USA-Haiti Men's Gold Cup Player Ratings

July 11 in Kansas City, Kansas
USA 1 Haiti 0. Goals: Vines 8
Att.: 12,000.
* * * * * * * * * *

Thanks to Sam Vines' early goal, the USA opened its Gold Cup campaign with a 1-0 win over Haiti, which had five players sidelined because of positive COVID tests.

USA Player Ratings
(1=low; 5=middle; 10=high.)


Matt Turner, whose saves were of the easy kind, survived a late goalmouth scramble in which he was knocked down and his misplayed backpass early in the second half went unpunished, the Haitian attacker deflecting Turner's miscue out for a goal kick.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Matt Turner (New England Revolution) 2/0 (27)


Central defender Walker Zimmerman hit a well-timed to Kellyn Acosta running through the middle in the buildup to the USA's first goal. Zimmerman, who hit the crossbar with a 6th-minute volley, also kept the Haitians at bay when they started playing more offensively late in the game. Forays up the right wing by Shaq Moore included the service that made its way to to left back Sam Vines on the goal. In the 69th minute, Moore broke up Haiti's best attack up to that point. Miles Robinson had an easy day against the one-man Haitian frontline.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Shaq Moore (Tenerife/ESP) 6/0 (24)

Walker Zimmerman (Nashville SC) 15/2 (28)

Miles Robinson (Atlanta United) 4/1 (24)

Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids) 4/1 (22)


Kellyn Acosta seemed to follow up each good pass with a mis-hit. He got robbed by Bryan Alceus and responded with a yellow-card foul in the 73rd minute. Sebastian Lletget came the closest to looking like a playmaker in a U.S. midfield whose hectic approach produced plenty of ineffective attacks. Jackson Yueill fell far short of serving as the central midfield orchestrator the USA was in dire need of.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Kellyn Acosta (Colorado Rapids) 32/2 (25)

Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes) 13/0 (24)

Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy) 25/7 (28)


Gyasi Zardes flicked up the ball that deflected off Martin Experience to assist on Vines' goal. His weak close-range volley in the 6th minute was easily saved. Zardes hustled plenty but lacked the touch needed by the USA to maintain possession deep in Haiti territory. Jonathan Lewis too was plagued an inability use various gears. Paul Arriola went off injured in the 14th minute.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Paul Arriola (D.C. United) 36/8 (26)

Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew) 57/12 (29)

Jonathan Lewis (Colorado Rapids) 8/2 (24)


Nicholas Gioacchini, who replaced Arriola, wasted a prime chance when unmarked he barely connected with a header from three yards out off Lletget's 51st-minute corner kick, shot wide a minute later, and hit the post from 13 yards in the 66th minute. Gianluca Busio's powerful half-volley provided a rare second-half highlight but flew straight down the middle for goalkeeper Brian Sylvestre to parry with a raised fist. Busio and Eryk Williamson each had promising moments bringing the ball forward but by late in the second half the U.S. frontline was even more disjointed. Daryl Dike didn't get the ball near the Haitian goal and coughed it up when he got it in the midfield.

Player (Club) caps/goals (age)

Nicholas Gioacchini (Caen/FRA) 4/2 (20)

Gianluca Busio (Sporting Kansas City) 1/0 (19)

Daryl Dike (Orlando City) 4/1 (21)

Eryk Williamson (Portland Timbers) 1/0 (24)

James Sands (New York City FC) 1/0 (21)

TRIVIAGyasi Zardes, with his assist on Sam Vines' goal, became the second fastest U.S. player to reach double-digit goals and assists. Zardes' 10th assist, along with 12 goals, in his 57th appearance is second to Landon Donovan, who hit double digits on both categories in 50 games.

July 11 in Kansas City, Kansas
USA 1 Haiti 0. Goals: Vines 8
USA -- Turner; Moore (Williamson, 76), Zimmerman, Robinson, Vines; Acosta, Yuiell (Busio 62), Lletget; Arriola (Gioacchini, 14; Sands, 76), Zardes, Lewis (Dike, 62).
Haiti -- Sylvestre; Arcus, Ade, Lafrance, Experience (Christian, 80); Alceu, Pierre (Clerveaux, 90+1); Lambese, Etienne, Nazon (Damus, 80); Antoine.
Yellow cards: USA -- Acosta 72, Zardes 75; Haiti -- Experience 46. Red cards: none.
Referee: Said Martinez (Honduras).
Att.: 12,000.

Shots: 12/8
Shots on target: 6/5
Saves: 3/4
Corner Kicks: 5/0
Fouls: 15/13
Offside: 4/0
Possession: 56%/44%
25 comments about "USA-Haiti Men's Gold Cup Player Ratings".
  1. Ben Myers, July 12, 2021 at 12:17 a.m.

    Did not see.  Could not compare to the drama of Italy v England earlier.  1-0 against not exactly a strong opponent can't be a good omen.  But this match could shake the cobwebs out, a wakeup call.

