Jamaica’s Hopes Dashed as United States Defeats Young Reggae Girlz in U-20 Women’s Championship

Jamaica’s hopes of qualifying for the FIFA Women’s Under-20 World Cup have been dashed after suffering their second consecutive 0-4 defeat, this time against the United States, at the Concacaf Under-20 Championships in the Dominican Republic on Sunday.

The reigning seven-time champions, United States, secured a semi-final berth with a dominant performance that included a hat-trick from Madeline Dahlien (10th, 47th, and 79th minute goals) and a goal from Tessa Dellarose (49th minute). Earlier in the day, Canada also secured a spot in the semi-finals with a convincing 5-0 win over Panama.

Both the United States and Canada are currently tied on six points each and will face each other in a top-of-the-table clash to determine the Group A winners on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Jamaica and Panama will meet in a match of academic interest on the same day.

Although the young Reggae Girlz showed improvement compared to their 0-4 loss to Canada in the opening match, they were outclassed by the United States team. Coached by Hugh Bradford, the Girlz displayed more resilience defensively and showed glimpses of individual skill when in possession but struggled to create meaningful attacking opportunities.


The United States broke the deadlock in the 10th minute when Dahlien found a way through the Jamaican defense and scored. Despite consistent pressure and a few more chances, the US team failed to capitalize on their opportunities and their shooting accuracy let them down. Combined with the improved defensive organization of the young Reggae Girlz, the score remained 1-0 in favor of the United States at halftime.

However, the Jamaican team’s first-half accomplishments quickly faded away as the US attackers intensified their efforts in the second half. Just two minutes after the restart, Dahlien met a well-placed cross from Onyeka Gamero and beat Jamaican goalkeeper Liya Brooks to extend the lead. Shortly after, Dellarose struck a delightful left-footed shot from around 20 yards out, leaving Brooks with no chance to make a save.

Brooks made a better save in the 54th minute, diving to her right to parry substitute Jill Flammia’s effort onto the upright from just outside the 18-yard box. However, Dahlien completed her hat-trick and secured a fourth goal for the United States with a straightforward finish.

The United States, Canada, Costa Rica, and Mexico are the teams set to contest the semi-finals. The two finalists and the third-place team will qualify for the Under-20 World Cup next year.

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