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USA vs. Costa Rica, 2022 World Cup qualifying: SSFC Man of the Match

Luca what we have here

Panama v USMNT Photo by John Todd/ISI Photos/Getty Images

It wasn’t the beautiful ending we may have dreamed of but the United States Men’s National Team has officially qualified for the 2022 World Cup by virtue of not getting thrashed at Cost Rica. The team came into the match knowing that only a 6-0 loss or worse could keep them from clinching, rather than playing it safe with a heavily rotated or defensive side it looked like they had plans to make a match of it. However, tired legs and loose touches combined with a conservative game plan would keep them from being victorious on the night.

It seems that Costa Rica was also resigned to the likely outcome of the game, they had a heavily rotated side that was actually younger than the US, which seems like it was probably a first in this qualifying cycle. They did start Keylor Navas however who would be in the right place at the right time as usual for Costa Rica against the USMNT and put to rest the few opportunities the team had to score.

Eventually it was a pair of defensive lapses and some concerning decisions by Zack Steffen, who had easily the lowest scores of the fan polling, that would allow for two goals from Costa Rica and send the US home as losers on the night but celebrating a birth regardless.

Through the ups and downs there was a pretty clear winner for the SSFC Man of the Match in Luca de la Torre who came on at the half and may have benefitted from being one of a few who did not start at the Azteca but was also one of the few players looking to drive play, be aggressive, and showing a clean touch.

The ratings for all the players, along with the referee and head coach Gregg Berhalter:

Luca de la Torre - 6.10

Timothy Weah - 5.73

Tyler Adams - 5.72

Yunus Musah - 5.70

Christian Pulisic - 5.67

Antonee Robinson - 5.57

Miles Robinson - 5.31

Walker Zimmerman - 5.15

DeAndre Yedlin 4.83

Ricardo Pepi - 4.78

Kellyn Acosta - 4.71

Zack Steffen - 3.29

—Substitutes—

Giovanni Reyna - 5.63

Shaq Moore - 5.22

Jesus Ferreira - 4.92

Jordan Morris - 4.53

Gregg Berhalter - 4.36

Referee Iván Arcides Barton Cisneros - 5.41

Hit the comments and let us know what you think of these ratings.