Tyler Adams Dec 3, 2022; Al Rayyan, Qatar; United States of America midfielder Tyler Adams (4) reacts after losing a round of sixteen match against the Netherlands in the 2022 FIFA World Cup at Khalifa International Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports

The USMNT survived the “Group of Death,” but when it came to the knockout round, they were out of their depth again. The Netherlands, winners of Group A, scored two first-half goals and then added a third for good measure to defeat the USMNT 3-1 in the round of 16 at the FIFA World Cup.

This is the USMNT’s fourth time exiting in the round of 16 since 1990, only reaching the quarterfinal in 2002.

After an early Dutch mistake resulted in Christian Pulisic failing to get any strength on an open shot, the Netherlands scored early with a passing masterclass, culminating with a goal by Memphis.

Then in the 46th minute, just seconds before halftime, Daley Blind scored with a shot that was very similar to the Memphis goal. A ground cross from Denzel Dumfries to a Dutch player toward the top of the box.

In the second half, Giovanni Reyna was subbed on, and things were clicking a bit more. They had a corner kick that was cleared off the line, and then Weston McKennie had a great chance just minutes later. Another Dutch mistake was squandered as Haji Wright messed up his first touch and couldn’t score, but he redeemed himself a minute later to make it a 2-1 game.

With 15 minutes plus stoppage time left, the USMNT was charging for another goal, and goalkeeper Matt Turner was standing on his head to ensure things didn’t get worse. Unfortunately for Turner, Antonee Robinson completely whiffed on marking Dumfries, who was so wide open he could’ve had something to eat. Dumfries’ volley sealed the game for the Netherlands and sent the USMNT packing.

After the match, there was a wide range of perspectives from the general public. Some were still proud of the team, while others were frustrated. Some pointed out how the Netherlands were the better team, while others were hopeful of what they could do in 2026. None of those feelings are wrong to have; it’s just the multitude of emotions one faces when eliminated from the FIFA World Cup.

About Phillip Bupp

Producer/editor of the Awful Announcing Podcast and Short and to the Point. News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. Highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them.

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