After a meandering first 45 minutes, the United States won two out of two victories in the Gold Cup group stage, beating Trinidad and Tobago 6-0 on Saturday night in Cleveland. [1
"Every time we step on the field, let's make a statement," he told US striker Gyasi Zardes, who scored twice and barely missed a third. "We're trying to change the world's view of American football."
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Zack Steffen was the first goalkeeper to be seriously tested when he was forced to escape Trinidad's Khaleem Hyland's nine minutes into the competition. But it was Hyland who did the worst, was paralyzed after his shot and could not continue, and came in just under fifteen minutes into the match for Kevin Molino.
The two teams exchanged their chances in the first 40 minutes, however. Neither of them really had an advantage when Aaron Long broke the deadlock four minutes from time in the first half. At the end of a cross from Christian Pulisic, he had hit his head and hid under goalkeeper Marvin Phillip on his first of two goals during the night.
Similar to the group stage win against Guyana on Tuesday, Gregg Berhalter's men fought in the first half to dictate terms of the competition to gain momentum after the break.
Twenty-one minutes after the start of the second half, Zardes scored his second goal in the Gold Cup when Nick crossed Limas's header. The box fell forward to the Columbus crew to tap. Three minutes later, he added his second of the night and formed a shot past the outstretched arms of Phillip into the top corner. Nearly three minutes later, his denied hat-trick twice in quick succession, first on the wood and then with a header that Phillip had parried with a brace.
Pulisic scored the 4: 0 in 73 minutes to pass the ball after the substitution game. Jordan Morris chose h I am on an acre of space in the area. Morris added another five minutes later and sent a ball over the six-yard box, which Paul Arriola scored with a 5-0 lead.
In the 90th minute, he sat through long and beat Phillip to a loose ball in the six-yard box and in a gaping net.
"For us, we're going to the next round," said Berhalter. "That's important, our focus was on getting ready for this game and knowing if we could move to the next round, which was the focus of the group, and Trinidad got in the way."