In the 2021 Gold Cup final in Las Vegas, the United States men’s national team stunned a near-full-strength Mexico side 1-0. Miles Robinson’s dramatic free-kick goal with three minutes left in extra time was the game-winner.
In the 117th minute, Robinson beat Mexico’s Edson Alvarez to a beautiful Kellyn Acosta cross in the Mexican penalty area.
Mexico will be frustrated for failing to score in the first half, when it dominated the game and had multiple chances, only for American goalkeeper Matt Turner to save the day. But it was Paul Arriola, who struck the outside of the right post around the half-hour mark, who gave the USA the best chance of the first half.
The Americans performed much better in the second half, and by the end of regulation, the game was pretty level. Orbelin Pineda had two of Mexico’s finest chances in the second half, but he couldn’t convert. Near the end of the 90 minutes, Arriola and Matthew Hoppe had the best chances for the USMNT, but both attempts were stopped. As the extra time periods wore on, both teams began to show signs of exhaustion, with few real opportunities before Robinson’s goal.
The United States has won the Gold Cup for the seventh time, and the first time since 2017. Mexico has won the trophy eight times, with Canada the only other country to have done so in 2000.
It’s also the United States’ second big final victory over Mexico, following the CONCACAF Nations League triumph in June (3-2, also after extra time). The focus will next shift to World Cup qualifying, which begins in September.