  2. Wooden Ships replied, July 12, 2021 at 12:30 a.m.

    I saw segments. Haiti could have easily won. We looked suspect from back to front. Azzurri!!!

  3. Bob Ashpole, July 12, 2021 at 2:54 a.m.

    Busio was a pleasant surprise in the pivot role. Good fundamentals and decisions. He energized the team and the crowd. Exactly what you want to see in a pivot. Looking forward to seeing him against stronger opponents. 

  4. Seth Vieux replied, July 12, 2021 at 1:33 p.m.

    Agreed, I think Yuiell has proven to be pretty much another Will Trapp - a nice MLS player but not close to the level we need to play the 6 in a 4-3-3 - doesn't measure up defensively or make up for it with superior distribution. Busio brings some excitement and versatility, being able to play 6 or 8. I'm hoping he gets a lot more minutes in this wondow and maybe attracts the interest of a top 5 european league suitor to fastrack his development. 

  5. Goal Goal replied, July 12, 2021 at 3:37 p.m.

    Bob, a pleasant surprise.  How?  Because he did what he should have done.  We have the tendency in this country to make STARS out of the play that is expected.  This whole product we put on the field was a surprise but certainly not pleasant.  With the experience that these guys were touted to have by the announcers I expected just a little more.  No, I expected much more and everyone else should have.  Anything more than a 3 on the ratings would be pushing it.  I don't believe in giving points for just showing up.

  6. Bob Ashpole replied, July 13, 2021 at 1:40 a.m.

    How Goal Goal? Because he had good fundamentals and decision making. The vast majority of the players are deficient in fundamentals and it limits both them and the team.

  7. Seth Vieux replied, July 13, 2021 at 12:49 p.m.

    Goal Goal... where in the world did you see anyone trying to present Busio as a STAR? He's one of the promising young players who was a pleasant surprise in his first cap, who tried to imply anything more?

  8. Santiago 1314, July 12, 2021 at 6:37 a.m.

    "Just Win Baby, WIN"... it's the "C" Team People.!!!... Lets Be Realistic in our expectations... I'm Looking for "Hole" Fillers for the "A" Team...
    Can Shaq Moore play Left Back.???

  9. Seth Vieux replied, July 12, 2021 at 1:35 p.m.

    I don't think he's ever really played there - LBs for this squad are Vines and Bello. I think Vines has an opportunity to earn a spot in the first 23. A bit of a poor-man's Steve Cherundolo (on the left side rather than the right), might actually be the best option to balance the defense if Dest plays on his preferred right side.

  10. Wooden Ships replied, July 12, 2021 at 11:50 p.m.

    You said what I was thinking about Vines. He's really a heads-up player, sees things quickly and has boldness. I would like to see him opposite Dest as soon possible.

  11. Bob Ashpole replied, July 13, 2021 at 1:52 a.m.

    Vines seemed weak to me on defense against Haiti. Hopefully that will improve.

  12. Santiago 1314 replied, July 13, 2021 at 6:37 a.m.

    Left "Back" is WIDE Open... I don't know much about Bello... Hopefully, we will see him on Thursday. 

  13. Seth Vieux replied, July 13, 2021 at 12:52 p.m.

    Santi - Bello got a decent ammount of hype a few years ago as a young teenager, that has faded some. He physically looked the part at a younger age than most, very high level athlete that plays a key position, though I think he was pressed into service as a CB with some frequency in the previous youth national team cycles. Still a prospect for sure with very limited experience as a full pro.

  14. Santiago 1314, July 12, 2021 at 6:52 a.m.

    Yes Bob, Busio Looked Quite Capable in their... I Still don't see USA with 2 Attacking Mids.???... I think Double Pivot with WingBacks is where Team needs to go... i liked  Robinson more than Zimmerman... Does Robinson Play on the Right.???
    And When does Ggg Pephalterklopp try Lleget at Ct Forward.???.. Dike and Zardes Useless... Lletget So Useless in "The Field", but a "Proven" Goal "Poacher"... (And WHY is your "Poacher" Taking FREEKICKS.???...He needs to be in "The Mixer" to Poach Goals)

  15. Bob Ashpole replied, July 12, 2021 at 11:08 a.m.

    I have never thought much of Lleget. This was Haiti. He should have dominated the central zone. I think that the problem for Dike was a lack of service from the midfield. Crashing the box as a midfielder is much easier than playing forward. I don't know how Lleget would do as a 9.

    Personally I don't care for wingless formations. It is a crutch for when flank players are lacking. Okay for the C team, against minnows, but against bunkered defenses it lacks width to the attack. Mexico of even 5 years ago would have a field day against a 532. The problem is that a 532 has 8 field players in the central zone. It concedes both flanks. Very unbalanced. If the "C" team has a height advantage and excellent crossers, it would work, but if we had excellent crossers they would be better used as wingers.

    What I would like to see is the MNT play a classic Dutch style 433. (In possession it, and the classic Brazilian 433 too, morphs to a 343.) Out of possession the 2 CBs and 3 CMs control the central zone while there are 2 flankers on each side. Excellent balance.

