The United States are through to the semi-finals of the Copa America following a 2-1 victory over Ecuador early on Friday morning.
Clint Dempsey proved the difference for the tournament hosts yet again as he scored one and created the other. The performance sees the Americans march through to the next round, where they face the winner of Argentina against Venezuela.
Each side made one change for the tie with Matt Besler replacing suspended DeAndre Yedlin for the US, while Ecuador were without the injured Jaime Ayovi, who was replaced by Michael Arroyo.
Dempsey opened the scoring in the 22nd minute as he latched onto a cross to header beyond Ecuador goalkeeper Alexander Dominguez for a 1-0 lead, which the Americans held onto until half time.
An unusual second half followed suit as Antonio Valencia was red carded following a second bookable offence, with Jermaine Jones of the US also sent off after reacting to the challenge.
With both sides reduced to 10 men, Dempsey’s scuffed effort was turned home by Gyasi Zardes after 65 minutes for a 2-0 lead.
Ecuador fought back with a stunning strike from outside the box with 74 minutes gone, but they could not muster an equaliser, seeing the US progress by virtue of a 2-1 victory.