Zusi Goal Leads US To 1-0 Win Over PanamaPanama City, Panama, Jan 26: Graham Zusi scored his first international goal in the eighth minute, and the United States beat Panama 1-0 in a friendly on Wednesday.Using mostly backups while the regulars remained with
Panama City, Panama, Jan 26: Graham Zusi scored his first international goal in the eighth minute, and the United States beat Panama 1-0 in a friendly on Wednesday.
Using mostly backups while the regulars remained with their European clubs, and playing nearly the entire second half a man short, the Americans evened their record at four wins, four losses and a draw under coach Jurgen Klinsmann.
Panama, which upset the U.S. in the first round of last year's CONCACAF Gold Cup, had a man advantage after Geoff Cameron received a red card in the 52nd minute for shoving Blas Perez just outside the penalty area on a counterattack.
Perez nearly equalized in the 78th but sent a short downward header wide.
Other than the goal, the Americans rarely threatened — the U.S. didn't have its first corner until just before the final whistle.
And goalkeeper Nick Rimando made several difficult saves to prevent the hosts from scoring.
The Americans used the game as part of long preparations for the start of World Cup qualifying on June 8 against Antigua and Barbuda.
Klinsmann expects to have most his top players for the Americans' next game, against Italy at Genoa on Feb. 29.
Zusi, a 25-year-old midfielder with Major League Soccer's Sporting Kansas City, made his national debut in Saturday's 1-0 win over Venezuela.
His goal came after left back Zach Loyd's cross fell to Teal Bunbury at the top of the 6-yard box and appeared to bounce off him to Zusi, who slammed it in with a right-footed shot from 7 yards.
Panama: Luis Mejia; Carlos Rodriguez, Eric Vasquez, Eduardo Dasent, Rolando Algandona; Alberto Quintero (Rolando Botello, 77), Gabriel Gomez (Juan De Gracia, 90), Marcos Sanchez, Amir Waithe (Luis Ovalle, 71); Blas Perez, Luis Renteria (Manuel Mosquera, 74)
United States: Nick Rimando (Sean Johnson, 46); A.J. DeLaGarza, Michael Parkhurst, Geoff Cameron, Zach Loyd (Heath Pearce, 41); Graham Zusi (Brad Evans, 66), Ricardo Clark (Jeff Larentowicz, 67), Jermaine Jones, Brek Shea; Chris Wondolowski (Jeff Parke, 55), Teal Bunbury (C.J. Sapong, 76)