AC Milan ended the year with a much-needed win as they edged past Sassuolo 1-0 at San Siro.

Christian Pulisic scored the only goal in the second half to keep Milan just about in touch with Serie A’s top two.

The Rossoneri went into the contest having picked up only one victory from their previous three league matches, leaving them 12 points behind city rivals and table toppers Inter.

Sassuolo are the only team to have beaten Inter in the league this season but they have been in poor form, having won just one of their previous 11 matches and none of the last four.

Milan had Luka Jovic available after he picked up an ankle injury against Salernitana last time out, and the Serbian was named among the substitutes.

The hosts had the ball in the back of the net after only six minutes when Ismael Bennacer slotted it in but an obvious offside in the build-up meant it was quickly chalked off.

Tijjani Reijnders was the next to threaten with a shot well wide, while Bennacer did well to create a shooting opportunity on the edge of the box but sent his effort just past the near post.

Milan thought they had found the breakthrough 31 minutes in when Rafael Leao drilled the ball into the top corner but he was again denied by an offside flag having mistimed his run.

Sassuolo looked lively on the break and two minutes later Domenico Berardi forced Mike Maignan into the first real save of the match with a long-range effort that was tipped over the bar.

The visitors have leaked goals too readily this season but they would have been happy with their first-half display, and Milan were limited to brief glimpses in the early stages of the second half as well.

However, with 59 minutes gone, Pulisic tucked away the opener, the American timing his run perfectly to meet Bennacer’s pass into the box.

Ruan Tressoldi desperately tried to intercept but could not divert the ball away from Pulisic, and he beat Andrea Consigli in the Sassuolo net.

Armand Lauriente tried to get the visitors back on level terms but he was stretching as he hit his shot from the edge of the box and it was easily stopped by Maignan.

Milan boss Stefano Pioli sent on 18-year-old Kevin Zeroli for his senior debut, and they almost grabbed a second in the 78th minute but Alessandro Florenzi’s well-struck volley dipped just over the bar.

Substitute Samuel Chukweze had the final chance but his search for a first Serie A goal goes on after shooting narrowly wide of the far post.

Luka Jovic opened his AC Milan account as the Rossoneri eased past Frosinone 3-1 at the San Siro.

Christian Pulisic also scored a superb individual effort and Fikayo Tomori put the seal on a comfortable victory before Marco Brescianini’s late consolation for the visitors.

Just one win in five Serie A matches had seen Milan drop off the title pace and Stefano Pioli’s side knew there was no room for error following Juventus’ last-gasp win at Monza on Friday.

Milan were without the likes of Malick Thiaw, Rafael Leao and Olivier Giroud, and full-back Theo Hernandez lined up in the middle of a badly depleted home defence.

A largely uninspiring first half was lit up by Jovic lashing home a superb left-footed volley two minutes before the break.

It was the Serbia striker’s first goal in 10 appearances since joining Milan from Fiorentina in September.

Frosinone, beaten 2-0 at the San Siro by Inter last month, started brightly but Milan had the first opportunity when Yunus Musah’s centre took a wicked deflection and Stefano Turati had to react sharply at his near post.

Milan slowly built up a head of steam and Alessandro Florenzi fired wide, while Samuel Chukwueze’s powerful drive was deflected to safety.

Frosinone full-back Anthony Oyono broke forward but his 25-yard effort went wide as his wait for a first senior goal continued.

The visitors should have taken the lead three minutes before the break after Marvin Cuni dispossessed Tomori.

Cuni had a clear run on goal but the Albania striker lacked conviction and Milan goalkeeper Mike Maignan stood tall to save.

Frosinone were punished for their profligacy within 60 seconds as Simone Romagnoli’s poor pass was picked off by Pulisic, who spotted the unmarked Ruben Loftus-Cheek to his right.

Loftus-Cheek found Chukwueze quickly and, although Romagnoli got his head on the cross, Jovic was waiting to volley in from eight yards.

Milan doubled their lead five minutes after the interval in route-one style.

Maignan’s long punt was brilliantly brought down by Pulisic, who cut across three defenders to present himself with a shooting opportunity.

Turati rushed out to narrow the angle but the American showed great composure to lift the ball over him for his fifth goal of the season.

Tomori added a third after 74 minutes from a well-worked corner routine, the England defender latching on to Jovic’s far-post header to force home his second goal of the season from close range.

