Superstar Christian Pulisic successfully changed over a penalty kick in the second half of additional time to lift the United States men’s national team to a 3-2 triumph over Mexico in the first CONCACAF Nations League final on Sunday night.
After Pulisic scored the eventual game-winning goal, the match was halted for around three minutes during the second-half stoppage time as a result of discriminatory fan chants at Empower Field at Mile High in Denver, and U.S. attacker Gio Reyna was bored in the face with an object thrown from a fan. He was down on the field for a few minutes.
When Pulisic nailed the penalty kick, the team ran to one of the corner flags to celebrate, and that is when fans decided to launch beer and other drink containers onto the field. One of the containers hit Reyna, and U.S. head coach Gregg Berhalter shared his considerations on the incident following the game.
“Total lack of respect for what’s happening on the field and all effort that both teams are putting into the game,” Berhalter said. “I think he’s going to be OK, but he did take something to the head, and it could have been a lot worse.”
U.S. backup goalkeeper Ethan Horvath made the game-winning save on Mexico star Andrés Guardado’s penalty kick in the 124th minute to seal the triumph for the Americans.
Horvath, who seven days sooner played his first international match since March 2019, entered in the 69th minute, seven minutes subsequent to beginning U.S. goalkeeper Zack Steffen tumbled to the ground, grasping his left knee, in the wake of coming off his line in what appeared to be a standard way to snatch a through pass from Mexico’s attack.
The U.S. survived an extended 11 minutes of stoppage time following the second additional period and beat Mexico in a competitive match for the first time since 2013 after a stretch of three misfortunes and a draw, acquiring certainty in front of the beginning of World Cup qualifying in September.
“We’re a young side and we need to learn how to win,” Berhalter said. “It’s also about the fight and spirit. .. They really showed the heart of champions.”
“This is the perfect way to end the year,” Pulisic added after the match.