As expected, it was a 3-2-5 in possession with Wynder, Craig and Che along the backline. McGlynn and Vargas were the double pivot. The top line left to right: Wiley, Wolff, Luna (false 9), Sullivan and surprisingly, Jonathan Gomez on the right. Staring Luna as a false 9 and Gomez as a right wing-back was a very surprising deployment of personnel.
Defensively, Varas deployed a 5-2-3 / 5-3-2 depending on the situation. 5-2-3 when they were pressing high and 5-3-2 when they were sitting back a little bit.
With the ball, the U.S. looked a lot like they did in the qualifying tournament. They were committed to building from the back, retain possession and looked to disorganize through a high tempo passing system. When they were able to turn the ball over they were not hesitant to transition quickly. Defensively, it was mostly a high press and a determination to win the ball back quickly when they lost possession.
Overall I thought Varas did a great job changing up the shape and preventing too many counter attacking options for Ecuador. Most of Ecuador's danger came from Angulo, the Anderlecht winger, but Varas adjusted well in the second half and Angulo was much quieter. The United States controlled the midfield and became more dangerous when Darren Yapi subbed in for Quinn Sullivan in the 65th, pushing Diego Luna out wide. Yapi provided a steady target and he did a great job of holding up play and brining others into the attack. Luna was much more dangerous out wide. Daniel Edelman came on for Obed Vargas in the 71st minutes and Niko Tsakiris subbed on in stoppage time for Diego Luna.
The goal sequence started with a long goal kick from Gaga Slonina where the second ball was collected by Owen Wolff who pokd it over to Tsakiris, whose first touch of the game was played nicely into Yapi's feet. Yapi took a good first touch with the outside of his boot and slipped a pass out to Owen Wolff in the left flank. Wolff plays a beautiful switch to Gomez on the right flank. Gomez takes a perfect first touch off his chest coming on his left foot and bangs a shot that the keeper gets his fingers to, but it was too hot to keep from the back of the net. 1-0 USA — what a goal.