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Jesús Ferreira becomes first American with back-to-back international hat tricks in US’ dominant victory

Jesús Ferreira became the first American to score international hat tricks in consecutive games, and the United States advanced to the CONCACAF Gold Cup quarterfinals with a 6-0 rout of Trinidad and Tobago on Sunday night.

Ferreira scored in the 14th and 38th minutes against 101st-ranked Trinidad, then converted a penalty kick in the third minute of first-half stoppage time.

“That intensity that the team is going out with is helping me get in the box,” Ferreira said. “We’re all working together. We’re all defending together. We’re all attacking together,”

Jesús Ferreira reacts

United States forward Jesús Ferreira reacts after missing a shot on goal against Trinidad and Tobago during the first half of a CONCACAF Gold Cup soccer match on Sunday, July 2, 2023, in Charlotte, N.C.  (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

Cade Cowell scored in the 66th, four minutes after entering, and Gianluca Busio in the 79th — the first international goal for both. Brandon Vázquez added his third goal in the fifth minute of stoppage time as the No. 11 Americans won by six goals for the second straight game.

A 22-year-old son of former Colombian midfielder David Ferreira, Jesús Ferreira joined Landon Donovan as the only Americans with three hat tricks. Twelve of Ferreira’s 14 international goals have been against Caribbean nations, including four against Grenada in June 2022 and three versus St. Kitts and Nevis on Wednesday.

“When I see his movement and his confidence in the penalty box, you can tell that the game has slowed down for him,” U.S. interim coach B.J. Callaghan said. “All of the work that he’s doing, leading our line defensively, dropping down, helping buildup play, for me he’s having a really complete tournament.”

The U.S. won Group A on goal difference over Jamaica and advanced to a quarterfinal at Cincinnati on July 9 against Canada, Guatemala or Guadeloupe. The Americans have 40 wins, one loss and five draws in the Gold Cup group stage

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Jesús Ferreira celebrates goal

United States forward Jesús Ferreira celebrates his first goal against Trinidad and Tobago during the first half of a CONCACAF Gold Cup soccer match on Sunday, July 2, 2023, in Charlotte, N.C.  (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

The U.S. won its group for the 16th time in 17 Gold Cups, along with a second-place finish to Panama in 2011. Before a crowd of 40,243, the Americans outshot T&T by 23-9.

Trinidad was eliminated, finishing with a win over St. Kitts and a pair of losses. The Soca Warriors denied the U.S. a trip to the 2018 World Cup with a victory at home.

Ferreira put the U.S. ahead in the 14th minute. Cristian Roldan shuffled the ball to DeJuan Jones, who cut back to Ferreira. He settled the ball and poked the ball in from near the penalty spot.

Ferreira doubled the lead in the 38th when goalkeeper Marvin Phillip palmed his initial shot and Ferreira put the rebound in off a leg of defender Sheldon Bateau.

Guatemalan referee Mario Escobar awarded the penalty kick when Alvin Jones pulled down Djordje Mihailovic, and Ferreira sent his kick to Phillips’ left.

Marvin Phillip saves shot

Trinidad and Tobago goalkeeper Marvin Phillip blocks a shot by United States forward Jesús Ferreira during the first half of a CONCACAF Gold Cup soccer match on Sunday, July 2, 2023, in Charlotte, N.C.  (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

Goalkeeper Matt Turner, defender Miles Robinson and Roldan were inserted into the starting lineup in place of Sean Johnson, Matt Miazga and Cowell.

Midfielder Alan Soñora missed the game because of a strained right hamstring and will be replaced on the roster. Midfielder Aidan Morris was allowed to leave camp for what the U.S. Soccer Federation said were personal reasons.

Jamaica, which drew 1-1 with the U.S., advanced with a 5-0 win over St. Kitts at Santa Clara, California. The Reggae Boyz went ahead on an own goal by goalkeeper Julani Archibald, then got goals from Jonathan Russell, DiShon Bernard, Daniel Johnson and Cory Burke.

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