2014 World Cup – United States 2, Ghana 1

The United States opened the tournament with another match versus Ghana.  Ghana has been a thorn in the U.S.’s side the last 2 World Cups.  In 2010, they beat the U.S. 2-1 in the knockout round.  In 2006, again they defeated U.S. 2-1 in the last game of the group stage to eliminate U.S. from the tourney.

This time around was a different result.  America defeated Ghana 2-1.  But the score line doesn’t tell it all. Dempsey scored in the first minute. I honestly didn’t even know how to react, I was expecting to have to bear down as a fan and hope for that first goal, and we had it before I could even ask for it. But from a U.S. perspective, things weren’t so bright going forward. In the 23rd minute, Altidore, our go-to forward with a strong physical presence, pulled up with a bad hamstring. For the remainder of the game, Ghana dominated possession and shots.  I felt like it was only a matter of time before they tied it up, and they did in the 82nd minute.  At this point, I was just hoping we wouldn’t end up with a defeat.  We looked inferior. But football is a funny game, and the better side does not always prevail.  John Brooks, a late substitution, scored a late header to put the U.S. ahead of Ghana 2-1, which was the final result.

Match Stats:

1 Goals 2
21 (8) Shots (on Target) 8 (7)
60% Possession 40%

USA will play Portugal in a few hours. If US wins, they advance and Portugal is eliminated. If not, US will have to get a positive result against Germany in their final group stage match.  Germany tied Ghana 2-2 in their second group match, and has looked strong in their first 2 matches, so I feel as if U.S. needs at least a tie here.  I hope Bradley has a better game and Howard will continue to perform as a great goalie. Altidore will be out, and it will be interesting to see who replaces him – Wondolowski, Johannson, Zusi?

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