x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

USA 5 Scotland 1 - Donovan hat-trick leaves Scots stunned

LA Galaxy star claims hat-trick as record-breaking crowd watches US stroll to victory over struggling Scots

US players celebrates after scoring against Scotland
US players celebrates after scoring against Scotland

JACKSONVILLE// Scotland boss Craig Levein suffered his heaviest defeat as international manager as the United States cruised to a 5-1 win friendly win.

LA Galaxy striker Landon Donovan bagged a hat-trick in front of a record-breaking crowd of more than 41,000 fans.

Michael Bradley and Jermaine Jones grabbed a goal apiece, with an own goal from Geoff Cameron doing little to ease a humiliating night for the Scots.

"It was a good day for me," Donovan said.

"We wanted to come out and put on a good show. It's not often we get 41,000 people."

Donovan - making his 139th appearance - took advantage of sloppy defending by Phil Bardsley to lash high into the net after just three minutes, after seeing an initial effort blocked by Allan McGregor.

The Americans continued to pile on the pressure and they were celebrating again with 11 minutes on the clock when Jones found Bradley in plenty of space and he unleashed an unstoppable shot from 30 yards that left the goalkeeper with no chance.

However, the Scots hauled themselves back into the match when they pulled a goal back four minutes later.

Phillips found Bardsley and he picked out Miller with a long cross to the back post and the Cardiff forward's header was bundled into his own net by Cameron.

Scotland made their first change after 50 minutes when Barry Bannan was withdrawn to make way for Don Cowie.

Russell Martin and Steven Whittaker were then both thrown into the action but hopes of salvaging the match were dealt a blow when the home side claimed their third on the hour mark.

Jones was the provider again, this time supplying the pass from the right for Donovan to coolly slot past McGregor from 10 yards.

There was worse to come for Scotland when Donovan grabbed his hat-trick five minutes later with an effort that came off the inside of the post and into the back of the net, beyond the grasp of McGregor.

Donovan then turned provider with a lovely cross for Jones to bullet a header past the Scotland goalkeeper and make it 5-1 with 20 minutes to go.

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