COUVA, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO – OCTOBER 10: Christian Pulisic of the United States mens national team reacts to the referee’s call during the FIFA World Cup Qualifier match between Trinidad and Tobago at the Ato Boldon Stadium on October 10, 2017 in Couva, Trinidad And Tobago. (Photo by Ashley Allen/Getty Images)
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Fans of the USMNT are furious with the officiating in their first World Cup group stage contest against Wales, thanks in part to some yellow cards.
World Cup officials gave out two yellow cards within the first 15 minutes to the United States men’s national team. Sergiño Dest and Weston McKennie’s aggressiveness got the best of them early on, as is often the case for young teams in their first World Cup game.
For the rest of the contest, Dest and McKennie will have to play with extra caution, or risk forcing the USMNT down a man against a formidable foe in Wales.
In its first World Cup game in eight years, the youngest U.S. men’s team in history created opportunities in the first 15 minutes, but also played with some reckless intent. That didn’t stop USA fans from voicing their concerns with the officiating in the first half.
USMNT fans upset with World Cup officiating
All United States fans can hope for is consistency, and the officials have failed to show that thus far. Christian Pulisic, for one, was dumped to the turf on multiple occasions in the first half. Yet, the officials failed to pull out a yellow against Wales.
As for the players themselves, they cannot afford to get distracted by the refs, or any ulterior motives. With just three matches separating the U.S. from the knockout round, they must find a way to pick up points against Wales, as Iran and England remain capable squads. England, for one, is among the top-ranked FIFA teams in the world. They’re among the favorites to win the entire tournament.
The Qatari refs seem about as up to this as their national team. #USMNT
— stupid weather tweets (@A2302340) November 21, 2022
Wales’ Mepham wipes out Pulisic with a late challenge after he had already let the ball go. Ref lets him off with a warning. Generous decision there.
Are the Welsh getting frustrated? #USMNT have had a LOT of the ball, though not a ton to show for it.
0-0, 35th minute
— Ives Galarcep (@SoccerByIves) November 21, 2022
Something cathartic about the USMNT scoring moments after the refs decided to keep the yellow card in their pockets.
— Chris Rosvoglou (@RosvoglouReport) November 21, 2022
Tim Weah scored the first goal for the USMNT in eight years, thus making fans forget about the sketchy officiating early on in this contest.