes.
Cowell racked up a ton of chances and was consistently in dangerous positions. He wasn't always elegant on the ball, but he scored a really nice goal and was striking the ball well throughout the game.
Yapi got himself into a ton of good spots, just could not put one away. He had some nice moments on the ball as well.
Luna came in and did a lot of lovely rondo-ing, moving off of the ball, chance creation things and opened up the scoring for the boys.
Tsakiris looked a little rusty at times but I also think he opened up a lot of space and created a lot of good opportunities in the final third. He is a player that the United States can rely on to disorganize opponents.
The United States play their final group stage match against Slovakia on Friday, May 26th at 11am PST. All the U.S. needs to do is not lose and they win the group. Ecuador will likely beat Fiji which will bring them to six points. If we lose to Slovakia there will be three teams with six points and positions will be decided by goal differential. A win gives the U.S. a perfect nine point group stage — that is what we are looking for.