U.S. announces U23 roster for Olympic qualifiers

United States Under-23 manager Jason Kreis has named his 20-player roster for the CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Championship.

The players were selected from a 28-man training camp roster that has been practicing in Guadalajara, Mexico since the start of this month. Players can be added to replace an injured player up until March 17.

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The U.S. opens the tournament against Costa Rica on March 18, followed by a match against the Dominican Republic three days later. The group stage finale will see the U.S. go up against rivals Mexico on March 24. The top two finishers in the group will advance to the semifinals. The two semifinal winners will qualify for the Tokyo Olympics.

“We know that qualifying will be a challenge, but it’s a challenge that we’re ready for. We’ll need all 20 players on this roster to contribute for us to achieve our ultimate goal of qualifying for the Olympics,” Kreis said. “We’ve had a productive training camp in Guadalajara and our players are hungry for the opportunity to compete. After starting this journey nearly two years ago, we’re excited to get started with the tournament.”

The roster contains 11 players who have made appearances with the senior national team, including six — San Jose Earthquakes midfielder Jackson Yueill, Colorado Rapids defender Sam Vines, FC Dallas forward Jesus Ferreira, Colorado Rapids midfielder Jonathan Lewis, Orlando City midfielder Andres Perea, and Real Salt Lake defender Aaron Herrera — who took part in the 7-0 U.S. win over Trinidad & Tobago in January. The roster also contains 10 players who have made the final roster at a FIFA Youth World Cup.

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CF Montreal midfielder Djordje Mihailovic has the most caps at U23 level with five, having captained the side three times. Yueill has the most caps at senior level with nine.

The Olympic qualifying tournament was originally scheduled for March 2020 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Players born on or after Jan. 1, 1997 are age-eligible for the competition and Kreis selected players from five different birth years: nine born in 1997, three born in 1998, one born in 1999, three born in 2000 and four born in 2001.

CONCACAF MEN’S OLYMPIC QUALIFYING CHAMPIONSHIP ROSTER BY POSITION (CLUB; HOMETOWN):

GOALKEEPERS (3):Matt Freese (Philadelphia Union; Wayne, Pa.), JT Marcinkowski (San Jose Earthquakes, Alamo, Calif.), David Ochoa (Real Salt Lake; Oxnard, Calif.)

DEFENDERS (6): Julian Araujo (LA Galaxy; Lompoc, Calif.), Justen Glad (Real Salt Lake; Tucson, Ariz.), Aaron Herrera (Real Salt Lake; Las Cruces, N.M.), Henry Kessler (New England Revolution; New York, N.Y.), Mauricio Pineda (Chicago Fire FC; Bolingbrook, Ill.), Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids; Colorado Springs, Colo.)

MIDFIELDERS (7): Johnny Cardoso (Internacional/BRA; Denville, N.J.), Hassani Dotson (Minnesota United FC; Federal Way, Wash.), Ulysses Llanez (Heerenveen/NED; Lynwood, Calif.), Djordje Mihailovic (CF Montreal/CAN; Jacksonville, Fla.), Andrés Perea(Orlando City SC; Medellin, Colombia), Sebastian Saucedo (UNAM Pumas/MEX; Park City, Utah), Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes; Bloomington, Minn.)

FORWARDS (4): Jesús Ferreira (FC Dallas; McKinney, Texas), Jonathan Lewis (Colorado Rapids; Plantation, Fla.), Benji Michel (Orlando City SC; Orlando, Fla.), Sebastian Soto (Norwich City/ENG; San Diego, Calif.)

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