Paul Arriola, who grew up in Southern California near the Mexican border and plays for Tijuana,
celebrated his first cap with a goal and an assist tucked away by Bobby Wood. Left back Tim Ream also scored his first U.S. goal by capitalizing on a rebound.
A strong game by DeAndre Yedlin at right back further assuaged fears of U.S. fans regarding that position.
The Americans play their next pre-Centenario friendly Wednesday against Ecuador.
USA Player Ratings:
5 Brad Guzan (Aston Villa/ENG) 43/-.
Collected a couple of threatening balls easily, no chance to prevent the goal.
7 DeAndre Yedlin (Tottenham/ENG) 32/0.
Played shutdown defense for the most part and constantly opened up the left side of Puerto Rico’s defense. Very sharp one-v-one, timing and selection of passes was good.
5 Michael Orozco (Tijuana/MEX), 23/4.
Sound positioning, passed the ball well, reacted too slowly when U.S. lost possession on the lead-up to Puerto Rico’s goal.
6 John Brooks (Hertha Berlin/GER), 19/2.
Played a solid game but didn’t always win the ball as cleanly as you’d expect of a Bundesliga veteran.
6 Tim Ream (Fulham/ENG), 21/1.
Followed up a saved shot to score his first U.S. goal. Lost the ball a couple of times near the sideline and was caught upfield on occasion without cover.
5 Perry Kitchen (Hearts/SCO), 4/0.
Connected the dots in midfield, found Yedlin in good spots several times, probably should have been cautioned for committing several rough fouls. Lost track of Joseph Marrero on occasion.
5 Danny Williams (Reading/ENG), 19/2.
Tracked back twice to halt attacks with strong tackles. Closed off the middle to entry passes. Jorge Rivera evaded him a couple of times.
6 Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes/FRA), 46/2.
Drifted in and out of the game but usually made good decisions when on the ball. Timed and angled his run perfectly to chase down ball he served up for Arriola.
6 Alfredo Morales (FC Ingolstadt/GER), 13/0.
Blasted a heavy shot keeper Matthew Sanchez could only knock down for Ream to put away, and hit another shot on frame. Like Bedoya, plagued by occasional defensive glitches.
7 Paul Arriola (Tijuana/MEX), 1/1.
Killed a great opportunity by straying offside, then slid a through ball that Wood took to the house for the second goal. Capped off his first cap by tapping in a centering feed from Bedoya.
7 Bobby Wood (Union Berlin/GER) 17/5.
Active and committed with and without the ball. Created opening for first goal by escaping pressure to feed Morales. Calmly and elegantly dinked a shot over the keeper as he and two defenders closed in.
6 Tim Howard (Everton/ENG), 108/-.
Dove right to smother a Manolo Sanchez skimmer.
5 Matt Miazga (Chelsea/ENG), 2/0.
Worked through a few nervy moments when tested by Betancur and Co.
5 Emerson Hyndman (Fulham/ENG), 2/0.
Hit a low shot on frame to force a save, played a nice ball up the wing for Ream.
5 Julian Green (Bayern Munich/GER), 6/1.
Forced good save by Matthew Sanchez, then missed the target twice, the second time with a free kick.
6 Eric Lichaj (Nott. Forest/ENG) 11/0.
Made his limited minutes count by darting up the left wing to hit good passes and crosses.
5 Fabrice Picault (St. Pauli/GER) 1/0.
Debuted with a shot on goal.
TRIVIA. Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, and never before had the nations played an international soccer match. Native-born Puerto Ricans are U.S. citizens eligible to play for either country.
May 22 in Bayamon
Puerto Rico 1 USA 3. Goals: Betancur 42; Ream 19, Wood 33, Arriola 56.
Puerto Rico -- Matthew Sanchez; Martinez, D'Andrea, Velez, Lopez (A.Rivera 46); Hall, Clark (Fernandez 57); Manolo Sanchez (Rios 77), J.Rivera (Soto 67), Marrero (Caban 85); Betancur (Ortiz 67).
USA -- Guzan (Howard 46); Yedlin, Orozco, Brooks (Miazga 46), Ream (Lichaj 62); Kitchen (Hyndman 46), Williams, Bedoya (Green 62), Morales; Wood (Picault, 70), Arriola.