The United States have reached the quarterfinals of the U20 World Cup for the fourth consecutive time, with a thumping 4-0 win over New Zealand in the Round of 16 last night. They have now won games by scores of 1-0, 2-0, 3-0, and 4-0 at this year’s tournament, and will face the winners of The Gambia vs Uruguay for a chance to advance to the semifinals for the first time since 1989.
While this was the most lopsided scoreline yet, most of the damage was done after the hour-mark. Goalkeeper Gabriel Slonina was called into action early on, before getting to see out another fairly comfortable clean sheet. Could he go through the entire tournament without conceding a single goal? He just might!
Given Chelsea’s uncertain situation at the goalkeeper position, every good performance from the 19-year-old should help his chances at grabbing a first-team spot for next season. (Though it also goes without saying that good shutdown defense, like the US have played at this World Cup, goes a long way towards goalkeeper success.)