FIFA WORLD CUP 2014: In a surprise unfolding of events at the Arena Das Dunas, the U.S. vs. Ghana match in Group G, U.S. captain Clint Dempsey scored in the 29th mn. to put the team ahead by 1-0. Incidentally, that was the 5th fastest goal in World Cup history. And Dempsey is the first American to score in three world cups. Very impressive for a country that celebrates NFL and NBA games over soccer. It looks like David Beckham’s tenure in the U.S. has done some good for the sport.
But the U.S. seemed to be struggling for the rest of the game. Ghana wasn’t playing much football but they were tough to get around due to constant fowls and rough marking. Towards the end of the match,Ghana was pushing forward making Coach Jurgen Klinsmann very uncomfortable on the sidelines.
A couple injured players with hamstrung problems worried the U.S. side and it remains to be seen if they will play in future matches – Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley. Andre Ayew scores for Ghana and appears to have run away with the game leaving little time for the American side to score again. In the last 2 tournaments, Ghana kept the US from advancing in the World Cup. And it looked as if Ghana had made a repeat performance.
But a corner from Graham Zusi finds John Brooks at the other end and a Brooks header seals the game 2-1′ in the 86th mn.
Brooks could not believe he scored a header. He told reporters later that he was hoping the ball coming toward him would somehow connect with his head…and it did.
“The U.S. team always has great spirit,” Klinsmann told media. “I said it to the bench minutes before we’re going to get some chances still. So we are still in the game after the equalizer, we just need to kind of push and push and grind it out. That’s what they did. Here comes a set piece we trained over and over and over that stuff. And (Brooks) puts it in, so well deserved.”
Next, the U.S. faces Portugal in group G play.