June 21, 2002

USA v Germany by the numbers.: Germany (W-D-L-GF-GA 3-1-0-12-1) tower over the US (2-1-1-6-6). They have the players with the most goals (Klose = 5) and assists (Ballack = 4). They're also up there in tackles and fouls.

For the US, Brad Friedel stands out as the keeper with the most penalties saved (2). Other achievements are spread more evenly throughout the team.

If the US plays as tightly as they did against Mexico, and shut down Ballack and Klose, Americans may be doing their own crazy dance in the streets tomorrow.

Game on in about six hours. Get ready to cheer your lungs out. And, oh, get your post-match joy and hand-wringing right here.

posted by worldcup2002 to soccer at 12:19 AM - 29 comments

Friedel against Kahn. Low scoring game, I'd say.

posted by etagloh at 12:41 AM on June 21, 2002

Ok, I'll dupe myself into believing the U.S. will win, though the Germans worry me by their extreme modesty in anticipation of this match. 3:2, USA, what the heck. (Besides, The Conspiracy Theory favors the U.S. for its unmined demographic.) :> ..that'll be the last of it, sorry!

posted by ShinyKnows at 12:55 AM on June 21, 2002

Germany's stats are just a bit skewed by their match against Saudi Arabia.

posted by gyc at 01:45 AM on June 21, 2002

I, for one, hope the stats are wrong. After the disappointment of England v Brazil (all credit to Brazil, tho, for taking their chances and toughing out the one-man disadvantage), I'm really ready now for a big upset. But, first a couple hours of shuteye ...

posted by worldcup2002 at 03:50 AM on June 21, 2002

Germany's stats are just a bit skewed by their match against Saudi Arabia. their goals against is still a fair bit better than the US. i do hope the US win though.

posted by juv3nal at 04:12 AM on June 21, 2002

Will be in the pub supporting the USA. Ain't gonna help though. :-( Final = Germany vs Brazil. And who the hell do u support there?

posted by squealy at 04:58 AM on June 21, 2002

By hook or by crook, USA! USA! USA!

posted by Miguel Cardoso at 05:34 AM on June 21, 2002

Sorry to spoil the party but this is why I don't think Americans (at large) will ever 'feel' football - football by numbers doesn't work. I'm not sure that anyone cares about all these spurious stats ('assists' anyone?). Observation is that Americans love them (American Football, Baseball) but in traditional footballing countries nobody takes note. That said, please beat the Germans for us!!!

posted by Brettski at 06:59 AM on June 21, 2002

Great game, that 18 yarder to Pollok for the header in was nice. Does anyone know of a radio feed or an internet site to listen to it at work?

posted by plemeljr at 07:36 AM on June 21, 2002

I begin to understand soccer riots. I want to run out into my cul-de-sac and start overturning cars.

posted by meep at 08:08 AM on June 21, 2002

Damn, damn, damn! Ah well. The better team lost by the sound of it...

posted by i_cola at 08:27 AM on June 21, 2002

ARRRGH. Like two inches from a tie that would have changed everything. Soooo frustrating. Oh well... I have a feeling we'll do pretty well in four years, esp. if the MLS isn't stupid and keeps letting our best get overseas experience.

posted by tieguy at 08:28 AM on June 21, 2002

Is it just me, or was the U.S. non-goal a "Hand of God II" or, more accurately I suppose, "Forearm of God"? It looked to me awfully like the player standing at goal blocked the ball with his forearm. Or was it incidental contact with the ball? Or do I need new glasses?

posted by Bixby23 at 08:48 AM on June 21, 2002

Bixby23, as much as it pains me to say it I think the ref made the right call in that situation. I don't think the ball went in and I don't think it was a handball, any contact wasn't purposeful. I'm sad the US lost but I'm happy we went out in a match where we looked so good. I would've hated to go out in the Poland game. I think we can feel very proud of what we accomplished. That German team sure is tough and Kahn really did tip the game in their favor. Excellent match. Being in Columbus, Ohio I can tell you this - this town at least is soccer crazy. We're having THOUSANDS show up at our local pitch to watch the World Cup matches and not just the US ones. We have US natives cheering next to this town's sizable Somali and Ethiopian immigrant population during Senegal matches. There's a large German population here (we have an area of town called German Village that is filled with em) and they've been a fixture at Crew Stadium for the matches. The best part? Our MLS games are getting record attendance and my coworkers are not just showing patience but actual enjoyment in my long winded football rants as the Cup has gone on. This has been the first World Cup I've followed closely and I'm a 100% convert to the sport now. It still can't beat American Football in my heart but it's a damn close second.

posted by elsoltano at 08:56 AM on June 21, 2002

All right I'm now a soccer fan, where do I get my fix when the Cup ends? I live in New England I know we have the Revolution, and what about seeing some club action from England. As for the US effort this morning, all I have to say is damm, they played great, but couldn't put the ball in the net. IMHO the US team got better in every match they played. Who to root for now? GO KOREA!

posted by jbou at 09:01 AM on June 21, 2002

Oh one more quick thing about the game's acceptance in America - the Cup matches were so popular when show in the Columbus Crew Stadium that they're now going to show England Premier League matches there this season! Excellent!

posted by elsoltano at 09:04 AM on June 21, 2002

jbou: Go support the Revolution. Adopt them as your club, no matter how crap they may be. The good times mean nothing if you haven't suffered through the bad times first. MLS cannot reach the next level unless fans support what's there now. Bad luck to the USA. They gave a good account of themselves in this Cup. I think the performances will have opened a lot of eyes in Europe.

