USMNT Shuts Out El Salvador 2-0 In CONCACAF Gold Cup Quarterfinal

Arena Makes Six Changes To Gold Cup Roster

Altidore was bitten and had a nipple tweaked during the USA's Gold Cup quarterfinal victory over El Salvador in Philadelphia, but that didn't break his sense of humor. It took most of the first half for the develop any kind of rhythm.

El Salvador's Henry Romero did his best Luis Suarez impression in the second half.

Romero bit Altidore on the shoulder and gave him what is known in playground terms as a "purple nurple".

Lichaj essentially put El Salvador through on goal early in the first half but was bailed out by a phenomenal save by Tim Howard.

In both instances, referee Drew Fischer didn't do anything.

"When the guy bit me I was a bit shocked", said Gonzalez, who scored the first USA goal.

And so if this looked like a team that hadn't played much together, it wasn't a surprise.

Thursday's match somehow didn't feature a single red card.

Romero's bite on Altidore appears to have caused the bigger ripple after he told reporters post-match: 'My girl's mad at me. "I'm going to go back to the hotel and talk to her about that, she what she says", he joked. She's mad at me.

US goalkeeper Tim Howard added a touch of humour to proceedings. That's insane. [The nipple twisting] should be allowed, but the biting is no good. Villafaña could very well return for the semi-final clash with Costa Rica.

"I thought we had a hard time tonight", Arena said.

"Obviously El Salvador is a good team and all that, but we want to prove ourselves".

"At this level, any time you play a game, you're prepared, or you should be, whether you're with your club team or national team", Howard said. But we weren't good on top of it. "Just move on from it, learn from it, and get ready for the next game". Wednesday's was the last game before the games get real, and the United States of America will have to be better to continue its run. One of the more notable ones came in the 52nd minute when Lichaj-perhaps due to the lack of experience at the worldwide level that Arena mentioned-allowed a route-one ball to bounce by him. Dempsey's adroit turn and perfectly-weighted through ball left the right back with just El Salvador's goalkeeper to beat, which he did by firing through Derby Carrillo's legs. Captain Michael Bradley was in midfield with Paul Arriola, Darlington Nagbe and Gyasi Zardes. As is his habit, Nagbe took good care of the ball, but Arena noted that the USA midfielder needed to be "more selfish", an observation that has often been made of the gifted Portland playmaker. "Once he got at them a little bit more, he got unsafe and helped our team in the attack".

Before the U.S. progresses to take on Costa Rica in the Gold Cup semifinals, let's take a look at this in a fitting homage to the way it played out.

He quickly became the US's heel du jour with his performance, particularly in "defending" striker Jozy Altidore. Then again, you never know what craziness might ensue.

"I shouldn't be saying these things happen, but they do".


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