July 10, 2006
Santa Clara, Calif. - Santa Clara University freshman Amaechi Igwe played in two games against Canada for the United States Under-20 national team over the weekend as the U.S. went 1-0-1. The Belmont, Calif. native helped set up the game-winning goal in his first game and then scored his team's only goal in the second match in his first two appearances at the U-20 level for the U.S.
Igwe played 90 minutes in a 2-1 win over Canada on July 7 at Rogers Centre in Toronto and showed his attacking ability by helping set up the game-winning goal late in the first half. After picking up the ball in his own half, Igwe made a long run to the edge of Canada's penalty box before sliding a pass over to Josmer Altidore. Altidore had his initial shot blocked, but he was able to finish the rebound to give the U.S. a 2-0 lead.
In the second match of the two-game series, Igwe continued his strong play despite entering the game as a second half substitution. After coming on to start the second half, he rose up to knock in a header in the 65th minute pushing the Americans out to a 1-0 advantage. Despite an equalizer by the Canadians, the U.S. held on to finish their short trip unbeaten. The second game was played in Kingston, Canada on July 9.
The next event for the U.S. Under-20s is the Northern Ireland Milk Cup. The U.S. will leave for the tournament on July 27 and play Wales on Monday, July 31, and Denmark on Wednesday, Aug. 2, before playing a placement match on Friday, Aug. 4. The other group consists of Northern Ireland, Paraguay and Turkey. A roster for the tournament will be announced in the near future.
Overall, the U.S. is beaten against Canada by one goal in their last six meetings since 2003. The last meeting between the two CONCACAF rivals took place last year in Blaine, Minn., ahead of the FIFA U-20 World Championship in Holland. The U.S. fell behind early after a goal from Will Johnson, but bounced back with goals from Eddie Gaven and Freddy Adu to pull out a 2-1 victory.
To read the U.S. Soccer match reports on Igwe's two matches click here.