posted by salmacis at 09:21 AM on June 21, 2002

Damn this was close. Both games today actually. Germany and Brazil keep scraping through. I'm telling you I'd love to see them play for the third place, if only to finally see them play. Too bad that they are both far, far away from their best. Well... I hope Senegal and Korea win tomorrow, hopefully convincingly so that they'll have oodles of self-confidence. Also, good game for the US, it's a shame they couldn't equalize. They deserved it. It's just hard to get the ball at the goal when there are 11 players in the penalty area. Though the Germans have to take credit for managing to marshal their defences after looking shaky for the first half. And Oliver Kahn was truly amazing. Landon Donovan was unlucky, against every other goalkeeper in the quarterfinals it would have been in. Oh well.

posted by Kattullus at 09:28 AM on June 21, 2002

USA acquitted themselves admirably well against Germany, much better than England against Brazil (esp., since Brazil had Ronaldinho sent off at the start of the second half). But for some near misses and Kahn being in the right place at the right time, USA might have pulled off a super upset. The handball was a close call, but I concur with elsoltano that it was not intentional and was a fair call. Also, Klose's header that hit the post had Freidel well-beaten and could have easily ended the game. At least the US didn't give away the howler that Seaman did. I'm glad to see the US didn't sit on the ball, but rather tried to make some constructive plays. (Which can't be said of England.) Reyna and Sanneh were all over the field. Donovan was courageous and confident in taking on the German defense. You really couldn't have asked for more. (Yes, I'm disappointed with both losses.) btw, elsoltano: You're a lucky bugger. That bit about the fans and EPL games being screened at Columbus Crew stadium almost makes me want to move back to Buckeye capital. *snif*

posted by worldcup2002 at 09:43 AM on June 21, 2002

elsontano: And Columbus Crew hold the honour of having the first purpose-built 'soccer' stadium in the US right? jbou: Go for the Revolution...they used to have the highest support & I've heard that the crowd are the most passionate in the MLS. Fox or ESPN used to show live Premiership matches on PPV and there was a really good 2 hour highlights show on a Monday somewhere along the way...no doubt NER fans could point the way.

posted by i_cola at 09:58 AM on June 21, 2002

i_cola: that's right! jbou: Salmacis and I_Cola are dead on. Go support the Revolution, living through the bad and the good are the best part of sports. And it's not like the Rev. are a bad team, all the MLS teams are rather close. So today was bad with England and US going out, now it's time to cast about for the next teams to cheer for. It's Senegal and S. Korea for me now.

posted by elsoltano at 10:21 AM on June 21, 2002

I try yo make the drive up to Columbus at least 3 times a year to catch a Crew game, gonna have to increase that number. I must say I've never been this content after a loss in any other sport. It was a great game on both sides and was a major step forwad for US soccer.

posted by mick at 10:44 AM on June 21, 2002

Senegal and Korea for me, too. We've been spoilt on a diet of upsets this World Cup. And I don't want it to end! Senegal! Senegal! Senegal!

posted by worldcup2002 at 11:46 AM on June 21, 2002

Yeah, support the Revs. They are crap but only marginally more crap than the rest of the league, which can make for fun games. And indeed, you have to suffer to truly enjoy the good times. As far as watching premiership games, Fox Sports World shows a couple of games a week, if that's available in your area. I know it's on satellite, and Digital Cable here in Southern California at least. The Pay Per View games are pretty ridiculous, being 19.95 per game or whatever. Regular Fox Sports Channel used to have a Premiership highlights show but it was cancelled due to ratings slightly below those Tony Robbins infomercials. Once again I refer people to soccertv.com

posted by kafkaesque at 02:09 PM on June 21, 2002

Fuck Germany and Fuck Brazil. Aaaah, nice to get that out of my system. jbuo: what people have said about supporting the Revs is right. Football is all about supporting your local team, however crap they are. Tell that to the Manure scummers. Oh, and lobby your govt. to have Premiership football available without PPV. Here in England, our crap govt. at least made sure the World Cup was available to all at no cost. Did I say Fuck Brazil?

posted by squealy at 08:00 PM on June 21, 2002

Hey, why does everyone hate the Germans? Aside from the part where they used to invade other countries, of course. Is it the way they play, their past World Cup sucesses, or just a general dislike of their country? Again, I apologize for my ignorance here, but I'm an American and until this year I've just been a casual observer of soccer. And please don't start in on the "Americans don't know football" thing. On the whole it's true, but a lot of us are trying. We really are.

posted by Samsonov14 at 12:44 AM on June 22, 2002

Samsonov, I think part of the reason is because no matter how crap Germany are THEY ALWAYS WIN. And they have a history of grinding down more inventive teams. Contrast this with teams like Spain and England, who always lose no matter how strong the players.

posted by Summer at 05:48 AM on June 22, 2002

As Gary Lineker (approximately) put it: "Football is a game where two teams play with one ball and Germany wins" Well, to be fair to the Germans they've deserved every World Cup and European Championship title that they've won (so far... if they win now it would be a disgrace). However on "off" years (by their standards) they tend to crush the dreams of other nations by grinding down the opposing teams through tough defending and having a team if good for nothing else offensively could always be relied on to score a goal or two from free kicks, whether direct or from a header. They've never won on an off year so far... who knows, that might change this year. What would be worse though, is if Brazil would win... that would be awful. In the semifinals I'll root for Korea but my brain tells me that Turkey are the most likely winners.

posted by Kattullus at 12:55 PM on June 22, 2002

"Yeah, those are the breaks," Reyna said. "But we're not going to cry like the Mexicans did. That's the game of soccer. We had other chances."

posted by skronk at 10:06 PM on June 22, 2002

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