US Under-17s roll past England behind Joe Gallardo hat trick, brace from LA Galaxy's Haji Wright
A Joe Gallardo hat trick and a second-half brace by LA Galaxy prospect Haji Wright highlighted the US Under-17 national team’s easy 5-1 victory Wednesday over England in the second of three matches at the Nike International Friendlies in Lakewood Ranch, Fla.
Gallardo (above), part of the Monterrey youth system, paced the attack early, firing in goals in the 13th and 16th minutes before capping his hat trick off in style in the 85th minute.
Wright, who also scored in a 2-1 loss Monday to Portugal, netted his goals in the 72nd and 80th minutes, snuffing out any hope for England after Marcus Edward made the score 2-1 with a curling free-kick goal in the 47th minute.
US goalkeeper Will Pulisic highlighted the defensive effort with five saves, including a penalty-kick stop on England midfielder Foday Nabay early in the second half as the Young Lions pushed for an equalizer.
US out-shot England 21-17 (9-6 on goal).
Other MLS academy players to appear included FC Dallas midfield prospect Alejandro Zendejas, who started and played 66 minutes. The New York Red Bulls’ Matthew Olosunde came on for Edwin Lara in the 66th minute.
Chivas USA prospect Hugo Arellano came on for Wright in the 86th minute. Also in the 86th minute, George Braima of the Columbus Crew Academy came on for Gallardo.
Richie Williams' side will conclude the week-long tournament against Brazil on Friday (5 pm ET, streamed live on USSoccer.com).