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News analysis

U.S. U-19 team rolling, Bono gets interest, Open Cup fever, Jozy injured, & more

Tuesday was a busy news day as the U.S. U-19 team downed Ukraine in Slovakia, Alex Bono is getting interest from Belgium, Jozy Altidore is out again, and the Open Cup is back with ASN in attendance in New Jersey. 
BY Brian Sciaretta Posted
May 08, 2018
2:00 PM
In the news today, the U.S. U-19 team is off to a strong start at the Slovakia Cup, there is interest abroad for one of the national team goalkeepers, Fabian Johnson is back, Jozy is out, and the Open Cup is here.

U-19’s team rolling

At the Slovakia Cup, the United States U-19 team is on a roll with consecutive wins to start the tournament. Coached by Dave Van den Bergh, the U.S team opened the tournament Monday with an 8-0 thumping of Kazakhstan. On Tuesday, it continued its strong start with a 2-1 win over Ukraine.

In the game against Kazakhstan, Real Salt Lake academy star Sebastian Soto was the man of the match with a hat trick with other goals scored by Kyle Holcomb, Matt Hundley, Jacobo Reyes, Declan McGlynn, and Akil Watts.

The goals from Soto should come as little surprise as he is currently the top scorer in the Boy’s Development Academy with 42 goals in 25 games. With this scoring pace he could get moved up to the U-20 team very soon.

On Tuesday, the United States defeated Ukraine 2-1 to move to a perfect six points through two games. After falling behind 1-0 in the 14th minute, the U.S. team got goals from 2017 U-17 World Cup veterans Blaine Ferri and James Sands to prevail. Due to goal differential, it can advance to the Championship game with a draw on Thursday against The Czech Republic.

This is typically a scouted event for European teams and the 2016 Slovakia Cup was where Schalke first noticed American midfielder Weston McKennie who started for them this year as it finished second in the Bundesliga.

Bono on the move?

Belgian publication Voetbal Nieuws reported on Tuesday that Club Brugge is interested in Toronto FC and U.S. national team goalkeeper Alex Bono. The report added that the club was impressed with Bono’s recent performance in the CONCACAF Champions League and also indicated that other Belgian clubs remain interested in the 24 year old from Syracuse, New York.

That report also suggests that the interest in Bono likely signals that the club will be parting ways with fellow American goalkeeper Ethan Horvath.

Open Cup kicks off

The 105th U.S. Open Cup gets underway tonight as the Portland Timbers U23 vs. host the NPSL’s Kitsap Pumas. On Wednesday night there is a full slate of games all across the country.

ASN will have writers at the FC Mo-Town vs. the New York Red Bulls U-23 team on Wednesday night, 7pm, at Drew University in Madison, N.J. Feel free to say hello if you see us.

Johnson back in action

Fabian Johnson, 30, has played fewer than 500 minutes this season for Borussia Monchengladbach and he has just one substitute appearance in 2018. A variety of injuries have essentially made this a lost season but Johnson could be back for the Bundesliga finale this weekend against Bobby Wood and Hamburg.

Altidore set for surgery

Toronto FC is trying to dig out of a massive hole in the Eastern Conference standings due to its decision to prioritize the Champions League. But on Tuesday Toronto announced that Altidore underwent surgery to remove bone fragments from his foot in New York and that he would miss 4-6 weeks. That will only make Toronto’s climb that much harder.

In a hypothetical situation if the U.S. team had made the World Cup, what would the forward situation look like? Jozy Altidore and Aron Johannsson are injured, Bobby Wood has had a bad year, Josh Sargent hasn’t played a professional game yet, Tim Weah only has a few pro minutes, Rubio Rubin is a only a limited substitute Tijuana, and Andrija Novakovich hasn’t scored a goal at a higher level beyond the Dutch second tier.

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