The U.S. U-20 men's national team wrapped up their five-day training camp in Houston with a 2-0 win over the Dynamo Academy U-18s, presented by Statoil, Saturday morning at the Houston Amateur Sports Park. Villyan Bijev scored a first-half brace to lead the visitors.
The U-20 MNT started strong, pushing the tempo and nearly getting on the board in the sixth minute. Daniel Garcia, a midfielder for the FC Dallas U-18s, received a ball on the left hand side of the penalty box and fired a shot on target. The ball hit Dynamo right back Sam Omondi in the stomach before it was cleared from danger.
Three minutes later, the U-20s were on the offensive again, and this time they capitalized. Garcia picked up the ball on the left side and dribbled into the corner. The Dallas native found Bijev at the back post as the Fortuna Dusseldorf (German second division) striker headed it home to give the visitors a 1-0 advantage.
It did not take long for the U-20s to double their lead. Less than two minutes later, Chicago Fire midfielder Victor Pineda picked the pocket of Dynamo Academy left back Leo Ayala. Bijev picked up the loose ball on the sideline, raced in on goal and slotted it past Dynamo goalkeeper Leopoldo Castillo.
Castillo made four saves in the game including a diving one-handed stop on a 30-yard strike by Caleb Stanko in the 15th minute.
The Dynamo's best opportunity came in the 55th minute against the run of play. Forward Manuel Chavez dropped into the Dynamo's half of the field to pick up the loose ball off a clearance from a corner kick and found Glen Reid between two U-20 defenders. Reid took two touches to separate himself from the defenders and fired a low shot on target. Second-half goalkeeper Tomas Gomez dropped to his right to make the U-20's only save of the game.
The U-20 MNT were without the services of Real Salt Lake striker Luis Gil who picked up a knock in Friday's training session. Gil returned to Salt Lake to be examined by team physicians. Vancouver Whitecaps forward Omar Salgado will join the squad for the remainder of the trip. The team will conclude their camp with matches against Uruguay, on June 6 and June 8, followed by a June 12 game against Chile in Santiago.