The future of world football will be on display at the Toulon Tournament.
This annual event features some of the top national teams in the sport using rosters completely filled with players under the age of 20. The winner not only has bragging rights for now, but also instantly becomes a top contender for future international contests.
Mexico won the tournament last year and must be considered one of the favorites to take the title once again. Still, there are 10 squads attempting to win it all, and each will be giving their best effort to win one for their home country.
Here is a full guide of everything you need to know for this two-week event.
When: May 28 - June 8
Where: France (Assorted Cities)
Watch: beIN Sport
Live Stream: beIN Sport Mobile
|Group A||Group B|
Schedule (via Festival Foot Espoirs)
|May 28||11:30 a.m.||Colombia vs. South Korea||Toulon||Stade Léo Lagrange|
|May 28||1:30 p.m.||France vs. USA||Toulon||Stade Léo Lagrange|
|May 29||11:30 a.m||Mexico vs. Nigeria||Hyères||Perruc|
|May 29||1:30 p.m.||Belgium vs. Brazil||Hyères||Perruc|
|May 30||11:30 a.m||Colombia vs. USA||Nîmes||Stade des Costières|
|May 30||1:30 p.m.||France vs. Congo DR||Nîmes||Stade des Costières|
|May 31||11:30 a.m||Belgium vs. Portugal||Nîmes||Stade des Costières|
|May 31||1:30 p.m.||Brazil vs. Mexico||Nîmes||Stade des Costières|
|June 1||11:30 a.m||Congo DR vs. USA||Nice||Stade du Ray|
|June 1||1:30 p.m.||France vs. South Korea||Nice||Stade du Ray|
|June 2||11:30 a.m||Belgium vs. Nigeria||Avignon||Parc des Sports|
|June 2||1:30 p.m.||Brazil vs. Portugal||Avignon||Parc des Sports|
|June 3||11:30 a.m||Congo DR vs. South Korea||Avignon||Parc des Sports|
|June 3||1:30 p.m.||France vs. Colombia||Avignon||Parc des Sports|
|June 4||11:30 a.m||Mexico vs. Portugal||Saint-Raphaël||Stade L. Hon|
|June 4||1:30 p.m.||Brazil vs. Nigeria||Saint-Raphaël||Stade L. Hon|
|June 5||11:30 a.m||South Korea vs. USA||Saint-Raphaël||Stade L. Hon|
|June 5||1:30 p.m.||Colombia vs. Congo DR||Saint-Raphaël||Stade L. Hon|
|June 6||11:30 a.m||Nigeria vs. Portugal||Toulon||Stade Léo Lagrange|
|June 6||1:30 p.m.||Belgium vs. Mexico||Toulon||Stade Léo Lagrange|
|June 8||9:30 a.m.||3rd-4th place match||Nice||Stade du Ray|
|June 8||11:30 a.m.||Finals||Nice||Stade du Ray|
While this event is not as big as the U-20 World Cup that will take place next month, this will be a good preview.
Additionally, it gives managers one last chance to evaluate players before finalizing a roster heading into the international event.
The United States has a strong roster of players, many of them are already playing professional ball either in the MLS or on some other club. Benji Joya is on Santos Laguna and the midfielder will be one of the key players in the upcoming event.
Perennial powerhouse Brazil actually has one of the weakest squads in years and did not even qualify for the Youth World Cup. Without a big-time scorer like Neymar, the group has struggled to get points.
Meanwhile, Mexico should once again be strong with a lot of experience on the defensive side of the ball. The young group has fared very well in international competition in recent years and has the ability to go very far.
Still, the favorite should be the hosting nation. France has talent and the motivation to succeed on home soil, and that could be enough to survive this loaded field.
Every match will be important, but France will be the team to beat over the course of this event.