World Cup: U.S. seems to be to realize respect in recreation towards England

Nobody expects the U.S. to beat England.

The oddsmakers say the World Cup matchup Friday in Al Khor on the sting of the Qatari desert is a large mismatch, like main lambs to slaughter. England is ranked fifth on this planet. It made the semifinals of the final World Cup and the ultimate of the final European Championship.

And the U.S.? Properly, it has accomplished nothing comparable.

“We haven’t achieved anything as a group on the world stage,” coach Gregg Berhalter conceded.

Earlier than you exit and guess the farm on the Three Lions, right here’s a truth to think about: The Individuals have by no means misplaced to England in a World Cup, successful in 1950 and enjoying to a draw 12 years in the past in South Africa. They usually’re not conceding something going into this recreation.

“I don’t think anything intimidates me. Other than spiders,” captain Tyler Adams mentioned Thursday.

Adams is one in every of eight members of the U.S. workforce who performs membership soccer within the U.Okay., and that has helped erase a number of the mystique surrounding the English recreation. Whereas the Individuals respect England, they not concern it.

“England are currently one of the favorites to win the World Cup. People would probably say that we’re the underdogs,” Adams mentioned. “But we carry that with pride. We have to perform in the games and show up. We know that our quality can show and our determination can show.”

If it doesn’t, the present may quickly be over for the U.S. After a tournament-opening draw with Wales, a loss to England can be a major blow to the Individuals’ possibilities to succeed in the knockout phases. Conversely a win would transfer them an enormous step nearer to advancing.

Berhalter mentioned Thursday he expects to have a full squad, with ahead Gio Reyna, midfielder Weston McKennie and out of doors again Sergiño Dest — who’ve all been coping with health points — accessible to play.

Adams, in the meantime, mentioned he sees alternative for the U.S. to take advantage of the best way England performs. Within the U.S. opener, Wales arrange in a low block and allowed the U.S. to have the ball a lot of the evening whereas holding it to only a aim. England, however, performs a possession-based, short-passing recreation. In its first match it had the ball for 70 of the 90 minutes and accomplished 716 passes, the third-most in a regulation-length recreation in World Cup historical past, whereas routing Iran 6-2.

⚽ 2022 Qatar World Cup

“I think it sets up to our strengths in a way,” Adams mentioned. “We feel that one of the qualities of our team, that we’ve built over the past three years, is our pressing. The amount of guys that we have on the team that can get in and around the ball, the athleticism to cover spaces and cover ground. And we play in a very aggressive way against the ball.

“That ultimately sets us up to create a lot of transition moments.”

Regardless of the Individuals’ favorable file towards England, they’ve principally struggled towards European groups on the World Cup, successful simply as soon as of their final 19 video games. Meaning a win Friday wouldn’t solely transfer the U.S. that a lot nearer to the following spherical, it will additionally serve discover that this workforce, like spiders, may be intimidating.

“It’s obviously a huge opportunity to fast track the impact that we can have,” Adams mentioned. “High pressure, a privileged moment to step on the field against some of these guys. We respect them.

“And when you get a result in a game like this, you know, people start to respect Americans a little bit more.”