To get better you've got to play the best teams. That's certainly what Team USA has been doing in the Confederations Cup Tournament in South Africa. Wednesday afternoon they'll play the top ranked team in the world.
Spain is the reigning champion of Europe, ranked #1 in the world by FIFA, and feared by just about any other team. The US won the right to play them in the semi-finals with a great performance in a 3-0 win over Egypt, and a great piece of luck when Brazil beat Italy by the same score. That meant the US advanced over group-mates Italy and Egypt to the semi-finals, in spite of two previous losses.
Those losses were against Brazil and Italy, two others considered among the best in the world. Our team looked a little sluggish against Italy ( being down a man through a player ejection didn't help) and overwhelmed against Brazil. They may well lose against Spain, and maybe that's OK, it's expected. A strong performance though, could reassure the US that they really can compete with the world's best, and that is critical with the World Cup now less than a year away.
If you can, watch the US take on Spain, 12:25 our time. A win would be remarkable, if not quite a miracle on grass. A loss would be predictable. But a close fight would be a big boost. If it takes a game with the best to get better, this is it.
If they do win they'll probably face Brazil in the final....I guess that's yet another chance to get better. Go USA!
We'll talk again soon.
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