The match ended at 0-0, but FC Cincinnati forward Brandon Vazquez’s performance Saturday in his second Men’s National Team appearance, once again raised his stock value.
USA coach Anthony Hudson said after Wednesday’s 2-1 loss to Serbia that he hoped for every player in the squad for this week’s training camp to get a chance to play over the two matches. FCC’s Vazquez and goalkeeper Roman Celentano began the match on the bench, Vazquez on the heels of an excellent USA debut including the team’s lone goal.
Celentano was not put into the match and remains uncapped by the U.S.
The game was played in the home of the LA Galaxy before a largely pro-Colombian audience. The first half was very open with chances both ways, especially for Colombia. Despite that, the teams went to the break with a 0-0 score.
The 2nd half continued scoreless and Vazquez came on in the 63rd minute for Jesus Ferreira, minutes after the FC Dallas forward had failed to capitalize on a good chance in the Colombia penalty area. The game was becoming ragged, with both teams struggling to string together any passes, but Vazquez immediately began receiving the ball after dropping deep into midfield to help build up the U.S. attack.
His efforts off the ball started to help the U.S. forge some scoring chance. Vazquez’s first scoring effort came in the 85th minute when he rose to head a free kick from Kellyn Acosta, but his effort was well off target. Still, his presence and aerial threat in the penalty area were evident.
It showed again in the 90th minute, when he made a curling run toward another Acosta free kick serve, but the ball was just out of his reach, and the game ended 0-0. The sum of the two matches will have done a world of good for the FCC forward’s chances with the Men’s National Team going forward. The next training camp and matches for the U.S. are March 24 and March 27 for the CONCACAF Nations League.
G: Sean Johnson
D: DeJuan Jones, Walker Zimmerman (Jalen Neal, 70), Aaron Long (Sam Rogers, 72), John Tolkin (Julian Gressel, 81)
M: Paxten Aaronson, Kellyn Acosta, Eryk Williamson (Alan Sonora 46)
F: Paul Arriola (Emmanuel Sabbi 66), Jesus Ferreira (Brandon Vazquez 63), Matthew Hoppe
Unused Subs: Roman Celentano, Gaga Slonina, Jonathan Gómez, Paxton Pomykal, Cade Cowell, Aidan Morris