June 21, 2013
FALLING TO SPAIN
U.S. U-20s lose in World Cup opener
ISTANBUL, Turkey - Spain strikers Jese and Gerard Deulofeu each tallied twice, scoring all four goals just past the hour mark to lead a 4-1 win over the United States in the opening match of the 2013 U-20 World Cup at Ali Sami Yen Arena Friday.
Despite controlling the majority of possession for stretches, the U.S. was unable to stymie a dynamic and impressive Spanish attack that did well to capitalize on its opportunities.
Luis Gil impressed throughout the match by controlling the midfield and spraying effective passes to his teammates, and provided the U.S. their lone but deserved goal with an exquisite left-footed strike in the 77th minute.
The U-20 MNT resumes Group A play against France on Monday, June 24, at Ali Sami Yen Arena in Istanbul. The game kicks off at 6 p.m. local (11 a.m. ET) and will be broadcast live on ESPN2, WatchESPN and Univision Deportes.
France defeated Ghana 3-1 in the other match in Group A.
Spain tallied early with a goal in the fifth minute, serving a ball over the top of the USA back line to Deulofeu. The forward then crossed the ball across the front of the net where Real Madrid striker Jese played it off the volley from the penalty spot.
The U.S. came back with a couple chances of their own early on, but didn't find the back of the net. The most impressive came from a pass by Gil that deflected off a Spain defender just outside the penalty area and found a wide open Alonso Hernandez, but he pushed his shot just wide.
Deulofeu added a goal to his assist in the 42nd minute with a bending shot from 18 yards out that turned toward the far post and out of the reach of goalkeeper Cody Cropper.
Just two minutes later, Javier Manquillo dribbled down the right side and cut back towards the goal as the U.S. defender went sliding by. Manquillo flicked it to a trailing Jese who only needed one touch to score his second goal of the game.
In the second half, a perfectly timed pass by Jose Campana coupled with a beautiful diagonal run and touch by Deulofeu added to the Spain lead. Cropper came out of the box but could cut off the pass, ending up nearly 20 yards away from the goal.
Gil provided the lone goal when he received the ball at the top of the box, cut back right and unleashed a left-footed shot that found the upper right side of the net where Daniel Sotres had no chance of stopping it.