USA vs Slovakia score, result as American Under-20s finish top of FIFA U20 World Cup Group B with 2-0 win

Quick Bit: The Americans continued their perfect start to the 2023 FIFA Under-20 World Cup in Argentina, advancing to the Round of 16 as top of their group after three wins out of three.

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It’s three wins in three matches for the U.S. national team at the 2023 FIFA Under-20 World Cup, as the Americans notched their third straight group stage win, 2-0 vs. Slovakia, to move into the Round of 16 as the top team in Group B.

The U.S. Under-20s advance to the Round of 16 on Tuesday, May 30, when they will face a third-place team hailing from Group A, Group C or Group D. But they’ll have to wait until all the groups have played their final match to learn their opponent. with FIFA predetermining the potential matchups before the tournament.

Man of the Match Cade Cowell scored the breakthrough goal shortly before halftime, going on one of several solo runs at the Slovakian defense before firing past the goalkeeper for his second goal of the tournament. It rewarded the U.S. dominance which was never in question.

Substitute Niko Tsakiris, Cowell’s teammate at the San Jose Earthquakes, got the second deep into stoppage time on a nifty dribble-and-finish in the box as the USA Under-20s head to the knockouts on a roll.

But Cowell could’ve doubled the Americans’ lead well before that purely based on the number of quality chances he helped create. Fellow forward Diego Luna also struck the post in the second half.

And the American defense held strong once again for a third consecutive shutout, with goalkeeper Gaga Slonina coming up with confident stops on the few times he was called into question.

MORE: All the updated FIFA U20 World Cup group standings

Final U20 World Cup Group B standings

Friday, May 26: USA 2-0 Slovakia
Friday, May 26: Ecuador 9-0 Fiji
1. USA-Q
2. Ecuador-Q
3. Slovakia
4. Fiji-E
Q = Qualified to Round of 16
E = Eliminated

USA vs Slovakia final score

Goal scorers
38′ Cade Cowell96′ Niko Tsakiris (Quinn Sullivan)


USA (5-3-2, right to left): 1-Slonina (GK) — 2-Halliday, 17-Che, 5-Craig, 4-Wynder, 3-Wiley (13-Gomez 77′)— 6-Edelman (8-McGlynn 67′), 16-Wolff (15-Tsakiris 67′), 18-Vargas — 9-Cowell (7-Sullivan 73′), 10-Luna (19-Yapi 73′).

Slovakia (4-3-3, right to left): 12-Hrdina (GK) — 19-Kopasek (2-Micuda 75′), 5-Ovsonka, 6-Kosa, 18-Sikula — 14-Szolgai (4-Murgas 68′), 20-M. Sauer (8-Gajdos 46′), 17-Snajder — 11-Gazi (7-Csoka 46′), 9-Griger (10-Jambor), 16-L. Sauer.

Cade Cowell shines for USA Under-20s on world stage

The hard-working San Jose Earthquakes forward put on a show. He was relentless, picking up the ball and going at the Slovakian defense time and again until he was subbed out.

His goal was a sensational solo effort, and he had other similar runs on goal, facing up defenders and blowing past them. It was an impressive display which interested international clubs will be filing away as his transfer value only rises based on that kind of performance. Clubs can probably look past the lack of clinical finishing under net given his pure power and age. He has plenty of room to grow.

USA U20s cruise into Round of 16

The Americans were in control from the start and the few times that Slovakia posed a threat, goalkeeper Gaga Slonina was up to the task. But whenever the USA lost the ball, they were in good position and worked hard to win it back, aided in no small part by a sloppy opponent.

U.S. head coach Mikey Varas even got to rest some players, and no one else picked up a yellow card. So the squad should be a great shape for the knockout rounds, for which they’ll also be reinforced by the arrivals of Kevin Paredes (Wolfsburg in Germany) and Rokas Pukstas (Hajduk Split in Croatia) after they conclude their respective club seasons this weekend.

Even though the USA finished top of their group, there is still a worst-case scenario in the Round of 16 with Italy, Brazil, or Nigeria potentially looming as an opponent from Group D. There are 7 of 15 third-place scenarios that could see that happen. Best-case scenario? Landing Uzbekistan, Guatemala, or New Zealand from Group A (also 7 of 15 scenarios). There is only one set of results that could see the Americans face the Group C third-place team (Israel, Japan, or Senegal).

