BRIAN SCIARETTA - Thursday, July 29, 2010
The US U20 national team defeated Denmark 3-2 Wednesday night at the 2010 Milk Cup in dramatic fashion and advanced to Friday's championship game against the hosts Northern Ireland.
In the 89th minute, Santos Laguna forward Adrian Ruelas pushed a loose ball across the line to break the 2-2 draw in what would turn out to be the game winner for the Americans. It was also the second goal of the game for the 19 year old Ruelas.
Denmark opened the scoring in the first half off a corner kick but the Americans responded quickly when Ruelas was able to connect with an Ethan White cross for the equalizer.
The US would take their first lead of the game late in the second half when Toronto FC winger Fuad Ibrahim hit a great shot to the near post after receiving the ball from Dinamo Zagreb midfielder Alex Molano.
The lead would not last long however when the Danish equalized in the 85th minute off an own goal from substitute defender Perry Kitchen.
Despite the close score, the Americans controlled play for most of the game and were deserved in their last minute winner from the former Mexican youth national team player Ruelas.
In addition to Ruelas and Ibrahim, the US received strong performances from Braga central defender Gale Agbossoumonde, New York Red Bulls forward Juan Agudelo, and Omar Salgado who recently signed with MLS after leaving Chivas.
The US will face Northern Ireland on Friday. The hosts are coming off an impressive 5-0 victory over China. Denmark will take on Mexico in the third place game.