U.S. OLYMPIC EFFORT SINKS
Canada manhandles USA 2-0
NASHVILLE---The U.S. team that beat Cuba 6-0 two days ago was nowhere to be seen Saturday as Canada punched out a 2-0 upset victory in Nashville in the second leg of Olympic qualifying action. The longer the game wore on with the United States getting no results, the more inevitable seemed the final result.
All of the scoring came in the second half, with Daniel Henry beating U.S. defender Ike Opara in the 58th minute to head in a goal and Lucas Cavallini topping of the scoring with a marker in the 85th minute.
The hungrier Canadians took advantage of a listless U.S. squad, still floating in the afterglow of its totally dominating first-round game. Canada came into its second Olympic qualifying match needing a result after its 0-0 tie with El Salvador in its opening game. The win now puts Canada in a tie with El Salvador with four points atop Group A, while the U.S. is one point behind.
Canada plays the winless and scoreless Cuba on Monday, while the U.S. must master El Salvador with a victory to have a chance to advance past the Olympic qualifying round.
Canada was dominating play most of the first half, as the U.S. fired blanks in its few chances. Freddy Adu took most of the promising shots for the host team, firing a nice free kick in the 10th minute. Brek Shea was the most effective U.S. tool in the opening stanza, but he wasn’t getting much connecting help as he fired numerous tasty crosses into the area from both the right and left flanks.
Joe Corona, who scored a hat trick in his first game, saw a few opportunities in the first half, but U.S. Coach Mark Caleb pulled him out after intermission and the chances really dwindled for the Americans. The U.S. just could not pick up its effort after halftime and the Canadians rallied just enough.
Canadian goalie Michal Misiewicz has yet to be scored on in two games and is playing with strong momentum.
Opara headed in a goal in the 48th minute but it was disallowed for offsides. The U.S. effort seemed to sink from that point as the Canadians grew more defensive and finally took the lead 10 minutes later.
The U.S. earned some desperation efforts and the clock wound down, but the final Canadian goal silenced even the desperation.