Thoughts on US Chances with ~3 days to go
First off, join my World Cup bracket group.
I got the following excerpt from someone that will remain unnamed:
Oh now I understand why you are heading there for the early rounds and not the finals. Sorry to hurt your feelings, but the teams you are supporting aren’t going to get past the first rounds. Except maybe for England – but I don’t expect them to get near the semis.
I second you on the French though. Hate em and want to see them head back asap. Same goes with Brazil – except that I’ll miss their samba chicks on TV.
I’ve been supporting Argentina and Italy since 98. Hoping that Messi will do great this year and I’m also looking forward to seeing Milito repeat his champions league performance (if they let him play). At least he seems to be in the squad.
The following was my response:
Really, you don’t have the US getting out of the group stage? Who do you think is going to go ahead? I could see Algeria winning the group or not getting a point. They are the most inconsistent side I’ve ever seen.
To be clear, I think the US will go out against Germany in the 2nd round, but it’s really a tough call…
The US’ road could be pretty easy *should they win the group*. They could see a weakened Ghana side in the 2nd round and then potentially Uruguay in the Quarters. In the semis they’d play Brazil, which they proved last summer they can play with, but ultimately they’ll lose that match I think. The US proved last summer they can play in the altitude and the cold of South Africa. Now, I’m not predicting that will happen, but whoever wins Group C might have an easy road to the semis. Even if the US finishes 2nd in the group, Germany has tons of injury problems and Maradona hasn’t proven himself to be a great manager, so even if the US comes 2nd in the group, they could be looking at semi –finals.
There are three x-factors: 1) how do teams play in the cold (the old MLS players have done that in Chicago, New York and New England in the past) and 2) how do they play at altitude (Salt Lake City and Denver for the former MLS players…which is basically everyone on the US squad). 3) How will being in Africa work for the African nations. With injuries, the African nations are looking pretty weak at the moment.
England has looked pretty bad in the warmups and the US has looked pretty good. Now, what to take from friendlies is hard to say but with Buddle and Findley added to the team the US may have found a strike partnership like they’ve never had before. Gomez has been on fine form as well. The defense has been shaky, but hopefully they learned some lessons against Turkey.
It’s pretty exciting that there are no teams without questions. Brazil has no plan B and Spain has injury concerns, despite being the clear favorites.
Please let me know how you feel about this assessment. I’d love to get some good conversation going in the comments!