Wednesday, June 23, 2010

USA Wins Group C and Advances to the Second Round of the World Cup

I wasn't going to write about the World Cup again until the first round was over, but today's game obviously gives me a phenomenal reason.

The two final Group C games were played this morning: England vs Slovenia and USA vs Algeria. In order to advance, the US needed at least a 1 goal win over Algeria, or a draw in the England/Slovenia game. It looked very bleak as the 90 minutes came to a quick close with a 0-0 score for the US game and England up one goal on Slovenia. As the final score was posted as England 1, Slovenia 0, the added 4 minutes accumulated for injuries began for the US/Algeria game. And 91 minutes in, US star player Landon Donovan scored an unbelievable game-winning goal to advance the US to the second round.

Of course, you've now heard me say twice that I think soccer is incredibly boring and disappointing to watch on TV. The field is too long/wide, the players look too small, and you can go 90+ minutes without ever getting a winner. But in the last 4 minutes of what I thought was going to be a heart-breaking game begging for all professional sports to have instant replay, I was on the edge of my seat, screaming at the TV and absolutely going wild, which was pretty much the same reaction I had when Donovan scored.

I have officially jumped on the USA Soccer bandwagon (if cheering for your own country can really be jumping on the bandwagon, that is).

If you missed the incredible game-ending play, click here and watch the last 30 seconds of the video called "USA Advances in Dramatic Fashion, 1-0"

So with the United States' win today, they will advance with England from Group C to the second round. The US will play against Ghana and England will play Germany from Group D. Uruguay and Mexico from Group A and Argentina and South Korea from Group B are also advancing. Stay tuned for the other half of the teams coming into the second round in the next two days!

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