USMNT downs Jamaica, sets up Gold Cup final against Mexico

USMNT downs Jamaica, sets up Gold Cup final against Mexico

CONCACAF Gold Cup

USMNT downs Jamaica, sets up Gold Cup final against Mexico

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For the first time since 2011, the U.S. Men’s National Team will take on Mexico with all the Concacaf marbles on the line.

Despite a lengthy severe weather delay and some late pressure from Jamaica, a goal from Weston McKennie and two from Christian Pulisic were enough for the USMNT as they took down the Reggae Boyz 3-1 in Wednesday night’s Gold Cup semifinal in Nashville.

McKennie got the scoring started in the ninth minute as the USMNT played with a high tempo game. He collected a slight touch off Jozy Altidore’s foot before smashing the ball home for the opener.

The storms hit six minutes later and the game was delayed for an hour and a half as the teams waited for the lightning to clear the area. The restart was a little cagey and Jamaica was able to maintain a little more possession, but the USMNT never really lost control of things. They didn’t create much before the break, but they were firmly ahead 1-0 at halftime.

Pulisic’s goal came in the 52nd minute thanks to a wonderful setup from McKennie. The Schalke midfielder picked out a Jordan Morris run. Morris got a shot away, but Jamaica keeper Andre Blake was able make the save. Fortunately for the USMNT, Pulisic was darting into the box to bury the rebound.

Jamaica gained a little bit of momentum in the 69th minute when some passive USMNT defending allowed Shamar Nicholson to head home a cross from Leon Bailey. Nicholson managed to sneak into the box unmarked to provide an easy target for the winger and the finish was a simple one.

The atmosphere at Nissan Stadium was growing a little nervy when Pulisic showed up to settle things down in the 87th minute. He was once again in the right place to pick up a rebound off a Paul Arriola shot and knock it in to restore the two goal advantage and finish the 3-1 scoreline.

The victory sets up the first USA-Mexico Gold Cup Final since 2011 on Sunday at Chicago’s Soldier Field. The USMNT broke out to a 2-0 lead in that match, but eventually fell 4-2.

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