US Comes Back From 0-2 Down and Gets Robbed of a Win- World Cup 2010

I am ecstatic and angry at the same time.  A great comeback by the United States National Team means a crucial point.  But, the US scored a legitimate goal with 5 minutes to play only to have it disallowed for some inexplicable reason.

After we saw 20 brilliantly refereed matches everything went pear shaped for the men in black.  First the Germany-Serbia match gets ruined by a silly, card happy and inconsistent ref.  Then the referee in the US-Slovenia match is not much better.

The US once again showed their failings in defence, and perhaps the lack of proper preparation, or the wrong mindset at the start of games.  Well something is wrong, because once again the US went behind early in a match.  This time they lasted 12 minutes, when Birsa of Slovenia cut in from the right, was given too much space, was not closed down, and put in a wicked shot that Tim Howard just watched go into the net.  The Yanks woke up.

Finally the much anticipated attacks came.  Chances were created, and the outlook was quite positive.  The US looked good to comeback from 1-0 down and to even win this.  Late in the half the US put the Slovenians under considerable pressure.  But luck held up for the Slovenians, a few close call did not pay off for the US.  A quick transition, a couple of nice passes, a  forward kept onside by Onyewu, and suddenly Tim Howard saw himself one on one with Ljublijankic who neatly finished.  2-0 Slovenia at half time.  Surely its over.

Bob Bradley made two changes, took off young Torres and Robbie Findley for Failhaber and Edu.  A strange change when one seeks offence.  Edu is a DM, Failhaber not an out and out striker.  Before the changes could take effect really Cherundolo hit the ball forward, it was missed by the sliding Slovenian LB and the brilliant Landon Donovan run onto it and came into the box from the right with speed.  He had a bad angle, everyone was expecting him to square the ball to the onrushing forwards.  But they both went to the same area of the penalty box.  So Landon just blasted the ball under the bar. Iit was a superb finish, one of the best this World Cup.

Game on, the US back to within a goal and almost a whole half to play.  But it was stop and start for the Yanks.  Some good chances and pressure, and some lulls when they just could not string two forward passes together.  To be fair, Slovenia are a good side.  They immediately started slowing the game down, wasting time, trying to keep possession.  Anything to stem the tide that turned against them.  Time began to run out.  On 82 minutes Cherundolo was involved again.  A long ball from about halfway line went to the top of the box.  Jozy Altidore, who despite drawing a few fouls, was poor all match, got position and out jumped the Slovenian defender.  He flicked the ball into the area into the path of the onrushing Bradley who poked the ball under the bar.  Another very good finish.  Everyone went mad.  The US completed a great comeback against a tough side.  This goal kept in the fight to get out of the group.  But it was not over just yet.

With American supporters, still going wild from the goal just 4 minutes later the Americans appeared to complete the greatest comeback in their WC history.  A free kick was called on Slovenia, Donovan put in a very good cross that saw the ball go to Maurice Edu who finished from up close.  Holy shit, a goal!!  Everyone went mad, including your truly (my neighbours must be wondering what was happening), but then something inexplicable happened.  No goal.  What!?  No one but the ref knows what happened to make the ref disallow it.  There was no chance of offside.  And the Yanks were not fouling anyone, in fact there was a very good case to be made for a couple of Slovenian players to be called for fouling the Americans themselves.  But no, the idiot referee called a foul against the US.  Absolute bullshit call.  US was robbed of 2 points by an incompetent ref who made several mistakes this match, like the phantom handball call against Findley.  The ball his his shoulder and face.  yet he was carded for it.

So now now we need help.  Either England needs to win their last two games and the US need to beat Algeria, or we need a draw later today.  I am happy and angry at the same time because of the game.  Still, a great comeback.  Too bad it was ruined by some muppet with a whistle.

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5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Ugh…I feel the same. I was finishing my victory lap around the living room when the word “offside” flashed on the screen…truly an awful call to cap of a game with a number of iffy calls. At least our chances to advance are still good.

  2. […] US Comes Back From 0-2 Down and Gets Robbed of a Win- World Cup … […]

  3. Yes, we’re not done yet. But need some things to go our way and we need to convincingly beat Algeria. Hopefully England will put them out of their misery today so they will have nothing to play for.

  4. Bob Bradley needs to FIGURE OUT his line up. Get Onyewu out. How many midfielders is he going to try with his son before he realizes that the problem might lie…. with his son?? Sure he scored a goal, so I’m sure he’ll never be substituted by Pops now, but if the problem is in the midfield and you’ve tried 4 different guys there — and the problem continues — maybe it’s time to change the guy he keeps leaving in there!!

    And FIFA needs to QUIT putting refs from small, poor countries in charge of World Cup games. They are susceptible to bribes (as we learned after World Cup 2002) and Komen Coulibably of Mali appears to be the latest one.

    We Wuz Robbed.

    http://blog.ericmerten.com/2010/06/18/komen-coulibaly/

  5. Agree about Gooch, but I don’t think Bradley is the problem. He is the only complete midfielder US has. Good both in attack and defending (not always mind, but still). There are not better options than Jr. So its not nepotism. Its just that no one else has been able to step up. Bradley might not have the best of games, but he is regularly consistent for the US, unlike the other midfielders.

    Don’t think the ref was bribed, just in awe of the occasion. He did referee the ANC final. But earlier we saw a Spanish ref being utter crap and destroying a game. So its not just the ones from small nations. Lets just hope it was a two off and not beginning of a trend.


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