Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Analysis: Be proud of U.S. soccer team

Despite a 1-0 loss to Germany in its final group game, the United States advanced to the knockout stage for the second straight World Cup for the first time Thursday. How should U.S. fans feel? Rowdies general manager Perry Van Der Beck, who played 23 games for the U.S. team, offers his expertise.

Was Thursday's performance what you expected from the United States?

I wouldn't say it's what I expected, but we survived. We're still alive, and that's what counts. Going into this game, people were questioning the two teams and what their tactics would be because everybody knew just getting a tie would help both teams advance. As you could see, when Germany came out, first 15 minutes, they were dangerous. We played compact. As the game went on, we started working our way back into it and found ourselves in a situation with a couple of chances.

How much do you think the conditions travel, weather, recovery time — affected the team's sharpness?

I think the conditions were a little bit difficult. But the effort was there, and that's why you have to applaud our players.

How should the casual U.S. soccer fan that is watching his or her first World Cup feel right now?

Well, hopefully proud of the team because you're playing one of the top teams in the world and we got drawn into the "Group of Death." Nobody thought going into the third game we'd control our own destiny. I think they should appreciate just how difficult the group was. They should feel the pride that American fans have for their team and the support everybody is giving them.

Is this a continuation of the upward trajectory of U.S. soccer to advance out of the group stage in consecutive World Cups?

The way I look at it, I don't let one game or one tournament dictate the trajectory of U.S. soccer. If you look at what the team has done in the last 35 months: we were on a 12-match winning streak; we won the CONCACAF qualifying group; we advanced out of the "Group of Death." The progression and the respect that we're going to be given not just nationally, but around the world is going to be very, very positive. Those are the things you need to take out of this result.

Analysis: Be proud of U.S. soccer team 06/26/14 [Last modified: Thursday, June 26, 2014 9:01pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. St. Petersburg's Sebastien Bourdais vows to return for IndyCar finale

    Auto racing

    INDIANAPOLIS — Sebastien Bourdais was in one of the best race cars he'd ever had, so fast that most of his competitors thought he would win the pole for the Indianapolis 500.

    Sebastien Bourdais does physical therapy at the Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana in Indianapolis. Bourdais broke his pelvis, hip and two ribs in an accident during qualifying for the Indianapolis 500 on May 20. He plans to return home to St. Petersburg soon to continue therapy. [Associated Press]
  2. Yellow cards stall Rowdies offense in tie with St. Louis


    ST. PETERSBURG — It's not the result they wanted, but it certainly could have been worse. Neill Collins' 87th-minute header off a corner kick was the reward the Rowdies settled for Saturday night during a 1-1 draw with St. Louis before an announced 6,068 at Al Lang Stadium.

  3. Calvary Christian routs Pensacola Catholic to win state baseball title


    FORT MYERS — Calvary Christian left no doubt as to which baseball team in Class 4A was the best in Florida this season. The Warriors defeated Pensacola Catholic 11-1 in six innings Saturday night at Hammond Stadium to claim the school's first state championship in any team sport. It also solidified a 30-0 season. …

    Matheu Nelson celebrates after scoring on a wild pitch during the first inning, when Calvary Christian took a 6-0 lead.
  4. Numerous lapses add up to frustrating Rays loss to Twins

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — While the Rays made some good defensive plays, threw a couple of big pitches when they needed to and got a few, and just a few, key hits, there were some obvious things they did wrong that led to them losing Saturday's game to the Twins 5-3:

    Rays reliever Tommy Hunter says the Twins’ tiebreaking homer came on a pitch that was “close to where I wanted it.”
  5. Rays journal: Steven Souza Jr. laughing right along after comical dive

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Souza being Souza.

    That seemed to be the best way to describe the entertaining — and comically bad — dive Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. attempted in Friday's game, and the good humor he showed in handling the fallout, including a standing ovation his next at-bat from the …