Ex-New England Revolution forward Clint Dempsey scored two impressive second half goals to help lead the U.S. to a 4-3 victory over 2nd ranked Germany at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. on Sunday afternoon as the U.S. Soccer Federation celebrated their 100th anniversary. Jozy Altidore gave the U.S. an early lead, doubled shortly after by an embarrassing own goal, and Germany pulled one back after the break before Dempsey’s two strikes made seemingly put the game out of reach. The visitors would make it interesting with two late goals, but couldn’t find an equalizer.
The U.S. squad that lost 4-2 to Belgium on Wednesday was boosted by the additions of Michael Bradley and Fabian Johnson, who both slid into the starting line-up. Germany was still without several key players, but thrashed Ecuador 4-2 on Wednesday with an even more weakened squad.
Altidore opened the scoring in the 13th minute after Graham Zusi found some space down the right flack. The Sporting Kansas City midfielder sent in a perfect cross were Altidore lost his man to volley in past Marc-André ter Stegen to put the U.S. ahead 1-0.
The U.S. lead was doubled in the 17th after a horrendous Germany own goal. The U.S. put some pressure on Benedikt Höwedes on a goal kick and the defender sent a pass back to ter Stegen, who completely misjudged the ball, inexplicably allowing it to pass him into the net to put the U.S. up 2-0 on an own goal.
Germany should have pulled one back in the 19th minute after Schurrle beat both DaMarcus Beasley and Matt Besler cutting in from the right flank. Schurrle was alone in on goal, but sent his shot wide of the post.
Dempsey then came close a minute later, but his shot from the top of the box was tipped wide by ter Stegen on a diving save.
The mid-80s temperature seemed to take its toll as the half wore on with the game slowing down a bit. The U.S. entered the break up 2-0 with few chances for either side in the final 25 minutes of the first half.
Germany came out of the gates stronger in the second half and pulled one back in the 52nd minute off a corner kick. Substitute Heiko Westermann lost Omar Gonzalez and headed it past Tim Howard to make it 2-1.
Dempsey then made it 3-1 USA in the 59th minute after Altidore had some good hold up play on a long ball into the box. Altidore took the ball to the corner of the box, waited for support then sent a cross that fell to Dempsey, who volleyed a shot inside the far post to give the home side another two goal lead.
Dempsey made it 4-1 in the 65th with a fantastic goal. The Tottenham striker got the ball outside the box and launched a left footed shot into the upper corner for his 35th international goal.
Germany got back into the game with 79th minute goal through Max Kruse. The 25 year old striker sent a powerful, well placed shot from just outside the box past Howard inside the near post to make it 4-2.
Two minutes later the visitors made it 4-3 when Sidney Sam hit a shot on frame that deflected on its way towards goal. Howard made the save, but failed to hold the shot, knocking the rebound right to Julian Draxler, who easily hit it past Howard to give Germany a chance.
The U.S. came close in the 88th minute when Jermaine Jones powerfully headed a Brad Davis corner kick on frame, but ter Stegen just managed to tip the shot over the bar.
Germany had a huge chance in the 90th minute to equalize and a claim for a penalty kick, but the referee didn’t whistle for a foul when a Germany forward went down under a U.S. challenge and then Kruse shot was right at Howard, who made the save to preserve the win for the U.S.
The U.S. returns to action on Friday, June 7th with a World Cup qualifier in Kingston, Jamaica.