Football

USMNT head into Copa América with first-ever draw against Brazil


Christian Pulisic’s free-kick offset Rodrygo’s 17th-minute opener, and the United States played out a spirited 1-1 draw against Brazil on Wednesday night in the last warmup for both teams ahead of the Copa América.

Rebounding from a humiliating 5-1 loss to Colombia last weekend, the US stopped their 11-match losing streak against the Brazilians in a wide-open match. The Americans are now 1-1-18 against Brazil after the draw. Their only win against the Brazilians came in a 1998 Concacaf Gold Cup semi-final. The Seleção had 61% of possession, outshot the US 24-12 and had a 9-0 advantage in corners.

Matt Turner made 11 saves, the most for an American goalkeeper since Tim Howard’s 15 in the last-16 2-1 loss to Belgium at the 2014 World Cup.

“It’s obviously a huge bounce back performance for us,” Turner said. “We really stared in the face of adversity and we were able to bounce back a few days later. And in tournament play that’s so, so important because not every result, not every call is going to go your way and you have to be able put things behind you.”

Yunus Musah nearly put the US ahead in the fifth minute with a 25-yard shot that hit the crossbar and ricocheted off the back of goalkeeper Alisson and away from goal.

Brazil went ahead when Turner’s poor clearance was intercepted by Bruno Guimarães. Raphinha then fed Rodrygo for his sixth international goal, a smart finish to Turner’s left.

The equalizer came when Pulisic was pulled down by João Gomes at the edge of the penalty area and he slotted his free kick through the wall and past Alisson’s right hand for his 29th goal in 68 international appearances.

Turner made up for his mistake leading up to the Brazilian goal with excellent stops from Endrick in the 70th, Rodrygo in the 74th and Vinícius Júnior in the 87th. He then punched away Andreas Pereira’s free-kick in the sixth minute of stoppage time. Alisson denied Pulisic in the 68th and Brenden Aaronson in the 80th.

USMNT coach Gregg Berhalter made two changes from Saturday’s loss to Colombia, bringing in Ricardo Pepi and Musah for Folarin Balogun and Johnny Cardoso. All 11 starters play for European clubs – just six of 154 starting positions have been filled with Major League Soccer players for the 14 matches in which the full pool has been available since the 2022 World Cup, including three of 110 since Berhalter returned as coach.

“We feel like we made a little step. It’s not a huge step, but it’s a little step to be able to play against an amazingly talented Brazil team and bend but not break and I think give them problems, as well,” Berhalter said.

The US are hosts of this year’s Copa América, and open their campaign against Bolivia on 23 June before they play Panama and Uruguay. Brazil, who last won the title in 2007, have group matches against Costa Rica, Paraguay and Colombia.

Wednesday’s game drew a mostly pro-Brazilian crowd of 60,016 to Camping World Stadium, the largest attendance for a US national team game in Florida.





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