The US national team and Colombia kicked off the Copa America Centenario on Friday at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California, with Colombia winning 2-0 courtesy of two first-half goals.
Colombia got off to a fantastic start just eight minutes in, as Cristian Zapata found space in the box and slotted home Edwin Cardona's corner kick to make it 1-0.
A penalty was called for Colombia in the 40th minute, after a cross into the box struck DeAndre Yedlin's hand. James Rodriguez stepped up and converted the spot kick to double the lead.
The best chances for the US came just past the hour mark, as Clint Dempsey tested Colombia's defense in quick succession. First, his header off a corner kick was blocked on the goal line by Sebastian Perez, and then a free kick a few minutes later forced a save from Colombia goalkeeper David Ospina.
- BAD START, BAD OMEN: It turns out, history prevailed for the US against South American opposition, as conceding first is practically the kiss of death for the Americans over the last two decades (statistic does not include this result).
In the past 20 years, #USMNT has conceded first to a CONMEBOL team 19 times, resulting in 1 win (vs Peru), 3 draws & 15 losses.— Paul Carr (@PCarrESPN) June 4, 2016
- CONCERN FOR JAMES? Rodriguez was one of the biggest X-factors coming into the tournament, because despite being the breakout star of the 2014 World Cup, he is coming off a tough club season with Real Madrid. He did notch the insurance goal in the match, but a second-half injury to his left shoulder forced him out of the game and will leave many wondering about his status for Colombia moving forward in the Copa America.
- SET PIECES REIGN: Not only did both of Colombia's goals come off set pieces, but both of the USMNT's best chances also came from dead-ball situations. Such is the nature in tournament soccer sometimes, but it turned out successful conversion of set pieces literally made the difference in this game.
- USA: Tuesday, June 7 vs. Costa Rica (8 pm ET, FS1, UniMás, UDN)
- COL: Tuesday, June 7 vs. Paraguay (10:30 pm ET, FS1, UniMás, UDN)