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USMNT player ratings vs. Trinidad & Tobago: 3 who excelled, 2 who failed

Job done. The USMNT clinched top spot in Gold Cup Group A on Sunday night after beating Trinidad and Tobago 6-0 in sweltering conditions at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, NC.

The win ensured that the U.S. and Mexico can't possibly meet until the final, but it was also an important 90 minutes for players to show that they should be considered for the full-strength USMNT squad when it eventually reconvenes. 

If you're not able to show out in the attack and look unbeatable in defense against T&T on home soil, then you probably have no business being in the 2026 World Cup cycle. 

USMNT vs Trinidad and Tobago player ratings 

3 players who showed they belong with the A Team

#1. Jesús Ferreira

A first-half hat trick brought Ferreira's international total to 14 goals in 21 matches. We all know the vast majority have come against members of the Caribbean Football Union, but on Sunday his movement, touch and finishing all looked exceptionally sharp.  

He's the first USMNT player ever to score back-to-back hat tricks, and now he'll lead the line in the quarterfinals.

#2. Jalen Neal

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The 19-year-old was sound defensively with what T&T threw at him, including a great one-on-one stop in the 68th minute, and again showcased an ability to play through the lines from center back. He's a next gen baller.  

#3. Cade Cowell

The 19-year-old came on in the 61st minute and in the 65th he left two T&T players on the ground before scoring his first senior goal on his sixth appearance. Minutes later, he beat two defenders again before lacing one off the post. Then he got the assist on the sixth and final USA goal, scored by Brandon Vazquez. Cowell's probably the most enjoyable player to watch in this squad.

2 players who failed to shine 

#1. Alejandro Zendejas

This isn't a man who's short on confidence, this is a man who's suffering a full-blown case of the yips. Other than the most basic of actions, nothing's working for the 25-year-old. After failing to put any of his five shots on target against Saint Kitts and Nevis, Zendejas was again missing any sort of finesse in the final third and cheaply turned the ball over numerous times.

He was the first player taken off for the U.S. and it was no surprise. 

#2. Gianluca Busio

Busio ultimately scored the fifth goal, so the laws of player ratings say I can't do this. However, it felt like he was in enough dangerous positions to make a much more telling impact over the entire 90 minutes. His passing wasn't particularly sharp in the final third, and those lingering questions about his defensive ability at the international level were asked again while getting bossed by Trinidad's Levi García on the counter.

Djordje Mihailovic was the midfielder taken off, but I was less impressed with Busio.  

And it goes without saying but Cristian Roldan won't be playing with the A Team. He should've scored his first goal for the U.S. on his 35th appearance but instead totally fanned on an easy opportunity. 

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