USMNT punch Gold Cup knockouts ticket with emphatic win over Trinidad & Tobago

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The US men’s national team came into their final Group A Gold Cup match needing to rack up the score on Trinidad and Tobago in order to ensure a top seed in the knockout stage. They did just that Sunday evening, thumping the Soca Warriors in a 6-0 win at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte.

FC Dallas striker Jesús Ferreira stole the spotlight with his second straight hat trick for the Yanks. This time it only took him the first half to grab all three tallies, which came in the 14th, 38th, and 45+3rd minutes. His finishes – two from close range in the box and one from a penalty kick – showed off the red-hot striker’s intelligent movement and refined scoring instinct.

Former MLS star Djordje Mihailovic also dominated the first half, initiating the buildup to Ferreira’s second goal with a killer ball to Alejandro Zendejas, and then earning a penalty kick by dribbling T&T’s Alvin Jones, who tried to make up for lost ground with a desperate challenge in the box that was deemed a foul.

The Soca Warriors showed signs of life at the start of the second half, most notably when second-half substitute Shannon Gomez blasted a long-distance shot off the post in the 62nd minute. But, just three minutes later, San Jose Earthquakes’ winger Cade Cowell slammed the door, pouncing on a poor back pass from T&T’s Kadeem Corbin and then dribbling their goalkeeper, Marvin Phillip, before smashing his finish home.

Gianluca Busio and Brandon Vazquez assured goal differential wouldn't be an issue by notching the USMNT's fifth and sixth tallies to cap a dominant performance for the tournament's host nation.


  • 14' - USA - Jesús Ferreira | WATCH
  • 38' - USA - Jesús Ferreira | WATCH
  • 45+3' - USA - Jesús Ferreira | WATCH
  • 65' - USA - Cade Cowell | WATCH
  • 79' - USA - Gianluca Busio | WATCH
  • 90+4' - USA - Brandon Vazquez | WATCH

Three Things

  • THE BIG PICTURE: The good-vibes train just keeps rolling for the USMNT. Any initial shakiness from their 1-1 opening-match draw against Jamaica seems to have washed away, and in its wake is the same ruthless side that cruised to their second-straight Concacaf Nations League title just a few weeks ago – albeit with a nearly completely fresh group of players. The competition will get harder from here, and it's possible a rematch with Canada could come in the quarterfinals, but as of now, the USMNT look to be the definitive favorite against any team in the region.
  • MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Quality build-up: It's what's defined so many USMNT performances in the past year, including at the World Cup. No sequence reflected that trend better than this Mihailovic to Zendejas to Ferreira goal.
  • MAN OF THE MATCH: Ferreira became the USMNT's first-ever player to score consecutive hat tricks. What else needs to be said?

Next Up

  • USA: Sunday, July 9 vs. Group D's second-place team (7:30 pm ET) | Gold Cup, quarterfinals
  • TRI: TBD