The USMNT faces Portugal in Manaus today in the biggest day in United States World Cup history, since last Monday.
I am not impressed with Portugal. It is a great brand name, an old European power with a star-studded roster, but they are not a great team. They had a rough qualification campaign and have yet to really impress on the international stage. I was swinging with confidence even before our result against Ghana, calling for a win against A Seleccao.
Now Portugal is in bad shape. They be a dangerously wounded animal, or they may be pulling a less scandalous “France 2010” by flaming out of the tournament amid injuries and suspensions.
The Group of Death is becoming a knock-down, drag-out cage match of death. I was hoping for some clarity with Germany as the Tiger and Ghana as the lamb, leaving only us and Portugal to battle it out for the second spot in the Knock Out Round. However Germany’s inability to ice the Black Stars complicates our Group. At least three teams will still be alive after today’s game, and possibly all four if we can’t get a result. The United States must play well against Portugal. It is cliché, but we control our own destiny.
Bold Prediction: I have already predicted a win against Portugal. I am gonna get saucy and push my luck. Behind a stellar attack spearheaded by a revived Michael Bradley and a creative Fabian Johnson, the Stars and Stripes control the match. Seattle Superstar Clint Dempsey poaches a goal to ice it, and the Yanks win 3-1