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Defensive miscues cost USMNT in loss to Serbia

The U.S. men’s national team claimed a first-half lead in its first match of 2023, but conceded two sloppy goals in an eventual friendly loss to visiting Serbia.

Luka Ilici and Veljko Simic scored for the Serbians to cancel out Brandon Vazquez’s first international goal in 2-1 triumph at Banc of California Stadium. A total of eight American players made their senior international debuts, including Vazquez, Julian Gressel, and Gabriel Slonina.

The result marked the USMNT’s first home defeat since September 2019 in all competitions.

After streaky periods from both teams in the early going, the USMNT broke the deadlock in the 28th minute. Gressel’s dangerous cross from the right wing was headed home by Vazquez in the box for his first international goal.

Vazquez’s flicked header landed into the bottom-left corner, leaving Serbia goalkeeper Djordje Petrovic to watch the FC Cincinnati forward celebrate with his teammates.

Slonina kept the Americans in front not long after the restart, denying Simic’s shot in the box before also keeping the rebound off the line.

Serbia continued to up its pressure before halftime and benefitted from a USMNT breakdown to tie things up. Luka Ilic’s free-kick in the 44th minute snuck through the Americans defensive wall and beat Slonina to the bottom-left corner.

The Serbs picked up where they left off in the second half as Dragan Stojkovic’s squad grabbed a 2-1 lead through Simic’s finish. The 27-year-old captain was played into the box after the USMNT lost possession, before slotting home his first international goal.

Cade Cowell looked the most likeliest to find an equalizer for the USMNT, calling his own number in the 56th minute. However, both posts on Dragan Rosic’s net denied the San Jose Earthquakes forward, first on Cowell’s flicked effort before his later attempt in the half.

DeJuan Jones, Matthew Hoppe, and Paul Arriola were among six second-half…

Source link : https://sbisoccer.com/2023/01/defensive-miscues-cost-usmnt-in-loss-to-serbia

Author : Larry Henry Jr

Publish date : 2023-01-26 05:47:00

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