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Colombia Beat USA 1-0 For Third Place In Copa America 2016

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Bacca scored in the 31st minute as Colombia beat USA 1-0 in the 2016 Copa America Centenario’s Third Place clash at University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale on 25 June, Saturday.

Colombia were clearly the better side in the first quarter of the first half and they desperately looked for an early lead.

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James Rodriguez had a chance to open the account for Colombia in the 12th minute but his left footed shot from 20 yards was saved by the former Everton goalkeeper Howard at the bottom right corner.

USA responded well and had a golden opportunity to take the lead in the 16th minute but Clint Dempsey’s first-time strike at the near post took a deflection and went inches over the bar.

Carlos Bacca scored in the 31st minute from an incredible build-up play to put Colombia on the driving seat. James Rodriguez whipped in a splendid ball over the top to pick Arias who launched a header across the face of the goal to find Bacca, who tapped the ball in from a sliding effort to beat his marker.

USA rushed forward and pushed the tempo despite conceding early but they lacked the finishing on the final ball and failed to level the score in the firs half. They had several chances but they lacked clarity in the final third.

The hosts had a golden opportunity to draw level in the 37th minute. Zardes managed to find space and picked out Jones, whose right footed shot from the centre of the box was blocked. Bedoya pounced on the follow-up but his shot at goal went way over the top corner.

Arias proved to be solid at the back for Colombia as he made a stunning intervention to deny Wood from finding the net from close range, in the 38th minute. Dempsey sneaked in a through ball to find Wood at the edge of the box. The striker failed to launch a first-time strike as Bedoya was on his way.He kept control over the ball and had a clean sight at goal, but Arias stuck out his foot to cancel out the move.

The tempo at the beginning of the 2nd half was slow but gradually the sides picked up pace and pushed more bodies forward.

David Ospina documented his name as one of the best goalkeepers in the tournament when he pulled up an incredible save to deny Dempsey’s curling effort from a free-kick in the 52nd minute. Ospina had to cover a lot of distance as he dived full stretch towards the top corner to get a touch to Dempsey’s sensational free-kick from 25 yards.

Colombia almost added to their lead at the hour mark but Juan Cuadrado’s spectacular chip from the edge of the box rattled off the crossbar and the frame of the goal.

Just a minute later Wood had the opportunity to draw level but his left footed shot from the centre of the box smacked off the inside of the far post.

USA maintained the pressure on the Colombian back-line and had a crucial opportunity to pounce back into the game in the 66th minute. Wood spectacularly deceived two defenders and picked Zardes inside the area. Murillo comes up with a brilliant interception to knock the ball away. Dempsey got on the end of it and launched a tricky first-time strike, inches wide of the post.

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Both the teams had a few chances in the dying minutes of the game but they failed to find the back of the net as USA secured the third place in the Centenario .

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