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USMNT wins Concacaf Nations League over Mexico, match mired by homophobic chants



ARLINGTON — Gregg Berhalter dreams of leaving an indelible legacy in the history of soccer as coach of U.S. Men’s National Team, and on Sunday, he took another step in his attempt.

With a spectacular goal from midfielder Tyler Adams, the USMNT defeated Mexico 2-0 in the Concacaf Nations League Final held at AT&T Stadium.

Adams’ goal was in the 45th minute when he unleashed a powerful 30-yard shot that skimmed the base of the right post, avoiding the effort of Mexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa.

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For Adams, winning the Concacaf Nations League at AT&T Stadium was special.

“I’m a fan of the NY Giants, so winning this tournament at the home of the Cowboys is something special,” said Adams, who has played 38 games for the USMNT.

“Everybody knows that the Cowboys are America’s team; it’s a beautiful venue, and we’re very fortunate to play here as it was winning the trophy in front of a home crowd,” Adams said.

The United States had to fight against their rival on the field and against the majority of the 59,471 fans who watched the game at the Cowboys’ home.

The Mexican fans tried to play their game from their seats by booing and whistling at the United States players every time they touched the ball.

The pressure from the Mexican fans on the Stars and Stripes squad was intense, but as soon as the United States scored, the El Tri fans deflated and began to pressure their own team with expressions of contempt for their poor showing on the field.

In the second half, Mexico tried to come back but was rarely able to endanger the United States goal guarded by Matt Turner.

As the minutes passed, the Mexican players began to show frustration by committing fouls that earned them three yellow cards.

In the 62nd minute, Gio Reyna scored the second goal for the United States by taking advantage of a rebound inside the box that he finished with his right leg.

In the 72nd minute, the Canadian referee Drew Fisher called a penalty in favor of Mexico for an alleged kick by Antonee Robinson on Santiago Giménez, but after reviewing the play in the VAR, the referee retracted it himself.

In the 87th minute, the referee suspended the game after the Mexican fans started to shout homophobic chants every time the United States goalkeeper cleared the ball.

The game was stopped for four minutes.

The referee suspended the match a second time for the same reason and a few seconds after it restarted, he ended the match.

The United States presented a young group of players in the Nations League with an average age of 24.8 years, most of whom play in Europe.

“This is a big event that can help define who you are as a group”, Berhalter said. “We saw this as an opportunity to create a legacy for this group of players. We love the Nations League. We love what this tournament represents.

For the United States, this is their third consecutive Concacaf Nations League title.

El Tri’s defeat sparked an explosion of comments on social media from Mexican fans calling for the dismissal of coach Jaime Lozano.

Even before the game ended, #fueraJimmy (Jimmy out) began to trend on X and other social media platforms.

“This is how I am judged because I am the coach of the Mexican national team. I understand it, but I don’t share it,” Lozano said.

“I have always thought that processes take you to a better place than seeking immediate results. The fact that the players believe in my work and believe in me as their coach has a significant value,” Lozano said.

The victory over Mexico bodes well for the USMNT, which will compete in the Copa America to be played in the United States in the summer.

“Winning the Nations League is a huge step for our group moving forward. Not many of us have played in such a big final. It was a great experience for us, and now we know what it’s about,” Adams said

The USMNT reached the Nations League final after struggling to beat Jamaica in extra time, which generated criticism against Berhalter from some press members.

Even so, the United States coach believes his team is on the right path.

“For us, it is all about how we take that next step to continue the development of this group,” Berhlter said. “I’m very proud of this team.”

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