USMNT beat Canada, Win Group B in 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup

USMNT beat Canada
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KANSAS CITY – Twenty Seconds after kickoff the USMNT had the roof lifted off Children’s Mercy Park. Shaq Moore scored his first goal for the National Team and set the record for the fastest goal in #USMNT history. The USMNT beat Canada 1-0, and it was a grind after that moment of euphoria. Canada dominated the majority of play during the match and had more chances, but the USMNT defense stood tall.

USMNT beat Canada behind fastest goal in USMNT recorded history

The hype was there to start the match as the USMNT beat Canada. A sellout crowd of over 18,000 people was packed into Children’s Mercy Park, Patrick Mahomes was on hand to swap shirts with Gianluca Busio, and folks knew a competitive match was on the horizon. From the kickoff, it took a failed clearance from Canada, a great pass from Kellyn Acosta, and an even better pass from Sebastian Lletget. Shaq Moore made nearly the same run Sam Vines did against Haiti except he had to use his feet. Moore raced to the corner flag and euphoria was in the air.

Quickly that tone changed when Walker Zimmerman had to exit the match early, and Canada finally got into the rhythm of the game. They had more possession, more shots on target, and the USMNT had started to compress their lines. Defensively the USMNT midfield had a hard time holding up, and Canada retained possession much better. Their most dangerous effort came when Tajon Buchanan cut in from the left side and ripped a shot that curled inches wide of Matt Turner’s goal. They didn’t get another chance after that and the USMNT effectively finished off the match in stoppage time.

Three Thoughts

  1. If you’re a fan of Canada, I’m sure you’re waiting for me to talk about the penalty shouts. To be 100% clear, they were not penalties. Richie Lareya is partly responsible for the collision in the box, after grabbing and yanking Zimmerman, he was way off balance, and the initial contact from Zimmerman after he was yanked by Lareya occurred outside of the penalty area. No pen. The other’s were half-baked shouts, and the way the referee was letting it go today, it should come as no surprise the others were not given.
  2. The USMNT’s failure to control the midfield was concerning. Considering what we’ve seen from Canada tactically over the last two months, I figured Gregg Berhalter would’ve gone with a 4-3-3, putting Acosta, Roldan, and Busio in some form of a midfield three. Instead, Kellyn Acosta and Sebastian Lletget played beneath a more advanced Gianluca Busio, and it did not work. Sometimes you tinker and it doesn’t work, today was one of those cases. They need at least two ball winners in the midfield, and Busio at the moment is not one of them. Roldan and Acosta both need to be mixed in with one of Lletget or Busio.
  3. Shaq Moore stock is up folks. The fullback looks too good to be playing in La Liga 2. He can get up the line, he can defend and frankly looks like he catapulted about two or three in that right-back depth chart with his performances in Kansas City. We saw a bit of Reggie Cannon, but that might be the most we see of him through the knockout phase.