USA’s Matt Turner ‘day-to-day’ ahead of Uruguay Copa América clash

KANSAS CITY, Kansas — United States men’s national team goalkeeper Matt Turner is day-to-day and participated in limited training on Saturday, per a U.S. Soccer spokesperson, ahead of the team’s crucial 2024 Copa América group-stage finale against Uruguay.

The USMNT faces Uruguay on Monday in Kansas City knowing that even a victory could see the Americans fail to qualify for the knockout stage on home soil.

“Obviously, a win puts us in the best circumstances to go into the next round, but we’re all confident,” USMNT midfielder Tyler Adams told reporters on Saturday. “We have 11 players on the field that can go toe to toe with anybody.”

A 2-1 loss to Panama on Thursday in Atlanta put the USMNT into its current predicament. Forward Tim Weah was sent off 18 minutes into the match for jabbing an opponent in the back of the head away from the ball, and while the Americans scored the opening goal a few minutes later, they quickly conceded an equalizer before giving up the game-winner in the final minutes.

Turner sustained a leg injury from a collision in the opening minutes and was replaced by Ethan Horvath at halftime, leaving his status for Monday unclear. Fox Soccer’s Jenny Taft reported on Saturday that Turner underwent an MRI on Friday and got “good results.”

Weah, who started each of the team’s first two Copa América matches, is suspended for the crucial game against Uruguay.

Uruguay leads Group C with six points from two matches, while the U.S. sits second with three points, ahead of Panama on goal difference. The Americans could still advance to the knockout stage on Monday with any result against Uruguay, but a loss or draw would then require Bolívia, the lowest-ranked team in South America that just lost to Uruguay 5-0, to pick up a result.

Even a victory for the Americans could see them bounced from Copa América at the group stage if Panama makes up the goal difference (currently +2 in favor of the USMNT) in a victory over Bolivia.

“There’s a lot of different circumstances that can happen in the game that can still put us through for the next stage,” USMNT defender Antonee Robinson told reporters on Saturday.

“In terms of our [thinking], we just have to think that a win definitely gives us the best chance of going through, and if we take care of business on the day and we don’t manage to go through, then it’s unfortunate and what will be will be, and we have to look back to the fact that we let ourselves down in the previous game. But I’d like to think that if we win, we will be going through.”

Adams reiterated the points he made after Thursday’s loss to Panama: If the Americans can keep their cool — and keep everyone on the field — they can compete with the best.

“We know from within what we have to do,” Adams said. “We can’t be naïve; we can’t give people opportunities to make decisions when it goes back to VAR — anything like that, that can affect the bigger picture and our goal. So, again, obviously the last one with Timothy, we talked to him, we talked about it as a team: we just can’t set ourselves up for failure in those situations.”

Uruguay’s eight goals scored this tournament is the best of any team at Copa América. USMNT captain Christian Pulisic said after Thursday’s match that the Americans would need to play the “game of our lives” against Uruguay. Robinson said as much on Saturday.

“It’s definitely going to come down to a massive effort from the team,” Robinson said. “If we’re looking at it realistically, there’s a chance that this is our last game in the tournament, so there’s no reason to hold anything back. We’re all gonna have to give everything in this game.”