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USA Marches On!

Today, USA defeated Algeria 1-0.  Today, USA also defeated all the doubters, naysayers, and nonbelievers. All the English fans who weren’t worried about us, all the national pundits who slammed the US team, all the referees who blew calls against us:  Defeated.  And it was so sweet.

Landon Donovan’s 92nd minute strike was the best moment I’ve had as a US Soccer fan, and I’ve been alive for some great ones.  Up until now, that honor went to John O’Brien for his early strike against Portugal in the 2002 World Cup.  Today blew that away.

I was at Tigin Irish Pubs (the official US Soccer bar in St. Louis) for the match and there was red, white, and blue everywhere.

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Wonderful Draw For The USA

US Captain Carlos Bocanegra

Today, the Soccer Gods smiled upon US Soccer for the first time in a long, long time.  The Yanks were drawn into Group C along with England, Algeria, and Slovenia.  That is a very, very manageable group.  After 2006’s Group of Death (and subsequent death-like performance), this year’s group looks like a cakewalk.  It won’t be, of course, but I certainly have more faith going into it.

Perhaps the only thing that could have better for the Americans would have been if they were placed in the host country South Africa’s group.  England, while obviously a top-flight team, has a style similar to the US.  Several players play on domestic teams in the UK and are very familiar with the English players.  The English will have more talent and skill than the Americans, but we only have to play them once and anything can happen in that opening game.

I also have to mention the only other time the USA and England met in a World Cup.  Click here to find out about the greatest upset in American soccer history.

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