The Under-20 national teams of USA and Costa Rica began their buildups to the FIFA World Youth Championship with a 1:1 draw on 12 May in Chula Vista, California. Pablo Salazar opened the scoring in the fifth minute, but Kelly Gray pulled the USA level seven minutes later.
Both teams qualified out of the same final group in CONCACAF qualifying for the 2001 WYC, Costa Rica reaching the world finals for the fourth consecutive time, joining Brazil, Argentina, Japan and Australia as the only countries to have advanced to each of the last four Youth Championships.
Costa Rica has been drawn into Group F of the 2001 FIFA World Youth Championship, and will face the Netherlands (18 June), Ethiopia (21 June)and Ecuador (24 June) in the first round of play. The USA will face China PR(17 June), Chile (20 June) and Ukraine (23 June) in Group C action.
In the meantime, the USA will travel to France to participate in the Toulon Festival, regarded as one of the top youth tournaments in the world. The USA will be making their seventh appearance at the Festival and will be joined in Group A by Italy, Colombia and the Netherlands. Group B is made up of Japan, Poland, Portugal and France.
The USA plays the first game of the 2001 Festival, opening against 2000 UEFA Under-21 champion Italy on Thursday 24 May. They face two-time defending Festival champions Colombia on 26 May, and wrap up group play against theNetherlands on 28 May.
The top two teams in each group will advance to the tournament semifinals on May 31 at the Stade Mayol in Toulon. The third-place match and the final will take place on June 2.