Despite the U.S.'s struggles in the group stage and the fact that Jamaica had yet to concede a single goal in the tournament, the home side beat the Reggae Boyz 2-0 on Sunday to advance to the Gold Cup semifinals. The first goal was scored in the 49th minute when a shot from Jermaine Jones was deflected by a Jamaican defender into his own goal. The Schalke midfielder, who was born in Germany while his father was stationed there by the U.S. military, was credited with the goal, though. And he celebrated his first score for national team with a salute as a father's day tribute to his dad.
From the AP:
"It was a nice little gift," said Jones in postgame remarks translated from German by teammate Steve Cherundolo.
Jones started his international career playing in three friendlies for Germany before FIFA allowed his move to the United States team in 2009.
"It was a sign of respect," Jones said of the celebration.
In the 66th minute, Jones had the good fortune of getting Jamaican defender Jermaine Taylor sent off with a straight red instead of earning his second yellow card for going down a little too easy. With the advantage, the U.S. found a second goal to seal the victory when Juan Agudelo set up Clint Dempsey, who once again put himself in position to score, but this time he actually finished and scored his second goal of the tournament.
Video of both goals right this way....
The U.S. will now get a rematch against Panama in the semis. Maybe this time they'll be able to beat the 67th best team in the world (according to FIFA).
- Jermaine Jones