Rondon breaks Venezuela goalscoring record with double against USMNT

With 24 goals the striker has overtaken Juan Arango as the Vinotinto’s most prolific marksman, as they continued their Copa America preparations

West Brom striker Salomon Rondon is now the highest scorer in Venezuelan history after he shocked the United States with two early goals on Sunday. 

Cincinnati’s Nippert Stadium played host to the weekend’s CONCACAF/CONMEBOL showdown as both the US and Venezuela look to sharpen up ahead of their commitments over the summer. 

The USMNT will be competing at the Gold Cup, while Venezuela vie for South America’s famous old Copa America trophy in Brazil. 

And if Sunday’s game is any indication, the Vinotinto and Rondon look to be raring to go. 

The forward – who impressed during a loan spell at Newcastle last season – needed just 16 minutes to break the deadlock, finishing after a wayward pass from US goalkeeper Zack Steffen had placed his defence under pressure. 

Jefferson Savarino, of MLS’ Real Salt Lake, doubled the scoreline on the half hour before Rondon ensured that the visitors would go into half time with a commanding lead when he made it 3-0 after just 36 minutes. 

And in doing so, the 29-year-old sharpshooter has clinched an all-time landmark for his country. 

With 24 goals Rondon is now the highest goalscorer in Vinotinto history, a mark he has reached in 73 games. 

He overtakes former Venezuela legend Juan Arango, who scored 23 in 129 games before retiring in 2015; striker Giancarlo Maldonado completes the podium with 22 goals, scored between 1996 and 2007.

Should Venezuela hold on to their lead in Cincinnati, victory would be a much-needed boost for a team that has lacked confidence and form recently. 

March’s impressive 3-1 defeat of Argentina, with Lionel Messi in tow, has been overshadowed by a host of underwhelming results with their last three outings yielding draws with Catalunya and Ecuador and defeat to Mexico.

At the Copa America the Vinotinto find themselves in Group A alongside hosts Brazil, with Peru and Bolivia completing the line-up.

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