Still down in the dumps after the USA debacle at Copa America? Forget about it. Instead, check out our u-20 team playing in the FIFA 2007 u-20 World Cup in Canada this year. If you’re looking for heart, passion, and skills, then this is the place you need to be. And all of these traits were on display during the USA 2-1 win over world power Brazil.
The thing to me that is most impressive about this win is not who it was against, but how it was done. Crisp passing, good defense, timely saves, and great attack. You haven’t been able to say great attack when talking about the US in quite a while these days.
While Jozy Altidore is still in need of training and growth, at 17, he reminds me of Eddie Johnson at this age. The difference is what Altidore can do with the ball. He can control it, and control it well, something Johnson still cannot do consistently. At 17, it is a bit premature to expect him to lead the attack in 2010, but rest assured, he is now breathing down the necks of both Johnson and Taylor Twellman.
Chris Seitz is making a case for the senior national team with his performance so far. He has been everywhere, making save after save, and some of them have been rather amazing. It’s a shame that the Copa America was wasted on Kasey Keller, because Seitz could have learned from the experience, which was the whole point right? I’m glad he is with the u-20 team, as he is keeping them in this tournament with his play so far.
And then of course, there’s our favorite teen phenom, Freddy Adu. Adu has been outstanding, and he’s doing it at the best possible time, with all the European scouts watching. Is it possible that he is dogging it at MLS because he doesn’t really care? It might be. He plans on leaving MLS anyway, so I could see that being the case. In any event, he is definitely catching the eye of many people, and is showing that he deserves to be captain of the u-20 team.
I think the US can win this tournament, and I’m not saying this because I am a fan. They have the talent, and they have to drive to pull off the feat, and winning the u-20 World Cup would be a huge boost to the US National Team program. All of these players have the European scouts watching them, and more European based players means better success for the senior national team.
The future is bright folks, and I for one cannot wait to see what lies ahead for USA Soccer.