US Men's National Team Flunks Final Gold Cup Warmup, Lose 3-0 To Venezuela

In their last tune-up before the Gold Cup, the U.S. men's national team gave fans even more cause for concern, as Venezuela waltzed to a 3-0 victory at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio. Several days after an eye-opening loss to Jamaica, a torrid first half saw the Stars and Stripes down 3-0 at the half, giving Gregg Berhalter his second loss as USA manager.

Christian Pulisic, Tyler Adams, and Michael Bradley were not part of the squad against the Vinotinto, who were coming off a 3-1 loss to Mexico during the week. Jozy Altidore was on the bench but came on to start the second half, giving Berhalter a chance to see his top striker in action before the start of the Gold Cup.

The U.S. started well and looked dangerous on several set pieces early on. Those set pieces came via Tyler Boyd, making his U.S. debut, after being granted a one-time switch from New Zealand back in May. However, that start was quickly overshadowed by a poor play out of the back from Zack Steffen.

Steffen, who got away with an error against Jamaica, played a dangerous pass in the 16th minute that led to Newcastle United striker Salomón Rondón opening the scoring. Not a shining moment from Steffen, who is headed to Manchester City later this summer.

His counterpart, Wuilker Faríñez, made a couple of good saves against Weston McKennie, showing how much difference every little play a keeper makes during the course of a game.

In the 30th minute, Real Salt Lake man Jefferson Savarino made it two for the Vinotinto. Savarino's first shot, which came shortly after a throw-in, smacked off the upright, after bending around Steffen. Savarino was quick to react, though, and stuck the rebound past Steffen.

Six minutes later, Rondón added his second of the game, taking advantage of a quick breakout from Venezuela's own end. Isolated against Aaron Long in the box, Rondón smashed a shot between the defender's legs that left no chance for Steffen to make a save, giving Venezuela a commanding three-goal advantage within 36 minutes. 

In the second half, the U.S. looked a bit more composed, but that was mostly down to the urgency of Venezuela receding after the first half performance. There were a couple of chances for the USA to grab a goal or two, but it was just not the U.S.' day.

Cristian Roldan and Jordan Morris managed to get in each other's way from a header by Altidore, and Paul Arriola couldn't guide a half volley on target at the back post from a good cross by Nick Lima. Arriola did manage to get a stoppage-time volley on target, but Faríñez made another excellent save, denying Arriola a consolation goal.

The U.S. will have to try to regroup over the next nine days, before they open up their Gold Cup by facing off against Guyana on June 18 at Allianz Field in St. Paul, Minnesota. 

First Half Own Goal Gives D.C. United Huge Victory Over Portland Timbers

In 90 minutes of rain, D.C. United emerged victorious in the Pacific Northwest, benefitting from an own goal in a 1-0 win against the Portland Timbers. Bill Tuiloma knocked in Ulises Segura's cross in the 25th minute, giving United their second consecutive win, both of which came away from the friendly confines at Audi Field. The win elevated the Black-and-Red to fourth place in the Eastern Conference, a position that could change depending on other results on Sunday.

D.C. United In Position To Solidify Playoff Position With PDX Trip

After two weeks off for the international break, D.C. United are back in action on Sunday afternoon as they travel cross-country to take on the Portland Timbers. A win could see the Black-and-Red vault back into fourth place in the Eastern Conference after they were surpassed midweek by Toronto FC, who moved into fourth on the goal differential tiebreaker. Both teams currently occupy a playoff spot at the moment but need a win to cement their standing.

4 Notes From The Opening Rounds Of The Concacaf Nations League

The opening two rounds of the Concacaf Nations League are in the books, and we now have a clearer picture of which nations might punch their tickets to bigger and better things or tumble down into a lower league. 

Final 4 Weeks Of MLS Season Should Provide Plenty Of Drama

With the new schedule this year, Major League Soccer has a couple more sprints before the finish of the 2019 season. With the new playoff schedule, the second season is much shorter this year, after having to deal with the November international window smack dab in the middle of the playoffs. This year the playoffs are sandwiched between the October and November FIFA windows, which will help produce an MLS Cup winner in a whirlwind of a playoff schedule.

The Gap Between US & Mexico Is Widening On The International Stage

Rewind the tape to last September, when the USA and Mexico faced off in a friendly in Nashville. Tyler Adams helped the USMNT grab a 1-0 victory under the guidance of interim manager Dave Sarachan. What might be most memorable from that game, though, was the towering center back Matt Miazga reminding Mexican youngster Diego Lainez just how much shorter the then 18-year-old was than Miazga.

Trinidad & Tobago Struggle In Opening Rounds Of Concacaf Nations League

Though it may have been just a consolation prize considering their last-place finish in the Hex, Trinidad & Tobago’s shocking win over the United States at the tail end of 2017 was ample reason for the small nation to celebrate. 

4 Games Left To Decide D.C. United's MLS Playoff Standing

The last time D.C. United took the field in a competitive MLS game, they did their playoff chances a world of good. In a crucial showdown against the Montreal Impact on August 31, the Black-and-Red repeatedly punched their opponents in the mouth over the first 45 minutes of the game, picking up a 3-0 win that massively helped ease the pressure on a playoff race that was rapidly tightening up.

Concaclusions, Ep. 1: Nations League Matchday 1 & Mexico Dominate USA

null

From clutch finishes to a surprise resignation, the last week of Concacaf action featured just about everything imaginable as the inaugural Nations League is now underway. Away from the opening round of the tournament, Mexico were busy flexing their muscles in front of a rain-soaked crowd at MetLife Stadium. 

The Favorites Roll, Curaçao Narrowly Beats Haiti & More From Days 2 & 3

null

The past two days of the Concacaf Nations League has provided plenty of drama, decisive results, and world-class goals for everyone to enjoy. With games across all three leagues in the competition, some storylines are already beginning to play out throughout the competition, as we move on to the second match day, beginning on Monday.

Unexpected Concacaf Twist: Gustavo Matosas Stepping Down Because Of Boredom

The Concacaf Nations League began play this week and is sure to provide plenty of drama on the field over the next couple of months. Countries are vying to move to the semifinal round, or avoid relegation, or even jump up a league through promotion. There's always some element of unpredictability in these games, leading to shock results and standout performances from unheralded players.