The U.S. men’s national soccer team faces Germany on Thursday afternoon, June 26, in Brazil. The Germans are the highest ranked team in the “group of death” and are only second in the world to the Spaniards, according to FIFA World rankings. Germany is the third best team according to ESPN’s Soccer Power Index.
However, last week’s Group G matchups came and went with its share of surprises.
The American’s one-goal lead against the Portuguese during last Sunday’s Group G World Cup matchup dangled like a carrot at the end of the stick for much of the five-minute-long stoppage time. But Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo crossed the ball within the last minute of the game to Silvestre Varela for the equalizing goal, disappointing Americans who hoped a win would secure their ticket to the Round of 16.
The U.S. men’s national soccer team had to settle with a 2 - 2 tie against Portugal, putting them in the lead alongside the German national team in Group G with four points. The two teams in each group with the highest points advances to the Round of 16. Teams that win earn three points, teams that tie earn one point and teams that lose get no points. Despite being in the lead ahead of Portugal and Ghana, the U.S. team’s chances of entering the Round of 16 depends on how the next two upcoming Group G matchups go.
The U.S. national team can advance to the next round of the World Cup by beating Germany, which news analysis website FiveThirtyEight gives a 14 percent chance of happening. That’s according to editor-in-chief Nate Silver, who successfully predicted the outcome for 49 out of 50 states for the 2008 presidential election.
However, U.S. and Germany could still advance to the next round of the World Cup if they tie, as reported by NPR. If the teams tie at the end of Thursday’s game, both teams will have five points in Group G. Even if Portugal or Ghana wins its matchup, the winning team will end up with only four points. FiveThirtyEight predicts a 22 percent chance of a draw between U.S. and Germany.
However, their calculations skew in favor of the Germans winning the Group G matchup at 64 percent. The U.S. men’s national soccer team has to watch for strong German counterattacks, as reported by TIME. The Germans racks up many of its goals through free kicks and corner kicks, moving their taller players into the penalty box for headers.
The Americans can still advance to the next round even if they lose their upcoming game, but it depends on what happens in the game between Portugal and Ghana. USA would be tied with the winners of the Portugal and Ghana game at four points, but FIFA has a number of ways to break ties in the group stages.
You can watch the Group G matchup between U.S. and Germany live at noon Thursday, June 26, by tuning in to ESPN or Univision. A full schedule for other upcoming World Cup games on ESPN and ABC is available on ESPN’s website.
You can also follow the action online on ESPN and Univision’s websites. ESPN requires fans to login with their cable subscription information, and Univision will stream the first 56 World Cup matches for free.
If you want to enjoy the World Cup in the company of other fans, several venues in Goshen and South Bend will air the international soccer tournament on their television screens.
Constant Spring offers daily food specials, including sandwiches that are not available during the rest of the week. The venue also carries 50 varieties of beer, 18 of which are on tap, and daily drink specials.
HOURS: 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Tuesday to Saturday.
LOCATION: 219 S. Main St. in Goshen.
BUFFALO’S WILD WINGS
Buffalo’s Wild Wings offers, what else, wings and beer. The Goshen venue also features eight big-screen and 40 flat-screen televisions. Buffalo Wild Wings and Flavor 574 also hosted a World Cup watch party June 12.
HOURS: 11 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday to Monday.
LOCATION: 1829 Rieth Blvd. in Goshen.
Fiddler’s Hearth is a pub in South Bend that offers music, Celtic drinks and food.
HOURS: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday to Tuesday, 11 a.m. to midnight Wednesday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m., Friday to Saturday.
LOCATION: 127 N. Main St. in South Bend.
O’ROURKE’S PUBLIC HOUSE
O’Rourke’s is an Irish pub in South Bend that offers daily drink and food specials throughout the week.
HOURS: 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday, 11 a.m. to 3 a.m. Monday to Saturday.
LOCATION: 1044 Angela Blvd., Suite 103, in South Bend.
How do you think the U.S. men’s national soccer team will do against Germany?