Having recently qualified for both the 2023 U-20 World Cup in Indonesia and the 2024 Olympics in Paris, Mikey Varas and his junior USMNT squad will head to Mexico City in late-September to once again compete in the Revelations Cup.
Last year’s edition of the competition, which took place in Celaya during the November international window, was the first gathering of the squad assembled by U-20 coach Mikey Varas.
While a total lack of preparation time meant that the mini-tournament went poorly for the Americans, who finished last amongst the four teams, it did put into motion the pieces that would eventually lift the CONCACAF U-20 crown just over seven months later.
The 2022 edition will take place in the 33,000 capacity Estadio Ciudad de los Deportes in Mexico City, current home of second division team Atlante, during the late-September window set by FIFA for international games.
Along with the Americans and hosts Mexico, South Americans Peru and Paraguay will round out the four-team group.
As was the case last year, the tournament will proceed in a round-robin format, with gamedays already set for September 21, 24 and 27. The team at the top of the table following their three games will be crowned as winners.
For the Americans, this will be a useful warm-up for the World Cup set for next summer in Indonesia, even if it is unlikely that any of the other participants will appear in the tournament.
Mexico famously dropped out of the CONCACAF qualification tournament at the quarterfinal stage, as a result missing both the World Cup and Olympics.
Peru and Paraguay have yet to go through the CONMEBOL U-20 Championship, which will take place in early-2023. However, the former has never qualified, while the latter has more often than not missed the cut, having last participated in the 2013 edition in Turkey.
With the Revelations Cup taking place during the FIFA window, it will be possible for Varas to call in a strong squad including several European-based prospects. As this is not an official FIFA tournament, teams however will be under no obligation to release players.
This will be the first opportunity to see whether both Mexico and Canada’s failure to qualify for both tournaments for this age group over the summer impacts the allegiances of on-the-fence youth internationals.
Specifically, eyes will be on a pair of Spanish-based players, Espanyol winger Luca Koleosho and Real Sociedad defender Jonathan Gomez.
Koleosho, who could represent any of the United States, Canada, Nigeria and Italy, has donned the American jersey at the U-15 level, but did recently attend a Canadian senior camp in June.
Gomez has been jumping back and between the United States and Mexico for years without binding himself to either team. He most recently played for Mexico’s senior team in a friendly in April, however it was a largely experimental squad.