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Benji and the U-23 MNT Ready to Clash with England in Preston

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For the second time in 2015, the U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team is set to play England on European soil, this time facing off with the Young Lions at Deepdale Stadium in Preston, England. Kickoff is set for 2:45 p.m. ET.  Fans can follow the match on Twitter @ussoccer.

The USA’s training camp runs from Aug. 30-Sept. 8 in Manchester and the match with England will be followed by a friendly against Qatar on Sept. 8 at Gigg Lane in Bury. The camp is the final for the U-23 MNT before the 2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Tournament in October.

The Olympic Qualifying Championship will be played across the United States from Oct. 1-13. The U.S. was drawn into Group A and opens with a pair of games at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas, against Canada on Oct. 1 at 8 p.m. CT and Cuba on Oct. 3 at 4 p.m. CT. The U.S. will conclude group play at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colorado on Oct. 6 against Panama at 7:30 p.m. MT. [TICKETS]

The U-23’s were last in Europe in June, where they competed in the prestigious Toulon Tournament. With group stage wins against Netherlands and Qatar, the team advanced to the tournament’s third-place playoff, where it defeated England and matched its best ever finish in the tournament. The U-23 MNT is 5-3-0 in 2015, having also logged wins against Bosnia in March and Mexico in April.

Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Cody Cropper (MK Dons; Maple Grove, Minn.), Ethan Horvath (Molde; Highlands Ranch, Colo.), Zack Steffen (Freiburg; Downington, Pa.).
DEFENDERS (8): Cameron Carter-Vickers (Tottenham Hotspur; Westcliff on Sea, England), Matt Miazga (New York Red Bulls; Clifton, N.J.), Eric Miller (Montreal Impact; Woodbury, Minn.), Boyd Okwuonu (Real Salt Lake; Edmund, Okla.), Shane O’Neill (Royal Mouscron-Péruwelz; Boulder, Colo.), William Packwood (Unattached; Concord, Mass.), Dillon Serna (Colorado Rapids; Brighton, Colo.), Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy; Los Angeles, Calif).
MIDFIELDERS (8): Gboly Ariyibi (Chesterfield; Arlington, Va.), Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake; Garden Grove, Calif.), Emerson Hyndman (Fulham; Dallas, Texas), Benji Joya (Club Necaxa; San Jose, Calif.), Marc Pelosi (San Jose Earthquakes; Sunnyvale, Calif.), Matt Polster (Chicago Fire; Milwaukee, Wisc.), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew; Gahanna, Ohio), Gedion Zelalem (Rangers; Bethesda, Md.).
FORWARDS (5): Alonso Hernandez (C.D. Juarez; El Paso, Texas), Jerome Kiesewetter (VfB Stuttgart; Berlin, Germany), Mario Rodriguez (Borussia Mönchengladbach; North Hollywood, Calif.), Rubio Rubin (Utrecht; Beaverton, Ore.), Maki Tall (Scion; Washington, D.C.).


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By | Benji, Uncategorized | No Comments

Continues the hard work of the Rays in the clubhouse facilities Necaxa ; Miguel Fuentes continues to monitor the campus before booting up games .  Among the reinforcements team #Aguascalientes is the youngster from the United States , Benjamin Joya.

” A happy return to Mexico ; I’ve followed to Necaxa throughout my career and saw how close they were to get back in the first division . ” Joya said Necaxa is a team of weight in the Liga MX ; “The name speaks volumes to me, is one of the most powerful teams in the division, I know we can getto the  first division, we can do it; all depends on us and being on the court, we have to do our best.”

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Benji’s United States 2, England 1 | Toulon Tournament Match Recap

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Alonso Hernandez and Benji Joya (pictured above) converted penalty kicks on either side of halftime and to help the United States Under-23 national team capture third place at the 2015 Toulon Tournament with a 2-1 win over England.

Hernandez got the US off to a fast start after Jerome Kiesewetter was tripped up from behind in the penalty area by England’s Kortney Hause in the seventh minute. The 21-year-old forward, who plays his club soccer for Monterrey in Liga MX, slotted the spot kick into the lower right corner, sending the England ‘keeper the wrong way.

The US lead wouldn’t last long, though, as Hause made amends for his error. The defender was on hand to push the ball just over the line after the US were caught unaware on a quick free kick in the 10th minute, allowing England winger John Swift to run free down the left-hand side before cutting back for Hause.

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USMNT U-23s starting eleven

Benji’s U-23 MNT Begins Toulon Journey Against France

By | Benji, Uncategorized | No Comments

TOULON, France (May 27, 2015) – The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team will participate in the 2015 Toulon Tournament from May 27 to June 7 in six venues in the south of France.

The USA has been drawn into Group A with host France, Netherlands, Costa Rica and Qatar. The U.S. opens against France (May 27, 1 p.m. ET), followed by Netherlands (May 29, 11 a.m. ET), Costa Rica (May 31, 11 a.m. ET), and Qatar (June 2, 12 p.m. ET). The top team from the group will advance to the final, while the second-place finisher will move on to play for third. The advancing pair from Group A will match up with the top two finishers from Group B, which includes China PR, England, Ivory Coast, Mexico and Morocco. The placement matches will be played on June 7.

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Video – Benji Joya debuts and Scores for the Chicago Fire

By | Benji, Uncategorized | No Comments

Last week Chicago Fire newbie Benji Joya spoke about what it would mean to make his club debut in front of his family in his home state of California Sunday vs. Chivas USA.

He probably didn’t imagine that he’d score on his first touch though.

After a drab first half ended 0-0, the Fire found themselves down 2-0 with goals a pair of Chivas USA goals inside the hour mark.

Shortly after the second goal, Joya entered the match for Patrick Nyarko as the team’s second substitute in the 63rd minute. Literally seconds later, he found himself at the back post, tucking in an Alex shot that Chivas ‘keeper Dan Kennedy could only get a hand to, to make things 2-1 in the 64th minute.

“All this week, all I’ve been putting in my mind is to hopefully get the debut and get a goal and get my name on the score sheet,” Joya told reporters post-game. “Luckily the first touch I had today it turned into a goal, so I’m really proud of that.”

Six minutes later fellow substitute Quincy Amarikwa added a highlight reel strike, turning and unleashing a driven shot from distance, to bring things level at 2-2 with 20 minutes to play.

With momentum on their side, it seemed like the team would push for a third goal with MLS MVP Mike Magee still available on the bench. Fire head coach Frank Yallop said following the match that Chris Rolfe began cramping and so Logan Pause was used as the final substitute for him in the 75th minute.

The Fire manager also said that Magee’s hamstring, which had been an earlier issue for the Chicago native during preseason began to bother him late this week.

“We didn’t want to risk [Mike] in this game,” said Yallop. “Mike was good for maybe 10 minutes but we kind of had to change it a little bit. Mike wanted to be part of it today and I did as well. I didn’t want to risk it and give 25 minutes when he probably only had 10 in him.”

Just as it looked like the Fire would escape with a point, a late header off a corner kick from Bobby Burling gave the team a disappointing 3-2 loss.

Having sparked the comeback only to see it end in defeat, Joya was still positive about the overall effort of the team in the first match of the season.

“Sometimes you come back and at the end you let a little bit go. If we slack, they’re going to come on top. I’m really proud of the effort from the guys and it’s the beginning of the season – we’ve gotta focus on the next game and get the win.”