U.S. Group Of Death

December 7, 2013 by  

U.S. Group Of Death, When FIFA unveiled the makeup of the four pots from which teams would be drawn at Friday’s World Cup draw, U.S. national team fans probably spent a good amount of time staring at an inevitability the USA has been facing for some time now.

Avoiding a brutal World Cup draw will be extremely difficult for the Americans, especially after CONCACAF teams were placed in the same pot with Asian teams, thus removing several of the easier potential opponents from the USA’s list of possible group stage options.

Now, the Americans are facing the strong likelihood that at least two world powers will be in their group, and there may even be three juggernauts in the USA group.

How tough are we talking?

Consider that the USA could wind up in a group with Brazil, Italy, and the Netherlands.

Yes, that could actually happen.

That worst case scenario is just one of several “Group of Death” draws that could leave the Americans facing their toughest road to the knockout rounds in World Cup history. Consider it the harsh reality of a World Cup field with few pushovers, and even fewer among the field of teams the USA could be paired against.

As scary as some scenarios might be, it should be noted that history has shown that, at times, seemingly scary draws have worked out very well while seemingly easy draws have led to heartbreak and plenty of nail biting.

Consider the 2002 World Cup. While some revisionist history might suggest the USA had an easy draw that year, it wasn’t thought of as one going into the tournament. The Americans were drawn against a powerhouse in Portugal, a host nation with talent in South Korea, and a European team that went unbeaten in World Cup qualifying (Poland).

The 2002 U.S. team survived that group, with some help from South Korea, and went on to a run to the quarterfinals, and a team that drew little fanfare as a force heading into the tournament left the 2002 World Cup considered by some as arguably the best U.S. team ever.

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