After the United States defeated Ghana 2-1 this past Saturday in East Hartford, Connecticut, there were a few players that were frontrunners to earn Man of the Match honors. Kellyn Acosta, who notched the second goal, was phenomenal in the middle and really showed that he’s likely here to stay on the USMNT scene. Dax McCarty, who won Budweiser Man of the Match honors, controlled the midfield on offense and defense and helped us to a 58% possession rate. That’s a great rate against a very good team in Ghana, and McCarty was a huge boost for our attack.
However, there is one player who showed every reason why his eligibility for the USMNT was highly anticipated for a long time. The Man of the Match for Ghana, with all respect due to Acosta and McCarty, was Dom Dwyer.
Dwyer was a constant thorn in the side of the Ghanaian defense, always pursuing the ball, winning (and holding) possession up top, drawing fouls and creating chances. He also scored on a volley 19 minutes into his debut, causing absolute delirium from the fans and a celebration worthy of such a first goal.
Sure, it was a goal where he just finished what Jorge Villafana and Joe Corona started. But, that’s what we ask our strikers to do: finish chances in front of the net. He was in the right spot. His shot was on a volley, ensuring no one had a chance to get in front of it. His finish was with authority. His celebration contained swagger. He kissed the badge It was everything that the USMNT needed to carry through the match and it endeared himself to the 28,754 in attendance in East Hartford.
One of the biggest questions on this USMNT roster was who was going to score goals and create and finish opportunities in front of the net. As the team prepares for their opening match in the Gold Cup this Saturday against Panama (4:30pm ET on Fox and Univision), we have a first choice should we once again go with a lineup with a lone striker. Dom Dwyer proved he can handle that responsibility and also score while doing it. He came in with the most to prove and he finished the match having answered every single question up for debate. And that’s what separates him from the rest to be our Man of the Match.
Do you think Dom Dwyer is the man? Are you going with Kellyn Acosta or Dax McCarty? Was there someone else who you thought was the MVP for the USMNT? Hit the comments and tell us what you think!