Monday June 16, 2014 (6 p.m. EST)
Ghana has been a thorn in the USMNT side for the last 2 World Cup appearances. The USA has been matched with them in the groups and has lost both games be a score of 2-1. The latest match was a heart-breaker with the second goal coming in extra time. Here are the highlights:
USA – The Yanks
Coach – Jurgen Klinsmann. Jurgen has come to the US with high expectations and for the most part as started the team on the path towards improvement. In preparation for this tournament, he made a big decision by excluding Landon Donovan from the team. He also has repeated that the US cannot win in this tournament.
Tournament history – Reached the Quarter-finals in 2002
FIFA Ranking – #13
This is going to be an interesting tournament for the USMNT. They are playing in the toughest group, alongside Germany and Portugal, and they are fielding a very green team. In the last send-off friendly, Jozy Altidore was able to break his goal-less streak but I am not sure that he is the problem. I think that our defense is not quite ready yet and will be exploited by the high power teams in our group.
Ghana – The Black Stars
Coach – James Kwesi Appiah. Appointed in 2012, this former national team player is the first black African coach to take a team to the World Cup.
Tournament history – Reached the Quater-finals in 2010. Lost that match with some controversy.
FIFA Ranking – #37
Ghana has a pretty solid team with several of their strikers and midfielders playing for top-flight teams. They have the speed and the skill to compete but their fate is pretty similar to the US when compared to the quality of their group mates, Germany and Portugal
I think that the USMNT will come out strong in this match and produce a win. The Ghanian attack will put pressure and score but I see the US attack being just a bit better and more energetic to prove themselves in this match.