United States men's national under-23 soccer team
The Stars and Stripes
|Association||United States Soccer Federation|
| United States 1 - 2 Italy
(Barcelona, Spain; 24 July 1992)
| United States 6 - 0 Cuba
(Tennessee, USA; 22 March 2012)
| Mexico 4 - 0 United States
(Guadalajara, Mexico; 10 February 2004)
|Appearances||4 (First in 1992)|
|Best result||Fourth Place: 2000|
The United States U-23 men's national soccer team, also known as the United States men's Olympic soccer team, is a youth soccer team operated under the auspices of U.S. Soccer. Its primary role is qualification into and competition at the quadriennial Olympic Football Tournament, the next of which is to be held during the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The team's most recent major tournament was the tournament at the 2012 Summer Olympics, in which the United States team did not qualify.
The roster can be augmented with three "overage" players, ostensibly possessing veteran experience, during Olympic competition, in accordance with FIFA regulations.
Men's Olympic soccer became an under-23 competition for the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain. In the group stage, the Americans defeated Kuwait but lost to Italy and only managed a draw with Poland. As a result, they were eliminated in the first round. Several US players on the roster, however, would go on to have a major influence with the United States men's national soccer team in the 1994 FIFA World Cup, which the United States would host.
The 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia would be the first time that teams could add overage players to their rosters. With the advantage as the host nation and with Major League Soccer in the middle of its inaugural season, the USSF tapped then-D.C. United head coach Bruce Arena to manage the Olympic team. They would fall short again, however, as a loss to eventual-silver medalists Argentina offset a win against Tunisia and a draw with Portugal.
The 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Australia marked a significant turnaround in the fortunes of the team. This time, the United States, led by head coach Clive Charles, won their group on goal difference on the strength of draws with the Czech Republic and eventual-gold medalists Cameroon and a win over Kuwait. A tense quarterfinal match against Japan ended in a penalty shoot-out which the United States won. Losses to Spain in the semifinals and Chile in the bronze medal match left the Americans short of medal dreams, but the fourth-place finish in a sixteen-team tournament was the program's greatest youth team.
The team did not compete at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece; the United States, led by head coach Glenn Myernick, failed to qualify after a defeat to Mexico in the semifinals of the 2004 CONCACAF Men's Pre-Olympic Tournament.
In late 2006, former Chivas USA head coach Bob Bradley was given the reins to both the senior national team and under-23 national team. His tenure would be brief as his elevation to full-time head coach of the senior team would result in him handing control of the under-23 team to his assistant head coach, Piotr Nowak. Under Nowak, the United States qualified for the 2008 Summer Olympics after a 3-0 win over Canada in the 2008 CONCACAF Men's Pre-Olympic Tournament, thanks to goals by Freddy Adu and Sacha Kljestan. The Olympics began promisingly; the Americans defeated Japan and led Holland late. However, a stoppage time goal equalized for the Dutch, and the Americans followed up with a loss to Nigeria.
Under the leadership of new coach Caleb Porter, the 2012 CONCACAF Men's Olympic Qualifying Tournament, hosted by the United States, began with a 6-0 win over Cuba. However, the favored hosts were upset by Canada and surrendered a late lead against El Salvador, causing them to miss the Olympics for the second time in three tournaments.
Olympic Football Tournament
|2004||Did Not Qualify|
|2012||Did Not Qualify|
|1992||Champions – Qualified||10||8||1||3||35||12|
|1996||Did Not Enter||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|2000||Runners-up – Qualified||4||2||1||1||8||2|
|2008||Runners-up – Qualified||5||3||1||1||5||2|
- *Denotes draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.
CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying
March 22, 2012
|United States||6 – 0||Cuba|
|Corona 11', 40', 88'
Diz Pe 43' (o.g.)
March 24, 2012
|United States||0 – 2||Canada|
March 26, 2012
|United States||3 – 3||El Salvador|
|Boyd 1', 64'
The following 20 players were named to the roster for the 2012 CONCACAF Men's Olympic Qualifying Tournament.
Other Players Called This Cycle
- 1988–1992: Lothar Osiander
- 1994-1995: Timo Liekoski
- 1995–1996: Bruce Arena
- 1996–2003: Clive Charles
- 2003–2004: Glenn Myernick
- 2006–2007: Bob Bradley
- 2007–2009: Piotr Nowak
- 2011-: Caleb Porter
- United States Soccer Federation
- United States men's national soccer team
- Football at the Summer Olympics
- Wilson, Paul (June 26, 2010). "USA 1–2 Ghana". The Guardian (London).
- "Adu Named Captain". Yanks-Abroad.com. Retrieved 2012-03-22.
- U-23 MNT official homepage at United States Soccer Federation