USA Vs. Mexico, 2011 Gold Cup Final: Let's Hit Each Other As Hard As We Can

Usually, in a boxing match, the boxers try and feel each other out for a moment. There might be some body shots, and some tentative jabs. The United States and Mexico decides that would be a terrible idea, and agreed to hit each other as hard as they could, with barbed wire wrapped around their boxing glove. All four goals of the first half have an element of "I just got hit with the hardest punch possible, I'm stunned, and I never saw that coming".

Freddy Adu had a key role in both the US early goals. You might remember Freddy Adu from such articles as "That kid's career is over, what a bust". The US won a corner kick in the 8th minute, and it was not taken by Landon Donovan. Freddy Adu took the corner kick, placed it near post, and Michael Bradley directed it into the back of the net. With US fans and Alexi Lalas thinking they'd gone to heaven, Fredy Adu found Clint Depsey who found Landon Donovan all alone. Donovan casually dribbled Alfredo Talavera out of position, then put the ball in the back of the net.

Mexico wasn't about to quit, however. Only six minutes after the Donovan goal, after making the second early substitution of the match (more on that in a second), Chicarito found Pablo Barrera who put Mexico back in the match. In the 36' Chicharito had a shot saved by Tim Howard, but Andres Guardado was there to put in the rebound for the equalizer.

Both Mexico and the United States faced injuries early. Steve Cherundolo had to go out in the 11' and his replacement Jonathan Bornstein was directly responsible for both of Mexico's goals. His play on the right side of the defense has been dismal, and he's had nothing but trouble marking his man. Bob Bradley will need to make some adjustments at halftime is this is to be remedied.

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