US U-17s fall to Portugal in Nike friendlies opener despite goal by LA Galaxy Academy's Haji Wright
In the first of three Nike International Friendlies, the US Under-17 men's national team blew an early 1-0 lead against Portugal, eventually falling in heartbreaking fashion 2-1 when the Portuguese scored in second-half stoppage time at Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood Ranch, Fla., on Monday.
LA Galaxy Academy forward Haji Wright put the US on top in the 13th minute when he received a through ball from FC Dallas Academy midfielder Alejandro Zendejas and slotted a shot in the upper 90 for a 1-0.
Portugal, however, equalized the match in the 28th minute courtesy of a Generoso Correia goal. The US allowed the game-winner in the 91st minute on a Gonçalo Vieira header.
The US were outshot in the match 12-6, but both team put six shots on frame. Portugal committed 18 fouls to the US' six, with the European side receiving three cautions.
Other MLS Academy players George Braima (Columbus) and Hugo Arellano (Chivas USA) played the full 90 for the US. New York Red Bulls Academy defender Matthew Olosunde played 78 minutes before coming off.
Richie Williams' U-17 side next face England in their second Nike friendlies match on Wednesday (5 pm ET, streamed on USSoccer.com) before wrapping up against Brazil on Friday.