The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team used a first half goal from Jesus Ferreira and a stellar performance from goalkeeper David Ochoa to defeat Costa Rica 1-0
in both teams’ opening match of the Concacaf Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship.
- U.S. Soccer Federation photo -
USA Soccer Team wins on road to Tokyo Olympic
Published Friday, March 19, 2021
By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services
The U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team used a first half goal from Jesus Ferreira and a stellar performance from goalkeeper David Ochoa to defeat Costa Rica 1-0 in both teams’ opening match of the Concacaf Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship.
Playing at altitude under a midday sun and with the temperature approaching 90 degrees at Estadio Jalisco, the USA nearly opened the scoring just minutes after the opening whistle. Costa Rica defender Fernán Faerron attempted to bring a ball out of his own area, but U.S. forward Jesus Ferreira applied pressure and picked the ball off at the top of the box. Ferreira took a touch forward and struck a shot past advancing goalkeeper Kevin Chomoro but unfortunately hit off the left post.
While Costa Rica’s Adrian Martinez found two early solid chances on goal, Ochoa was up for the challenge, each time coming off his line to cut off Martinez’s angles and deny point-blank shots from close range.
Ferreira then provided what proved to be the game-winner just past the half hour mark. U-23 USMNT left back Sam Vines deftly brought down a pass on the left flank and sent in a low cross that got past three players, leaving the on-rushing Ferreira to hit a first-time shot at the far post to break the deadlock.
Chasing the game, Costa Rica took the attacking initiative for much of the second half, but Ochoa remained sharp, denying Randall Leal with a fantastic diving save and easily handling a number of long-range shots on goal. The USA nearly doubled its lead when Hassani Dotson worked a give-and-go with Jonathan Lewis to spring Ferreira, who tried to flick a ball over Chamoro but was denied.
The U-23 USMNT will next face Dominican Republic on Sunday, March 21 (7:00 p.m.; FS1, TUDN) and finish the group stage vs. Mexico on Wednesday, March 24 (9:30 p.m.; FS1, TUDN).
Due to the current conditions related to the global pandemic, the matches will be played with limited attendance.
All three of the USA’s matches at the CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship will be broadcasted on Fox Sports Channel, FS1, and Univision Sport Channel, TUDN. Game will be also covered by the U.S. Soccer Federation on its website.
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