Sporting Kansas City midfielder Gianluca Busio was named to the 2019 Concacaf U-17 Championship Best XI after leading the United States U-17 Men's National Team to a second-place finish at the tournament.
Busio erupted for five goals and three assists in six tournament appearances as the U.S. steamrolled to Thursday's final before suffering a 2-1 extra-time loss to archrivals Mexico at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida.
After notching three goals for Sporting to begin the 2019 MLS campaign, Busio and fellow 16-year-old Sporting KC Academy product Tyler Freeman joined a USA U-17 side led by newly appointed head coach Raphael Wicky for the prestigious international competition. Although the Americans fell short of winning the title, their runners-up finish was enough to secure a berth at the 2019 FIFA U-17 World Cup later this year in Brazil.
Busio's five goals were the third-most in the tournament behind Costa Rica's Geancarlo Castro (seven) and U.S. teammate Gio Reyna (six). He opened his scoring account in a 3-2 group stage win over Canada, bagged a brace in a dismantling of Barbados, then scored in knockout-round wins over Guadeloupe and Panama. Busio would save arguably his best performance for the semifinal, where he recorded three assists in a 4-0 defeat of Canada.
Four Americans were selected to the tournament's Best XI as Busio was joined by Reyna, Kobe Hernandez-Foster and Daniel Leyva.
2019 Concacaf U-17 Championship Best XI
- Goalkeeper: Eduardo García, Mexico
- Right Back: Jean Geffrard, Haiti
- Left Back: Stanley Guirand, Haiti
- Center Back: Kobe Hernandez, United States
- Center Back: Jesus Gomez, Mexico
- Center Midfielder: Daniel Leyva, United States
- Center Midfielder: Eugenio Pizzuto, Mexico
- Center Midfielder: Gianluca Busio, United States
- Winger/Right Midfielder: Geancarlo Castro, Costa Rica
- Winger/Left Midfielder: Giovanni Reyna, United States
- Striker, Israel Luna: Mexico
USA U-17 Results at Concacaf U-17 Championship
|May 2||Canada||W 3-2||Group F|
|May 4||Barbados||W 6-1||Group F|
|May 6||Guatemala||W 3-0||Group F|
|May 9||Guadeloupe||W 8-0||Round of 16|
|May 12||Panama||W 3-0||Quarterfinal|
|May 14||Canada||W 4-0||Semifinal|
|May 16||Mexico||L 1-2||Final|
Busio and Freeman will now return to Sporting Kansas City, which begins a three-game homestand Saturday against Vancouver Whitecaps FC at 7:30 p.m. CT. Tickets for the match at Children's Mercy Park are available at SeatGeek.com.