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Wednesday, January 18, 2006

World Cup Outsiders 2 - USA

Like the Ukraine who I profiled a few days ago, the United States are definite underdogs at Germany 2006. Americans don't like being underdogs. They like to compete and better yet, they like to win.

Unfortunately, this time around they have found themselves in a group containing Italy and the Czech Republic. And - unlike the 2002 World Cup Finals - no one will be taking them lightly this time.

Nevertheless, I still believe it is just possible for them to get through the group stages. As I said, Americans like to win and it looks likely that the core of their World Cup squad will be the same set of players who were at Korea 2002 - Brian McBride, Landon Donovan, Claudio Reyna. Similarly, tough talking manager Bruce Arena is still in place and knows what it takes to turn his players into a team. So they have the experience.

In my opinion, the USA squad is more talented this time round and with some of their best players now having experience in the top European leagues, they are better placed to compete this time round than in 2002.

Of course, it will need one or both of Italy or Czech Republic to slip up for the USA to progress to the next round, but this is soccer and it's very possible that a 'surprise' USA victory in their opening match against the Czechs could set them up for a good run in the tournament. We shall see.

posted by mark_s at 11:44 AM


Blogger sportinformer said...

well i see the USA going into the quarterfinals.that is my humble opinion.

9:30 AM  

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