BRADENTON, Florida – The stage is set for what should be a tantalizing 2018 Concacaf Under-20 Championship Final between the United States and Mexico.
The U.S. is the reigning champion and will be seeking to defend its crown against its most storied rival.
Meanwhile, claiming the top prize at a CU20 is nothing new for Mexico, evidenced by its previous 13 Concacaf Under-20 crowns. El Tricolor would like nothing more than to win its 14th title on the U.S.’s home soil.
From back to front, both teams are brimming with talent.
Mexico is led by CU20 leading scorer Jose Macias, who has 10 goals. Ironically, Macias has yet to find the back of the net in the Qualification Stage and the Final would be the perfect platform to return to his goalscoring ways.
Also leading El Tricolor into the final has been Diego Lainez. The Club America MF spearheaded Mexico’s comeback from 2-0 down versus Panama on Monday to salvage a 2-2 draw and earn a spot in the final.
As for the U.S., no team has scored more goals in this CU20 than the reigning champions, with 44 in total, led by Ulysses Llanez (7 goals) and Ayo Akinola (7 goals).
Defensively, the U.S. has been just as solid with only two goals conceded, but a stiff challenge awaits against Mexico’s fleet of dangerous playmakers.
With both teams already qualified for next summer’s 2019 FIFA Under-20 World Cup in Poland and regional bragging rights on the line, fans can expect a thrilling 90 minutes of action to cap off what has been a very memorable tournament.