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USWNT-Mexico matchup set for U-20 WWC quarterfinals

Mallory Pugh was again the savior of the USWNT U-20s on Monday, scoring to secure the 1-1 draw that gave the U.S. the Group C title. (Photo Copyright Erica McCaulley for The Equalizer)

Mallory Pugh was again the savior of the USWNT U-20s on Monday, scoring to secure the 1-1 draw that gave the U.S. the Group C title. (Photo Copyright Erica McCaulley for The Equalizer)

The U-20 Women’s World Cup knockout stage is set, and the quarterfinal match-ups are scintillating.

The United States advanced first out of Group C, with a 1-1 draw with Ghana on Monday sending the Americans through above France via tiebreaker. That sets up a quarterfinal match with CONCACAF rival Mexico, which finished second in Group D The winner of that match plays the winner of the meeting between rising power Spain (a program that finished runners-up at the U-17 World Cup in 2014) and Korea DPR.

On the other side of the bracket, defending champions Germany will take on France, while Japan — with part of the group that won the U-17 World Cup two years ago – facing Brazil in the other quarterfinal. The winners of those two matches will meet in the semifinals

Quarterfinal matches

Korea DPR-Spain (1 a.m. ET Thursday)
Japan-Brazil (4:30 a.m. ET Thursday)
USA-Mexico (1 a.m. ET Friday)
Germany-France (4:30 a.m. ET Friday)

Going home from the U-20 World Cup after the group stage are: Canada, Ghana, Korea Republic, New Zealand, Nigeria, Sweden, Venezuela and hosts Papua New Guinea.

Canada’s three losses and minus-12 goal differential was better than only Papua New Guinea’s in the 16-team field. The Canadians ended their tournament on Sunday with a 5-0 loss to Japan.

The U.S. clinched first in Group C on Monday with a 1-1 draw vs. Ghana. Mallory Pugh scored the equalizer two minutes after the U.S. conceded an own goal. The draw allowed for the U.S. to avoid a match-up with defending champions Germany in the quarterfinals.

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