USA vs Slovakia live updates, highlights from FIFA U20 World Cup

Final: USA 2-0 Slovakia

96th min.: Goal USA! It’s Niko Tsakiris who takes a pass from Quinn Sullivan and does the rest with a neat dribble and finish in the box.

91st min.: Chance Slovakia! It’s Timotej Jambor with the shot from just outside the top of the box, but goalkeeper Gaga Slonina gets down to stop it.

90th min.: Seven minutes of stoppage time.

84th min.: Chance USA! Josh Wynder pokes the ball ahead for U.S. forward Quinn Sullivan in the box, and the Philadelphia Union man gets a shot off, but Slovakia defender David Ovsonka blocks it for a corner.

77th min.: SUBS USA. Jonathan Gomez enters the match for Caleb Wiley. The USA are milking the clock and effectively managing the match.

Slovakia could equalize with one goal and four points instead of three would give them a better chance to qualify as one of the four best third-place teams. It’s surprising not to see more urgency. They look defeated.

73rd min.: SUBS USA. And Man of the Match Cade Cowell comes off along with fellow forward Diego Luna, as Darren Yapi and Quinn Sullivan replace them.

67th min.: SUBS USA. It’s Niko Tsakiris and Jack McGlynn giving a breather to captain Daniel Edelman and Owen Wolff.

67th min.: USA hit the post! Cade Cowell does pass it this time and the ball finally makes its way into the path of Diego Luna who fires it off the right post. It’s an attacking clinic by the USA.

63rd min.: Chance USA! Cade Cowell again doing it on his own, facing up the Slovakian defense. But he might want to pass on the next opportunity, because he didn’t have an opening on this chance.

57th min.: Chance USA! Caleb Wiley launches the counter and feeds Cade Cowell, who converges from the left and fires a shot that’s stopped by the sprawling Slovakian goalkeeper.

56th min.: Cade Cowell has plenty left in the tank. He chased down a ball back to the Slovakian goalkeeper and made the slide tackle to block his pass.

49th min.: Chance USA! It’s that man again as Cade Cowell penetrates the Slovakian area and then chips a cross to the far post where Diego Luna sends the volley attempt high.

46th min.: Second half is underway. Three subs for Slovakia. Mario Sauer, Adam Gazi, and Adam Griger are off with Balint Csoka, Artur Gajdos, and Timotej Jambor taking their place.

Halftime: USA 1-0 Slovakia

Halftime: The USA came out and set the tone, and they didn’t let up — personified by Cade Cowell -— until they got the breakthrough goal. The Americans did have a few giveaways which better teams would punish, but Slovakia don’t appear threatening today with Gaga Slonina solid when called upon.

The end of the first half saw the USA cede the initiative to Slovakia, but they’re going to want to come out on the front foot again to avoid any surprises.

41st min.: Chance Slovakia! It’s Leo Sauer from the left side with the right footed blast heading into the corner. But USA ‘keeper Gaga Slonina gets to it and slaps it out for a corner.

38th min.: Goal USA! It’s Cade Cowell who finally breaks through. He intercepts a backpass and again goes at the Slovakian defense all by himself. He danced past defenders before firing a left-footed shot that got past the Slovakian ‘keeper. Second goal of the tournament for Cowell.

35th min.: USA goal disallowed! Cade Cowell was just ahead of the last defender and the flag goes up after he slots it past the goalkeeper.

33rd min.: Chance Slovakia! It comes on a set piece, with the ball falling to one of the Sauer brothers (Mario), whose shot doesn’t trouble USA goalkeeper Gaga Slonina. It looks like Slovakia will only bother the Americans on set pieces.

28th min.: Chance USA! Long ball from Brandan Craig for Cade Cowell and he bundles the ball past the goalkeeper, but he whiffs on the volley on an empty net and the chance goes up in smoke.

26th min.: Chance USA! It’s target practice for the USA. It’s Cade Cowell with another run at the Slovakian defense and he fires a shot that’s blocked by a defender. The rebound heads to Obed Vargas who fires from distance. The ‘keeper stops it, but allows a rebound which he recovers. Slovakia are looking shaky.

24th min.: Chance USA! Justin Che with two opportunities in quick succession on the ensuing corner kick. But Slovakia’s defense holds up again. The team in blue is bending but not breaking so far.

21st min.: Still all USA. A Cade Cowell pass to onrushing right wingback Michael Halliday is stopped by the defense, but Halliday gets off a dangerous cleared by the Slovakian defense.

