PRETORIA, SOUTH AFRICA - JUNE 02: The US national soccer team bus is guarded by South African Police as the teams trains at Pilditch Stadium on June 2, 2010 in Pretoria, South Africa. US will face England in their 2010 World Cup opener on June 12. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
The bus says it all, "Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Victory"
No matter what you want to lay as the "blame" factor for the US to need a win in their final group stage match, is it the inability to finish against England, allowing Slovenia to get a two goal lead, a bad official, or some global conspiracy. The end of it all will come on Wednesday, as the US faces Algeria, and here are the senarios:
U.S. tie and England loss
Tie and England-Slovenia tie, and the U.S. maintains it's +2 goals scored advantage (USA 3 GF, England 1 GF)
U.S. tie and England win
USA Advances and Wins Group:
Win by a greater goal difference than England wins by
Win and England win by same goal differential while the U.S. maintains its +2 goals scored advantage
Win by two or more goals and England / Slovenia tie
Win by one goal and England / Slovenia tie while scoring more goals than Slovenia
I find it funny that they are asking the question on the TV broadcasts, "wouldn't you be happy knowing that the US could advance with a win in their final match?" My answer is no, listen we could have won both matches, the reality is that the US so far has failed to take advantage of their opportunities, they have failed to play solid defense early in matches, and now they find themselves in a situation where they do control their own destiny but they have done that from day one. Now we can only hope that once again the team that has thrived on the come from behind mentality, can do so one more time.
after the jump more US info, including player quotes:
thanks to US Soccer, we get the following quotes
U.S. MNT Defender STEVE CHERUNDOLO
On the challenge of playing as well as they did in the second half across 90 minutes:
"Soccer is a continuous sport, it's changing every minute. A lot of it depends on the opponent, you can never forget the other 11 standing on the other side of the field. That changes the elements of our game continuously. But I think when we sharpen up our passing and have a good attitude of attacking guys and putting defenders on their heels, I think that's when we're at our best. We can move all of our lines forward and put other teams under pressure. That's when we'll create chances, make the other team make mistakes, and we tend to scoop up a lot of those mistakes and reward ourselves."
U.S. MNT Midfielder MICHAEL BRADLEY
On the Algerian team and what they present:
"Algeria is a good team. The performances they put together in the African Cup of Nations were all really good. They didn't start the tournament off great, but they were able to work themselves into it and go on a really good run. Qualifying in Africa, playing teams like Egypt home and away, is not easy. We watched a good bit of tape on them and have a good feel for their players. A lot of guys are comfortable on the ball, but they're still an athletic team that's fit and mobile, so we know it's going to be a difficult game."
U.S. MNT Midfielder LANDON DONOVAN
On what type of game he expects against Algeria:
"It'll be interesting to see how they approach the game. They have no choice but to win, there are scenarios where we could tie and advance so their approach to the game would most likely be an aggressive approach to get a goal and win the game. But they're a team that, as much as we can watch tape and know about their players, as a team they can be unpredictable. On their day they're a very good team. We have to see what the game presents early, but our clear objective is to go out and try to win the game."
Some interesting facts about Wednesday's match:
CLUB MATES: There are three pairs of club teammates who will be on opposite sides in Pretoria tomorrow. Michael Bradley and Karim Matmour are midfield mates at Borussia Moenchengladbach, while Damarcus Beasley, Mo Edu and Madjid Bougherra lifted the trophy together at Rangers in Scotland. Lastly, goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann and Adlane Guedioura share the training pitch at Wolverhampton.
Play professionally in: England (7), USA (4), Germany (3), Mexico (2), Scotland (2), Denmark (1), France (1), Italy (1), Norway (1), Spain (1)
Hometown in: California (7), Texas (3), Illinois (2), Arizona (1), Florida (1), Georgia (1), Indiana (1), Maryland (1), Nevada (1), New Jersey (1), New York (1), Virginia (1), Washington (1), Wisconsin (1)
I will post more info about the Wednesday matches later tonight.
OFF MY SOAPBOX