After a captivating and compelling victory over Algeria in the 91st minute that gave USA the top spot in group C, USA flopped in their first game in the knockout stage and lost 2-1 to Ghana in extra time. They had all the motivation necessary as Ghana kept them out of They conceded an early goal as usual, after poor midfield and defense efforts allowed it almost uncontested. However, the US had a strong comeback that manifested itself in Landon Donovan scoring a penalty kick after Clint Dempsey was taken out in the box making a run. USA had several other attempts and dominated the second half. Michael Bradley should have scored, but kicked it low instead of going top shelf. Altidore also had 2 chances but a heavy first touch and bad positioning ruined both. They went into extra time with the obvious momentum, but succumbed to yet another early goal once the defense got lazy and complacent. The Americans failed to retaliate. However, Bob Bradley understood that you can’t give up early goals and to expect to come back every time. This isn’t a Disney movie with a happy ending like D2: Mighty Ducks, this is the real world.
Soccer is a cruel game sometimes — one minute you’re on top of the world, and next you are at the bottom of the mountain. – Landon Donovan
The real question is will the USA ever be a force in the soccer world? This seemed to be there magical run as everything fell into place at the perfect time. They also managed to win their group with only 1 win; the only other team to win their group with 1 win was Paraguay. If anyone thinks the USA is going to top England in group play consistently is still high off the win over Algeria. USA soccer has gotten better over time, but the talent level is still inferior compared to the greats like Spain, Brazil, and Argentina. While most countries view soccer as a street game and play it however and wherever they can, we still view it as an organized activities with Capri Suns and orange slices. Compared to other leagues around the world, the MLS still doesn’t even compare to the top leagues. I won’t get into the details as Josh already went over the MLS problems, but I won’t get into that. Several players are starting to get chances overseas, but the MLS has some lackluster talent. The reason for this is because soccer isn’t first choice in the US. If you give a kid 4 choices of what sport they want to play professionally, soccer most likely won’t be in the list. There really isn’t a fan base either. While a lot of people got behind USA this world cup, the other 3 years and 10 months they could care less and don’t even glimpse or know what the premier league is. It’s possible that US soccer and the MLS eventually gets better talent (Beckham’s there, Theirry Henry might join up later too), but it’s going to take time. Football and Basketball are kings and will remain to be for some time.