The USMNT overcame a horrible start to their World Cup qualifier against Costa Rica in Columbus, Ohio, to score an almost-necessary 2-1 win on Wednesday.
The USMNT were coming off a brutal performance in a 1-0 away loss to Panama and went down in the first minute on a massive defensive lapse to start Wednesday’s match.
But Sergino Dest, partly at fault for that concession, scored a sensational equalizer and connected with Timothy Weah to help produce the match-deciding own goal.
USMNT player ratings vs Costa Rica
GK – Zack Steffen: 7 – I didn’t have any problem with Steffen on the Costa Rica goal because he has to wait to see if the last attacker redirects the shot. We’d argue that it would be a riskier decision if he dives to the far post and it’s redirected where he was standing.
LB – Antonee Robinson: 7 – Along with Dest, he did what many hoped they’d see from Berhalter’s fullbacks: Rampaging up-and-down the pitch and looking for any chance to sweep a cross into the mixer.
CB – Chris Richards: 5 – Baptism by fire in making a first World Cup qualifying start in place of Walker Zimmerman, who might’ve been the Man of the Match in both games this break.
CB – Miles Robinson: 5.5 – Made amends for a terrible error by racing back to deny Bryan Ruiz, but almost any other center forward is not going to be caught before a shot finds its way toward the keeper.
RB – Sergino Dest (Off 73′) : 7.5 – We can’t quite go 8 thanks to his allowing the first-minute cross that could’ve become oh-so-haunting for a solid month, but Dest scored the first goal — a true stunner — before setting up the Costa Rica own goal by slipping Weah through on goal. A special attacking talent with bravery to match.
CM – Tyler Adams: 8.5 – Let’s not forget the shiny star that is Christian Pulisic, but Tyler Adams is probably as important as the Chelsea man to this squad (especially given McKennie’s recent issues).
CM – Weston McKennie: 5.5 – Pretty good for about 89 minutes and 15 seconds. Problem is he abdicated his responsibilities in the first 45 seconds and is the No. 1 reason Costa Rica took their early lead. It’s not acceptable.
CM – Yunus Musah (Off 78′): 6.5 – His youthful exuberance and bravery with the ball in tricky parts of the pitch still gives us a lot of pause but he’ll grow in wisdom and we’ll grow in confidence. Never stops moving and to start three-straight matches in the center of the park while playing almost exclusively wide with Valencia is laudable.
RW– Timothy Weah (Off 73′): 7 – A last-minute substitution for an injured Paul Arriola, Weah’s athletic gifts were on display all night with electric bursts of pace and of course the vicious shot that wound up across the Costa Rica goal line for an own goal.
LW– Brenden Aaronson (Off 86′): 6.5 – Very busy and energetic to the extent where we’re surprised he had it in his legs. Goes to show the youth can do things, you know?
CF– Ricardo Pepi (Off 86′): 6 – A quiet day for the youngster, who is rumored to be on the verge of signing for Wolfsburg. That and the stage is a lot for one teenager’s head on a Wednesday night in October.
DeAndre Yedlin (On 73′): 6.5 — Mission mostly-accomplished in being a defensive upgrade (kinda wild if you think about it) over Dest.
Matthew Hoppe (On 73′): 6.5 — Flashed in the box a few times
Gianluca Busio (On 78′): 6.5 — Couple of moments including a blocked shot
Walker Zimmerman (On 86′): N/A
Gyasi Zardes (On 86′): N/A