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USMNT vs. Cuba, 2015 Gold Cup: Stock up, stock down

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Who helped their cause the most against Cuba?

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

That went about as everyone expected it would. The United States dominated Cuba, 6-0, thanks to a Clint Dempsey hat trick and a little help from his friends. It was as one-sided of a match that the USMNT will ever be a part of. It's extremely hard to judge individual performances in such a non-competitive match like this one.

On one hand it's refreshing to see the U.S. outplay a weaker opponent and finishing them off while they have them down. Then you take a minute to realize that this Cuba team is one of the weakest teams the Gold Cup has seen in quite some time. Nevertheless, the players went out and got the job done against the opposition that was put in front of them on the day.

It would be unfair to single out any players for having a bad match, so here are some of the performances that outshined the rest:

Stock up

Aron Johannsson: The Iceman had one of his best matches for the national team against Cuba. His movement was precise and bothersome to the Cuban back line all match. He got his first goal of the tournament when his great run behind the defense put him one on one with the goalkeeper. An expertly placed chip over the keeper's head and into the net put the U.S. up by three goals.

Clint Dempsey: Okay, so Dempsey's stock might have hit the ceiling but that doesn't mean we can't praise him. His first ever hat trick for the USMNT puts him 11 goals shy of Landon Donovan's all-time scoring mark of 57 goals. He was cocky, confident, and hungry for 90 minutes. He was simply Clint Dempsey. And that's why we love him.

Omar Gonzalez: Scoring your first USMNT goal certainly deserves to get you on a list like this. Omar's tap-in late in the first half was his first international tally in 28 matches. While he didn't have much to do on the defensive end with Cuba rarely threatening the American's goal, he did nothing to hurt his chances at future playing time. With Ventura Alvarado still shaky at the back, Omar could see vital minutes in the upcoming semifinal match.

Stock down

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