U20 Match Report v. New Zealand

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2023 World Cup
The United States U20 advance to the quarterfinals of the U20 World Cup after a comprehensive 4-0 performance against New Zealand. The U.S. has not yet conceded a goal in this tournament and advance off of goals from Owen Wolff, Cade Cowell, Justin Che and Rokas Pukstas. The U.S. will await the winner of The Gambia and Uruguay who play on Thursday.

Tactics and run of play

More of the same against New Zealand. The United States played a 3-5-2 / 3-4-3 type formation with Wolff and Luna moving around into central, deeper positions to support in the build out. The starting 11 looked like this: 

GK: Gaga Slonina
LCB: Josh Wynder
CB: Brandan Craig
RCB: Justin Che
LWB: Caleb Wiley
RWB: Jonathan Gomez
CM: Jack McGlynn
CM: Daniel Edelman
AM: Owen Wolff
ST: Cade Cowell
ST: Diego Luna

We pressed high and caused a lot of problems for a New Zealand side that did not have the quality to play through it consistently.

The U.S. was able to continuously find pockets of space to break down New Zealand's three quarter line of confrontation. New Zealand's press became more aggressive as the game went on, but had very little impact in disrupting the U.S.'s rhythm. The United States dominated possession for the majority of the game and won the ball back relentlessly throughout the game aside. Outside of a couple five to ten minutes spells, the United States were in complete control.

Top performers

Owen Wolff

Wolff scored the opening goal off of a mistake by the keeper and was also productive in breaking pressure and connecting play that transitioned into dangerous attacking moments.

Diego Luna

Luna was saucing and dangerous for the better part of the game and he appears to be settling in to the false 9 role. He had two assists on the game and also had a couple of big chances to score himself.

Jack McGlynn

McGlynn continues to be the string puller for this group. His reliability and precision passing continue to be a massive weapon for this group and he is also holding his own defensively.

Daniel Edelman

Edelman has a couple of poor moments in possession, but his ball winning was outstanding and critical in deflating New Zealand possession.

Justin Che

Che continues to have a quiet, but incredibly solid tournament. He has been very good in one on one defensive situations and he added a clean up goal in the second half.

Josh Wynder

This was Wynder's best game of the tournament. He was physical in duels, more progressive on the ball and a presence throughout the game.

Brandan Craig

Craig continues to be the lead distributor from the backline and added a beautiful set piece assist that found the head of Rokas Pukstas, perfectly, at the back post.

Up next

The United States advance to a fourth consecutive U20 World Cup quarterfinal and are attempting to make a semifinal for the first time since 2007. The U.S. will play either The Gambia or Uruguay on Sunday, June 4th. The Gambia and Uruguay play on Thursday, June 1st.

Listen to the Recap

I joined Adam Belz from Scuffed to breakdown the New Zealand match.