Jonathan Amon

AP Photo/Jessica Hill

Three things from USMNT’s 1-1 draw with Peru

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The USMNT led Peru 1-0 late before a back post marking error allowed the World Cup participants to level the score line in Connecticut.

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But that’s not what resounds from Tuesday’s match, as we once against confirmed that the U.S. is producing some fine young attackers.

Teenage trio grows into game, puts U.S. ahead

These friendlies provide good chances for players to express themselves individually, and there’s reason to be excited by three young Americans attackers.

Yes, there were plenty of sloppy moments for Josh Sargent (18) and Jonathan Amon (19), but those came early and both European-based players seemed to relax as the match wore into the second half.

Sargent in particular showed flair with one-touch flicks and dynamite touch passes even before he scored his opener. Amon misplaced a looping outside of the foot pass in the first half, but swept a ball over the top of the defense to cue up Sargent in the second half.

And while Tim Weah misfired on that chance, the Paris Saint-Germain man is as exciting as any American teenager on the scene.

Moving forward, it’s all about the attack (and that is exciting)

This isn’t to say that Weston McKennie, Matt Miazga, Tyler Adams, and a few other intriguing young players can’t buoy the hopes of the U.S. heading into the Gold Cup and then World Cup qualifying, but what’s so exciting about this team is a new wealth of attacking options (most of it now growing overseas).

Sargent, Weah, and Amon are 19 or younger. Christian Pulisic is the most important national team talent in a generation, and just turned 20. That’s the same age as Weston McKennie, whose played everywhere from CDM to CB to CAM at his club.

All are playing for clubs whose senior teams are competing for places in Europe. Sargent has yet to play for Werder Bremen’s senior team and Weah sparingly for PSG, but the other three are key pieces for Borussia Dortmund, Schalke, and Nordsjælland.

That’s why it’s key the new U.S. coach knows how to push down on the gas pedal.

Let’s hear it for the long-term caretaker

Sarachan (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)

Dave Sarachan may’ve just coached the final match of his long-term interim run as USMNT boss, and the Rochester-born 64-year-old deserves a lot of credit for Tuesday’s performance.

While his late substitution of DeAndre Yedlin for a thriving Reggie Cannon led to Peru’s equalizer, no one should blame him for thinking an every week Premier League starter would be able to mark a back post.

Sarachan drew up a short free kick from Kellyn Acosta that led to a Josh Sargent goal, and coaxed a strong performance from first time center back mates Cameron Carter-Vickers and Aaron Long.

The longtime assistant’s record as USMNT boss sits at 3-3-3 despite a very tricky schedule. He’s earned draws against three World Cup nations: Portugal, France, and Peru. He also has the distinction of being 1-0 against Mexico, never a bad thing.

In another climate, Sarachan would have earned something close to a full-time gig. And Bruce Arena’s assistant will surely be involved with the USMNT program in some capacity. But coming off a World Cup qualifying failure, it was always going to be time for fresh blood.

Late concession denies USMNT win vs. Peru

Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images
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The United States men’s national team lost focus late in a 1-1 draw with Peru in Connecticut on Tuesday.

Josh Sargent scored his second USMNT goal, but Edison Flores took advantage of sleepy defending at the back post to snare an equalizer.

The U.S. finishes its 2018 with matches against England and Italy in November.

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Timothy Weah continued to produce in the national team’s shirt, playing Kellyn Acosta into the box. The Colorado Rapids man was quickly challenged and pushed his shot wide of the near post.

Picking up a flick from Josh Sargent, Jonathan Amon had a chance to cue up a streaking Weah in the Peruvian box. His outside of the boot pass was too ambitious and the PSG man could not reach it.

Peru, though, enjoyed the first half more than their hosts, though very chances ended up meeting Brad Guzan.

There weren’t any changes at the break, and Amon swept a pass over the top of the Peru defense to allow Sargent a path into the box. Sargent squared for Weah, whose shot missed wide of the near post.

Sargent made good on his promise in the 49th minute, a short free kick from Kellyn Acosta that took a deflection off Renato Tapia.

