World Cup Daily Update For June 24
News, notes and links from the U.S. MNT camp in South Africa.
June 24, 2010
U.S. MNT World Cup Update
June 24, 2010
Pretoria, South Africa
U.S. FACES SHORT TURNAROUND: Finishing in the top spot in Group C doesn’t mean the U.S. has much time to celebrate, as there are just two days between the clinching win against Algeria and Saturday’s Round of 16 matchup against Ghana. The matchup marks the second-straight FIFA World Cup that the U.S. has faced The Black Stars. The Round of 16 visit is the third of the U.S. in the last five World Cups, but it’s the first time the U.S. will participate after winning their group. Watch the Ghana match on June 26 live on ABC and Univision at 2:30 p.m. ET (8:30 p.m. local time).
Final Group C Standings
PRESIDENT OBAMA CALLS U.S. TEAM
The day after the historic and dramatic 1-0 victory against Algeria that sent the USA to the Round of 16 at the 2010 FIFA World Cup, United States President Barack Obama called the team and addressed the players and staff via speakerphone. The call came after dinner on Thursday to the meal room at the team hotel. U.S. head coach Bob Bradley first thanked the President for taking the time to address the team. The President then congratulated the players on the amazing team spirit they showed during the unbeaten run through the first round of the World Cup and told them that while he was meeting with General Petraeus in the Oval Office, he could hear the rest of the West Wing erupt when Landon Donovan scored the game-winner. The President then congratulated Donovan on the game-winning goal, asked Tim Howard how his ribs were feeling and asked Clint Dempsey how his lip was doing. The President wished the team good luck on Saturday and made sure they knew that the entire country was cheering them on.
U.S.-ALGERIA ATTRACTS HUGE AUDIENCES
The U.S. Men’s National Team match against Algeria was the highest-rated and most-watched soccer game in the history of ESPN networks, delivering a 4.6 rating (4.0 household U.S. rating), 4,582,000 households and 6,161,000 viewers. The previous households record was set five days earlier with the U.S.-Slovenia match (June 18) – 3,906,000. Excluding holidays, ESPN's coverage of the U.S.-Algeria game ranks as the most-watched weekday morning telecast ever for ESPN, surpassing the U.S.-Germany World Cup match from eight years ago (June 21, 2002) – 4.4 rating and 5,335,000 viewers. The game also marked a milestone for online video, with ESPN3.com logging the largest U.S. audience ever for a sports event on the web. It attracted nearly 1.1 million unique viewers with an average time spent viewing of 43 minutes.
TODAY FROM STUDIO 90
U.S. Soccer’s popular web show Studio 90 features daily shows during the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Here’s a look at the rundown for the June 22 show.
Studio 90: Studio 90 brings you a special post-game edition of the show following the USA’s dramatic 1-0 victory of Algeria in their final Group C match of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. We’ll sit down with assistant coach Mike Sorber to analyze the match and then hear from the players after the emotional encounter in Pretoria.
Studio 90 Extra Time: Today on the show we chat with U.S. defender Jay DeMerit who has played every minute of all three group matches for the USA. We also have an update from the players during the media round tables as the U.S. prepares to face Ghana on Saturday, June 26 at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg.
Sounds from South Africa: On the June 24 episode of Sounds from South Africa, U.S. Men's National Team head coach Bob Bradley gives his thoughts on the USA's win against Algeria to conclude Group C at the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Defender Jay DeMerit is interviewed on ussoccer.com, where he discusses the USA's progression to the next round and also recounts his unique journey through professional soccer to the World Cup.
FROM THE MNT BLOG
A collection of notes, anecdotes and links:
- World Cup baby, baby
- End of USA-Algeria nears internet traffic records
- Midfield giant
- Great greeting
- From our men and women in Afghanistan
- Historical perspective
QUOTABLE: June 24, 2010
For more quotes, visit ussoccer.com
U.S. Men’s National Team Head Coach BOB BRADLEY
On his feelings on having achieved the goal of advancing to the second round:
“That was our first goal, that wasn’t our goal. It would be important to understand that the way we always discussed it was with the understanding that first you have to get out of your group, it’s three games. I think we’ve seen in this World Cup in so many of the groups that results don’t always go exactly as expected. I think all teams go to great lengths to prepare, physically, tactically, so it produces tough moments for everybody. We understood that going in. I think we feel good about the way we handled the first round, the different challenges and the way we responded along the way. But now, when you get to the knockout phases it’s again the opportunity to see how far you can take it. You can feel good about getting there but now you have to quickly put that behind you and focus on your next opponent and that’s where we are right now.”
U.S. MNT Midfielder LANDON DONOVAN
On the other players being overshadowed with so much of the attention focused on him:
“It's natural as human beings to emphasize the person who scores the goal. There are a lot of parts of that play that don’t happen without, not only the four or five people directly involved, but everyone else involved. I spoke last night about the ability of our back four and Michael (Bradley) to keep them at bay while we kept taking chances. That was as little as I’ve defended in a long time because we had to push for a goal and Steve (Cherundolo) consistently shut down (Nadir) Belhadj throughout the night so that I could do that. Without that, the 91st minute never happens.”
U.S. MNT Goalkeeper TIM HOWARD
On whether he had to make any really difficult saves:
“No. Everything was pretty straightforward. We didn’t give up needless corners. Every time the ball went to the endline and got cut back or whipped in, it seems like Jay (DeMerit) and Carlos (Bocanegra) were in really good spots, as were Jonny (Bornstein) and (DaMarcus) Beasley when he came on, tucking in and making sure they were taking things away. That’s where you start to gain confidence as a goalkeeper in a back four. Because, listen, if you’re getting peppered with shots I don’t care how good of a goalkeeper you are at this level, the players are too good for you to stop all the shots. That’s what you want. You’re going to make saves but you want them to be routine saves, straightforward saves, and that’s what happened last night.”
U.S. MNT Forward JOZY ALTIDORE
On what about this team that allows it to come from behind and/or score late goals:
“I genuinely feel that we never feel that we are out of a game. In the 91st minute, Landon is out there clapping and getting guys together. Carlos is out there working extra. Just to see that on the field – you know the game is close to being over – but people aren’t saying o.k. we tied. People are still pushing forward, trying to sort out plays. It’s just great to see that we’re never out of a game.”
FIFA WORLD CUP FACTS: Round of 16
- Germany and England will face off on Sunday, and Germany has advanced deeper into the tournament than England on every occasion since 1966.
- Italy and France, the finalists in 2006, did not advance to the Round of 16. This is the first time that at least one of the top two teams from the previous FIFA World Cup finished outside the top 16 in the next World Cup.
- In 2006 there was one team from CONCACAF and no teams from Asia in the Round of 16, and in 2010 there are two of each.