The U.S. held on to defeat second-ranked Germany 4-3 behind two goals from Clint Dempsey, while Alex Morgan had two goals as the American women’s team beat Canada 3-0 in exhibition matches to commemorate 100 years of soccer in the U.S.
Jozy Altidore also got a goal for the U.S. men, who are ranked 29th by soccer’s governing body FIFA, in front of 47,359 spectators yesterday at RFK Stadium in Washington. Sydney Leroux got the other goal for the women at BMO Field in Toronto.
The games commemorated the centenary of the formation of the United States of America Foot Ball Association.
“Having a player like Clint Dempsey on your team is a privilege, and if I look back I think this is one of the best players in U.S. history,” U.S. men’s coach Juergen Klinsmann told reporters. “Compliments to him and the entire team.”
Klinsmann made four changes from the team that lost 4-2 to Belgium May 29. Klinsmann played for the Germany team that won the 1990 World Cup and coached his native country to the semifinals in 2006.
Germany, which is coached by Klinsmann’s successor Joachim Loew, was without players from European champion Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Real Madrid and Stuttgart for the game.
Altidore opened the scoring after 13 minutes with a first-time volley from Zusi’s low cross. Germany went 2-0 down four minutes later on an own goal by goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen.
The visitors got a goal back six minutes into the second half as substitute Heiko Westermann lost his marker at a corner kick before heading the ball past U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard.
Dempsey, the U.S. team captain, restored the home team’s two-goal lead eight minutes later with a first-time shot across the goal from Altidore’s cross. After 64 minutes, Dempsey made it 4-1 with a curling left-footed shot from about 25 yards (22 meters).
Dempsey has scored five times in as many games and has 13 goals in 19 appearances under Klinsmann, 10 more than any other player. Yesterday’s goals took Dempsey’s tally for his country to 35 and moved him past Eric Wynalda for the second-most all-time behind Landon Donovan, who has scored 49 times.
Max Kruse got his first goal for Germany in his second game for the national team with a 20-yard right-foot shot in the 78th minute.
Germany scored again in the 82nd minute as Julian Draxler got his first goal for his country after Howard parried a shot into his path.
The U.S. has three World Cup qualifiers in the next two weeks. It visits Jamaica June 7 before home games against Panama four days later and against Honduras on June 18.
“They’re going to be tough games but we prepared by playing two top teams,” Dempsey told reporters. “We’re going to make sure we get as many points in these next three games as possible and put ourselves in a good position in the table.”
Panama leads the six-team group with five points, with the U.S., Costa Rica and Honduras tied on four points. The top three nations qualify for next year’s tournament in Brazil, with the fourth-placed team playing New Zealand in a home-and-away playoff for another berth.
After an exhibition game against Paraguay Aug. 14, Germany has World Cup qualifiers against Austria and the Faroe Islands in September.
The women’s game in Toronto was scoreless until the 70th minute, when Morgan collected a pass from Abby Wambach and beat two defenders before shooting under Canada keeper Erin McLeod. Morgan doubled the advantage two minutes later and Leroux made it 3-0 three minutes into added time at the end of the game.