Brazil World Cup 2014 Schedule: Group G Fixtures, U.S. Vs. Portugal.2-2
United States 0 2-2
Portugal 1 1-2
First half_1, Portugal, Nani 1, 5th minute.
Second half_2, United States, Jermaine Jones 1, 64th. 3, United States, Clint Dempsey 2, 81st. 4, Portugal, Silvestre Varela 1, 90th, injury time.
United States: Tim Howard; Fabian Johnson, Geoff Cameron, Matt Besler, DaMarcus Beasley; Kyle Beckerman, Jermaine Jones, Alejandro Bedoya (DeAndre Yedlin, 72nd), Michael Bradley, Graham Zusi (Omar Gonzalez, 90th, injury time); Clint Dempsey (Chris Wondolowski, 87th).
Portugal: Beto; Joao Pereira, Bruno Alves, Ricardo Costa, Andre Almeida (William, 46th); Joao Moutinho, Miguel Veloso, Raul Meireles (Silvestre Varela, 69th); Nani, Helder Postiga (Eder, 16th), Cristiano Ronaldo.
With a 2-2 win over Portugal, the U.S. is tied with Germany in Group G with four points each. Meanwhile Portugal and Ghana have a point each. On Thursday, the U.S. will have to deal with Germany and their striker Klose, who has just finished a scoring record set by Ronaldo of Brazil – 15 goals in World Cup career matches. Portugal will take on Ghana in Brasilia simultaneously.
The match against Portugal began with a strong kick off from the Europeans, spear-headed by their star striker Christiano Ronaldo, who has been riddled by a knee injury. Later, the Americans received numerous chances with Michael Bradley’s shot saved by Ricardo Costa in the fifty-fifth min.
Dempsey maintained his reputation as captain with a goal, his second in the tournament, while Jones got a goal in, the third for the U.S. side.
U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsman, who was one of the stars of the World Cup 1990 winning German team will have to lead the U.S. against his own country. If anyone can do it, it should be an experienced former German player like Klinsman – the new generation Backenbaur of sorts.
Klinsman was quoted as saying after the match with Portugal, “Now we have to go out and beat Germany, that’s what we have to do,” adding, “We have to play Germany, we have one less day to recover, we played in the Amazon, they played on a place with less travel. We have to do it the tough way.”
Dempsey who scored an amazing goal in the opener against Ghana in the 30th second (fifth fastest goal in World Cup history), did not seem to have the same ‘stuff’ going into Portugal’s territory. A lot is going to depend on him to score more goals against Germany, a side that has proven to be a goal-scoring machine this World Cup with forwards like Muller and Klose, magnets for the ball in front of goal posts.
“Obviously we’re disappointed, but at the end of the day you’ve got to look at the positives, we got a point,” Dempsey said. “It’s going down to the last game and hopefully we get the job done.”
Portugal vs. Ghana will also prove to be a decisive game, but Ronaldo’s injury has gotten the better of him and his usually game play has been roiled by sitting on the sidelines.