Switzerland fought back to earn a 1-1 draw with the U.S. national team in Zurich on Tuesday, as the USMNT let another lead slip in the second half.
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Brek Shea’s stunning free kick on the stroke of half time put the U.S. 1-0 up, but Jozy Altidore’s red card with 20 minutes to go gave Switzerland the man advantage and they made the most of it as Valentin Stocker poked home an equalizer in the 80th minute to mark the 12th time the U.S. has conceded a second half goal since the World Cup.
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Late on the U.S. were put under severe pressure, but Jurgen Klinsmann’s young side held on for a respectable draw but a worrying trend continues as the USMNT have now held a lead heading into the second half of seven of their matches since last summer but have only won twice.
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The U.S. settled down early on and Gyasi Zardes whipped in a delightful ball from the right but nobody gambled. In the eighth minute Mobandje surged forward from left back and caused some problems but the U.S. managed to clear the lines as Switzerland started to dominate possession.
After 15 minutes the U.S. had a glorious chance to go ahead as Alejandro Bedoya whipped in a great ball to the back post but Zardes fired over as the ball bounced up at the vital moment. In the 27th minute the USMNT had another glorious opportunity as Jozy Altidoe held the ball up and played in Bedoya who picked out Bradley six-yards out but the U.S. captain somehow side-footed over with the entire goal gaping. Before half time Shea whipped in a great ball to the back post which Bedoya latched onto but his header lacked power, then Mehmedi missed the ball entirely from close range after great work down the left from Xherdan Shaqiri.
Right on the stroke of half time the U.S. won a free kick 25-yards out after Inler brought down Alfredo Morales and Shea stepped up and curled a beauty into the top corner to put the U.S. 1-0 up at the break. At the interval the U.S. brought on goalkeeper William Yarbrough for his debut, while Ventura Alvarado also came on with Switzerland making a raft of changes to try and get things going.
At the start of the second half the U.S. almost went 2-0 up, as a looping cross from the right saw Burki come out and flap at the ball as Zardes headed towards goal but it bounced inches wide. Bradley had another great chance to make it 2-0 but was closed down at the final moment after confusion in the Swiss box, as the U.S. pushed hard to extend their lead.
Before Tuesday’s game 10 of the 14 goals the USA had conceded since the World Cup last summer had come in the final 30 minutes of matches and their chances of holding on for a marquee win were not helped when Altidore was shown a red card, two yellows one after the other, in the 68th minute after first fouling a Swiss player and then swearing at the referee.
Late on Switzerland threw the kitchen sink at the U.S. as Kasami and Embolo came close, then Stocker tapped home after a looping ball into the box from the left wasn’t cleared by Alfredo Morales and DeAndre Yedlin. 1-1, as the U.S. held on under intense pressure to seal a draw as their trip to Europe came to a close on a high note.
Switzerland: Burki; Lichtsteiner (Widmer, 45′), Schar, von Bergen, Mobandje; Frei (Kasami, 45′), Inler (Stocker, 45′), Fernandes; Drmic (Embolo, 56′), Shaqiri, Mehmedi (Xhaka, 45′)
Goal: Stocker (80′)
USA: Rimando (Yarbrough, 45′); Chandler, Orozco (Ventura, 45′), Brooks, Shea; Bedoya (Yedlin, 76′), Williams, Bradley, Morales (Ream, 88′); Zardes (Morris, 88′), Altidore
Goal: Shea (45′) Red card: Altidore (68′)