- Special Features
Blogs & Columns
- Fun & Games
One might think that if anyone is going to have faith in a particular team, it would be the head coach. However, that was not the case with the U.S. soccer team and their coach Jurgen Klinsmann in the days leading up to the World Cup.
Klinsmann, who won a World Cup as a player in 1990 with West Germany, was criticized for comments he made to the New York Times in an article released back on June 4, which revealed his lack of confidence in the capabilities of his team.
“We cannot win this World Cup, because we are not at that level yet.” Klinsmann knows his squad does not have the talent to consistently contend with the best teams in the world, as we saw by the U.S. being dominated by Germany, but he is beginning to believe that, on a given day, the U.S. can pull off an upset over anyone.
The U.S. proved they are a legitimate side in escaping the "Group of Death" by defeating Ghana 2-1, and managing a 2-2 draw with Portugal before falling to Germany 1-0. "You got out of this group, now anything is doable," is what Klinsmann said in a video posted my MLSsoccer.com.
Throughout the tournament, U.S. players and fans talked about the great American spirit that surrounds this team, which gives them confidence going up against anyone. Even the U.S. team's biggest critic, Klinsmann is starting to believe in his team now. The head coach who may have been too grounded for his own good is starting to get caught up in that American spirit we have heard so much about throughout ESPN's biased coverage of the World Cup. "In the knockout stage can we do it? Yes we can."
The U.S. will have to defeat Belgium, who won all three of their matches in group play, if they are to make it to the quarterfinals for the first time since 2002. Klinsmann believes his team can defeat Belgium and advance even farther in the tournament after that, as he told his players not to book a flight until after July 13, the day of the World Cup Final.