Once again, the USA had a big edge in possession but little to show for it. Indeed, the Americans created fewer good opportunities against Malawi than they did against Spain on Monday.
The U.S. backline, very shaky in the first half against Spain, was much more more composed against the Young Flames, who played themselves offside time and time again with little effort by the American defenders.
After an initial charge, the Americans refused to be drawn into a foot race with Malawi. Especially in the second half, they were content to pass the ball around in midfield.
The trouble was in the final third, where Jack McInerney never looked comfortable. Andrew Craven came on for Victor Chavez in the second half and brought energy but little in the way of skills to break down the Malawi backline.
All in all, it was a subdued performance by the Americans, but Coach Wilmer Cabrera gets this first victory.
USA-MALAWI REPORT CARD
5 Earl Edwards (Nomads SC)
5 Zachary Herold (West Pines United FC)
5 Eriq Zavaleta (FC Pride)
5 Jared Watts (North Meck SC)
6 Tyler Polak (CSA Legacy)
6 Marlon Duran (Latino Americana)
6 Luis Gil (Pateadores)
6 Nick Palodichuk (Washington Premier FC)
6 Alex Shinsky (Super Nova FC)
4 Jack McInerney (Cobb SC)
4 Victor Chavez (Real So Cal)
4 Andrew Craven (First Coast Kickers)
4 Carlos Martinez (Wilmington Jr.)
NR Boyd Okwuonu (Tulsa Thunder)
(1=low; 5-average; 10;-high.)