Top Ad
I DIG Radio
www.idigradio.com
Listen live to the best music from around the world!
I DIG Style
www.idigstyle.com
Learn about the latest fashion styles and more...

Berhalter lauds 'Jedi' effort, goal in USMNT win

Written by 
Published in Breaking News
Thursday, 27 January 2022 21:36

Antonee Robinson celebrated his goal for the United States with an acrobatic backflip, followed by a front spring, and then a feigned leg injury.

A memorable celebration for a player who goes by a galactic moniker.

"It's weird being called Antonee. I prefer being called Jedi," the self-professed "Star Wars" fan said afterward.

- ESPN+ viewers guide: LaLiga, Bundesliga, MLS, FA Cup, more
- Futbol Americas on ESPN+: MLS, Liga MX, USMNT, El Tri
- World Cup 2022 qualifying: How it works around the world

U.S. fans will nonetheless laud Robinson's athleticism -- and his nickname -- as his effort ensured the 1-0 win for the USMNT over El Salvador in World Cup qualifying on a frigid Thursday night in Columbus, Ohio.

After a scoreless first half, Robinson wasted no time breaking the deadlock early in the second half, pouncing on a loose ball at the back post in the 52nd minute and hammering a low volley past El Salvador goalkeeper Mario Gonzalez.

The narrow victory on a 29-degree night at Lower.com Field boosted the U.S. to 18 points with five games left in the qualifying window. The U.S. is one point behind Canada. Mexico has 17, followed by Panama (14), Costa Rica (12), Jamaica (seven), El Salvador (six) and Honduras (three).

play
1:22

What to make of USMNT's win over El Salvador

The Futbol Americas crew reacts to the USMNT's 1-0 victory vs. El Salvador in the CONCACAF World Cup Qualifiers.

"Really happy to get the win, this one we've been preparing for. It wasn't the prettiest game. And there were times when we played good football, when we just had to kind of take our chances," Robinson said after the match. "One step closer to our goal qualifying for the World Cup."

The U.S. is at Canada on Sunday and hosts Honduras on Wednesday at St. Paul, Minnesota. Qualifying ends in March with trips to Mexico and Costa Rica around a matchup with Panama in Orlando, Florida. The top three CONCACAF nations qualify to Qatar 2022, and the fourth-place team advances to a playoff against the Oceania champion, likely New Zealand.

On a night when the USMNT's offensive prowess from the likes of Christian Pulisic and Weston McKennie fell short, it was England-born Fulham defender Robinson who supplied the goal for the crucial win.

Gregg Berhalter praised Robinson's versatility in his left full-back position that requires him to be a contributor on both the defensive and attacking fronts.

"We call our full-backs the superpower of our team. We do that because they produce, they give assists and goals," Berhalter said. "We put an emphasis on our full-backs arriving in the penalty box because we know we have that midfield line that's supporting them, and can clean up anything that comes out of the box."

Regarding his acrobatic antics to celebrate the goal, Robinson said it is something that comes second nature to him.

"I don't practice backflips anymore. It's just one of them muscle memory things. I've been doing it since I was a kid. So I just know I can do it."

And what about the feigned injury?

Robinson said he was mimicking a Kenyan player he saw while playing for Everton's youth team as a teenager in Africa.

"My friend's been on me for weeks to do that celebration, so I had to pull it out,'' Robinson said. "Didn't tell anyone, so there were a few people scared. It's all part of the fun of enjoying the game.''

The move initially caused concern among his teammates.

"He kind of scared me because I thought he pulled his hammy,'' winger Timothy Weah quipped.

The Americans' 15th straight home win over El Salvador since 1989 didn't come easily. They outshot El Salvador 8-3 in the first half but put none on target. But the offense followed a familiar pattern: The U.S. has scored 11 of its 13 goals during World Cup qualifying in the second half of games.

"I think we could have done that much better. The big picture of this game, we're still in very good position in World Cup qualifying. The three points were vital at home and we achieved that," Berhalter added.

"So happy now it's time to regroup and come up with a plan to attack Canada."

Read 64 times

Soccer

Courtois: Lack of respect inspired UCL final heroics

Courtois: Lack of respect inspired UCL final heroics

PARIS -- Thibaut Courtois has revealed a lack of respect for his success in England inspired him to...

UCL final delayed amid crowd congestion outside

UCL final delayed amid crowd congestion outside

PARIS -- The Champions League final between Liverpool and Real Madrid in Paris was delayed on Saturd...

Courtois inspires Madrid to UCL glory, Liverpool 'Quad' dreams halted, Vinicius shines

Courtois inspires Madrid to UCL glory, Liverpool 'Quad' dreams halted, Vinicius shines

Real Madrid defeated Liverpool 1-0 to win the UEFA Champions League, the 14th European title for the...

Basketball

Heat fined $25K for violating bench rules in G6

Heat fined $25K for violating bench rules in G6

MIAMI -- The NBA announced that it has fined the Miami Heat $25,000 for "violating league rules rega...

Udoka: C's need better start in Game 7 vs. Heat

Udoka: C's need better start in Game 7 vs. Heat

MIAMI -- Ahead of Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals, Boston Celtics coach Ime Udoka said that...

Baseball

Angels' Suzuki alert after suffering neck contusion

Angels' Suzuki alert after suffering neck contusion

Los Angeles Angels catcher Kurt Suzuki left Saturday's night's game against the Toronto Blue Jays wi...

Managers back Kapler's protest, La Russa differs

Managers back Kapler's protest, La Russa differs

CHICAGO -- White Sox manager Tony La Russa says he both likes and respects San Francisco Giants mana...

Sports Leagues

  • FIFA

    Fédération Internationale de Football Association
  • NBA

    National Basketball Association
  • ATP

    Association of Tennis Professionals
  • MLB

    Major League Baseball
  • ITTF

    International Table Tennis Federation

About Us

I Dig® is a leading global brand that makes it more enjoyable to surf the internet, conduct transactions and access, share, and create information.  Today I Dig® attracts millions of users every month.

 

Phone: (800) 737. 6040
Fax: (800) 825 5558
Website: www.idig.com
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Affiliated