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USMNT vs Grenada: Jesus Ferreira’s four goals a welcome development

Joe Prince-Wright, Nick Mendola and Andy Edwards look into their crystal ball for the upcoming Premier League season one day after Championship Sunday.

USMNT vs Grenada final score: Jesus Ferreira scored four goals to boost his own chances to start at the 2022 World Cup and help the Yanks to a 5-0 victory over Grenada in CONCACAF Nations League action on Friday.

[ MORE: USMNT vs Uruguay: Yanks hold on for draw as World Cup prep continues ]

Following a victory over Morocco and a draw with Uruguay in a pair of friendlies to begin the June international window, the USMNT kicked off its Nations League defense with three points. More importantly, though, were the goals scored by Ferreira following a frustrating series of performances and output (by a number of different players) at center forward.

[ MORE: USMNT hub - Upcoming schedule & results ]

USMNT vs Grenada final score, stats

Final score: USA 5, Grenada 0

Goal scorers: USA (Ferreira 43', 54', 56', 78', Arriola 63'), Grenada (None)

Shots: USA 24, Grenada 3

Shots on goal: USA 10, Grenada 0

Possession: USA 67%, Grenada 33%

Three things we learned from USMNT vs Grenada

1. The good…

  • Jesus Ferreira scored a goal two three four goals - 1) It was about time for him, and 2) it was only the second (and third and fourth) goals scored by a USMNT striker in the Yanks’ last 14 games. Sometimes your striker can’t put any of a dozen chances away, sometimes he merely needs to stand in front of goal and the ball will find him. With the much-needed caveat that “it was against Grenada,” it’s hard not to view Ferreira as slightly ahead of Ricardo Pepi, who was not called into the current camp, at this very moment. At the very least, Ferreira has a four-goal confidence, while Pepi hasn’t scored a single goal (for club or country) since moving to Augsburg in January.

  • USMNT floods the channels - When you’re trying (and failing) to break down a low defensive block, it’s all too easy to simply pass the ball sideways, enter into the final third via overlapping full back stretched wide, cross the ball, rinse and repeat. Instead, Ferreira and Paul Arriola repeatedly explored the channels and, because the midfield looked to play quick one- and two-touch passes (hello, Kellyn Acosta and Luca de la Torre, both of whom must be close to sealing a roster spot), they were actually found in dangerous areas.

2. The bad…

  • Nothing, really - Look, it was a 5-0 victory against the 170th-ranked team in the world, but it was also a heavily rotated USMNT side. They did what was expected, collectively and, largely, individually. The attack was more elementary than dynamic, but that’s to be expected with Christian Pulisic, Tim Weah and Tyler Adams all taking the night off. A handful of players had opportunities to help themselves, and no one managed to hurt their stick, but that’s about it.

3. The (still) unknown…

  • Center backs unchallenged, unproven - Cameron Carter-Vickers did what he could with his slightly surprising start, which is to say he was hardly tested defensively or in possession. Aaron Long started his third straight game, which confirms that he, Walker Zimmerman and Chris Richards remain the three options for two starting spots.

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