USA U17 head coach Richie Williams believes a large portion of his players all have very bright futures despite their World Cup qualification failure.
The US youngsters were beaten 3-1 by Costa Rica in CONCACAF qualifying meaning they will not take part in the U17 FIFA World Cup in the United Arab Emirates later this year – the first time this age group has failed.
But Williams was full of positivity after the defeat, saying there was plenty to like about the soccer youth of America.
"Obviously we’re extremely disappointed,” said Williams.
"The players have put so much into this preparation over the last 16 months with us and our goal was to get to the World Cup, and that’s not going to happen now."
He added: "We’re extremely proud of our players. We believe they have great futures ahead of them. One game is not going to define their career.
“You could see over the last 16 months working with them how they’ve developed, how they’ve become better soccer players and better people. They have great futures ahead of them. It’s unfortunate sometimes when it comes down to one game."