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Once a Goat: Brad Guzan helps USA to Copa America 2016 semifinals

Maybe his final game wasn't one to remember, but it was a solid tournament overall for Guzan.

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Copa America Centenario was one of the better tournaments for the U.S. Men's National Team for a while. There's been some outstanding matches, individual play, and moments where you might just think the team might be improving. Then there's some matches like against Argentina that make us question how good our team really can be.

Certainly, goalkeeper Brad Guzan had a tournament like that, in which he had a good run, but his final participation, in the semifinal round against Argentina, laid bare some of his, and his defense's, limitations.

But before that, the U.S. tasted success in a tournament knockout game, with a nice 2-1 victory in the quarterfinal round against Ecuador, and Guzan let in only his third goal of the tournament so far. The final minutes of the game were nervy, to be sure, but a slew of near-misses by Ecuador and Guzan and the defense doing what they needed to got them the big result in a winnable game, to move on to the final four of the tournament, the only CONCACAF team in the end to accomplish that.

But then the talent gap (and possibly a gameplan gap) was exposed as the U.S. lost to tournament favorites Argentina 4-0. The dismantling was total and Argentina were better for all 90 minutes. Guzan was let down by his teammates and coaches and let in four goals, raising his total for the tournament to seven.

There was a literal consolation match for the U.S., going for third place against the first team they played in the tournament, Colombia. But Guzan was sacrificed for Tim Howard, and they went on to lose 1-0. That ended Guzan's Copa playing time, and he can now take some time off before he heads back to England to join Aston Villa as they begin life in the Championship.

It was a decent summer for the Ex-Goat, and something most supporters will remember him by. One doesn't know how he thinks of his play during the Copa, but he can go away with the truth that he played his heart out.

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