Good evening, grapple fans. If you’re a fan of the United States of America national team, you could be forgiven a pang of deja vu about this evening’s match. The USA opened their 2002 World Cup campaign against Portugal, and their performance in a 3-2 win in that match reinvented many perceptions of America’s place in the football world. Moreover, there were parallels between the Portugal of 2012 and the Portugal of 2014, as well – a team with many desirable pieces that never quite seemed to be assembled in quite the way that they might have been, a team which never quite fulfilled as much as it promised.
Fast forward to 2014, and these two nations are now into their second match of the competition, with castly differing results so far. The USA finally got their revenge over Ghana for elimination in 2006 and 2010 thanks to a late goal in their opening match, but Portugal have a lot of work to do after having lost by four goals to nil against Germany in their opening match. Can the USA get the win that will guarantee them a place in the Second Round of the competition? Will Cristiano Ronaldo end this evening pulling his happy face or his sad face? Find out from eleven o’clock this evening (BST) with Ian King and Rob Freeman. Until then, here’s the teams:
USA: Howard, Bradley, Besler, Beasley, Dempsey (c), Bedoya, Jones, Beckerman, Zusi, Cameron, Johnson.
Portugal: Beto, Bruno Alves, Veloso, Ronaldo (c), Moutinho, Costa, Meireles, Nani, A. Almeida, Pereira, Postiga.
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