Wil Trapp and Zack Steffen are getting used to good performances with the United States Men’s National Team.
After both Columbus Crew SC players featured for the U.S. against Bosnia and Herzegovina in late Janary, the duo was on the field again for the Red, White and Blue’s 1-0 win over Paraguay on Tuesday night.
For the second consecutive game under interim head coach Dave Sarachan, Trapp was given the captain’s armband and he patrolled the midfield. Steffen played his first 90 minutes for his country in goal after coming on at halftime in his debut. He has now gone 135 minutes with the national team without conceding a goal.
The U.S. earned the win thanks to a Bobby Wood penalty kick in the 45th minute. The penalty was drawn by New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams, who made a great run out of midfield and latched on to a pass, before he was taken down by Paraguayan goalkeeper Gatito Fernández.
Trapp was once again in control playing the defensive midfield position for the Yankees. He was both a help defensively when needed, but also helped connect the backline to the attack. He was efficient with his passing and made a couple of important tackles.
Crew SC’s captain was fouled once in the first half by Atlanta United’s Miguel Almiron in attempting to make a tackle.
Steffen was not asked to do much in his second international appearance. In the first half, he had to make some routine saves and come out on a couple of set pieces. In the second 45 minutes, the goalkeeper had a couple of saves including one on a free kick in stoppage time to keep Paraguay scoreless.
Columbus’ shot stopper was careless on a couple of passes, one in particular in the second half that led to a give away. Trapp bailed out his goalkeeper, coming back to make a sliding tackle in the penalty box.
For a second straight game, both members of the Black & Gold represented their country well. With Trapp as captain once again and Steffen playing a full 90 in goal — despite Bill Hamid on the bench — it appears these two have a future with a national team in flux after not making the 2018 World Cup.
As for what this national team appearance means for the duo and Crew SC on Saturday, head coach Gregg Berhalter said the staff would evaluate them when they returned on Wednesday and make decisions from there.