Frosinone gained some reward for their determination to keep going eight minutes from time.

Brescianini’s wide free-kick escaped everyone in a crowded penalty area and surprised Maignan, who had no chance of preserving his clean sheet.

AC Milan moved to the top of Serie A with a 1-0 win at Genoa that saw Christian Pulisic score late on before both sides had their goalkeepers sent off in stoppage time.

After substitute Pulisic broke the deadlock by firing home in the 87th minute, the Rossoneri were then reduced to 10 men in the eighth minute of time added on when Mike Maignan was dismissed.

Pulisic’s fellow substitute Olivier Giroud took over from Maignan in goal, and saw the Milan bar rattled moments later – before the drama continued with Genoa keeper Josep Martinez being shown a second yellow card.

With Giroud then making a save in the final few moments, Milan saw out the victory as they managed to take maximum advantage of Inter Milan being held 2-2 at home by Bologna earlier in the day.

Securing a fourth successive league victory and eighth in nine Serie A games, Stefano Pioli’s went two points clear as they replaced Inter at the summit.

Pioli made five changes to his starting line-up from the 0-0 Champions League draw at Borussia Dortmund, including replacing the front three of Giroud, Pulisic and Rafael Leao with Luka Jovic, Samuel Chukwueze and Noah Okafor.

Two of that trio brought in almost combined for an early goal, with Chukwueze lofting the ball forward and Okafor just unable to finish as Martinez grabbed it.

The hosts then appealed for a penalty when Johan Vasquez went down in a tangle with Alessandro Florenzi but nothing was given.

A spell of Milan pressure around the quarter-hour mark saw Martinez deal with a shot from Florenzi and then block Tijjani Reijnders’ strike.

Florenzi subsequently got himself in the way of a Vasquez shot, before Theo Fernandez and Florenzi hit drives off-target.

After Pioli opted to bring on Pulisic and Leao for Chukwueze and Okafor at the interval, Milan continued to be frustrated in their search for a breakthrough early in the second half, struggling to fashion much in attack.

Leao then saw Martinez make a fine save to tip his bouncing header over the bar in the 65th minute, shortly before Giroud was introduced to the fray.

Genoa then threatened to grab the lead as Radu Dragusin’s shot deflected off Reijnders, with Maignan doing well to turn it around the post, and substitute Caleb Ekuban headed over.

It looked as if Milan would miss their opportunity to replace Inter at the top, but Pulisic then controlled a Yunus Musah delivery, turned and fired in, the effort standing after a VAR check for handball.

That proved only the start of a dramatic finale as stoppage time saw Maignan given a red card, via VAR, for clattering Ekuban, Giroud don the gloves, and the resulting free-kick by Albert Gudmundsson diverting off Fikayo Tomori and onto the Milan bar.

Martinez then fouled Musah and was sent off himself, before Giroud came out to bat the ball away from George Puscas as Milan emerged with all three points.

Christian Pulisic has joined the growing number of players to leave Chelsea this summer after completing a move to AC Milan.

The 24-year-old midfielder has signed a contract with the Serie A giants until June 30 2027, with an option to extend for a further year.

Pulisic spent four years at Stamford Bridge after joining from Borussia Dortmund in 2019, making 145 appearances and scoring 26 goals for the Blues.

One of those goals was in the 2021 Champions League semi-finals against Real Madrid, which helped Chelsea into the final where they beat Manchester City.

The United States international also won the European Super Cup and Club World Cup with Chelsea the following season.

Pulisic, who has made 60 appearances for his country and helped them reach the knockout stages of last year’s World Cup, will link back up with former Chelsea team-mate Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who joined Milan last month.

They are among a host of senior players to leave Stamford Bridge this summer as the club rebuilds under new boss Mauricio Pochettino, with the likes of Mason Mount, Kai Havertz, Cesar Azpilicueta, Mateo Kovacic and Kalidou Koulibaly also moving on.

Christian Pulisic believes the United States can take confidence from setting a record for away goals as they thumped Grenada.

In winning 7-1 on Friday in the CONCACAF Nations League, it was the first time they had scored seven goals in a match taking place outside the US.

It was USA's first competitive match since the World Cup, with Ricardo Pepi and Weston McKennie each scoring twice.

Chelsea star Pulisic also got on the scoresheet, and had a hand in four other goals too.

"We came out really strong with a lot of energy and just kind of put with them right away," Pulisic said.

