The Malta Independent 7 May 2021, Friday

US reach Copa America quarters with 1-0 win over Paraguay; Costa Rica upset Colombia 3-2

Associated Press Sunday, 12 June 2016, 08:41 Last update: about 6 years ago

Protecting a lead after Clint Dempsey's first-half goal, the United States' Copa America planning was suddenly upended.

DeAndre Yedlin got a pair of yellow cards 57 seconds apart just into the second half for two rash tackles, forcing the U.S. to play a man short against Paraguay for what turned out to be 49 fretful minutes.

Defenders held the back line, goalkeeper Brad Guzan made an outstanding double save in the 82nd minute and the U.S. held on for a 1-0 victory Saturday night to reach the Copa America quarterfinals.

"We stuck together," defender Geoff Cameron said. "Everybody sacrificed."

Hosting a special expanded 100th anniversary edition of South America's championship, the Americans (2-1) won Group A on goal difference over Colombia (2-1), which was upset 3-2 by already eliminated Costa Rica. By finishing first, the Americans may avoid a quarterfinal matchup with Brazil.

The U.S. plays Thursday night at Seattle, most likely against Ecuador or Peru, with the matchup to be determined by Sunday's Group B finals.

"I think that we could possibly do something special here," Dempsey said.

With the Americans playing for the third time in nine days, U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann started the same lineup for the third straight game — something done only once before in U.S. national team history, in its three matches at the 1930 World Cup.

Dempsey scored for the second straight game, getting his 51st international goal in the 27th minute to move six behind Landon Donovan's American scoring record.

 

Johan Venegas and Celso Borges each scored and Costa Rica benefited from an own goal by Colombia in a 3-2 upset victory to wrap up Group A play in the Copa America on Saturday night.

Colombia had already advanced before this match, earning a berth in the quarterfinals with a win over Paraguay on Tuesday and Costa Rica was eliminated from contention with the United States' 1-0 victory over Paraguay earlier on Saturday. The loss makes Colombia's path in the tournament more difficult as the team will likely face Brazil in New Jersey because of the loss. The Los Cafeteros would have drawn either Ecuador or Peru with a win.

But the United States did benefit from Costa Rica's upset, with Colombia's loss giving the team first place in Group A.

Frank Fabra and Marlos Moreno scored Colombia's two goals. Fabra scored Colombia's own-goal in the first half to give Costa Rica a lead it would not relinquish.


 

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