ATLANTA (July 22, 2015) - The U.S. Men's National Team was eliminated from the 2015 Gold Cup Wednesday night after a 2-1 Semifinal loss to Jamaica at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
Trailing 2-0 at the start of the second half, the U.S. came out quickly on the attack and Michael Bradley scored his second goal of the tournament to cut the Jamaica in half. Chances continued to come for the MNT, but none found the net, and when the final whistle blew, it signaled the USA's first loss to Jamaica in Gold Cup play.
Jamaica led at the break after two quick goals from set pieces late in the first half. Darren Mattocks headed home a long throw in the 31st minute and Giles Barnes doubled the lead five minutes later with a free kick from just outside of the box.
The USA will play either Panama or Mexico in the third-place game on Saturday, July 26 at PPL Park in Chester, Pennsylvania. The broadcast information on the semifinal is still to be determined.
The MNT will also face the winner of the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup later this year for a spot in the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup. The one-game playoff pits the winner of the 2013 and 2015 Gold Cups against one another for a spot at the tournament in Russia the year before the World Cup. The USA last featured at the Confederations Cup in 2009 when the team beat then No. 1-ranked Spain and advanced to the Final against Brazil.
Goal Scoring Rundown:
JAM - Darren Mattocks (Kemar Lawrence) 31st minute: A long throw in from Kemar Lawrence found Mattocks in the center of the box, where he rose highest and flicked a header to the back post. The ball floated over diving U.S. 'keeper Brad Guzan and bounced in off the post. USA 0, JAM 1
JAM - Giles Barnes 36th minute: Brad Guzan was whistled for a handball after he was deemed to have advanced out of the penalty area. Jamaica was awarded a free kick on the right side of the box and Barnes stepped up to take the kick, curling it over the wall and in at the near post to put Jamaica up by a pair. USA 0, JAM 2
This goal by Barnes was a perfect strike of a Direct from just outside the box.
The problem is that it should never be called. There was a Jamaican player following Guzman and not necessarily interfering with him, BUT, if you're going to call him for "handling the ball outside the box," then you probably should call the Jamaican player fro interference first, before the handball.
Not sure what is going on, but referees are getting way too involved in the outcome of games. This one call changed the game. Just like the PK called in extra time of the Mexico game. Bad calls that change the outcome of games, too often.
USA - Michael Bradley 48th minute: Just after the restart, the ball was played into Aron Johannsson at the top of the box. He took a turn and fired at Jamaica's goalkeeper Ryan Thompson, who batted it down in front of him. Dempsey followed and got a shot away before Michael Bradley followed up for the third time to tap it home from eight yards.USA 1, JAM 2 (SEE GOAL ) (FINAL)
In the 57th minute, Bradley hit a cannon from about 20 yards out that knuckled so badly that Jamaican Keeper, Ryan Thompson didn't even have time to get his hands up. It richocheted off Thompson's chest and then hit the post.
- With his goal U.S. captain Michael Bradley became the fourth player with 15 goals & 15 assists for the #USMNT (Landon Donovan, Cobi Jones, Eric Wynalda)
- With tonight's start, Bradley ties goalkeeper Tim Howard for 11th on the all-time MNT cap list with 104 appearances.
- Midfielder Kyle Beckerman made his 50th all-time appearance for the USA in tonight's match.
Additional Notes from the game:
- U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann made two changes to his lineup from the Cuba Quarterfinal match: John Brooks returned to central defense after serving a one-game suspension, while Brad Evans stepped in at right back.
- Michael Bradley and Brad Guzan continued as the lone U.S. players to start all five matches of the tournament.
- The start was the first for Evans since the second Gold Cup group match, a 1-0 victory against Haiti on July 10 at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.
- The MNT is now 13-2-8 all-time against Jamaica and is 10-1-3 against the Reggae Boyz at home. The U.S. record against Jamaica in the Gold Cup falls to 3-1-0.
- The MNT is 2-1-0 all-time in Atlanta.
- The loss was the first for the MNT under Jurgen Klinsmann in the Gold Cup.