Amon came off in the 55th minute for Julian Green.

Peru brought the match to life with an Andy Polo bullet off the cross bar.

The Yanks then broke back the other way, with Reggie Cannon starting a rush that Julian Green marshaled into a chance. The end product was a blocked Ben Sweat shot.

Dave Sarachan put in a number of veterans late, and one of them was at fault for Peru’s equalizer.

DeAndre Yedlin failed to react to a cross that bounced twice on its way through the six, and Flores was at the back post to punch it into the goal.

And Brad Guzan might’ve not liked his decisions on the goal, but the Atlanta United backstop saved the Yanks’ bacon with a punch save on a late free kick.

USMNT-Colombia preview: Bradley’s back, but the new stars are not

AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo, File
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The United States men’s national team is back, and will play a match one year and one day removed from its colossal failure in Couva.

The Yanks were eliminated from World Cup qualification on Oct. 10, 2017, failing to ever find their footing in a must-win contest against Trinidad and Tobago’s B Team.

[ MORE: 1 year on from USMNT’s dark day ] 

How fitting, then, that the American squad set to face Colombia on Thursday is still a bit of a B Side by its own standards? Yes, Michael Bradley and Brad Guzan are back in the fold, but Dave Sarachan hasn’t just called up another a young side. He’s been forced to operate without new key pieces Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, and Tyler Adams (all injured).

Bradley is the most interesting piece in that he’s been one the main targets of scorn and blame for the failure in Trinidad and Tobago. On any other team, he waltzes back into the Starting XI. But how is Sarachan viewing this week, and the USMNT’s longtime captain?

Colombia is bringing plenty of A-listers to the affair, starting with James Rodriguez, Juan Cuadrado, Carlos Bacca, and Radamel Falcao. They’ll provide a stiff test for an American back line which is really beginning to function well together. DeAndre Yedlin, John Brooks, and Matt Miazga will figure in the set-up, but will Sarachan opt for three, four, or five at the back?

Or will he try some new blood, with MLS standouts Reggie Cannon, Aaron Long, and Ben Sweat angling for their first caps?

The other uncapped player in Nordsjaelland winger Jonathan Amon, a 19-year-old now featuring for the senior team after several years in the academy of the Danish powers.

Colombia beat the USMNT twice at the 2016 Copa America, once in the group stage and then again in the third place match. The Yanks haven’t come out on top against Los Cafeteros since a 2005 friendly.

The goal scorers that day? Pat Noonan, Chad Marshall, and Clint Mathis.

Europa wrap: Burnley wins in extra time

Nick Potts/PA via AP
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Burnley left it very late but send the Turf Moor crowd home elated, earning a berth against Olympiacos in the Europa League’s playoff round.

[ MORE: Reyna’s son to BVB ]

Come for that, stay for the insanity in Russia.

Burnley 1-0 aet (1-0 agg.) Istanbul Basaksehir

Burnley’s first European run in 57 years continues thanks to more Joe Hart heroics and a Jack Cork extra time goal on Thursday at Turf Moor.

İstanbul Başakşehir out shot the hosts 18-10 but couldn’t solve Hart, who extended his clean sheet record to 300 minutes, making a number of saves in blanking the Turkish guests for the second time this season. He also shutout Southampton in the Premier League.

Cork managed a pretty 97th minute goal from a Jeff Hendrick feed, scoring a tie-deciding goal for the second-straight round.

Partizan Belgrade 3-2 (5-3 agg.) Nordsjaelland

American winger Jonathan Amon has his first Europa League goal, though it couldn’t help his Danish visitors overcome a 3-1 first leg deficit.

Molde 3-0 (3-0 agg.) Hibernian

American midfielder Emerson Hyndman played the final 50 minutes for Hibs, who could not earn a berth in the playoff round.

Zenit Saint-Petersburg 8-1 (8-5 agg.) Dinamo Minsk

Zenit bounced back in a big, big way after last week’s 4-0 loss in Ukraine. Zenit matched that marker over 90 minutes, but went into the extra time’s halftime down 5-4 on a goal by Dinamo’s Seidu Yahaya.