13th min.: While USA and Slovakia are still at 0-0 with USA pressing forward, Ecuador take the lead against Fiji on a 7th minute Kendry Paez goal.

Ecuador are up to 2nd in Group B with that result. Pressure is on Slovakia.

7th min.: Chance USA. It’s Cade Cowell who’s not fooling around. He goes right at the defense and fires at goal, but the Slovakian ‘keeper makes the comfortable stop.

Kickoff: USA vs Slovakia underway.

1 hour to KO: Lineups are out for the USA and Slovakia. 

1 hour, 15 mins to KO: The U.S. Under-20 women’s team is also in action later today in the CONCACAF Under-20 championship:

2 hours to KO: The USA Under-20s may be top of their group, but they’re good at other non-soccer things, too.

USA vs Slovakia lineups

With the U.S. already assured of a knockout stage place and a Round of 16 match looming in four days (if the USA finishes in first place), U.S. head coach Mikey Varas rotates players in this match, giving Jonathan Gomez, Jack McGlynn, and Quinn Sullivan a breather, though Brandan Craig features once again.

Three U.S. players (McGlynn, Diego Luna and Josh Wynder) have earned a yellow card through the first two matches and would be automatically suspended with another. But Luna and Wynder still start against Slovakia. The yellow card slate is wiped clean after the quarterfinals.

Kevin Paredes (Wolfsburg) and Rokas Pukstas (Hajduk Split) are both set to join the team in the knockout stages. The likes of Paxten Aaronson (Eintracht Frankfurt) and Jalen Neal (LA Galaxy) were not released by their clubs to play in the tournament.

USA starting lineup (5-3-2, right to left): 1-Gaga Slonina (GK) — 2-Michael Halliday, 17-Justin Che, 5-Brandan Craig, 4-Joshua Wynder, 3-Caleb Wiley — 6-Daniel Edelman, 16-Owen Wolff, 18-Obed Vargas — 9-Cade Cowell, 10-Diego Luna.

USA subs (8): 21-Alex Borto (GK), 12-Antonio Carrera (GK), 13-Jonathan Gomez, 14-Marcus Ferkranus, 15-Niko Tsakiris, 8-Jack McGlynn, 19-Darren Yapi, 7-Quinn Sullivan

Slovakia head coach Albert Rusnak (father of Seattle Sounders player with the same name) brings back winger Adam Gazi, who was replaced by Nino Marcelli in Slovakia’s second match. Rusnak also has four players who are one yellow card away from suspension (Samuel Bagin, Samuel Kopasek, Dominik Snajder, and Mario Sauer), but three of them still get the start.

Of Slovakia’s 21 rostered players, 18 play in the local Slovakian league. The three who play overseas are Adam Griger (Cagliari Under-19s on loan from Austria’s LASK), Jan Murgas (with Austria second-division side Admira Wacker), and Leo Sauer (Feyenoord’s Under-21 team in the Netherlands). 

Slovakia starting lineup (4-3-3, right to left): 12-Adam Hrdina (GK) — 19-Samuel Kopasek, 5-David Ovsonka, 6-Sebastian Kosa, 18-Nicolas Sikula — 14-Mate Szolgai, 20-Mario Sauer, 17-Dominik Snajder — 11-Adam Gazi, 9-Adam Griger, 16-Leo Sauer.

Slovakia subs (10): 1-Samuel Belanik (GK), 21-Adam Danko (GK), 2-Simon Micuda, 3-Samuel Bagin, 13-Marek Ujlaky, 4-Jan Murgas, 7-Balint Csoka, 8-Artur Gajdos, 15-Nino Marcelli, 10-Timotej Jambor

MORE: FIFA U20 World Cup Round of 16 schedule

USA vs Slovakia live stream, TV channel

Date: Friday, May 26, 2023
Time: 2 p.m. ET
TV channels: FS2 (English), Universo (Spanish)
Streaming: Fubo, Fox Sports GO,, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo, Universo NOW

The USA vs Slovakia match will be televised by FS2 (English) and Universo (Spanish) with both channels streaming on Fubo, which offers a free trial for new users.

There is also a stream available on both broadcasters’ streaming platforms (site & app) for authenticated subscribers to cable, satellite or telco packages: Fox Sports GO,, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo, and Universo NOW.

For those located outside the USA, the broadcaster carrying the match depends on the region. For countries without a designated broadcast rightsholder, the match can be found on FIFA+, which is FIFA’s official streaming platform.

Originally found on Sporting News Read More

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