We made it! The result of the match wasn’t pretty, but the United States are through to the knockout round for the second consecutive World Cup; their third in four World Cups as well. Their opponent will be Belgium, who failed to drop points in their Group H run and only conceded one goal. The match will be played on Tuesday at 1 PM PST (4 PM EST).
Here is a look at the performance against Germany:
(GK) Tim Howard- 7
Solid performance in net as per usual. He and the rest of the defense kept Germany at bay for almost 60 minutes and it took a lovely finish from Thomas Muller to beat Howard.
(LB) DeMarcus Beasley- 7
Took a little bit to get into the game and was attacked heavily on his side by the forward runs of Jerome Boateng. After Graham Zusi switched to the left wing, Beasley looked more comfortable defending.
(CB) Matt Besler- 7 and (CB) Omar Gonzalez- 8
Both men were extraordinary in the central defense role. Gonzalez in particular was flying around, making timely challenges that could’ve otherwise resulted in goals. Besler commanded his troops well and is coming into his own at the right time. I think the pair should remain the same heading into the Belgium fixture, at the expense of Geoff Cameron.
(RB) Fabian Johnson- 6
This was easily Johnson’s worst game of the group stage and yet it wasn’t a bad performance at all. He defended well against Tony Kroos and Lukas Podolski. He just wasn’t able to making those dangerous attacking runs because of Davis’ lack of defensive presence in front of him. A player like Yedlin provides good cover for Johnson.
(CM) Kyle Beckerman- 6
Took a yellow card in the 62nd minute, after a give away in the midfield that otherwise would’ve resulted in a chance on goal. Defended well in the defensive midfield role yet again. Jones was pushing up more than usual, so Beckerman had more duties, but handled the task nicely.
(CM) Jermaine Jones- 7
Jones put in another solid performance in the midfield. He made some good tackles and controlled the defensive half well with Beckerman. Had a great forward run, but couldn’t quite latch on to Bradley’s pass over the defense. His collision with Bedoya looked scary at the time, but both men ended up playing on. Jones has said that there’s a possibility of a broken nose, but that is far better than a concussion, which originally looked in question. Certainly the best player for the US throughout group play.
(LM) Brad Davis- 4
Started on the left, but his lack of defending ability could’ve been costly in the early goings on the match. Klinsmann switched him to the right in favor of Zusi, who is a much better two-way player. Didn’t really offer much to the game. Most likely started in order to give Alejandro Bedoya a rest.
(RM) Graham Zusi- 5
Had an excellent opportunity to open the scoring in the 22nd minute with a curling shot from just outside the eighteen, but it sailed slightly over the bar. He didn’t see many other chances after that. Defended very well on the left hand side, assisting Beasley with Boateng and Schweinsteiger in particular.
(CAM) Michael Bradley- 6
Created quality chances for Zusi and Jones, but neither resulted in goals. He didn’t control the ball well at times, but much of that had to do with the surface. Certainly better than the latter two performances.
(ST) Clint Dempsey- 5
Other than his free header at the end of regulation, he didn’t have too many chances. The US’ lack of possession led to a quite game from the captain. The inclusion of Jozy Altidore in the lineup against Belgium would relieve Deuce of some stress and allow him to create more in the attacking third.
DeAndre Yedlin- 6
His pace continues to astonish me and he almost created another goal on the a run down the right flank. Needs to be starting on the right side in front of Fabian Johnson, not only because of his pace but defending abilities as well.
Alejandro Bedoya- 4
Had his shot blocked in second half stoppage time, but should’ve done much better. Didn’t have too much else to do. He defended nicely, but I still firmly believe that he should be left out in the future in favor of Yedlin. Just doesn’t offer that spark to the team on the flanks.