A young and inexperienced USA outfit salvaged a 1-1 draw with Chile in an international friendly at the Home Depot Center on Saturday.
Chilean striker Esteban Paredes put the visitors ahead in the 52nd minute with a clever volley past USA goalkeeper Nick Rimando, temporarily silencing the 18,580-strong crowd at the home of MLS club Los Angeles Galaxy.
But the USA drew level through Sporting Kansas City attacker Teal Bunbury, who coolly slotted home a penalty kick in the 74th minute.
Both sides fielded youthful line-ups lacking a host of first-choice names on club duty in the major European leagues, and their inexperience showed early in a tentative first half of few real chances.
Half-time substitutions sparked both sides into action and the visitors took the lead through Paredes, the only member of the team to have taken part in Chile’s 2010 World Cup campaign.
Substitute Felipe Seymour sent a terrific through ball down the right to Fernando Meneses, whose pinpoint cross found Paredes at close range for the Colo Colo attacker to thump home beyond substitute goalkeeper Sean Johnson.
USA captain Dax McCarty was terrific in the midfield and had a hand in what would become the hosts’ equaliser when he sent through 18-year-old substitute striker Juan Agudelo in the 73rd minute.
Aguledo, introduced at the hour as part of a double substitution with Bunbury, raced into the box but was brought down by Sebastian Toro.
Bunbury, in just his second appearance for the US, stepped up to the spot and deposited the ball into the bottom-right corner past Chile custodian Paulo Garces.
USA coach Bob Bradley was pleased with his young players.
“There was a strong response when we were down, and I thought that was quite good,” Bradley told reporters.
“I think we had seven guys get their first cap tonight, and that’s always positive.”
“When you have a young group of guys in camp, at the end of everything you want to put it to the test, and it gives you a good picture of where a lot of these guys are. From that standpoint, it was excellent.”
“When you assess the game, we just need more games like this.”