The United States can never truly get enough revenge on Trinidad & Tobago for losing the game that cost the USMNT a trip to the 2018 World Cup, but there will forever be big American smiles whenever and wherever the USA beat T&T.
The U.S. men’s national team managed to pull off a late victory against Trinidad & Tobago Thursday night in the first leg of their CONCACAF Nations League quarter-final. Late goals from Ricardo Pepi, Antonee Robinson, and Gio Reyna lifted the USMNT to a 3-0 win at Austin FC’s Q2 Stadium.
Pepi, who was brought in during the second half, initiated the scoring spree in the 82nd minute, capitalizing on Robinson’s assist. This paved the way for the USMNT, with Robinson scoring a deflected left-footed shot from outside the penalty area four minutes later.
Reyna added another goal just before the final whistle, marking his third goal in the last two U.S. games, and rounding off a busy night for the Borussia Dortmund star that nobody expected would ever play under Gregg Berhalter again.
The Soca Warriors were down to 10 players in the 37th minute when Noah Powder was dismissed for a second yellow-card offence after a reckless tackle on Juventus’ Weston McKennie.
The USMNT initially thought they had a chance to score via a penalty kick when referee Oshane Nation awarded a penalty following Daniel Phillips’ foul on McKennie in the penalty area. But, VAR overturned the call, merely postponing the USMNT’s inevitable victory over a defensively unfocused and undermanned T&T.
The second leg is set for Nov. 20 in Port of Spain, where the two-time defending CNL champions have the chance to secure their spot in the March 2024 semifinals. The overall winner will also earn a place in the expanded 2024 Copa América, which will include six CONCACAF nations.