March 21, 2018

Nicaragua 0 - USMNT 3

16 July 2017, 04:47 | Taylor George

Michael Bradley and Clint Dempsey are among the six additions to the U.S. Gold Cup roster

Gold Cup U.S. Soccer Bruce Arena

The US Men's National Team concluded Group B play at the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup with a 3-0 victory over Nicaragua on Saturday at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio, clinching the group win with a late goal by defender Matt Miazga.

The Americans (2-0-1) finished tied with Panama (2-0-1) in points and goal differential but ahead on total goals (7-6) in the 12-team regional competition. Earlier in the day, with a 3-0 victory over Martinique, Panama turned up the pressure on the United States. The Americans play their quarterfinal Wednesday in Philadelphia against a third-place team from another group, likely Honduras, El Salvador or Jamaica; a second-place finish would have meant a U.S. -Costa Rica matchup.

Panama and the USMNT were tied in goal differential after two matches, but the US had the lead because of a goals-scored tiebreaker. All three started the group stage opener against Panama.

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Alejandro Bedoya surged on the right flank and crossed to the top of the penalty area. The USMNT had a chance to double the lead from the penalty spot in the 51st but Dom Dwyer saw his attempt saved. In the 56th minute, Zusi forced an errant pass that Bedoya intercepted and played to Dwyer. On the ensuing free kick, Miazga scored the dramatic match-winner for his first USA goal.

Dwyer was dragged down by Marlon Lopez for the first spot-kick, but the forward's penalty was too narrow and at a good height for Lorente. His shot attempt was deflected, but the ball rolled to Bedoya who played a ideal pass between two defenders to Kelyn Rowe.

After Copete picked up a second yellow card in the 85th minute, Zusi drifted in a delightful set-piece for Miazga to head in at the back post for what was a crucial goal for United States.

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