"So I think they were kind of surprised by that. Took our goals well and just a great all-around performance. Definitely gives us confidence."

The game was also the first time USA played a competitive match without using a single MLS player since the league began in 1996. 

Interim coach Anthony Hudson was impressed by what he saw from his team, but urged them to finish the job as they bid to reach the Nations League final four.

USA are top of their group ahead of hosting El Salvador on Monday at Exploria Stadium in Florida.

Hudson said: "With a [good] performance and a result like this, you don't want to get carried away.

"The importance for us is just to make sure that we do all the right things between now and the next game and we finish the job off. 

"But the actual performance, I thought it was the result of just a really, really good week."

Christian Pulisic has expressed sympathy for Gregg Berhalter amid what he considers a "childish" saga involving Giovanni Reyna's family and the erstwhile United States head coach.

Berhalter's contract with US Soccer expired at the end of December, with the governing body putting any decision on his future on hold amid an investigation into claims he kicked his wife in a 1992 altercation.

The allegation – which Berhalter has admitted to – was brought to US Soccer's attention by Reyna's mother Danielle, who was angered by Berhalter's treatment of her son at last year's World Cup.

Reyna had limited playing time at the tournament, after which Berhalter suggested the Borussia Dortmund youngster was almost exiled from his squad due to poor behaviour.

US Soccer has appointed Anthony Hudson as interim boss, but it also confirmed Berhalter remains under consideration for a new deal when announcing the findings of the investigation this week, and national team winger Pulisic sympathises with the coach.

"I'm not here to appoint the next manager – it's not my job – and whoever it is, I'm going to play and give it 100 per cent," Chelsea's Pulisic told ESPN.

"Everything that happened with Gregg, first of all, has been handled in an extremely childish manner. I think we've seen what's been going on.

"I think it's childish, it's [like] youth soccer, people complaining about playing time. I don't want to go too far into that, but I think Gregg has been extremely unfortunate to get into the position he is in now."

The USA earned plaudits for their energetic performances as they reached the last 16 in Qatar last year, having failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

Asked whether the team required major changes, Pulisic said: "I don't think it's necessary. We are not in a phase like we were after not qualifying, where we needed a complete rebuild.

"We don't need a bunch of new guys coming in. We have a strong core in my opinion, people have seen that and we need to carry on with that.

"It's a tough one for me because we should continue that as soon as we can and build off this World Cup, which I think had a lot of positives in it. We want to get going with that as soon as we can."

Joao Felix has had a mixed start to his loan spell at Chelsea, but the Premier League club are eager to make his stay permanent.

The 23-year-old Portugal forward joined Chelsea on loan from Atletico Madrid in January, getting sent off on debut before scoring on his Premier League return against West Ham on Saturday.

Felix signed for Atletico from Benfica in 2019 on a seven-year contract for a transfer fee of €126 million and extended his deal until 2027 prior to the move to Stamford Bridge.


TOP STORY – CHELSEA WANT PERMANENT JOAO FELIX STAY

Chelsea want to make Joao Felix's stay at Stamford Bridge permanent, according to Relevo.

The Portuguese is on loan with the Blues for the rest of the season from Atletico Madrid, with Chelsea willing to pay €100 million (£88.3m) for his services.

The Spaniards were originally asking for more, believed to be around €130m-140m (£115m-£124m) but may be willing to accept a reduced fee.

Meanwhile, Christian Pulisic could be heading in the opposition direction with Atletico considering a cut-price bid for Chelsea's United States international, according to Fichajes.

 

ROUND-UP

- Real Madrid are monitoring Tottenham forward Richarlison and Juventus striker Dusan Vlahovic, reports ESPN. Los Blancos are looking for long-term replacements for 35-year-old Karim Benzema.

- Neymar's future at Paris Saint-Germain is uncertain with the French champions to place him on their transfer list in the upcoming off-season, claims Foot Mercato. PSG paid a staggering €222m for Neymar in 2017 but are set to move on.

- Chelsea's pursuit of West Ham midfielder Declan Rice could lead them to sell Conor Gallagher and Ruben Loftus-Cheek to raise funds for the deal, claims Football Insider.

- Barcelona have reached a verbal agreement with Eintracht Frankfurt centre-back Evan Ndicka for a free transfer at the end of this season, claims German journalist Christopher Michel.

- Bayern Munich want to sign Manchester City full-back Joao Cancelo for a reduced fee, rather than trigger the €70 million buy option, reports 90min. The report claims a fee around €60m is more realistic.

