USA draw Japan in U-17 World Cup group play

The US national team tied Japan 0-0 at the 2019 U-17 World Cup in Brazil on Wednesday, leaving their hopes of advancement hanging on their group-stage finale against the Netherlands on Saturday evening.

The game, the second in Group D play, was a tense affair, defense dominant on both sides. In particular, goalkeeper Chituru Odunze, a Vancouver Whitecaps FC academy product now at Premier League club Leicester City, made key stops to keep Japan off the board and give the Americans their first result at the tournament.

All told, Raphael Wicky used six current MLS pros from six clubs for the US in the second game – Joe Scally (NYCFC), George Bello(Atlanta United), Danny Leyva (Seattle Sounders), Gianluca Busio (Sporting KC), Ricardo Pepi (FC Dallas) and Griffin Yow (D.C. United).

The draw gives the US hope of advancing to the knockout round, but they still have work to do. They'll wrap up group play against a winless Dutch team, and can advance if they can move up to second place or qualify as one of the best third-place teams in the tournament.

USA lineup vs. Japan: GK - Chituru Odunze; Joe Scally, George Bello, Juan Carrera, Kobe Hernandez-Foster, Danny Leyva, Gianluca Busio, Ricardo Pepi (Gio Reyna 55'), Adam Saldaña, Ethan Dobbelaere, Andres Jasson (Griffin Yow 78')