The United States lost an early lead with a 2-1 loss to Serbia at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles on Wednesday night in their first game since the Netherlands’ exit from the 2022 World Cup.
Dual nationals Brandon Vazquez and Alejandro Zendejas gave interim coach Anthony Hudson eight players their senior team debuts — seven as starters — with Vazquez opening the scoring in his first appearance for the US, glancing home Julian Gressel’s header. Cross the field.
Chelsea goalkeeper Gabriel Slonina, making his debut for the senior U.S. team, made several key saves during the first half, but he was beaten by Luka Ilic’s free kick at the near post to give Serbia a goal before halftime. – Time.
Serbia then took the lead early in the second half when Veljko Simic took advantage of poor US defending to score from outside the area and beat Slonina from close range to make it 2-1.
Cade Cowell, who had been lively all night down the left for the US, hit the post twice in the next minute and then fired a shot wide of the Serbian goal.
With Hudson bringing on World Cup veteran Cailin Acosta and Middlesbrough forward Matthew Hope off the bench, the US kept up the pressure in search of a second goal, but the equalizer was not to be.
The U.S. team is in transition with interim head coach Hudson running the show while the U.S. Soccer Federation determines the future of coach Greg Berhalter, whose contract expired late last year.
Hudson is using the team’s annual January camp and accompanying exhibitions to get a feel for a new crop of prospects after the U.S. was eliminated in the round of 16 at the World Cup in Qatar.
The US uses youth and MLS players in its winter camp, which falls outside the FIFA international window. The current group has 11 players receiving first-time call-ups and a total of five members on the World Cup roster.
Hudson’s inexperienced side have produced an exciting performance with more action and attacking flair than usual in these annual January exhibitions, but the American team has won just one of its past eight games with four draws and three losses.
Next up for the US is a friendly against Colombia on January 28 at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California.