Jamaica holds United States to draw in World Cup Qualifiers

The U.S. team was expected to dominate after winning its last four matches against Jamaica, but it was held to a 1-1 draw by Jamaica in Kingston on Tuesday.

Jamaica’s Michail Antonio (18) celebrates scoring the equaliser.   -  AP

Jamaica held the United States to a 1-1 draw in its World Cup qualifier in Kingston on Tuesday, disappointing the young U.S. squad after its victory over Mexico last week.

U.S. forward Timothy Weah drew first blood in the 11th minute, but West Ham United striker Michail Antonio levelled in the 22nd minute with a stunning shot from range. Defender Damion Lowe briefly appeared to have given Jamaica the lead with a header from a corner in the 84th minute, but his effort was disallowed for a foul.

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The United States also escaped falling behind in the 53rd minute, when Jamaican Bobby De Cordova-Reid’s attempt at close range flew over the crossbar.

The U.S. team was expected to dominate after winning its last four matches against Jamaica and following an emotional 2-0 win over Mexico last week that saw attacking midfielder Christian Pulisic return to the fold. But a young U.S. squad seemed to have lost its momentum on Tuesday.

“We knew we had to come and, you know, just play our style of play and I feel like we didn’t quite get there,” said Weah. “...I think we’re just happy that we didn’t drop points.”

With an average age of 22 years and 341 days, the starting 11 was the second-youngest men’s squad featured in a World Cup qualifier, U.S. Soccer said. The team has 15 points through eight matches, putting it in good position for one of three automatic spots at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, with six more matches left to play next year.

“When you think about the youth of this group, the inexperience of this group... we’re on the right track,” head coach Gregg Berhalter told reporters after the match. “We’ve been resilient and this group has character.”

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