United States loses to Belgium 2-1 in extra time and are eliminated from the World Cup

It was a nice run, but the US is going home after a tough loss to Belgium

7/1/14 in Soccer   |   Pat   |   5235 respect

Jul 1, 2014; Salvador, Bahia, BRAZIL; United States goalkeeper Tim Howard (1) shouts after making a save against Belgium during the second half of their round of sixteen match in the 2014 World Cup at Arena Fonte Nova. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY SportsAfter an extremely tough game against Belgium in which US goalie Tim Howard pulled a rabbit out of his hat time after time, the United States just couldn't hold on.

Belgium scored in the 3rd minute of extra time thanks to a brilliant shot by Kevin De Bruyne and some shoddy US defending. They scored again 12 minutes later to give Belgium a seemingly insurmountable lead.

The Belgians attacked aggressively all game, firing off 39 shots compared to only 17 for the US. Howard made 17 saves, many of the spectacular variety, despite finally letting in the game-winner. Belgian goalie Thibaut Courtois only had to make 5 saves.

The Americans played fiercely, but were simply overmatched by a superior Belgian team. They got themselves a goal, the first scored against Belgium by any team in the tournament, off the foot of Julian Green in the 107th minute.

Howard may have been the best player on the pitch, but he could only do so much when the Belgians stayed on the attack nearly the entire game.

Still, this was as good as it gets for the Americans, who have never advanced into the quarterfinals. They still haven't, but this tournament was encouraging, as they reached the knockout stage for the 2nd World Cup in a row for the first time ever.

Congratulations to the Belgians, who now have to face Lionel Messi and Argentina in the quarterfinals.
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7/7/14   |   ML31   |   3675 respect

"Still, this was as good as it gets for the Americans, who have never advanced into the quarterfinals."

Incorrect.  We got to the quarterfinals in 1930 and as recently as 2002...

Still....   This team pretty much did what they should have done and no more.  Good for not failing to meet expectations.  Bad for not exceeding those expectations.  We are now at the point where anything less than the knockout round should be considered a monumental failure.  No matter who is in our group.   And that can only be a good thing for football in America.

7/1/14   |   Scott   |   54671 respect

Tim Howard is the Felix Hernandez of the futbol world.

Seriously though, there is only so much you can do when you have a really bad defense playing n front of you.  Still, I think it's fair to say that US soccer is in good hands with Jurgen Klinsmann at the helm