For the second time in less than a month, 18-year-old Benjamin Cremaschi converted the penalty to send his team to the next round of a club tournament. This time he sent them to the U.S. Open Cup Finals.
“We’re living the dream, and I’m enjoying it,” Cremaschi told CBS Golazo network in a post-match interview. “I know when I have to go out there, I have to kill it. But I’m living a huge dream.”
It was a bit of deja vu for Inter Miami fans. In the Leagues Cup quarterfinals against FC Dallas, Cremaschi was the second-half sub Gerardo “Tata” Martino made to add life to the attack. He was rewarded when Cremaschi scored a goal just a few moments later.
Martino relied on the 18-year-old again late in the match. He brought him in to start extra time this time, subbing out Leo Campana following his brace. Moments later, Cremaschi didn’t disappoint again, assisting Josef Martinez’s 93rd-minute goal.
Following the match Cremaschi spoke about Martino told him: “I’m fresh. I have legs. I can control the ball and control the game. He told me to circulate the ball, and there’s spaces, and that’s what I tried to do.”
Just like in Dallas, Inter Miami’s tournament hopes rested on a penalty shootout. And just like in Dallas, Cremaschi was the final kicktaker for Miami with a chance to send the team to the next round.
In both instances, the kid cooly converted his kick.
“Sometimes I sit down and really think about the position I’m in, and it’s incredible,” he said. I never believed I was going to be in the spot that I am today. I just know that I have to keep on working and work for more.”