US Men’s National Team Draws With Uruguay in a Friendly

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — For the United States males’s nationwide soccer group, a string of 4 video games this month in opposition to a numerous set of opponents presents any variety of productive alternatives.

There are moments to workshop collective ways, moments to guage particular person gamers, moments to strengthen the interpersonal bonds that make up the group’s common character.

And then there are moments like Sunday, when the group might face an elite opponent, pull out a measuring stick and plainly take stock of its personal high quality in the center of its monthslong preparations for this year’s World Cup.

Providing the take a look at was Uruguay, the Thirteenth-ranked group in the world, and the Americans might be moderately happy with the consequence: a onerous fought, 0-0 draw in an exhibition performed earlier than a crowd of 19,569 followers in Kansas City, Kan.

The testing and inquisition and self-reflection will proceed in the months to return, although earlier than the sport, there did emerge at the least one little bit of certainty: Wales would be the United States’ first opponent on the World Cup in Qatar after beating Ukraine, 1-0, in a scintillating play-in recreation earlier in the day in Cardiff, Wales.

In Kansas City, Diego Alonso, the Uruguay coach, rotated his lineup considerably from the group’s earlier recreation in opposition to Mexico. Big names like Federico Valverde and Edinson Cavani (who misfired on an open internet in the waning moments of Sunday’s recreation), as an illustration, performed solely the ultimate half-hour or so. But La Celeste, because the group is thought, nonetheless introduced a stern, star-studded activity for the U.S.

In its conventional sky blue shirt, Uruguay managed play early, dissecting the American protection with purposeful passing, ensuing in a variety of nervy, slim misses. But the U.S. progressively gained a foothold after withstanding that early strain, threatening Uruguay with a sequence of possibilities, with proper winger Tim Weah in explicit offering repeated spurts of hazard and creativity in the primary half.

“A lot of us are young, and we’re still getting that experience against these high-level teams,” Weah stated earlier than the sport. “So I feel like playing a team like Uruguay that has a lot of stars is amazing.”

The Fifteenth-ranked United States started its coaching camp this month with a recreation in opposition to Morocco, ranked twenty fourth. And the group’s subsequent two video games this month symbolize a little bit of a drop-off in general high quality: Grenada (one hundred and seventieth) on Friday in Austin, Texas, and El Salvador (74th) on the street on June 14.

So the match on Sunday and the Americans’ strong efficiency — that they emerged from a sparring session with a prime group principally unscathed — will symbolize an optimistic growth for a younger group making an attempt to mould itself into a contender.

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