Since we last checked in, there's been two matches each for the two ex-Goats who have seen significant playing time in the Copa America Centenario.
Following their tournament-opening loss to Colombia, the U.S. Men's National Team and Brad Guzan bounced back, posting two clean sheets as the U.S. beat Costa Rica 4-0 and Paraguay 1-0 to clinch passage to the quarterfinals.
If USA lost to Costa Rica, they would have been out of the Copa, and in all likelihood, we were looking at a new manager. The USA put up four goals, and Clint Dempsey looked like the player he was in the last World Cup. We also saw the continued growth of John Brooks. And Guzan kept a clean sheet, solidifying his status as the U.S. No. 1.
Following that, the narrow win over Paraguay, even with the U.S. playing down a man for most of the second half after DeAndre Yedlin picked up two yellow cards in quick succession, put the tournament hosts on a course to move on.
But it got even better! Even though Costa Rica were eliminated, they wanted to end their Copa America on a high note, and beat Colombia, featuring an almost entirely-reserve lineup, 3-2. The result? The U.S. actually won Group A! From "Jurgen Out" to group winners in a matter of days.
Meanwhile, Miller Bolanos of Ecuador faced the highs and lows of the tournament in a matter of minutes. Their second match, after their controversial 0-0 draw against Brazil, was a 2-2 tie against Peru. This was one of the best matches of the tournament so far. Bolaños tapped in a great pass from Jefferson Montero into a wide open net in the 48th minute to complete the comeback, after Peru went ahead 2-0 in the first half.
But just after he scored the dramatic equalizer, Bolaños appeared to go down with a hamstring injury, and was immediately subbed out of the game. He then did not feature in Ecuador's group stage finale, a 4-0 win over Haiti. That result, however, was huge for Ecuador, as they advanced to the knockout stage in the Copa America for the first time since 1997.
And it will be Goat vs. Goat (potentially) in the quarterfinal, as the U.S. is matched up against Ecuador on Thursday in Seattle. Expect Guzan to start once again for the U.S. For Ecuador? If Bolaños really got a a hamstring injury, he's probably unlikely to feature, but you never know. Either way, it will be a huge game for both sides.
And another former Goat, forward Roberto Nurse, made his debut in the Copa America on Tuesday, starting and playing the first 45 minutes in Panama's 4-2 loss to Chile. Panama, in a must-win position to get out of Group D, could not get the job done against the defending Copa America champions, and end their first-ever Copa America tournament with a 1-2-0 mark, finishing third in the group.
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