The USA vs El Salvador highlights make it clear that although this was a tough game, the USMNT was the better team and deserved the victory. The 5-1 victory of the USMNT over El Salvador means the USA continues its perfect Gold Cup streak, and will move on to the semifinals to face the winner of the Honduras vs Costa Rica match.
The USMNT was absolutely superior in the first half of the USA vs El Salvador quarterfinal, creating several scoring opportunities, dominating possession, and scoring twice. Clarence Goodson opened up the scoring with a 21st minute goal via an assist from Landon Donovan. The goal was generated off a corner kick, in what appeared to be a pre-planned set kick play.
Xolos midfielder Joe Corona scored the second goal for the USA in the 29th minute. Corona dribbled outside the Salvadoran box, juked out a defender, and blasted the ball into the bottom left of the goal. The 2-0 lead over El Salvador was a just reward for the USMNT’s overall domination of the Central American squad.
However, Rodolfo Zelaya would go on to score a penalty kick in the 41st minute, off a foul Beasley committed inside the box. El Salvador would take the positive momentum of this PK goal into the start of the second half.
For the first 8 minutes of the second half, El Salvador created several scoring opportunities, with Zelaya leading the team on offense. Nonetheless, the USMNT weathered the storm and held off the Salvadorans at 2-1. From then on, it was all for the USA.
Eddie Johnson was subbed on for Wondolowski in the 60th minute and scored immediately off a corner kick. Donovan added to the score in the 77th minute, and Mikkel Diskerud did likewise with a goal in the 83rd minute. The final score of the USA vs El Salvador was 5-1, and the USA continues its impressive winning streak on its way to a Gold Cup trophy.
Although the scoreline might indicate the USA had an easy time against El Salvador, that was not the case. El Salvador came really close to getting the 2-2 score early in the second half, and it is only due to the USMNT’s great form that the score ended so one-sided. The USA is a clear favorite to win the Gold Cup 2013.