First Touch

USMNT Beat Mexico 3-0 In Fiery Encounter

Christian Pulisic scored twice and Ricardo Pepi added a third as The U.S. Men’s National Team (USMNT) thrashed Mexico 3-0 in front of a sellout crowd of 65,000 fans at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. The USMNT will now advance to the Concacaf Nations League final on Sunday against Canada. Weston McKennie and Sergiño Dest will miss that match after being sent off in this highly contentious match. Canada defeated Panama 2-0 in the earlier semifinal matchup.

USMNT forward Ricardo Pepi
USMNT forward Ricardo Pepi celebrates after scoring during the second half at Allegiant Stadium. Photo: Lucas Peltixaer-USA TODAY Sports

USA 3 Mexico 0

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With the win, the USMNT’s extends its unbeaten streak against El Tri to six straight games (4-0-2), matching the longest such streak against its rivals since a similar run from 2011-2015. In a tense affair, the teams combine for 13 cards, including 12 in the second half after the USA took a 2-0 lead. Of more interest to bettors and statistitions everywhere, a total of nine yellow cards were shown and two players from each side were ejected. If you’re looking for a leader in the sports betting field you can visit, and start playing there today!

In his first match after being appointed USMNT head coach, B.J. Callaghan’s starting XI featured eight players from the 2022 FIFA World Cup as well as forward Folarin Balogun, who made his USMNT debut.

The U.S. showed no signs of changing its style of play, pressing high early and keeping possession for most of the first half. Pulisic had a great chance after 20 minutes when he sped by a defender on the left side and rounded Mexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa. However, his shot sailed high as two defenders were in position on the goalmouth.

Pulisic On Target

Pulisic struck 15 minutes later when he capitalized on a bad touch by a defender following a back-pass as the U.S. pressured high and beat Ochoa from a tight angle. The USA captain then doubled the lead seconds into the second half with a clinical finish from a Tim Weah cross from the right wing.

Gio Reyna and Mexico forward Uriel Antuna (21) during the first half. Photos: Lucas Peltier-USA TODAY Sports

With the U.S. in complete control, the match became more heated when Mexico’s Cesar Montes kicked at Balogun from behind and was shown a direct red card. Weston McKennie was also shown a red after walking away from a scuffle with his jersey nearly ripped off.

Pepi Strikes

Moments after coming off the bench, Ricardo Pepi added the USA’s third following a brilliant individual effort from Sergiño Dest that put him in a prime position to take a touch away from Ochoa to slot the ball into the open net, effectively sealing the match. However, the drama did not end as Mexico’s Gerardo Arteaga was ejected with five minutes left for raising his hands to the face of USA Dest, who reacted similarly and was also shown red.

USA defender Sergino Dest
USA defender Sergino Dest shoves Mexico defender Gerardo Arteaga (6) during the second half.

Line Ups


1-Matt Turner; 2-Sergiño Dest, 12-Miles Robinson, 4-Chris Richards, 5-Antonee Robinson; 7-Gio Reyna (14-Luca de la Torre, 75), 6-Yunus Musah, 8-Weston McKennie; 21-Tim Weah (11-Brenden Aaronson, 82), 20-Folarin Balogun (9-Ricardo Pepi, 75), 10-Christian Pulisic (capt.) (19-Joe Scally, 89)

Substitutes not used: 13-Drake Callender, 18-Sean Johnson, 3-Walker Zimmerman, 23-Auston Trusty, 15-Johnny Cardoso, 16-Alan Soñora, 17-Alex Zendejas, 22-Taylor Booth

Head coach: B.J. Callaghan


 13-Guillermo Ochoa (Capt.); 15-Israel Reyes, 3-César Montes, 22-Victor Guzmán; 19-Jorge Sánchez, 21-Uriel Antuna, 18-Luis Chávez, 4-Edson Álvarez, 23-Jesús Gallardo (9-Ozziel Herrera, 54); 17-Orbelín Pineda, 20-Henry Martin (11-Santiago Giménez, 54)

Substitutes not used: 1-Antonio Rodriguez, 12-Luis Malagón, 2-Julian Araujo, 5-Johan Vásquez, 6-Gerardo Arteaga, 7-Luis Romo, 8-Carlos Rodríguez, 10-Alexis Vega, 14-Érick Sánchez, Sebastián Córdova

Head coach: Diego Cocca

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Next Game

Winners of the inaugural Nations League in 2021, the USMNT will aim to lift another trophy on Sunday, June 18 when they face Canada in the Championship Game (8:30 p.m. ET). 

USA defender Chris Richards
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