The U.S. men's national team salvaged a result from the September international window, battling from a goal down to tie South American power Uruguay 1-1 in St. Louis Tuesday night.
Jordan Morris's 79th-minute goal was the answer for Brian Rodriguez's 50th-minute opener, giving the Americans something to build on as they head into Concacaf Nations League play next month.
The U.S. managed to earn the draw without Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie and Zack Steffen, who were among the six players released back to their clubs in between Friday's 3-0 loss to rival Mexico in New Jersey and Tuesday's friendly. Uruguay was shorthanded as well, with Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani out injured for the match and the likes of Diego Godin, Nicolas Lodeiro, Cristhian Stuani and Lucas Torreira also unavailable.
The U.S., as Berhalter stated it would, continued trying to build out of the back by keeping things on the ground. It nearly cost the Americans in the fourth minute, when a ball from Jackson Yueill was picked off by the center circle and taken the other way on the counter, only for Aaron Long to kill off the threat.
Uruguay threatened on a sequence that started in its own third a couple of minutes later. Bentancur sprung a decisive pass to Jonathan Rodriguez, who played it out right to Brian Rodriguez. The new LAFC signing found Jonathan Rodriguez continuing his run through the box, but Brad Guzan came off his line and made a sliding, kick save to prevent the goal.
On the other end, Cristian Roldan forced Fernando Muslera into his first save in the 11th minute, snapping a clear header down from the center of the box after a looping cross from the left from Sebastian Lletget.
The U.S. wasn't that far from going ahead in the 16th minute off a set piece. Tyler Boyd curled in a free kick from 25 yards, but it missed the upper left-hand corner by inches, bending away from the post as it reached the destination to keep things at 0-0.
Boyd was inches away from scoring again in the 22nd minute. Morris's cross from the left snuck through to the back post, where Boyd was making his run. The Besiktas winger overhit his first-time chance, though, bouncing it over the bar instead of tapping it in.
The U.S. caught a break a minute later, when Guzan completely spilled a routine ball in the box. Fortunately for him, Tim Ream made the block on the rebound, keeping Uruguay from going in front.
Muslera was called into action in the 38th minute after a confident piece of play by Josh Sargent. The Werder Bremen forward held the ball up in the face of defense from Sebastian Coates, patiently waiting to pick out a teammate. He found Sergiño Dest striding into the final third, and the Ajax fullback forced a diving save from Muslera to keep the match scoreless.
Sargent, who got the start over Gyasi Zardes at forward and was playing in his home town, looked to have forced a handball in first-half stoppage time, as when he tried to turn a header on frame, the ball came off Jose Maria Gimenez's extended arm. But with no VAR in place for the friendly and no call made in the moment, no penalty was given, and the two sides went to halftime at 0-0.
Uruguay went ahead five minutes into the second half. Brian Rodriguez wound up with the finish, a powerful left-footed blast from a left-sided angle, which followed an end-to-end counterattack.
The U.S. nearly pulled even in the 58th minute. Boyd served up a great cross for Morris, who had peeled off his defender and was in position to head back across the goal. Muslera made the clean, diving save, though, not yielding a rebound and keeping the header out.
Morris wound up with his equalizer in the 79th minute. It came off a bit of a fluky circumstance, with Nick Lima, in off the bench, having a clearance attempt go off his chest and loop toward the goal. Morris was left unmarked and chested into a vacated net to make it 1-1.
Here were the lineups for the night:
Here were the rosters for both sides:
GOALKEEPERS: Jesse Gonzalez (FC Dallas), Brad Guzan (Atlanta United)
DEFENDERS: Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas), Sergiño Dest (Ajax), Nick Lima (San Jose Earthquakes), Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls), Daniel Lovitz (Montreal Impact), Tim Ream (Fulham), Miles Robinson (Atlanta United), Walker Zimmerman (LAFC)
MIDFIELDERS: Sebastian Lletget (LA Galaxy), Paxton Pomykal (FC Dallas), Cristian Roldan (Seattle Sounders), Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew), Jackson Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes)
FORWARDS: Corey Baird (Real Salt Lake), Tyler Boyd (Besiktas), Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders), Josh Sargent (Werder Bremen), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew)
GOALKEEPERS: Martīn Campaña (Independiente), Fernando Muslera (Galatasaray)
DEFENDERS: Martín Caceres (Fiorentina), Sebastián Coates (Sporting Lisbon), José Giménez (Atlético Madrid), Giovanni González (Peñarol), Diego Laxalt (Torino), Marcelo Saracchi (RB Leipzig), Gastón Silva (Independiente), Matías Viña (Nacional)
MIDFIELDERS: Rodrigo Bentancur (Juventus), Giorgian De Arrascaeta (Flamengo), Brian Lozano (Santos Laguna), Nahitan Nández (Cagliari), Lucas Torreira (Arsenal), Federico Valverde (Real Madrid), Matías Vecino (Inter Milan)
FORWARDS: Maxi Gómez (Valencia), Darwin Nuñez (Almeria), Brian Rodriguez (LAFC), Jonathan Rodriguez (Cruz Azul)