Cesar Hernández4 minute read
The United States men’s national team closed out its Concacaf Nations League quarterfinal series against Trinidad and Tobago with a 2-1 away loss Monday, which was enough to win 4-2 on aggregate and qualify for the 2024 Copa America.
Held at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain, the match started promisingly for the USMNT, who took the lead in the 25th minute thanks to a goal from Antonee Robinson. Things looked simple given the United States was already leading 3-0 from the first leg, but the match was then turned around after fullback Sergiño Dest earned back-to-back yellows and a subsequent red due to an argument with the referee.
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Galvanized by the numerical advantage, Trinidad and Tobago equalized in the 43rd minute after a goal from Reon Moore. After the break, the hosts made it 2-1 when Alvin Jones found the back of the net in the 57th minute. Needing at least three more goals to win in total, Trinidad and Tobago advanced into the final stages but ultimately fell short.
While the USMNT will now prepare for the Nations League semi-finals in March, Trinidad and Tobago will have one last opportunity to qualify for the Copa America with a knockout play-off match taking place the same month.
Manager’s rating (scale of 1 to 10)
Gregg Berhalter, 4 years old — Although Dest’s red was an unexpected curveball for Berhalter, the coach couldn’t find a way to quickly shore up his defense and avoid defeat. As his team wilted under the mounting pressure, Berhalter failed to reverse the momentum which remained in Trinidad and Tobago’s favor until the final 5-10 minutes.
USMNT player ratings (0-10; 10 = best; 5 = average)
GK Matt Turner, 5 years old — The Nottingham Forest goalkeeper could have done better on the two goals he conceded, especially the second.
DF Sergiño Dest, 1 — Credit to him for his assist and forward runs, but Dest completely lost his cool with unnecessary consecutive yellows. A bizarre and shocking moment from the 23-year-old, who will need to be more precise and more disciplined in big moments.
DF Cameron Carter-Vickers, 6 years old — Some good defensive interventions, although it was questionable at times when the hosts were pressuring the USMNT backline.
DF Tim Ream, 7 years old — The USMNT captain worked well with Carter-Vickers and looked strong in his aerial duels.
DF Antonée Robinson, 8 years old — Despite several losses of possession in dangerous areas, Robinson became one of the most active players of the evening. His goal in the 25th minute was the icing on the cake of a great performance.
Mr. F. Yunus Musah, 6 years old — Musah was excellent in his distribution but left room for improvement in his one-on-one duels.
Mr. F. Luca de la Torre, 6 years old — He made some good runs forward, but like Musah, the midfielder didn’t always have full control of his area of the pitch. Being a man down obviously didn’t help in that regard.
MF Brenden Aaronson, 7 years old — Aaronson, one of the most energetic players, asked Trinidad and Tobago the first questions with his dangerous shots. Beyond that, its cast was also impressive.
M.F. Gio Reyna7 — Reyna was a smart playmaker for the USMNT, often pulling the necessary strings in the final third before being replaced due to red Dest.
FW Ricardo Pepi, 6 — A promising partnership was building between Pepi and Balogun, but he still failed to have a single shot during his 65 minutes.
FW Folarin Balogun, 6 — Balogun took early chances and dropped deep to recover the ball, but ultimately had to play a more cautious game in the second half.
Substitutes (players introduced after 70 minutes receive no rating)
DF Joe Scally, 5 years old — A quiet evening for someone who could gain many minutes in the not-so-distant future after Dest’s red.
Mr. F. Malik Tillman, 6 years old — Did well to ultimately help the USMNT close up shop and win the ball back in the closing stages.
Mr. F. Lennard Maloney, NR — He came on in the 90th minute and couldn’t show much.
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