While Sporting Kansas City were preparing to host the Portland Timbers without three of their starters on National Team duty with the United States, those same players were all starting for the US Men’s National Team. At least Bruce Arena is using them, unlike when Besler sat on the bench during World Cup Qualifiers.
Dom Dwyer came out looking focused and ready to go.
And it wouldn’t take long for Dwyer to make an impact. In the 19th minute the United States were on the attack and Dom Dwyer was there to put home his first ever international goal for the US in his first ever game.
Just minutes later it looked like Dom was going to get his second goal for Team USA when the keeper came out with a rash challenge that put Dwyer’s health in danger. It would earn a yellow for the keeper but probably should have been a red for a challenge over the ball with studs up.
The remainder of the half played out rather uneventfully until the second minute of stoppage time. Jorge Villafana earned a yellow (that also looked red) for tugging the jersey of the Ghanaian player right in front of the goal. It wasn’t that bad, but he definitely did it and of course that’s now allowed.
The ensuing penalty kick would be saved by Brad Guzan to send the game into halftime with the US up by one.
The second half would get off to a quick start as well as Graham Zusi would nearly find Dwyer on a cross in the box but a push in the back would prevent him from getting on the end of it.
Right after that Kellyn Rowe of the New England Revolution (who was also making his international debut) earned a free kick on the edge of the 18-yard box. Kellyn Acosta would then step up and put it away to make it 2-0.
No long after that Dwyer had another chance to add a goal and he really will want that one back as he was wide open and shot the ball right at the keeper.
Then, basically out of nowhere, Ghana earned a free kick and then put away a perfectly placed shot to pull back a goal in the 60th minute.
Dom would ultimately leave the game in the 76th minute but he had a heck of a debut. It is the kind of thing I’m sure he’ll be thrilled about and it has to put him in the conversation for the World Cup qualifiers going forward.
There would be moments for each team after the third goal, but nothing substantial. Ultimately the United States would hold on for a 2-1 win.