The United States Men’s National Team headed into their Round of 16 match against Belgium on July 1 knowing what they needed to do — win and move on to the quarterfinals, or lose and head home in sorrow. They went into overtime but Belgium still won.
The entire nation looked on as the United States Men’s National Team faced off against Belgium with a trip to the World Cup quarterfinals on the line. Unfortunately, the biggest sports day in the States in years turned out to also be the biggest disappointment, as the Belgians overpowered Team USA in the end to win 2-1. But it was a nail biting game with everyone blown away by the amazing efforts of USA’s goal keeper, Tim Howard.
USA Loses Against Belgium
It was an intense game! Jozy Altidore was still out with an injury but the rest of the team did their best to win it all and they lost. The game ended with a tie and that’s when things got even more exciting when they went into overtime, with Belgium getting the winning goal. Kevin De Bruyne of Belgium scored the first goal around the 94 minute mark of the game, then it was Belgium’s Romulu Lukaku who scored at the 105 minute mark, a devastating blow to the USA team. But then with a shocking turn of events, USA’s number 16, Julian Green, scored at the 107 mark.
Despite everything that happened, USA’s goal keeper, Tim, is the real hero of the World Cup because he was the iron wall that kept America alive. Tim’s 16 saves were the most saves out of any goal keeper in a World Cup match.
Not only was he a physical presence stopping the strong, youthful, attack of the Belgian offense, but he was the emotional leader of the red, white and blue. Tim came up strong time after time when the United States defense was no where to be found.
After the game he told ESPN: “I will never forget this night.”
USA & Belgium: Their Roads To The Round Of 16
The United States and Belgium were teams heading in different directions out of the group stage of the World Cup. The U.S. thrillingly won their first game against Ghana, and it looked like they were headed to a victory against Portugal in their second match, until Cristiano Ronaldo whipped a cross into the penalty box that resulted in a tying goal in the dying seconds of the game. The mood of that depressing tie (it really felt like a loss) carried over into a lackadaisical performance against Germany, but despite Team USA’s 1-0 loss, they were still able to advance (read: limp) into the Round of 16.
On the other hand, things couldn’t have gone better for the Belgians in group play. Belgium started by coming back against Algeria for a 2-1 win. They then kept up their late-match heroics by defeating Russia and South Korea, both on goals that came after the 75th minute. Those three close wins were good enough to give them first place in Group H.
Clearly, Belgium was able to ride their momentum to a win against Team USA. It was a good run for the boys in red, white and blue. Now I guess we’ll just go back to being awesome at every other sport. As for Belgium, they’re set to take on Argentina in the quarterfinals on July 5.
HollywoodLifers, we hope you got a chance to catch this game!
— Andrew Gruttadaro