CLEVELAND.- United States Men’s National Team Manager Gregg Berhalter spoke to the media at his pre-match press-conference ahead of Saturday’s 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup Group D showdown with Trinidad and Tobago.
Berhalter was asked about any sort of pressure that may have been taken off the backs of his players after opening their Gold Cup campaign with a 4-0 win over Guyana in Minnesota on Tuesday night.
“For us,” said Berhalter, “I think it’s just step by step. Knowing that Trinidad and Tobago are a good opponent, we have an objective as a group right now to make it to the knockout rounds, and it’s step by step right now.”
As for that next step at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland on Saturday night, Berhalter was complimentary of Trinidad and Tobago’s toughness and tactical organization.
“They’re a tough team to break down,” Berhalter said. “They’re good at staying tight in a low block defensively, and they’ve got a lot of experience within their squad. It’s going to be a good challenge for us.”
As for the keys in breaking down that Trinidad and Tobago defense, Berhalter pointed to the pace of play he wants to see from his side.
“Speed of ball movement will be key,” said the U.S. Head Coach. “Getting in behind their backline, trying to put balls in between their back line and their goalkeeper, really putting pressure on their defense… it’s going to have to be a combination of things, but we have to have to speed in what we’re doing.”
U.S. vs. Trinidad and Tobago will kick off at 8 PM ET, preceded by Panama vs. Guyana. The four teams will then head to Kansas City for their third and final matches in Group D.