The United States Under-20 National Team will not be participating in their 8th World Cup in a row following a 2-1 Qualifying defeat to Guatemala on Wednesday in Guatemala City. Playing in front of a crowd happy to stress home field advantage early and often at the Estadio Mateo Flores, the US went down a goal in the 33rd minute. Conor Doyle equalized in the 66th, but Guatemala went in front for good thee minutes later. The win sends the US home while Guatemala moves on to the semifinals. In CONCACAF Under-20 Qualifying, all semifinalists advance to the Under-20 World Cup.
“Obviously we are extremely disappointed by this result,” US coach Thomas Rongen said. “If you look at the game, you have to take your hat off to Guatemala. The home team came to play. They had a good game plan. We have to move on, and I firmly believe that within this group we have very capable players who will move on to represent our team at the senior team or Olympic level, but today wasn’t our day. It was a good host team and our team wasn’t able to click on all cylinders.”