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U.S. U-17’s drawn against Mexico at 2017 CONCACAF Championship

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a.k.a. World Cup qualifying

United States v Canada: Third Place - 2015 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images

The United States under-17 team’s road to the 2017 World Cup just received a massive obstacle. The draw for the 2017 CONCACAF Championship was held today and the U.S. were draw into the Group of Death alongside their most bitter rival Mexico.

The CONCACAF Championship acts as World Cup qualifying for CONCACAF, so the young and talented Americans have a lot of work to do to get to India in October.

In this edition of the tournament, the format has been altered. Three groups of four nations will play a normal round-robin round with the top two teams from each advance to the Classification Stage where the six teams are split into two groups.

In this stage, the top two finishers from each group will qualify for the 2017 World Cup with the winners advancing to the final of this specific tournament.

For the U.S., the group stage will be the tricky part. If they can survive that big obstacle and outlast at least Jamaica and El Salvador you have to like their chances in the Classification Stage.

The U.S. U-17’s are coming off of dominating the 2016 Nike International Friendlies and will be confident heading into this tournament that starts in the middle of April.