ARLINGTON, Texas (July 22, 2017) – The U.S. Men’s National Team utilized two second-half goals in the span of 10 minutes from Jozy Altidore and Clint Dempsey to defeat Costa Rica 2-0 in the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup Semifinal in front of 45,516 fans at AT&T Stadium.
Dempsey’s 82nd minute strike was the 57th of his international career, tying him with Landon Donovan for the most all-time by a U.S. MNT player.
With the win, the U.S. MNT moves on to its record 10th Gold Cup Final on Wednesday, July 26 at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. (9:30 p.m. ET; FS1, Univision and Univision Deportes Network), where it will meet the winner of Sunday’s second semifinal between Mexico and Jamaica.
Coming on the heels of a fury of second-half chances, the breakthrough came six minutes after Dempsey entered, unlocking the Costa Rica defense with a beautiful pass for Altidore who then tucked his effort past Costa Rica ‘keeper Patrick Pemberton in the 72nd minute.
Dempsey got in on the scoring 10 minutes later, when he curled a low free kick from 25 yards out around the Costa Rica wall and just inside the right post to record his historic 57th all-time goal
Next on the Schedule: The U.S. MNT takes on the winner of Sunday’s Mexico-Jamaica Semifinal in the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup Final on Wednesday, July 26. Kickoff from Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. ET on FS1, Univision and Univision Deportes Network).
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Goal Scoring Rundown:
USA – Jozy Altidore (Clint Dempsey), 72nd minute: The breakthrough finally came shortly after Clint Dempsey’s entrance into the match. Having created a chance for Kellyn Acosta two minutes earlier, the substitute forward picked up a ball from Nagbe in midfield and glided past two Costa Rica defenders before playing the final pass to get Altidore into the box on the left. Dempsey’s pass helped the U.S. forward beat Jose Salvatierra before he slipped his low effort past onrushing Costa Rica ‘keeper Patrick Pemberton. USA 1, CRC 0 [WATCH]
USA – Clint Dempsey, 82nd minute: History was made 10 minutes after the opening goal as Dempsey lined up a free kick about 25 yards out. The substitute forward curled his low effort around the Costa Rica wall and inside the lower right post, hitting home his 57th career international strike to tie Landon Donovan at the top of the U.S. MNT all-time goal scoring chart. Dempsey equaled Donovan in front of numerous family members and friends in his home state of Texas.
USA 2, CRC 0 [WATCH] FINAL
Key Saves and Defensive Stops:
USA – Tim Howard, 37th minute: Despite long spells of U.S. possession, the game’s first big save game from Howard. After a nice move in the center circle helped him gain a step on Michael Bradley, Bryan Ruiz went on an impressive 40-yard run towards goal, before slipping Marco Ureña in at the top of the area. Shadowed by Omar Gonzalez, the striker took a touch before firing a low, blast which Howard turned away with a kick save at the top of the six-yard box.
CRC – Patrick Pemberton, 56th minute: A quick U.S. counterattack saw Darlington Nagbe slide the ball to Jorge Villafaña on the flank before the left back whipped in a low cross that saw Pemberton awkwardly come off his line to punch away. The rebound fell for Kellyn Acosta just outside the box, but the midfielder couldn’t get a clean touch before David Guzman came to clear away the danger.
CRC – Patrick Pemberton, 65th minute: The U.S. pulled another quick transition when Nagbe intercepted a pass out of the back at midfield before immediately striding towards goal. The midfielder held up his run about 25 yards out and laid for Altidore who knuckled an effort from distance that forced Pemberton to punch away the danger.
CRC – Patrick Pemberton, 70th minute: Arena’s side continued to press for the opening goal as Morris strolled through midfield before finding substitute Clint Dempsey at the top of the area. There, he laid a square pass for Acosta whose first-time effort was saved by Pemberton, before the Costa Rica ‘keeper claimed the rebound.
USA – Tim Howard, 71st minute: A through ball out of the back slipped past the U.S. midfield and straight to Ureña who beat out Omar Gonzalez only to have Howard make a diving stop off his line before quickly pouncing on the rebound.
- Clint Dempsey’s 82nd minute free kick was the 57th goal of his international career, tying him with Landon Donovan for first all-time on the U.S. MNT goal scoring list.
- Dempsey also recorded his 20th career assist on Altidore’s goal, moving him past Claudio Reyna into sole possession of third on the U.S. MNT’s all-time assist list.
- Jozy Altidore tallied his 38th career international goal to open the scoring in the 72nd minute.
- Having gone 8-0-5 since Bruce Arena returned as head coach, the team extends its unbeaten streak to 13-matches, a record to start a U.S. MNT head coaching tenure.
- Bruce Arena made five changes from the lineup that started against El Salvador, inserting Kellyn Acosta, Matt Besler, Jordan Morris, Jorge Villafaña and Graham Zusi vs. Costa Rica.
- Earning his 135th cap, Michael Bradley moved past Jeff Agoos into sole possession of fourth on the U.S. MNT’s all-time appearance list.
- Tim Howard made two saves to earn his 61st career win and 42nd all-time clean sheet.
- Howard combined with the U.S. back line of Jorge Villafaña, Matt Besler, Omar Gonzalez and Graham Zusi to earn the MNT’s third-straight clean sheet at the tournament.
- Defender Jorge Villafaña made his team-leading 10th appearance of 2017 as well as his first appearance in the Gold Cup Knockout Round.
- Jordan Morris earned his second start of the tournament and remains the only player to appear in all five tournament matches.
- Kellyn Acosta and Michael Bradley paired in central midfield for the second time this year, with the first coming in the USA’s 1-1 World Cup Qualifying draw at Mexico on June 11.
- Dallas Metroplex products Omar Gonzalez (Dallas) and Kellyn Acosta (Plano) each earned starts near their hometown.
- Besler and Gonzalez paired in central defense for the second time at this year’s Gold Cup and first since the 1-1 draw vs. Panama in the tournament opener on July 8.
- Jordan Morris and Jozy Altidore partnered up front for the second time and first since a 1-0 friendly win against Canada on Feb. 5, 2016 vs. Canada.
- The USA is 15-15-6 all-time vs. Costa Rica and 14-6-4 on U.S. soil.
- The U.S. improves to 7-0-1 vs. Los Ticos in Gold Cup play.
- Arena improves his record to 5-3-2 record in 10 meetings with Costa Rica.
- The USA has more wins in the CONCACAF Gold Cup than any other nation, going 55-8-9 all-time.
- The U.S. has gone an impressive 23-7-5 during the tournament’s Knockout Round.
- With a 18-1-4 record in the Gold Cup, Arena is also the winningest head coach all-time in the competition.
- The U.S. manager is 8-1-3 in the Knockout Round and 16-0-4 overall vs. CONCACAF opposition in the tournament.