Gio Reyna's alleged fallout with United States head coach Gregg Berhalter at the World Cup was "a non-story", according to team-mate Tim Ream.

USA reached the knockout rounds on their return to the competition after eight years away, but saw their stay at Qatar 2022 curtailed after a last-16 loss to the Netherlands.

There was a limited role for Reyna, widely considered one of their best players, with just two appearances off the bench throughout the USMNT's run.

Reports pointed to a disagreement with Berhalter over a lack of effort in training, but Ream has moved to settle the story once and for all as the team continue to decompress.

"For us, it's a non-story," he said on his podcast Indirect. "We dealt with it in camp, things moved on, we moved past it and that's where we are. We can put that to bed.

"We addressed it in camp and [Reyna] did what he had to do, and obviously came on against the Netherlands and helped to drag us back into the game. For us, that's it. That's the end of it."

Meanwhile, USMNT team-mate Christian Pulisic also disclosed he has no current plans to leave Chelsea as it stands, though that could change further down the line.

A coaching turnover between Thomas Tuchel and Graham Potter at Stamford Bridge is yet to improve Pulisic's playing time, but speaking on the podcast, the forward stated he is not plotting an exit.

"Right now, I'm absolutely back at Chelsea," he said. "That's where my mind is at, ready to finish the season. But you know in football, things change. Anything can happen."

Everton and Wolves are reportedly interested in signing Atletico Madrid forward Matheus Cunha as the Spanish side look to cash in on their young talent.

The 23-year-old arrived at the club in August last year and, despite making 29 LaLiga appearances, he was only awarded eight starts, scoring six goals and contributing six assists for the campaign.

This season has been more of the same for the Brazilian international, being subbed on in 15 games across all club competitions, while making just two starts. He is yet to score this season.

Sitting fifth in LaLiga with only seven wins from 14 fixtures, Atletico were also eliminated from all European competition by finishing bottom of their Champions League group – and they have decided it is time for some changes.

 

TOP STORY - BRAZIL'S CUNHA BEING PURSUED BY PREMIER LEAGUE CLUBS

According to Fichajes, Wolves and Everton are the two main clubs showing a desire to bring in Cunha, who has eight international caps for Brazil, but was left out of their World Cup squad.

The report states the club needs to part ways with some prominent players for financial reasons, and while Thomas Lemar and Rodrigo De Paul have plenty of suitors, Atletico are more likely to ship off Cunha and fellow Brazilian Felipe.

Wolves are said to be investigating a potential deal to bring in both Cunha and 33-year-old centre-back Felipe, while Everton are focused on Cunha by himself, with no mention of an asking price.

 

ROUND-UP

– 90min is reporting Newcastle United and Liverpool are among a host of teams interested in a loan deal for Chelsea winger Christian Pulisic, but the Stamford Bridge club would prefer to send him overseas to avoid strengthening their competition.

– According to Marca, Real Madrid have decided to make a run at Borussia Dortmund star Jude Bellingham in January after his impressive World Cup campaign.

– Sport claims Real Madrid are no longer planning a move for Manchester City's Erling Haaland after securing 16-year-old Brazilian prodigy Endrick from Palmeiras.

Fulham are the favourites to land Roma right-back Rick Karsdorp, with Lille and Juventus falling behind due to their hesitance for a permanent deal, per Calciomercato.

– Fabrizio Romano is reporting Chelsea will aggressively pursue a striker in January after the ACL injury to Armando Broja.

Cody Gakpo's reputation has grown exponentially during the World Cup having netted three goals for the Netherlands in the group stage.

Manchester United, who are managed by ex-Ajax boss Erik ten Hag, were keen on the 23-year-old during the off-season but no move materialised.

The Red Devils have since parted ways with five-time Ballon d'Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo and are eager to bolster their forward options.

TOP STORY – PSV UP GAKPO ASKING PRICE

Manchester United are ready to make their move for Netherlands forward Cody Gakpo in January, according to The Sun.

However, Gakpo's Dutch club PSV will demand £50million (€58m) for him, claims The Mirror, which is double what they wanted in the off season.

If that asking price is prohibitive, United may opt to switch their attention to Milan's Rafael Leao, who is contracted until 2024.