Sebastian Driussi leveled the score line in the 109th minute, before Russian World Cup hero Artem Dzyuba completed his hat trick and Robert Mak scored a pair of goals. The sixth and seventh goals came from the penalty spot, five minutes apart.

Elsewhere
Kairat Almaty 1-2 (1-4 agg.) Sigma Olomouc
Progres Niederkorn 2-2 (3-4 agg.) Ufa
AEK Larnaca 5-0 (7-0 agg.) Sturm Graz
HJK Helsinki 1-4 (1-7 agg.) Olimpija Ljubljana
Copenhagen 2-1 (4-2 agg.) CSKA Sofia
Universitatea Craiova 1-1 (2-4 agg.) RB Leipzig
Apoel Nicosia 3-1 (5-3 agg.) Hapoel Be’er Sheva
CFR Cluj 5-0 (7-0 agg.) Alashkert
Midtjylland 3-1 (5-1 agg.) New Saints
Kukesi 2-0 (4-5 agg.) Torpedo Kutaisi
Suduva 0-0 (1-0 agg.) Spartaks Jurmala
Zalgiris 0-5 (0-6 agg.) Sevilla
Luzern 1-3 (1-7 agg.) Olympiacos
Maccabi Tel-Aviv 2-1 (2-1 agg.) Pyunik
Dinamo Brest 1-0 (1-4 agg.) Apollon Limassol
LASK 2-1 (2-2 agg.) Besiktas
Atalanta 2-0 (6-1 agg.) Hapoel Haifa
Basel 1-0 (2-0 agg.) Vitesse
Brondby 2-1 (4-1 agg.) Spartak Subotica
F91 Dudelange 2-2 (4-3 agg.) Legia Warsaw
Zrinjski Mostar 1-1 (1-2 agg.) Ludogores Razgrad
Lech Poznan 1-2 (1-4 agg.) KRC Genk
NK Maribor 0-0 (1-3 agg.) Rangers
Steaua Bucharest 2-1 (2-1 agg.) Hajduk Split
Feyenoord 1-1 (1-5 agg.) AS Trencin
KAA Gent 3-1 (4-1 agg.) Jagiellonia Bialystok
Rapid Vienna 4-0 (5-2 agg.) Slovan Bratislava
HNK Rijeka 0-1 (1-2 agg.) Sarpsborg
Rosenborg 3-0 (5-0 agg.) Cork City
Valur Reykjavik 2-1 (2-2 agg.) Sheriff Tiraspol
Braga 1-1 (2-2 agg.) Zorya Luhansk

Playoff round
Olimpija Ljubljana vs. Spartak Trnava
APOEL Nicosia vs. Astana
Rosenborg vs. Shkendija
F91 Dudelange vs. CFR Cluj
Suduva Marijampole vs. Celtic
Sheriff Tiraspol vs. Qarabag
Malmo vs. Midtjylland
Torpedo Kutaisi vs. Ludogorets Razgrad
Sigma Olomouc vs. Sevilla
Sarpsborg vs. Maccabi Tel Aviv
Gent vs. Bordeaux
Partizan Belgrade vs. Besiktas
Rapid Vienna vs. Steaua Bucharest
Apollon Limassol vs. Basel
Atalanta vs. Copenhagen
Zenit Saint Petersburg vs. Molde
Trencin vs. AEK Larnaca
Genk vs. Brondby
Olympiacos vs. Burnley
Zorya Luhansk vs. RB Leipzig

USMNT prospect Amon scores first Europa League goal (video)

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South Carolina-born Jonathan Amon isn’t likely to be thrilled with the result, but may find comfort in knowing he’s joined select American company by scoring in a UEFA senior tournament.

Amon entered Thursday’s Europa League second leg for Nordsjaelland against Partizan Belgrade with his Danish side trailing in the match and tie, and the left wing made his presence felt with a timely tap-in.

[ MORE: Reyna’s son to BVB ]

The match marked his 12th appearance for Nordsjaelland, and his third goal to go with three assists.

Amon joined Nordsjaelland in 2017, and signed a new contract with the club this summer.