Can USMNT Advance Past Group Stage of 2014 World Cup?

By Juan Pablo Aravena
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The USMNT had the toughest draw in the upcoming World Cup. While many fans are optimistic about the chances of the team in the tournament, it will be incredibly tough to advance to the next round.

The team managed by Jürgen Klinsmann was selected in Group G, and they will have to battle with Germany, Ghana and Portugal for a place in the Round of 16 of the competition. It is a tough challenge and certainly lots of things will have to go in the team’s favor to clinch one of the two spots in the next round.

On paper, United States’ easiest game is against Ghana, but the African side is loaded with talent on the offensive side of the ball. Players like Sulley Muntari, Kevin Prince Boateng and Asamoah Gyan are deadly when given enough space, and despite the fact that the USMNT also has quality players, the defense will have to be as tight as possible to avoid conceding goals. If they can accomplish that, then the US will have chances in this contest.

Portugal is a tough team as well. Even though most people believe Cristiano Ronaldo is the only threat, the reality is that they also have several important key players. Goalkeeper Rui Patricio is one of the best in Europe, Pepe has a lot of international experience, Joao Moutinho has a lot of talent in midfield and wingers like Nani and Quaresma can play like the best of them on any given day. The USMNT will need to control the ball against Portugal or it will be hard for them to get anything out of this game.

The fixture that appears most complicated is the one against Germany. Die Mannschaft is considered one of the candidates to win the tournamen,t and they are expected to cruise in the Group Stage. The US National Team, however, has already shocked the world a few times when playing against top teams so they can’t be discarded before the game is over.

The USMNT will have a tough time trying to advance to the next round of the World Cup. They are in a dangerous group and will need to be at their best in the three games if they don’t want to suffer an early exit from soccer’s biggest tournament.

Juan Pablo Aravena is a sports writer for Follow him on Twitter @jparavenarant or add him to your network on Google

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