The United States had everything on its side. History. A raucous home crowd. And, supposedly, the better team.
The U.S. Men’s National Team may have won their group in the opening stage of the Gold Cup but that doesn’t mean there isn’t much for the squad to improve on.
That guy who bit that other guy, what’s he up to?
You’ll notice the ratings for this World Cup are highest in the Northeast, where folks try rather hard to look most enlightened. And you may also notice by the time the U.S. team lost to Belgium, some of them had already jumped ship.
Belgium defeated the U.S. 2-1 in full time and deflated the American hype and furor around our new favorite sport-of-the-moment. Although we won’t see the USMNT contend for the title, good times and camaraderie were had by all.
Highly physical, probably defensive and anxiety-ridden for sure. Not exactly the kind of happy football that fans have enjoyed so far at the World Cup, but it’s the likely scenario for Tuesday’s second-round match between Belgium and the United States.
The last time the U.S. played in a World Cup in Brazil, just one American reporter was on hand, using vacation time and paying his own way. Sixty-four years later, about 100 credentialed U.S. media members are covering the tournament – and that doesn’t even include staffers from the networks broadcasting the games.
U.S. midfielder Jermaine Jones has a broken nose after Thursday’s game against Germany, but remains available to play in the round of 16 against Belgium on Tuesday in Salvador.
As we get deeper into the 2014 FIFA World Cup there is a growing enthusiasm surrounding the U.S. Men’s National Team. It’s an excitement that started decades ago when the United States was just beginning to make a name for itself in the world of international soccer. Fast forward to now where the U.S. fans have built up expectations to see their team advance into the Round of 16 and beyond.
Now that the U.S. has survived the so-called “Group of Death,” it’s time for sudden death: the knockout phase of the World Cup. The Americans play Belgium on Tuesday night in the round of 16, hoping to show they’re better than the U.S. team that lost in overtime to Ghana in the second round four years ago.