  16. Santiago 1314 replied, July 12, 2021 at 11:32 a.m.

    Bob, I think we agree... See my "A" team below

  17. Bob Ashpole replied, July 12, 2021 at 11:52 a.m.

    Yes we do. I answered your post on the other article. It is mostly nitpicking and a wish to try the more technical players over the usual more physical players. A nod to positional play. I am, however, a realist. Play in CONCACAF qualifying requires a different approach than at the Finals.

    Over the last 5 years the USWNT has crawled closer to Dutch style positional play. I would say they are over 75% there. Largely thanks to Jill Ellis. Vlatko is continuing that work. I would like to see the USMNT follow the same path. I think the USMNT has the talent to make the transition.

    What has tempered my criticism is that over the last 5 years I have found some commonality that wasn't there before.

  18. Seth Vieux replied, July 12, 2021 at 1:56 p.m.

    Lletget played as a false 9 earlier this year, just can't remember which game, to me it didn't play out well at all. He's better being able to arrive on time in the second/third wave runs than creating his shots when the CBs are marking him.

    Bob that is basically what GB is and has been aiming for on the 4-3-3, it just hasn't really come off yet, in my mind due mostly to the fact that we either don't the type and quality of a 6 needed, or if we do he's almost never been available in the GB era (Adams). Yuiell isn't that dude (just like Trapp wasn't), and while I think Acosta is a serviceable 6, he ain't quite that guy either. Busio may just be if given a chance, and I for one am hoping he becomes a transfer target for someone in a top 5 european league to provide the developmental challenge he needs.

    Don't take any of that to be some full-throated endorsement of GB by the way. I appreciate that he's massively opened up the player pool, but still am left confused so often by his player selections, especially for this Gold Cup. I'm excited to see if Busio or Williamson are possible answers for depth in the first 23's midfield. I'm very tuned in to whether Vines, Robinson, or Dike are real prospects for the top group. But I'm just absolutely baffled by the player selection on the 'wings' only Arriola and Lewis are actual wings. Arriola was a massive injury risk (which unfortunately showed immediately) and Lewis has never shown even close to the quality needed for this level despite many opportunities. I think Arriola was an obvious choice for the group and starting on the right, but there HAD to be serious depth at wing because of his injury worries. How Chris Mueller and at least one other true wing wasn't included here is mind-numbing. We brought FOUR strikers and two wings to play 4-3-3..... Gioacchini, Hoppe, and Zardes can be FORCED into service wide, but they are all strikers, period.

    Dike should be right near the top of minutes logged in this tournament to see exactly what he brings to the position we are most adrift at, and we already know what Zardes brings so he and Hoppe are more than enough to provide depth and rest for a young bull like Dike.

  19. Bob Ashpole replied, July 13, 2021 at 1:50 a.m.

    Seth, my problem with GB has always been the disconnect between his talk and his walk. I describe his tactics as playing "in" the back rather than playing "out of" the back. His CBs generally play at the tactical speed of glaciers. Ideally, when playing out of the back you want to break the first line with the first touch, not pass the ball laterally 3 or 4 times.

  20. Kevin Sims, July 12, 2021 at 8:33 a.m.

    Acosta & Busio rated better as MF maestros than given here

  21. E Velazquez, July 12, 2021 at 8:42 a.m.

    Moore showed improvement from hos last appearance with the team. Where is Hoope ? He can play anyplace as a striker

  22. Santiago 1314, July 12, 2021 at 11:08 a.m.

    The "A" Team----

    Pulisic  --- Lletget --- Arriola



              *Any US GK*

    Any Thoughts.???

  23. frank schoon, July 12, 2021 at 3:46 p.m.

    I don't know about you guys but I was impressed with Haiti. First of all, I didn't expect the large size of the Haitians players...I was impressed with leftfooted #11...nice touch and moves..All the players had a smoothness on the ball that the American players so lack....
    This team good be a decent side, which is sort of now. The Americans have difficulty in 50/50 or 1v1 situations..  If Haiti had a good consistent goal scorer ,they would give anyone a run for their money in the Concacaf...

  24. Seth Vieux replied, July 13, 2021 at 12:56 p.m.

    Assuming that is Etiene without checking the game recap - he was clearly the most gifted player on the pitch IMO.

  25. Kent James, July 13, 2021 at 1:08 a.m.

    I disagree about a few of the ratings; Vines is too high (yes, he scored the goal, but that was a bit of sitter, and he was caught out of position quite badly a couple of times).  I was most impressed with Shaq Moor; he made things happen both offensively and defensively.  Acosta also seemed to pop up everywhere and made a lot of excellent passes (so he deserved a higher rating).  Saying Gianchini (sp?) was "unmarked" and missed an easy header is really harsh; yes, he was inside the box, but the Haitian player just in front of him seemed like he was going to get the ball (and probably obscured his view of it), so that was not an easy header.  Zardes had a nice touch on the goal, but he is clearly not a winger, so that experiment should end.  

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