Most of the scenarios favor the Americans, but there’s still plenty on the line for the United States today in their final group match of the U-20 World Cup in Poland.
The Yanks will be expected to beat a Qatar team that was outscored 5-0 in its first two games, but strange things tend to happen in the final day of group play. As usual, a win would be the path of least resistance (where have we heard this before?).
Look for Philadelphia Union defender Mark McKenzie — who made his tournament debut replacing the injured Chris Richards at the hour mark against Nigeria on Monday — to be in the starting lineup. Union teammate Matt Real could also make his first start today while Philadelphia native CJ dos Santos is an option to spell Brady Scott in goal.
The U.S. will advance to the knockout round with a win. With a draw they would advance as a second place team in the group if Ukraine beats Nigeria, but could still advance as the third place team if they draw and Nigeria wins or draws Ukraine. The top four third place finishers will join the top two finishers in each group in the Round of 16.
The U.S. could still finish second with a loss if Ukraine beats Nigeria and they have the advantage on goal differential over Nigeria. A third place finish in that scenario would depend on how the other groups shake out.
How to watch
Where: Tychy Stadium, Tychy, Poland
When: 2:30 p.m. ET, Thursday, May 30, 2019
TV: Fox Sports 1, Universo
Streaming: Fox Sports Go