US beats Trinidad 1-0, moves closer to World Cup berth

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> The United States beat Trinidad and Tobago 1-0 Wednesday, moving closer to its fifth straight World Cup appearance on a goal by Brian McBride.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:53 IST
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East Hartford:

The United States beat Trinidad and Tobago 1-0 Wednesday, moving closer to its fifth straight World Cup appearance on a goal by Brian McBride 91 seconds after the opening kickoff. The United States dominated throughout, especially after Trinidad defender Dennis Lawrence was ejected in the 41st minute. But it failed to finish at least a half dozen chances and completed the match with 10 men itself when Bobby Convey was sent off in the 88 with his second yellow card. American goalkeeper Kasey Keller had his fourth straight shutout in qualifying, extending his qualifying shutout streak to 417 minutes. The victory gave the United States 15 points from six games, assuring it of finishing no worse than fourth in the final round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying. The top three teams are assured of berths in the 32-team finals field next year in Germany while thee fourth-place team will play either Bahrain or Uzbekistan for another berth. Trinidad remained with four points with four games remaining. The Americans likely could clinch a berth by beating Mexico in their next game, on Sept. 3 at Columbus, Ohio. John O'Brien, the oft-injured American midfielder, made his first appearance in a qualifier since Nov. 11, 2001, at Trinidad, and started the action that led to the first goal. O'Brien took a backpass from Convey, moved upfield and played a 25-yard, left-footed pass that Convey ran onto and crossed to McBride, who knocked the ball in from about 4 yards. It was McBride's 29th international goal, leaving him five shy of Eric Wynalda for the U.S. record, and his 10th in qualifying. O'Brien was paired in the midfield with US captain Claudio Reyna for the first time since the 2002 World Cup, with Reyna playing only his second game for the national team since September. O'Brien bruised his left hip and was replaced by Chris Armas at the start of the second half. Lineups Trinidad and Tobago-Kelvin Jack; Avery John, Dennis Lawrence, Marvin Andrews, Atiba Charles (Scott Sealy, 45); Collin Samuel (Brent Sancho, 45), Aurtis Whitley, Silvio Spann, Christopher Birchall; Stern John (Kenwyne Jones, 55), Dwight Yorke. United States-Kasey Keller; Eddie Lewis, Gregg Berhalter, Oguchi Onyewu, Chris Albright; Bobby Convey, John O'Brien (Chris Armas, 46), Claudio Reyna, Steve Ralston (Santino Quaranta, 72); Landon Donovan, Brian McBride (Taylor Twellman, 83). (AP)

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