ST. LOUIS — The U.S. national team’s two September friendlies had two notable things in common. There was sod. North Jersey’s MetLife Stadium and St. Louis’s Busch Stadium are nice, but there’s too much artificial turf or dirt, and neither is suitable for soccer without a bit of refurbishment.

There also was the disparity in talent. Mexico and Uruguay were simply better, man for man, than the USA. El Tri brought several big-name players who missed out on the Concacaf Gold Cup triumph to last Friday’s game at the Meadowlands. And Uruguay, although absent the likes of Luis Suárez and Edinson Cavani Tuesday night, still fielded several World Cup quarterfinalists who play for some of Europe’s top teams. The Americans already were without a handful of likely starters through injury or club commitments, then sent Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie and four others back to their clubs between games. They were undermanned.

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