Thursday, April 19, 2018
Sports

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.

Comments

Friday’s sports on TV/radio

TODAYAutosXfinity: ToyotaCare 250 qualifying4 p.m.FS1Monster Energy Cup: Toyota Owners 400 qualifying5:30 p.m.FS1Xfinity: ToyotaCare 2507 p.m.FS1BaseballRoyals at Tigers1 p.m.MLBTwins at Rays7 p.m.Fox Sun; 620-AMIndians at Orioles7 p.m.MLBMarlins at ...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Bucs linebacker Kendell Beckwith fractured ankle in car accident

Bucs linebacker Kendell Beckwith fractured ankle in car accident

TAMPA – Bucs linebacker Kendell Beckwith had surgery to repair a broken ankle he suffered in a car accident in Louisiana last week, putting his status for the start of the season in question.Beckwith was passenger in car driven by former L...
Updated: 2 hours ago

High school scoreboard for April 19

Thursday’s scoreboardBaseballDixie Hollins 8, Canterbury 0Northeast 13, Lakewood 3Calvary Christian 5, Berkeley Prep 2
Updated: 3 hours ago
Out early: Here’s the Bucs’ full 2018 schedule

Out early: Here’s the Bucs’ full 2018 schedule

TAMPA — How good can the Bucs be in 2018? Fans will get a good sense in the first three weeks, as Tampa Bay opens the year with three of its toughest games, all against reigning division champions.The Bucs open 2018 in New Orleans on Sept. 9 at...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Lightning’s Hedman a Norris finalist again

Lightning’s Hedman a Norris finalist again

The Lightning's Victor Hedman is a finalist for the second consecutive year for the Norris Trophy, given to the top defenseman in the league. The other two finalists are Drew Doughty of the Kings and P.K. Subban of the Predators, it was announced Thu...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Turns out, Lightning’s Andrei Vasilevskiy is ready for the playoffs

Turns out, Lightning’s Andrei Vasilevskiy is ready for the playoffs

TAMPA — The second period was not even four minutes old Wednesday night when Devils right wing Patrick Maroon skated all alone toward Andrei Vasilevskiy. It was a moment that could turn a game and even a series.A goal and the score would be tie...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Shaquem Griffin: ‘Lightning is going to win the Stanley Cup’

Shaquem Griffin: ‘Lightning is going to win the Stanley Cup’

Former UCF and Lakewood High standout Shaquem Griffin understandably has been focused on the NFL draft next week in Arlington, Tex., where he is projected as a potential second-day pick.But the Lightning's playoff run  hasn't escaped his attenti...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Bucs’ home schedule leaked: Hosting Eagles in Week 2

Bucs’ home schedule leaked: Hosting Eagles in Week 2

The 2018 NFL schedule won't be released until 8 p.m. tonight, but the Bucs' eight home games were posted early — and presumably accidentally — on the team's site, showing what would be a daunting start to the upcoming season.Multiple outl...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Bay area has ‘hit show’ again, thanks to USF

Bay area has ‘hit show’ again, thanks to USF

For the first time since its season commenced, the USF baseball team enters a weekend as the Bulls' feature sports attraction.Basketball ended last month, and spring football ended last Saturday, meaning would-be baseball fans no longer have reason t...
Updated: 12 hours ago
The Mallex Smith effect can take effect for Rays

The Mallex Smith effect can take effect for Rays

ST. PETERSBURG — Mallex Smith has style.Effervescent personality. Pop culture hipness. Sense of fashion with accoutrements.Now the Rays are going to find out if he has game.More specifically, enough game to be a front-line outfielder, even an i...
Published: 04/19/18