The United States and Mexico's U-23 squads faced off on Wednesday, just one week after their senior sides met. And much like the senior team, the U.S. U-23's overcame a lackluster first half to dominate Mexico and come out victorious.
Much to the dismay of U.S. Soccer historians, the final scoreline read 3-0, which isn't a bad disappointment to have. Goals from Mario Rodriguez, Christian Dean, and the new Mexico boogeyman Jordan Morris gave the Yanks the win.
The first half left much to be desired as the U.S. struggled They were dominated in possession and Mexico had the bul of the scoring chances. Had it not been for some stellar goalkeeping from Cody Cropper, the U.S. could've easily conceded a few first half goals.
But after the break the U.S. looked a completely different side. They opened the scoring with some nifty wing play by Luis Gil, who whipped in a left footed cross for Rodriguez to finish nicely. Moments like those give you glimmers of hope that Gil will one day reach his full potential. He has always shone flashes of brilliance, but never any consistency.
Dillon Serna is one of the most talented players in the U.S. pool and somehow he's rarely a starter for one of the worst clubs in MLS. On the U-23s, he's forced to play out of position at left back for this team, but at least he's playing and he still found a way to make an offensive impact. He hit a perfect free kick, which found the head of a wide open Dean for a 2-0 lead.
The kid who everyone is talking about finished off the scoring. Morris followed up is first USMNT start and goal with another against the Mexican U-23's to wrap up the 3-0 win. Morris put the Mexico backline under pressure all night with his darting runs and his work rate is outstanding. Running non-stop for 90 minutes and with the technical ability to match, it is time to start buying into the hype surrounding him.
A few players helped their causes like Fatai Alashe, who is a monster as a defensive midfielder, and Shane O'Neill, who led the backline like a veteran. Others weren't so lucky. Benji Joya once showed promise with the U-20 team, but has since steadily declined and tonight didn't change that.
The scoreline is a bit flattering if we are being fair. The U.S. looked abysmal in the first half and cannot afford lopsided performances like this when the games start to count. But 3-0 will still do the trick.