U.S. Men’s National Team Fails To Qualify For The Olympic Games Again
The USA is out of the 2020 Summer Olympics. How can this keep happening … how is it allowed to keep happening? (Do we really believe this is one of those uncontrollables that we can’t control?)
It was a beautiful goal. U.S. captain Jackson Yueill gave the United States hope today when he scored against Honduras in Sunday’s CONCACAF Olympic qualifying semifinal in Guadalajara, Mexico.
But it was not enough.
The USA was defeated by Honduras, 2-1 in the U-23 Olympic qualifying tournament. The ratio of shots on target was 3:1 in favor of Honduras with the USA having 57% of the possession. While our passing accuracy in this match was 86% accurate, and Honduras enjoyed only 3% greater accuracy, it is knowing what to do with the ball that counts.
The Match #13 – Honduras vs USA Moment of Disaster: USA’s goalkeeper David Ochoa sends the ball back on the field and mistakenly strikes Luis Palma’s leg. The ball ricocheted off the 19-year-olds leg and finds it’s way into America’s goal, earning a 2-0 lead for Honduras.
Now our country will have to sit out of the men’s soccer in the upcoming Olympics and wait for our next chance.
“Obviously, we’re devastated, absolutely devastated,” United States Coach Jason Kreis said. “In our locker room, the guys are like it’s a tragedy — a tragedy.”
What is Brazil, France, Germany, and Spain doing that the USA isn’t? Why do these countries make the cut but the Red, White and Blue are left ego-bruised and embarrassed?
We won the easy games, if there are any easy games … and we started off the competition strong with back to back wins against Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic but we lost to Mexico 1-0 and Honduras, which has qualified for the last three Olympic Games.
No one wants excuses citing mitigating circumstances. America is a proud country that likes to win and if we ever want soccer to become the preeminent sport, we have to win more.
This defeat was a tough blow, especially when you contrast the performance of the men’s side with the women’s. Our FIFA World Cup champions qualified last year and are up for winning more gold.
SADNESS SET IN:
Stuart Holden, who played on the 2008 U.S. men’s Olympic team (which was the last time we made it to the men’s side of the Olympics) said, “It cuts. It makes me want to cry. I recognize what that moment means.”
“We should not accept failure.”Stuart Holden — was on the U.S. Soccer Men’s team the last time the USA qualified for the Olympics
“That was not good enough for the U.S. team and I don’t care who was on the field today, that team should be going to the Olympics. And it’s yet another failure for this program.”@stuholden reacts to the USYNT failing to qualify for the Olympics pic.twitter.com/8DNnwgp8KP— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) March 29, 2021
“The team today was good enough,” said Holden. “Honduras wanted it more.”
What used to make America great in soccer was determination … has this been replaced by creativity without old fashioned, “get out of our way” grit?
The disappointment should not give way to despair. The future is still promising. U.S. Soccer’s trajectory is strong …
As Sports Illustrated stated, “A slew of young, talented athletes have emerged under senior U.S. coach Gregg Berhalter, many of whom play for top European clubs. The senior side, which beat Northern Ireland in a friendly earlier Sunday, is 8-0-1 in in its past nine matches.”
Fun Facts on the USA in Concacaf Men’s Olympic Qualifyiers:
- Top scorer in CMOQ: Steve Snow (8), Brent Goulet (6), Freddy Adu (5), Carl Gentile, Mike Seeray, Alecko Eskandarian, Bobby Convey, Joe Corona y Jerome Kiesewetter (4 goals each).
- All-time scorers per year: Carl Gentile in 1964 (4), Mike Seeray in 1972 (4), Don Ebert in 1980 (3), Brent Goulet in 1988 (6), Steve Snow in 1992 8), Chris Albright and Josh Wolff in 2000 (2), Alecko Eskandarian and Bobby Convey in 2004 (4), Freddy Adu in 2008 (4) and Jerome Kiesewetter in 2015 (4).
CONCACAF MEN’S OLYMPIC QUALIFYING CHAMPIONSHIP ROSTER:
GOALKEEPERS (3): 12-Matt Freese (Philadelphia Union; Wayne, Pa.), 1-JT Marcinkowski (San Jose Earthquakes, Alamo, Calif.), 20-David Ochoa (Real Salt Lake; Oxnard, Calif.)
DEFENDERS (6): 2-Julian Araujo (LA Galaxy; Lompoc, Calif.), 4-Justen Glad (Real Salt Lake; Tucson, Ariz.), 17-Aaron Herrera (Real Salt Lake; Las Cruces, N.M.), 3-Henry Kessler (New England Revolution; New York, N.Y.), 5-Mauricio Pineda (Chicago Fire FC; Bolingbrook, Ill.), 13-Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids; Colorado Springs, Colo.)
MIDFIELDERS (7): 16-Johnny Cardoso (Internacional/BRA; Denville, N.J.), 18-Hassani Dotson (Minnesota United FC; Federal Way, Wash.), 8-Djordje Mihailovic (CF Montreal/CAN; Lemont, Ill.), 15-Andrés Perea (Orlando City SC; Medellin, Colombia), 10-Sebastian Saucedo (UNAM Pumas/MEX; Park City, Utah), 11-Tanner Tessmann (FC Dallas; Hoover, Ala.), 6-Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes; Bloomington, Minn.)
FORWARDS (4): 9-Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas; McKinney, Texas), 7-Jonathan Lewis (Colorado Rapids; Plantation, Fla.), 14-Benji Michel (Orlando City SC; Orlando, Fla.), 19-Sebastian Soto (Norwich City/ENG; San Diego, Calif.)
Photo credit: Concacaf.com/MexSport / U.S. Soccer graphic