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Do the U.S. and Mexico care about the Gold Cup anymore?

Gold Cup

Jordan Morris and Juan Agudelo spark a brilliant U.S. win over Mexico

SAN ANTONIO -- After a scoreless first half, the United States national team rode second-half goals from surprise starter Jordan Morris and substitute Juan Agudelo to beat archrival Mexico by a (what else?) 2-0 score line. The Yanks secured the result in front of a near-capacity crowd of 64,639 at the Alamodome on Wednesday night.

Here is how the individual American players fared in the match.

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Player Ratings (1-10; 10=best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Nick Rimando, 5 -- Survived an early adventure when he touched a Mix Diskerud back pass around an onrushing El Tri attacker. Rarely troubled before making way for William Yarbrough in the second half.

DF DeAndre Yedlin, 5 --Got caught ball-watching on several occasions in the first half, but as it often does, his all-world speed allowed him to recover. First touch let him down at times, too, but he improved after the break.

DF Omar Gonzalez, 7 -- The L.A. Galaxy center back was dominant in his first U.S. start since the World Cup, making a host of key clearances and positioning himself well throughout.

DF Ventura Alvarado, 6 -- In his first career start, the Club America man was solid. Had a couple of headed clearances early, which probably helped him settle in.

DF Greg Garza, 5 -- Aside from a couple wayward touches, Garza rebounded well from his sub-par showing in Denmark last month. Pulled after 45 minutes because his club, Tijuana, plays Friday night.

MF Kyle Beckerman, 6.5 --The destroyer again showed his value in protecting the American backline, making several key tackles, including a potentially goal-saving stop on Erick Torres just before halftime.

MF Mix Diskerud, 6 -- Deployed on the right side of the Yanks' diamond midfield, Diskerud was dangerous going forward showed improved tackling on the other side of the ball despite manning an somewhat unfamiliar position.

MF Joe Corona, 5.5 -- Lively. Might even have had an assist on a curling 38th minute cross but the chance went begging. Like clubmate Garza, played just the opening 45 minutes.

MF Michael Bradley, 6.5 -- Covered a ton of ground as usual, but Bradley's final pass was off until he assisted on Agudelo's goal in the 72nd minute: The acting captain's completed just 56 percent of his passes in the first half.

FW Gyasi Zardes, 5.5 -- Made his fourth consecutive U.S. start. Appears to be adapting to the demands of the international game. Still has plenty of room to improve, though.

FW Jordan Morris, 6.5 -- The Stanford University sophomore showed a flashes of his speed and power and some naïveté, as expected, early on. Still, Morris, 20, took his 49th-minute goal with aplomb -- even if a lucky bounce helped create the chance.

Jordan Morris had an impact in his first start for the U.S., scoring his first goal against heated rival Mexico.


GK William Yarbrough, 6 -- The important punch he made on a cross into the box in his second U.S. appearance helped preserve the shutout for the Americans.

DF Brek Shea, 6 -- Replaced left back Garza at the half and the converted midfielder again acquitted himself well, putting in a couple of dangerous crosses.

MF Miguel Ibarra, 5 -- Took over on the left side for Corona at the break and while he made a few strong runs, failed to make any real impact.

MF Perry Kitchen, 6 -- Came on as an injury replacement for Beckerman in the 63rd minute after the RSL man reportedly had an issue with his left thigh. Kitchen filled in well in his second U.S. cap and almost scored late for the Yanks. 

FW Juan Agudelo, 7 -- His 72nd minute strike -- and the first touch that helped set it up -- was a thing of beauty. It was also Agudelo's first U.S. goal in more than four years.

DF Brad Evans, NR -- Defensive sub for Diskerud with about 10 minutes to play.

Doug McIntyre is a staff writer for ESPN The Magazine and ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @DougMacESPN.


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