Sergiño Dest Scores First International Goal As U.S. Men Beat Jamaica 4-1 In Friendly
by Todd Kortemeier
Sergino Dest controls the ball during the CONCACAF Nations League match against Canada on Nov. 15, 2019 in Orlando, Fla.
Fresh off scoring two goals for global powerhouse Barcelona on Sunday, Sergiño Dest on Wednesday looked ahead to his upcoming international duty and remarked that he hoped to keep up his good form and score his first goal for the United States.
Thursday in Austria against Jamaica, he did exactly that. And it was a doozy.
In a lineup full of young attacking players from the top leagues of Europe, it was Dest the left back who opened the scoring in the 34th minute. Carrying the ball up the left side, he cut to his right near the Jamaica 18-yard box and unleashed a bending shot. It landed perfectly in the far corner past the outstretched arm of the Jamaica goalkeeper. Dest’s first U.S. goal was assisted by 18-year-old Yunus Musah of Valencia, making his first start since committing to play for the United States on March 15.
In the 53rd minute, Salzburg midfielder Brenden Aaronson, who had just come on at halftime for Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic, headed the ball forward for Josh Sargent. Sargent then lost his defender and played it back to Aaronson who was waiting for a tap-in goal, the second of his U.S. career. Both Pulisic and Sargent were getting their first national team action since 2019.
While the U.S. enjoyed a majority of possession and chances, Jamaica was able to pull back a goal off a counterattack in the 70th minute. But Sebastian Lletget, one of the few MLS players in the lineup, capped the scoring with a pair of goals in the last 10 minutes. The goals were the fifth and sixth international goals for Lletget, who has become a mainstay in manager Gregg Berhalter’s lineup.
Berhalter will no doubt make changes to that lineup to get a look at more players Sunday as the U.S. heads to Belfast for a friendly with Northern Ireland. That same day in Mexico, the U.S. Under-23 team will look to qualify for this summer’s Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, which would add to a packed fixture list for U.S. Soccer this year. Besides the Games, the U.S. will also field teams in the Concacaf Gold Cup and Nations League alongside 2022 World Cup qualifying.