Costa Rica Coffee Guide

USA plan to go on offensive against Belgium during World Cup clash

July 1, 2014

SALVADOR, Brazil — United States coach Jurgen Klinsmann says his team’s attack will be the best form of defense when his underdogs tackle Belgium on Tuesday at 2 p.m. for a place in the World Cup quarterfinals.

The United States confounded all pre-tournament predictions by battling their way out of a daunting Group G, finishing behind Germany but claiming the runners-up spot ahead of Portugal and Ghana.

Klinsmann acknowledged, however, that his team must improve on last Thursday’s 1-0 defeat by the Germans in Recife if they are to provide another shock by eliminating Belgium, regarded by many as the tournament’s dark horse.

Of particular concern to Klinsmann is his team’s offense. The coach wants to see a better effort against a Belgium side who may be missing centerbacks Vincent Kompany and Thomas Vermaelen, both of whom are battling to recover from injuries.

“It’s definitely something we learnt out of the Germany game,” Klinsmann said. “We were too deep, especially the first 20 minutes.”

Belgium ‘Prefer to win 1-0’

Klinsmann was criticized by sections of the U.S. media on the eve of the tournament for stating that his side had no realistic chance of success.

But since reaching the knockout phase, Klinsmann has been bullishly telling his players they can go beyond the last 16 and ordering them to change their return flights for the Monday after the July 13 final.

His side will also be playing a familiar opposition. In two friendlies in the last three years, Belgium have recorded two victories, winning 1-0 in 2011 before recording a 4-2 success away in May last year.

“They are full of individual talent, there’s no doubt about it,” Klinsmann reflected.

“We had the opportunity to play them twice in the last two years. Both times they came out as the winning team, but we also believe we can have enough confidence going into this very special knockout game to say we are able to beat them.”

Klinsmann’s Belgian counterpart, Marc Wilmots, meanwhile has shrugged off suggestions that his team have so far failed to contribute to the feast of attacking football being laid on at this World Cup.

Three group wins over Algeria, Russia and South Korea were secured with very little flair, but Wilmots is not concerned.

“If you ask whether I’d rather put on a good show and go out at the first stage, or win games 1-0, I prefer to win 1-0,” Wilmots said.

“It’s clear — you have to be a realist and playing to the gallery is not the goal.”

You may be interested

Henrietta Boggs, First Lady of the Revolution, dies at 102
Archive
2588 views
Archive
2588 views

Henrietta Boggs, First Lady of the Revolution, dies at 102

Mike Faulk - September 24, 2020

Henrietta Boggs, the Alabama woman who married a revolutionary President of Costa Rica and became the First Lady of the Revolution,…

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Thursday, September 24
Costa Rica
5503 views
Costa Rica
5503 views

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Thursday, September 24

Alejandro Zúñiga - September 24, 2020

Costa Rica announced 14 new coronavirus-related deaths over the last day for a total of 795, according to official data…

Costa Rica expands list of authorized states, countries for tourists
Costa Rica
1061 views
Costa Rica
1061 views

Costa Rica expands list of authorized states, countries for tourists

Alejandro Zúñiga - September 24, 2020

Costa Rica has expanded the list of countries and U.S. states from which it will welcome tourists in October, Tourism…