Colombia clinch third spot with win over the U.S.

Colombia clinch third spot with win over the U.S.

Colombia clinch third spot with win over the U.S.

In the end they had played better, in the end they suffered the same result. A defeat. The United States could not conjure a victory to guide them to their best placed finish in the Copa America, as Colombia overcame the hosts with a 1-0 victory at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

Carlos Bacca was the Los Cafeteros hero, and his 31st minute goal was enough for Colombia to do a double on the hosts in this tournament. However, it must be noted that the state of play wasn’t one-sided. In fact, during the early exchanges of the game, it was the U.S. that were the brighter of the two, and though they didn’t make their chances count, Jurgen Klinsmann’s side was a different one than the one mortified by Argentina four days earlier.

That would soon change as Colombia went into the ascendancy. In the 12th minute, Los Cafeteros best attacking asset, James Rodriguez forced a save from former Manchester United and Everton keeper, Tim Howard. Thereafter, Jose Pekerman’s charges started making the game exciting with some good attacking play.

The chances missed by the United States would come to haunt them. It was a beautiful lob from Rodriguez that turned the game around. The Real Madrid playmaker chipped the ball over the Yanks defense onto the path of Santiago Arias, whose header was met by the slightest of touches by Bacca and into the net.

After the half time break, the hosts went into attack mode and nearly got an equalizer. In the 51st minute, David Ospina produced an incredible save from a Clint Dempsey free kick that was heading towards the back of the net. Six minutes later, Rodriguez tried his lack from outside the box but the ball went wide.

In the 61st minute, Colombia should have certainly scored and extended the lead. With Howard well beaten, Juan Cuadrado could only see his shot hit the underside of the crossbar, as the Yanks held their breath. Just a minute later, it would be the U.S. going close, only for Bobby Wood’s shot to come smack off the upright.

The Colombians held their own and secure a third spot in the tournament, but the Stars and Stripes have to be proud in their defeat. The game was pretty even in terms of shots and possession. The U.S. did have a go against an, ultimately, superior opponent. Sadly, a victory wasn’t to be.

Be sure to watch the Copa America Centenario Final between Argentina and Chile LIVE ONLY on StarTimes, the official Copa America Centenario broadcaster, on World Football channels 254 DTT and 244 DTH on Monday 27th June at 3am.

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