The United States Men’s National Soccer Team (USMNT) held on with 10-men to beat Paraguay 1-0 and book a spot in the Copa America 2016 quarterfinals. Minutes into the second half, DeAndre Yedlin received his second yellow card of the match, resulting in a red, forcing the USMNT to play a man short against Paraguay.
Jürgen Klinsmann rallied his boys to continue their impressive performance, even after going a man down. The defenders managed to keep things tight at the back with goalkeeper Brad Guzan making a couple of outstanding saves in the 82d minute. The USMNT managed to keep Paraguay from scoring to secure a 1-0 victory and make it to the Copa America 2016 quarterfinals. Klinsmann and his boys will be flying high after the result and will be awaiting either of Ecuador or Peru at the quarter-final stage, which will be decided after Sunday’s Group B Round 3 encounters.
With his magnificent 27th minute strike against Paraguay, Clint Dempsey scored his 51st international goal to move six behind Landon Donovan’s all-time American scoring record.
Michael Bradley delivered an excellent pass to Gyasi Zardes, who dribbled until the end line to cross the ball inside the box. Dempsey entered the penalty area like a hawk to score a one-time left-footed shot past Paraguay defender Fabian Balbuena and diving goalkeeper Justo Villar.
DeAndre Yedlin’s actions could have cost the USMNT their quarter-final berth when in the 47th minute of the match he was booked for a slide tackle against Miguel Almiron. Rather than containing himself, Yedlin chose to raise a foot once play resumed and charged into Miguel Samudio. Referee Julio Bascunan took no-nonsense to immediately give Yedlin a second yellow.
Yedlin became the first player since Michael Bradley to receive a red card in a competitive match for the USMNT. Bradley received a red in the 2009 Confederations Cup.
Yedlin’s void at right back forced Klinsmann to substitute Dempsey and bring on Michael Orozco in the 50th minute of the match. Since Dempsey left the field, it was a Paraguay onslaught until the end with the USMNT managing to fend them off with determination.
Picture Courtesy: Jorge Mir/Wikimedia Commons