US dominate St Kitts and Nevis 6-0 in CONCACAF Gold Cup

Jesus Ferreira scored his second hat trick for the United States in an international match, guiding the team to a dominant 6-0 victory over St. Kitts and Nevis, ranked 139th, in the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

In just under four minutes, Mihailovic, Reynolds, and Ferreira scored three goals, giving the US a commanding 3-0 lead by the 16th minute. They outshot St. Kitts by an impressive 34-2 margin in the CONCACAF Gold Cup encounter.

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Ferreira, with 11 goals in 20 appearances, became the fastest American player to reach double-digit goals. He achieved the milestone in three games lesser than Clint Mathis. Seven of Ferreira’s goals have been against St. Kitts and the previously ranked 170th team, Grenada.

With multiple hat tricks, Ferreira joins an elite group of American players, including Landon Donovan with three hat tricks, and Peter Millar, Jozy Altidore, and Clint Dempsey with two each. Among the American starters, Ferreira was the only player who participated in the previous year’s World Cup, featuring in the first half of the team’s loss to the Netherlands in the second round.

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Mihailovic, in addition to his two goals, provided two assists for the defending champion United States. This win equalled their largest winning margin in a Gold Cup match, matching the 6-0 results against Cuba in 2015 and Trinidad in 2019.

At the moment, the United States lead Group A in the CONCACAF Gold Cup with four points, following a 1-1 draw against Jamaica. Trinidad and Tobago have three points, Jamaica has one point, and St. Kitts is yet to secure any. The top two teams from the group will advance, and the United States will only need to draw Trinidad in their upcoming match in North Carolina, to progress.

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St. Kitts, as the United States’ 100th international opponent, now holds a 0-2 record against them, while the US team boasts an impressive track record of 39 wins, one loss, and five draws in the CONCACAF Gold Cup group stage.

In his first start since June 2019, Mihailovic gave the United States the lead in the 12th minute with a left-footed shot from the side of the penalty spot, assisted by Gianluca Busio.

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Reynolds scored a 20-yard volley in the 14th minute, beating Julani Archibald after Alejandro Zendejas’ corner kick bounced twice in the penalty area.

Ferreira displayed his skills by dribbling into the penalty area and scoring with a 12-yard angled shot in the 16th minute, capitalising on a pass from Busio. In the 25th minute, Ferreira evaded an offside trap and slotted the ball between the goalkeeper’s legs from a Mihailovic assist.

Ferreira completed his hat trick with a goal from close range in the 50th minute, while Mihailovic secured his third international goal in the 79th minute.

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United States coach Callaghan made seven changes to the starting lineup from the previous game, introducing goalkeeper Sean Johnson, right-back Reynolds, central defender Jalen Neal, left-back DeJuan Jones, as well as midfielders Busio and Mihailovic, along with forward Cale Cowell. The remaining players from the previous match were defender Matt Miazga and midfielder James Sands, alongside Ferreira and Alex Zendejas in the forward positions.

Sean Johnson captained the US side for the first time in his career.

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In the CONCACAF Gold Cup opener, 63rd-ranked Jamaica defeated 104th-ranked Trinidad and Tobago 4-1. Demarai Gray scored his first two international goals in the 14th and 30th minutes. Leon Bailey found the back of the net in the 18th minute, and Dujuan Richards added one in the second minute of stoppage time in the second half. Andre Rampersad saved Trinidad and Tobago humiliation, scoring their lone goal in the 49th minute.

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