 

ROUND-UP

Real Madrid's plans to sign Leao will be deferred until 2024, according to Sport. Madrid's sights are set on chasing Manchester City's Erling Haaland, who reportedly has an exit clause from 2024, and Palmeiras teenager Endrick, who cannot move to Europe until he is 18, in 2024.

– Atletico Madrid are looking to sell Portuguese forward Joao Felix in January, reports Marca. Manchester United and Chelsea have been linked with the 23-year-old who is contracted until 2026.

– GiveMeSport's Dean Jones claims Newcastle United are considering Chelsea midfielder Christian Pulisic, who is currently the subject of plenty of speculation.

Arsenal are not making plans to sign a replacement for Gabriel Jesus whose World Cup was ended prematurely by a knee injury, despite there being no certainty on how long he will be out injured, claims Football Insider.

– La Gazzetta dello Sport reports that Inter are in the hunt for a midfielder and weighing up a move for Valencia's United States international Yunus Musah, who caught the eye at the World Cup.

The United States must be proud of their efforts at the World Cup in Qatar, but Christian Pulisic insisted the team "don't want to feel like this again."

A 3-1 defeat to the Netherlands at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha saw the USA knocked out of the competition on Saturday.

While the Dutch had a quarter-final against either Australia or Argentina to look forward to, the USA's focus will now turn to developing their young squad further ahead of the 2026 edition.

That tournament will be co-hosted by the USA, Canada and Mexico, and feature 48 countries, and Pulisic wants to see a team with title-winning quality.

"Right now, it's just tough, you know? It hurts, after a tough loss like that, we feel like we could have had more," he said.

"It's another experience for all these guys, moments that we can be proud of. We don't want to feel like this again. We want to put ourselves in a position to win tournaments like this."

Pulisic missed a golden opportunity to open the scoring three minutes into the game, seeing a close-range attempt saved by Andries Noppert.

In contrast, Memphis Depay slotted away the Netherlands' first big opportunity, with Daley Blind making it 2-0 on the stroke of half-time.

"It happened so early in the game, and he made a good save," said Pulisic, who assisted Haji Wright for the USA's goal, which was swiftly cancelled out by Denzel Dumfries at the other end.

"They defended well for the most part, but I think when their first kind of two real chances went down, they just cut back, execute it, finish.

"We were down 2-0, but it didn't feel like it should be that way. But that's what good teams do."

USA coach Gregg Berhalter is approaching the end of his contract, and did not give much clarity over what his future holds.

Antonee Robinson, however, hopes Berhalter continues in the role as the USA look to build towards 2026.

"I hope so," said the Fulham full-back. "He's given a lot of boys a chance to develop with this group, and I feel like this whole time we've shown the type football we can play."

Christian Pulisic was named in the United States' starting XI for their World Cup round of 16 tie with the Netherlands.

Pulisic scored the USA's winner against Iran on Tuesday, securing their place in the knockout stage, but was sent to hospital for scans on an abdominal injury.

On Friday, it was confirmed Pulisic had been cleared to play a part against Louis van Gaal's team at Khalifa International Stadium, and Gregg Berhalter did not hesitate in throwing the Chelsea attacker back in from the off.

Pulisic has been directly involved in six goals in his past nine appearances for the USA, with four goals and two assists, having a hand in both of their goals so far in the World Cup. 

Josh Sargent, however, did not make the squad due to an ankle problem, with Jesus Ferreira coming in for his first appearance of the tournament.

The 21-year-old scored 18 goals in 35 MLS appearances for FC Dallas this past season.

At 25 years, 84 days, the USA's starting team is the youngest in a World Cup knockout match since Slovakia (24 years, 239 days), also against the Netherlands in 2010.

Van Gaal, meanwhile, stuck with the same team that started in the 2-0 victory over hosts Qatar last time out.

That means the in-form Cody Gakpo partners Memphis Depay in a front two – the PSV forward could become the first Netherlands player to score in each of his first four World Cup appearances, with Christian Vieri the last European player to do so in 1998. 

The Netherlands would love to start playing well, but beating the United States and reaching a World Cup quarter-final is their primary focus.

This has so far been an underwhelming tournament from the Oranje, although they still advanced top of Group A with two wins and a draw from their three matches.

Coach Louis van Gaal told the media to fly home if the football was "so terribly boring", but there is no doubt it is effective.

Discounting penalty shoot-outs, Van Gaal is unbeaten in his 10 World Cup matches as a coach. Only Felipe Scolari (12) and Mario Zagallo (11) have enjoyed longer undefeated streaks to start their finals careers.

