The United States men’s national soccer team beat Costa Rica, 1-0, in Saturday afternoon’s international friendly held in Carson, California.
Esteban Alvarado was the highlight for La Sele as the goalkeeper kept the match close despite the United States’ many chances. The U.S. finished with five shots on target and 61% possession.
The North Americans finally broke through with a penalty kick in the 50th minute. The goal was scored by Ulysses Llanez, an 18-year-old making his national team debut.
Llanez, playing near his hometown, paid a tribute to Kobe Bryant after scoring:
WATCH: @uly_soccer7 with the penalty kick *swish* and tribute to a legend. #USAvCRC pic.twitter.com/qBQqDiWAOf
— U.S. Soccer MNT (@USMNT) February 1, 2020
Costa Rica’s best chance came in the first half, when a set-piece play resulted in a free header for Giancarlo Gonzalez, whose effort hit the crossbar.