Christian Pulisic was named Young Player of the Gold Cup.
CHICAGO – Long-time rival Mexico denied the United States from winning two championships on the same day Sunday as it captured the Concacaf Gold Cup behind a 1-0 victory at Soldier Field.
Earlier in the day, the American women captured its fourth Women’s World Cup with a 2-0 win over the Netherlands in Lyon, France.
In the Windy City, Jonathan dos Santos’ 73rd-minute goal turned out to be the deciding goal.
U.S. head coach Gregg Berhalter sent out the same starting XI that guided the USA through the semifinal while handing the captain’s armband to Weston McKennie for the first time in his career. Ten players have skippered the USA squad this year.
The USA looked the better bet to score early on with Jozy Altidore putting Christian Pulisic, named Young Player of the Tournament, through on goal only to see his shot blocked by Mexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa. The rebound was headed back in by Paul Arriola. A missed overhead kick attempt by Altidore was nearly cleared off Pulisic into the upper left corner.
A minute later, former Red Bulls defender Tim Ream cleared the ball upfield where Altidore brought it down and cut past a defender into the box but dragged his shot just outside the right post.
Later opportunities for the industrious Arriola and the creative Pulisic rolled wide of the left stick and landed in the hands of a nearly-chipped Ochoa, respectively.
When the teams emerged from halftime tied at 0-0, play carried a similar pattern to the first half. In the 51st minute, Jordan Morris was denied on a glorious chance as his header from a Pulisic Corner was cleared off the line by Andrés Guardado.
After that point, the field slowly tilted in Mexico’s favor. Berhalter made two subs after the hour mark, bringing on Cristian Roldan and Gyasi Zardes to provide fresh legs. A header from Zardes put Pulisic in on goal in the 71st minute, but the young attacker was closed down by a Mexico defender and put his shot wide. Two minutes later Mexico took the lead when Raúl Jiménez laid it off for dos Santos to hit the winner.
The USA continued to search for a way back into the game and a final burst of pressure resulted in a last-gasp chance for Roldan in the 87th minute but his one-time drive from inside the box was blocked by Héctor Moreno.