The USMNT and Trinidad and Tobago played the second leg of the Copa America qualifier and advanced after a heated encounter where Sergio Dest lost his head in an unnecessary argument with the referee and was sent off after a second yellow card during a 30-second span that put the United States’ place in next year’s Copa America in jeopardy.
While the USMNT visited Trinidad & Tobago they fell 2-1 but advanced on aggregate 4-2 after winning the first leg 3-0 on Thursday.
“I can’t say a lot of things here publicly that we’ve said privately,” Ream said. “It’s a complete lack of respect for the guys that are playing, for the guys that are on the bench. It’s disrespectful to the game itself, to the referees.”
Suffering on Trinidad’s home court for the USMNT
The U.S. was in control until Dest, tested the official’s patience after he did not stop a ball from going out near midfield, and kicked the ball to the other end. That earned the first yellow card from Guatemalan referee Walter Lopez, and the 23-year-old defender then pointed to where no foul was called moments earlier when Andre Rampersad pushed him.
“It’s inexcusable,It was surreal,”
Dest argued with Lopez as Gio Reyna and Ream tried to keep him away, Reyna trying to cover Dest’s mouth. Lopez held up two fingers and flashed a second yellow and a red. Ream and Turner yelled at Dest as he walked off the field.
“It’s concerning because that’s not what we stand for, that’s not who we are as a group,” Berhalter said. “We pride ourselves on staying mentally disciplined, fighting through any kind of condition. Whether it’s good decisions or bad decisions, we’re supposed to follow through and respond appropriately, and that wasn’t the right response from Sergio.”
“He apologized to the group. He said it’s not going to happen again. As a team, the players, the staff, we have to hold him accountable.”Dest will be suspended for the Nations League semifinal in March. He missed this year’s Nations League final after receiving a red card and a three-game suspension for a fight in the semifinal against Mexico.” Berhalter spoke openly