File this one under ‘headlines I didn’t expect to write this season’.
El Salvador took a unique - but ultimately unsuccessful - approach to causing an upset against the United States during Wednesday’s Gold Cup quarter-final in Philadelphia, and Toronto FC striker Jozy Altidore found himself at the centre of it.
Altidore, a knockout-stage call-up for the Americans, appeared to be bitten and have his nipple twisted by El Salvador defender Henry Romero.
Fortunately, Jozy and the USA had the last laugh. Goals from Omar Gonzalez and Eric Lichaj earned Bruce Arena’s side a 2-0 win and a place in the semi-finals, where they will face Costa Rica.
Michael Bradley and Justin Morrow also started and completed the 90 minutes. By sending in the free-kick from which Gonzalez broke the deadlock, Bradley reached a notable milestone:
Bradley just tied Cobi Jones for 2nd place in #USMNT history w/ 22 assists.— Matthew Doyle (@MattDoyle76) July 20, 2017
Morrow, making his second start of the tournament and winning just his third cap at age 29, earned strong reviews as he looks to lock down a long-term spot on Arena’s roster.
Great run & goal from Lichaj, but notice once again that it was Morrow pushing up to initiate useful possession. He's been good. #USMNT— Matthew Doyle (@MattDoyle76) July 20, 2017
On Thursday, Canada take on Jamaica before Mexico play Honduras. The winners of those two games will meet in the second semi-final at the Rose Bowl on July 23, with the USA-Costa Rica tie scheduled for July 22 at AT&T Stadium.