When the US faced Argentina in 1999, it was the first encounter between the two sides since the US’ famous 3-0 upset win in Copa America 1995. Of course, four years is an eternity in international soccer, and Earnie Stewart, Cobi Jones, Joe-Max Moore, and Kasey Keller were the only holdovers from that victory.
Like he did a year prior in his masterful display against Brazil, Keller played an enormous role in this game. Argentina coach Marcelo Bielsa would lament that his side could have had 13 goals in this game, but Keller’s play – including a penalty save – behind a makeshift backline kept the match scoreless. This game also deviated from the script of US against Superpowers (excellent keeping, narrow margin of victory, little bit of luck) in that the US generated 14 shots to Argentina’s 17. Tony Sanneh hit the crossbar from a Claudio Reyna free kick, but fortunately for the US, this missed chance merely set the stage for an excellent winner.
In the 88th minute, Earnie Stewart wins a header 35 yards from goal, and the resulting ball pops up toward Roy Lassiter. Rather than challenge the ball, Lassiter continues to run forward, and this movement confuses the Argentina defense, resulting in a deflection that Stewart recovers. Stewart takes a touch toward the corner of the box, and Argentina appears to have numbers back. Moore makes a great late run, and Stewart plays an even better pass, a clever backheel that hits Moore in stride. Without hesitation, Moore unleashes a left-footed strike that accelerates into the far left corner.
At the time, Moore called this goal the biggest of his career. The US won 1-0, and it remains the last victory over Argentina.