Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

American Men Blank Czechs

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

American Men Blank Czechs

Article excerpt

Alejandro Bedoya scored in the 39th minute, and a youthful U.S. men's soccer team started the four-year cycle of preparation for the 2018 World Cup with a 1-0 win against the Czech Republic Wednesday in Prague.

Three players made their U.S. debuts, with forward Joe Gyau, 21, playing the entire match, defender Greg Garza, 23, entering in the 63rd and midfielder Emerson Hyndman, 18, coming in four minutes later. Hyndman made his debut last month with Fulham in England's second tier.

Tim Ream, 26, a defender who failed to make this year's World Cup roster, entered at the start of the second half, his first national team match since October 2011. Brad Guzan played the first half as he took over as the Americans' No. 1 goalkeeper from Tim Howard, who is taking a year off from the national team. Guzan, who turns 30 Sept. 9, was the oldest player in the U.S. starting lineup.

The only U.S. player older than 30 was goalkeeper Nick Rimando, 35, who made several excellent saves in the second half, including a leg stop of Daniel Punil's point-blank shot in the 89th.

The U.S. was coming off its first consecutive appearances in the World Cup's knockout rounds; the Americans were eliminated with a 2- 1 overtime loss against Belgium July 1 in the round of 16.

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