The coach appears to have his players on board, as Marten de Roon said: "We are searching, that is clear. We hope it gets better, we all hope so.

"But the first goal is to get through to the next round. We are not deliberately playing badly here. Maybe one of you has the solution?

"Of course, we would prefer to play everyone off the carpet and win 5-0 every time and become world champions, but it is not that simple. Winning counts on Saturday, but how we do it matters less. Even if necessary through penalty kicks.

 

"I don't mind becoming a world champion without having played a good match. The positive is that we haven't lost. That may also give us the confidence that it can only get better."

The Dutch have reached at least the quarter-final in four of their last five appearances at the World Cup, exiting in the last 16 in 2006.

Meanwhile, the United States have lost three of their four last-16 matches, winning only in 2002 against Mexico.

They have only won one of five meetings with the Netherlands – all in friendlies – although that victory was in their last such clash in 2015.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Netherlands – Cody Gakpo

All the talk going into the tournament was around one forward in Memphis Depay, but the Netherlands have a new star. Gakpo put Oranje 1-0 up in all three group games, with David Villa in 2010 the last player to open the scoring in four matches at a single World Cup.

United States – Christian Pulisic

Pulisic expects to be fit for this match despite his injury against Iran, and his return will be welcomed. The winger has scored twice as many goals (22) for the USMNT as any other player in Gregg Berhalter's squad.

PREDICTION

The Netherlands may not be playing well, but the supercomputer expects their winning habit to continue. They are 51.9 per cent favourites for this one.

The United States have a 22.0 per cent chance, while a draw that would spell penalties has a 26.1 per cent likelihood.

Christian Pulisic says he will do everything in his power to be fit for the United States' World Cup round-of-16 showdown with the Netherlands on Saturday.

Pulisic suffered a pelvic injury when scoring the winning goal in the USA's victory over Iran on Tuesday.

The Chelsea forward was substituted at half-time, but hopes to recover in time to take on the Oranje at Khalifa International Stadium this weekend.

A USA team spokesman said of Pulisic's pelvic contusion injury during a press conference on Thursday "it's what it sounds like," but the former captain stated: "No, but at the same time, it's not.

"Like, I didn't get, like, hit in the balls."

He added: "It was very painful. You know, that bone is there for a reason, to protect you, I think. And I hit it well. And it was sore, but like I said, I'm getting better."

Pulisic continued: "I took a knee ... to a nice pelvis area - it was not nice."

The former Borussia Dortmund man is determined to play his part when the USA go in search of a quarter-final place.

"I'm gonna go meet now with the team and the medical staff, and make a decision on [training] today," added Pulisic.

"Just kinda see how I'm feeling, taking it day by day right now. But doing everything in my power to be able to be out there on the field Saturday.

"I will do everything in my power to work with this medical team and make sure that I can play."

Christian Pulisic was decisive as the United States beat Iran 1-0 to secure their place in the last 16 of the World Cup as geopolitics briefly took a back seat at Al Thumama Stadium.

Due to the long-strained relationship between the two countries politically and the ongoing civil unrest in Iran, the build-up to Tuesday's Group B clash was dominated by talk of almost anything but football.

Once the game settled, however, the USA's superiority was abundantly clear and Iran were fortunate to only trail by Pulisic's goal at the break, with Timothy Weah having one disallowed.

Carlos Queiroz's side did at least manage a shot after the break, but the USA had enough to see out a slender – albeit deserved – victory and set up a last-16 clash with Group A winners the Netherlands.

After an emotionally charged opening that saw both sides show purpose, the USA began to probe with the greater regularity.

Weah let Iran off the hook just before the half-hour, taking an early header – which led to an easy save – unaware he had time for the ball to drop.

Pulisic gave Alireza Beiranvand no chance 10 minutes later, though.

Sergino Dest headed Weston McKennie's exquisite pass into the danger zone and Pulisic slammed home while colliding with Beiranvand, ultimately forcing the Chelsea man off at the interval.

Weah strayed just offside before scoring what he thought was the USA's second, and half-time substitute Saman Ghoddos almost capitalised as he headed over just after the break.

Iran enjoyed a lot of late pressure but their efforts did not yield an equaliser, with Morteza Pouraliganji heading agonisingly wide and Mehdi Taremi failing to convert from close range in stoppage time.

Page 1 of 6
© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.