A Win For Immigration: How Latinos Push America Forward In The U-20 World Cup

A Win For Immigration: How Latinos Push America Forward In The U-20 World Cup

By: Oliver G. Alvar -

Latinos dominate the U.S. Soccer National Team Roster as the team moves forward in the U-20 World Cup, proving immigration is what actually makes America great.

Great news! The U.S. Men's National Team just reached the round of sixteen in the 2019 under-20 Football (excuse me, "soccer") World Cup after two wins and one loss in the group stage.

In case you don't know, the World Cup is currently taking place in Poland, and America's team is truly worthy this year. During the group stage, the U.S. faced Ukraine (1-2), Nigeria (2-0), and Qatar (1-0), finishing second in Group D and earning a spot in the knockout round. The key moment was the team's victory over Qatar last Thursday, as Tim Weah scored a late goal in the 79th minute with an assist from Alex Mendez. 

immigration latinos u-20 soccer national team world cup@ussoccerThere's something particularly striking about the U.S. team this year. Out of 21 players, 10 are Latinos—and that means a lot in a political age where the Latinx community is under fire. Alex Mendez, the player without whom the U.S. might never have won, is the son of Mexican parents. This only goes to show that America truly thrives with immigration.

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No matter what some people, Trump included, want to say, the simple truth is that the United States is a country built by immigrants and for immigrants. And despite Trump's hateful rhetoric against them, Latinxs are gaining more and more ground in the social, political, economical, and athletic spheres, for the benefit of America as a whole. Latino presence in the U-10 National Team only goes to show this fact. When immigrants get an opportunity, America wins. 

For your pleasure, here are the Latino players that are killing it this year in Poland.

David Ochoa (Mexico)

He was born in Oxnard, California, to Mexican parents. He played as the titular goalkeeper in Thursday's match against Qatar, much to the frustration of the Arab team. He managed to deny each one of their attempts—a feat he expects to repeat as the team moves forward.  

Follow him on  Twitter and Instagram.

‪Alex Mendez (Mexico)

Mendez, born of Mexican parents, is from Los Angeles, California. He's a versatile player who can just as easily play in the forward position as he can in the midfield, and his stunning offensive plays are key for any team he's on—as proven during march against Qatar. 

Keep up with him on Twitter and Instagram.

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Julián Araujo (Mexico)

Originally from Lompoc, California, this defender was born into a proud Mexican family. He usually plays for LA Galaxy, and is yet to see any playing time during this Cup. Here's hoping his debuting performance in the next few games will help lead America to victory.

You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram. 

immigration latinos u-20 soccer national team world cup

‪Konrad de la Fuente (Haiti)

Born in Miami, Florida, de la Fuente's family migrated to the U.S. from Haiti. He played all three games from the group stage as a forward, and currently plays for FC Barcelona's youth division (Juvenil A). 

Here are his Twitter and Instagram accounts.

‪Richard Ledezma (Mexico)

Ledezma was born in Phoenix, Arizona, to Mexican parents. The match against Qatar marked his debut for America's U-20 team, and he even came close to scoring a couple of times. We can't wait to see what this promising player has in store.

Don't miss him on Twitter and Instagram.

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‪Brandon Servania (Puerto Rico)

This talented midfielder was born in Dallas, Texas, to a Puerto Rican family. He scored the opening goal for America during this World Cup in the match against Ukraine, and as such has proven himself to be a key element in the field. Talent runs in the family, actually, as his brother plays for the Puerto Rican National Team.

Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

immigration latinos u-20 soccer national team world cup

‪Sebastián Soto (Chile/Mexico)

Regularly playing for Hannover 96, this talented forward was born in San Diego, California, to a Mexican mother and a Chilean father. He scored two goals against Nigeria, making him a truly valuable player for the team by any standard. 

These are his Twitter and Instagram accounts.

Ulysses Llanez (Mexico)

Llanez, from Lynwood, California, also comes from a Mexican family. He was called into the Mexican U-16 team, yet ultimately chose to play for the U.S., debuting in the first half of the match against Qatar. 

Follow these two Twitter accounts, and don't miss his Instagram profile. 

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Matthew Real (Brazil)

From Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania, Matthew Real is the only player on the team with a Brazilian background. He's played in two of the three U.S. matches during this World Cup, and he's just warming up. Let's hope we get to see him rise to the proud heritage of Brazil, a country known for producing some of the most extraordinary soccer players in history.  

Check out his Twitter and Instagram.

immigration latinos u-20 soccer national team world cup

Edwin Cerrillo (Mexico)

Born into a Mexican family, Cerillo hails from the Southern lands of Frisco, Texas. This FC Dallas player is yet to see field time during this World Cup, so he's sure to do his best whenever he gets his opportunity. 

Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

(Cover image from US Soccer Official Page)

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