Skip to comments.World Cup 2014: U.S. braces for Belgium in knockout stage clash [4pm EDT]
Posted on 07/01/2014 10:02:58 AM PDT by 1rudeboy
SALVADOR, Brazil Every four years, soccer cleans its slate and allows nations to reinvent themselves. Forgotten teams resurface. Small programs make big strides. Champions uphold their legacy or, in the case of Spain this summer, show their age.
For the second consecutive World Cup, the United States is in position for a breakthrough, a fresh narrative, a defining moment.
[From Fancy Stats: How the United States can beat Belgium | What to expect from U.S.-Belgium (not much scoring) ]
Four years ago in South Africa, the Americans won their first-round group in a heroic manner but lost to Ghana on an extra-time goal in the knockout stage. It wasnt an upset; rather, it was a missed opportunity to reach the quarterfinals for the second time in three tournaments and set the tone for the next World Cup cycle.
On Tuesday, the U.S. squad enters a round-of-16 match against Belgium with another chance to nudge the program along a little further. The Belgians are a more formidable foe than Ghana was in 2010, having arrived in Brazil with a stable of top-flight talent and a deserved label as dark-horse candidates to hit the semifinals or beyond.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
I’m not sure on this one. Doesn’t Belgium have a couple of its top players on the injured list? That may help us. And we have been playing strong defense. But this could be as much of a challenge for us as Germany was.
Belgium is fashionable this time. Gonna be a tough match.
It’s all about possession. Dempsey and Bradley (shudder) will make or break us in midfield.
Any word on Altidore? Playing? Subbing?
Coverage starts at 3:30 ET2:30 CT on ESPN.
Sorry....I'm rooting for Belgium.
Belgium is the JV version of Portugal - some great individual players, not so much of a team. I think we can take ‘em. Neither Argentina nor Switzerland are looking impressive either... possible semifinal matchup with Costa Rica brewing?
Klinsman says Altidore is ready to go. Could be a bit of gamesmanship though. Question is does he start or is he a sub. If he’s a sub and then can’t go then you’ve burned 2 subs...
Word is that he’s available. But if he is, I wouldn’t expect him to play the entire match (or he might come in as a sub, especially if we are down).
Belgium is 11-0-2 in their last 13 international matches...
I don’t think CRC gets past the Dutch. Would be fun to see though.
That’s what I’m thinking, a bit of gamesmanship. As bad as that looked, I simply cannot imagine any athlete coming back earlier than at least 4-6 weeks. They never indicated the severity of the pull/rip, but it sure looked bad.
<-——Waiting for August when REAL football starts.
I take it you mean Rugby?
I say dump the pussified NFL and make rugby the sport of sports for us. Soccer, baseball, and NFL are all crap over the last 20 years. NBA still has a little fun in there, but not enough to match a real field game like rugby.
Yep. Pink gloves, and gay players. Have fun.
Crush the Miserable Fat Belgian Bastards!
I assumed he was talking the start of the Premiere League season.
Looks like Argentina just scored at 119. Nice shot on goal by Switzerland — missed.
Yep, things got Messi in the 119th minute.
USA: Howard, Gonzalez, Bradley, Besler, Beasley, Dempsey (c), Bedoya, Jones, Zusi, Cameron, Johnson
BEL: Courtois, Alderweireld, Kompany (c), Vertonghen, Witsel, De Bruyne, Fellaini, Hazard, Mertens, Van Buyten, Origi
Obviously not in formation order.
Note: no Beckerman or Altidore for USA.
How do they figure odds in soccer? 0-0 score 1:1, any tied score 2:1, any score at all 3:1, over 0, under 1
I’m cracking myself up. More scoring would mean more fans. Sorry but I just can’t get in to the whole hype but I still want USA to win
And just let the networks hype, it's their job. Go USA!
The first match was proof you don’t need a lot of scoring to have an exciting match. Switzerland played very well and could have easily won.
Is the match underway?
Starts in about 7-8 minutes.
Enjoy the game, soccer fans.
LOL you must really be old.
I’m 66 and played club soccer in college.
I put it in the category of “fun to play but deadly boring to watch”
All rise. Let’s get it done!
Bradley need to cut the crap and get it together!!
Col, do you know the explanation for the two small blue flags handed over following the coin toss?
Bradley is certainly due to have a good game. If he can play like he did in the second half against Portugal we’ll do alright
FIFA pennants. It is a tradition for captains to exchange gifts before full international matches.
Hmmm. Sound only here. Color bars on the screen. Local problem? ESPN via TimeWarnerCable.
Americans testing both flanks early in the game. Good for them. Belgium is playing four natural center-halves and may be vulnerable there.
Same here. In 1976, we purchased our first home and drove to NJ to see Pele play a game. Our neighbor's son was in elementary school and played soccer. Apparently, in the mid 70s, there was a major push in the US to introduce the sport, beginning with youth. It has taken 40 years to develop a solid US fan base.
I can understand total apathy toward soccer (like I have) but don’t understand the hate.
Thank you for that report. I’ll surf a few channels here before settling for the sound-only experience.
“Headers Head & Haters Hate”
Perhaps it is a poor analogy but scoring in soccer is very much like in hockey. This is an intellectual game, IMHO. If anything, soccer truly fits the definition of football whereas American 'football' rarely involves use of the foot.
Some people don’t like games where scoring means something. Oh, well.
Can you access ESPN GO via web browser?
Just what I was afraid of. More ineffective midfield play coupled with getting carved open far too easily. Belgium could be ahead 3-0 already if they had simply taken the chances open to them.
That Euro announcer is irritating. He sounds like the US is 20 points behind.
Ian Darke is as good as they get. He calls a good game. We have been playing defense for the last 10 minutes, he’s got it right.
Johnson leaves with injury, Cameron on a yellow. USA is getting manhandled at the moment and is forced into a first half substitution. Not good.